Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Cultivating Submission post three: Build him up, the power of the spoken word

Hello, readers! For those of you following this series, thanks for being patient with me as I took a little while to get this post up. We had a lovely vacation last week, and are just settling back home now! I'm ready to get back into the swing of things. This month, I'm posting a four-week challenge for those who are interested in taking things to a deeper level with submission. 

Today's topic is, in my opinion, is one of the most important in building one's dynamic, and also one of the easiest. 

The first topic, embracing humility, is a simple concept, but quite difficult in the implementation as it entails being humble, accepting criticism, and letting go of control. Many of us find being in control empowering and safe, and even though we may theoretically wish not to be in control – we may fantasize about relinquishing control and obeying another in authority – the actual practice of letting go of control is very difficult. The second topic, bedroom submission, also pushes comfort zones and can be difficult because it puts us in a place of vulnerability. We fear rejection, and again, what's comfortable to us feels safe. 

If you take on this week's challenge, however, you truly have nothing to lose. It is, I think, one of the simplest ways to enhance your dynamic, and one that can be easily overlooked or discounted. 

Last year, I posted a guest post on why DD makes a man feel ten feet tall. This post was very well received, re-posted many times, and the feedback I got was incredible. It resonated. Yes, we said, that's one of the most beautiful things about this dynamic! One fear we submissives often have is that the pleasure is one-sided. I know I struggled with that. I did fear for a while that I was the only one who really wanted this. Was I the only one attracted to this lifestyle choice? It was only after we embraced the application of DD in our relationship that we both began to see how mutually beneficial the arrangement was. And yes, one of the benefits for him is how much he felt trusted, appreciated, and respected, as a result of my obedience to him. 

One of the reasons so many of us desire this dynamic is because it makes us feel special. We feel we are of paramount importance. We love the attention. Certainly, there are other benefits, such as the accountability, intimacy, and erotic attraction, but feeling cherished and desired is at the heart of a committed DD or DS dynamic. 

What do our men feel, though? 

In the past years, as I've communicated with others regarding relationships, I've learned a few things. I'm not just talking about DD or DS dynamics, either, but with friends and family and people I know who are married or dating. And there's one thing that's become clear to me time and time again. Women and men are different creatures. We relate differently, think differently, and behave differently. There are no hard and fast rules, of course, but there's an incredible amount of wisdom in the old “Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus,” truth that needs to be taken into account as we pursue depth in our relationships. 

We women so often make the mistake of assuming that men will, or at least should, behave the way we do. Men also often assume that women will behave the way men do. 

Simply put, we don't. 

In our efforts to avoid labeling, categorizing, and judging one another, we've done away with a recognition that men and women are different creatures. I think that's a mistake. If two people speak different languages, it only follows that occasionally communication will become difficult. If we learn to speak one another's languages, we can truly understand one another at a deeper level. 

What does this all have to do with my topic today? 

Building him up has to do with speaking his language, the language of the male species. ;) 

Inasmuch as we women want to be cherished, men want to be trusted. Where we want to be valued, they want to be appreciated. This is nothing I've invented. It's not a ground-breaking discovery. It's simply something I've come to see as truth through a variety of sources I've read, and the many many interactions I've been blessed to have with other couples. 

If men want to be trusted and appreciated, it therefore follows that it is in our best interest to do what we can to make them feel trusted and appreciated. 

So let's get down to the nitty gritty, then, shall we? 

How does one go about making our significant other feel trusted and appreciated? This is where we build him up, and where I will pose this week's challenge. 

The challenge is to build him up in what you say. 

Thank him. 

Do you thank him for working hard? When he comes home after working all day, or comes in for a cold drink after mowing the lawn, or when he takes the children to the park so you can get caught up on housework? It's so easy to get so busy with what we're doing that we forget the simplest of courtesies. A simple “thank you.” 

If we are seeking to let go of control, it's vitally important we don't offer one of the “backhanded compliment thank you's.” What are those? “Thank you for putting the baby to bed, but can you please do it earlier next time?” “Thank you for sweeping the floor, but you missed the right corner.” And let's be frank on the DD level. “Thank you for holding me accountable, but I didn't like how you lectured me.” 

Ouch. You're better off not thanking him at all, if it's going to be stated in a passive-aggressive way. I've been there. I've done that. I still fight it, sometimes, the desire to somehow snatch back control in subtle ways. 

Try to give thanks with no strings attached. 

If you are in the process of building your dynamic, it's very important to remember to thank him when he does step up to the plate, as you want him to. It's challenging uttering those embarrassing words, “Thank you for disciplining me,” but I promise, it's worth the effort. Become transparent. Embrace the vulnerability. Say the words. 

Praise him. 

Of the five love languages, the one I'm really not very good at is the “words of affirmation.” It's not very high in my own list of love languages (in fact, last I checked, it was at the bottom), so it's one I need to make a conscious effort with, not just with Jason, but with my children and friends as well. I grew up in a home where praise was sparing, and sadly it makes me uncomfortable to praise others. I also was taught that we should avoid being proud, and it's important not to get a big head. Although that's true, it doesn't mean there's never a time and place for praise. 

We often forget how important it is to praise our husbands. If you're someone who's forgotten this, I challenge you to do it. It sometimes feels foreign to us. Still, you may find it's very much worth the effort.

The other day Jason went to work dressed to the nines – crisp white shirt, black slacks – he looked amazing. I made sure to tell him. He looked hot! Made my heart go pitter-patter. Why not tell him? 

Do you love the new beard your husband is sporting? The tan he's gotten over the summer? The way he looks lying in bed in his white t-shirt when you join him in bed at night? I've told Jason that one of my very very favorite smells is the smell of his clean white t-shirt he's wearing when I'm curled up on his chest. It's so true. Swoon! Tell him. He needs to hear these things. 

Physical praise isn't the only way to praise him, though. Do you love how he makes your baby belly laugh when he pretends her spoon is an airplane? Does it make you proud how he sits down after a long day of work and does homework with your children? Does he take time from what little free time he has to help his mother buy groceries, or get her car fixed? 

We are so busy, it's easy to fall into the temptation of focusing on our own needs and tasks at hand. Try to see beyond those. Try to see what he's doing, too. And when you do, praise him for it. Don't just limit your praise to face-to-face, either. Send a text or email. Leave him a note. Have fun with it.

Speak highly of him to others. 

Many have asked me how it is that Jason and I have arrived where we are. It's taken time, and we're still learning, but one thing I've shared that has helped me is this little blog of mine. 

How has blogging helped? Jason is truly an amazing Dominant. He meets my needs in spades, time and time and time again, and I make no bones about it on this blog. He reads this blog. He knows how much I love him. In reading my blog, he knows how much I appreciate the fact that he doms me so well. This way of communicating with one another has truly enhanced our dynamic, because speaking highly of Jason builds him up. Building him up is crucial as he grows into his role as Dominant. 

Many of us avoid building our husbands up, because we don't want to sound like we're bragging. Try to get past that, because the effort you make in speaking highly of him goes a long way. And the more you speak highly of him, the less tempted you are to speak negatively (which has the exact opposite effect at building him up and therefore a negative effect on your dynamic). It's okay to speak frankly with friends, but do try to be careful with how you choose. 

So now, for this week's challenge. 

Thank him. At least once a day, thank him for something he's done. 

Praise him. At least once a day, praise him for something he's done. Remember, even the simplest praise goes a long way. 

Speak highly of him to others. When the opportunity arises, speak highly of him. When you talk with your mom, your pastor, or your best friend, is there a chance you can share with them how hard he's worked, an accomplishment he's achieved, or how proud you are of him? 

Again, these are very simple ways you can build him up. Focus on the power of the spoken word. The more you build him up, the easier it becomes for him to lead. 

Join me next week as I post the fourth and final installment in this series. And thank you for all the positive feedback!

Monday, July 13, 2015

Cultivating Submission, Post Two: In The Bedroom

Hello! For the month of July, I'm posting a series of posts aimed at helping us challenge ourselves to cultivate submission. The topics of the posts I have planned are HERE, and the first post in the series can be found HERE

And now, time to take off the gloves and get down to business. 

In the interest of being honest and straight-forward, I'm going to be blunt, but I'll try to do it in good taste. That said, I know some of my readers are on the more conservative side, so please be aware that I'll be talking about sex here. In some detail. 

Submission in the bedroom. Pretty easy, right? Accept sex whenever he wants, and do whatever he asks. Right? Well, that was a quick post. Looks like my job here is done!

Yes, I'm teasing! It's not that simple. And where's the challenge in that? If it were that simple, there wouldn't be so much frustration in this area. Before I get to this week's challenge, there are a few points I'd like to make. 

First. Many women readily admit that that they desire to be dominated. Many in this community want to be spanked. They crave it. They're frustrated when they aren't dominated the way they'd like. But we often overlook a very important fact: sexual acts of submission can be every bit as vital in establishing a D/S dynamic as spanking. 

Second. Most women who desire a D/S dynamic are very much erotically attracted to it. Most have a bit of a kinky side. Many read books about it, fantasize about it, and it's a pretty big deal. The other thing is...women who are in touch with their sex drives and fantasies tend to have pretty active sex drives. Kinky women tend to like sex, and lots of it. However, it doesn't always necessarily follow that their husbands are as into it – and by that I mean spanking, sex, or kinky sex lol – as they are. I can't tell you how many women, over and over and over again, have written to me frustrated because their husband isn't interested in sex the way they wish. 

Jason and I do have a very active, very fulfilling, sex life. An active, fulfilling sex life very much fuels a working D/S dynamic. But this wasn't always the case with us. So I'm going to share a bit about how things changed for us in this area, what I've learned along the way, and I'll offer some tips on how we can challenge ourselves in this area. 

For years, I was so reserved in bed. We had boring sex, because I wouldn't let him try anything that was out of my comfort zone. Boring sex isn't all that fun, so we really wouldn't go at it very often. I knew I wanted him to spank me, but I was far too shy to ask for it, and I also thought this was a strange idea. Why did I want to be spanked? I didn't know anyone else found this sexy, so I squelched this fantasy for a very long time. I've shared my story before with how I finally got up the nerve to ask him to spank me – I did it with a “swap fantasy” pillow talk idea – and after I asked him to spank me, he was game, put me over his lap, and gave me a thorough spanking with his hand. That was the I wanted the spanking to hurt, but I didn't know anything about belts or paddles. I wanted to feel safe and not scared, so he used his hand and put me over his lap. That night, we made love, I climaxed harder than I ever had before, and I cried my eyes out after we made love. I didn't understand why I cried. Somehow, his spanking me had unearthed a deep desire of mine I hadn't really even known was hidden. 

And things took off. Women are emotional creatures and men largely physical (though of course we all relate both physically and emotionally). So it's not uncommon for us women to already know in our minds what we'd like to try, because the emotional idea of fulfilling a spanking fantasy appeals to our emotions (being dominated, his being in charge, etc). But men are physical, and many are turned off by the idea of spanking. Why? They relate it to being childish, or in a kinky area that's way out of their comfort zones. So how do we come to an understanding? We need to find ways that we're both comfortable exploring. I was comfortable with an over-the-knee spanking, and so was he. At the time, he had no interest in tying me up, or using his belt, or anything like that. We had to be patient, and explore things slowly. What areas were arousing and what were weird? What made us comfortable and what didn't? We both had to be willing to be patient with the other. 

But submission doesn't stop or start with a spanking. There's far more to it than that. 

So while we were exploring the whole spanking thing, I had to ask myself, what other ways could I be submissive in bed? 

Well, for starters (I warned you I'd be blunt), I could learn how to give the man oral sex. How many men don't like oral sex? Honestly...there aren't that many. I was so reserved about doing this, though, and my reservations showed. I was hesitant, and hesitant in bed isn't sexy. So, I learned. I read The Bad Girl's Bible. I asked him what he liked. I read any website I could find on how to improve (and cleared my history religiously). I even asked friends who were comfortable with this. And, I, um...practiced. A real lot. Like, every day. 

He was okay with this lol. 

And the more I practiced the better I got. The more I got on my knees and pleased my man, the better our sex life got. He was more than willing to put me over his lap if I got on my knees. It became routine: spanking and blow job, spanking and blow job. There were things we did to make it easier for me. Sometimes he would whip off his t-shirt and blindfold me (very haaawwwt). Sometimes he would take the tail end of his belt and spank me as I was already on my knees (again, haaawwt). 

I've often given the advice to offer a bit of a barter: blow job for a spanking. I wouldn't do this in a controlling way, of course, but a teasing/playful/sexy way is welcome. It's another version of “you show me, I'll show you.” Many many men are averse (at least initially) to spanking. Few are averse to receiving oral sex. Giving oral sex is a submissive act. Try to see that the two are linked; if he won't spank you, at the very least offer to submit to him sexually by not going over his lap but getting on your knees. 

So sex began to ramp up for us. For me, I was entering into my sexual prime (early thirties) and my appetite was insatiable. Jason is older than I am, and a busy father and manager, so he would often come home from work exhausted. By the time I was raring to go to have sex, he wasn't up for it. This frustrated me. He's a normal guy with a healthy sexual appetite, but reality sets in. Kids get up at night. Jobs demand hours. Sometimes I would want sex and he wouldn't. 

There's a bit of an interesting juxtaposition in the D/S community. In mainstream society, it's not uncommon for women to not want sex, when their husbands do. It's so common, there are jokes about it, memes even. But in the D/S world, since we women are pretty much in touch with our sexual desires, we often have a higher appetite than our men do. And when we are denied, we feel rejected, and even angry. We think, “how many men want sex and can't have it? It's here, yours for the taking, and you don't want it? Don't you know how lucky you are?” 

Ladies, if there's anything that throws cold water on a sex drive, it's a haughty snotty attitude. Please, don't hold your sexual desires over your man. If he's tired, let the man sleep. If he's not interested in tying you up and strapping you, respect his comfort zones. 

If you want him to lead, then it follows you must respect his own desires. If you want him to dominate you, you must submit. And submission isn't about obeying what we think we should obey! It's about allowing him to lead. Denying your own desire to please him. I don't mean that what you want isn't important; it absolutely is. But ask yourself this: whose needs are you putting first, yours or his? So please keep that in mind. 

However, often what's holding us back is our own reservations. 

Are there areas you are holding back? I've already explained about my reticence in giving oral sex. That can be overcome, I assure you. I now adore pleasing him in this area, have become quite good at it, and it's not a turn off at all (quite the opposite). 

But there are so many other areas that were holding me back. I was self-conscious about my post-baby-body. Jason was not! He adores my body, and made so many efforts to make me see that I was beautiful to him. What I didn't know was that my own lack of confidence in this area was unattractive. When I began accepting what he said – submitting to his praise of my body – I became more confident. And when I became more confident, I became even more attractive to him. 

Confidence is attractive. 

I don't care if you're overweight, have stretch marks, or have saggy breasts from breastfeeding. You're his. He wouldn't have married you if he didn't find you beautiful. Embrace your beauty. We weren't meant to be twenty-something and svelte for life; our bodies aren't designed that way. 

It's not the beauty of youth that fuels us for decades in the bedroom. It's the vulnerability and self-giving. 

That said, it's also important that you do take the best care of your physical appearance you can. For many, it's routine, but for others, we've learned to put our self-care at the end of our priority list. If this is the case for you, it's time to make your own self-care important again. Are there areas in your own appearance that you may be overlooking, because you've denied your own self-care? It's not necessary to spend oodles of time and money on your own self-care. Simply take a long, hard look at how well you take care of yourself, and ask if there are areas you can improve. Do your clothes fit well? Are your hair and nails kept up, and attractive? Does he like when you wear a little make-up or jewelry? Do you get enough rest? Can you improve your diet? Do you need to lose, or gain, weight? 

You are worth it. Embrace your beauty, and work it. Ditch the granny undies. Buy something sexy. Live a little! Surprise him in bed wearing nothing but your birthday suit. Take a long shower, and use a nice scented lotion. Use your imagination. 

Another thing I didn't realize for a very long time was that men need to be desired, too. It's vital to make your husband feel like you want him physically. We often are under the mistaken belief that in order to be submissive, we must accept what he gives or takes, and that precludes any initiation on our part. Not true. Jason loves when I put down my book to kiss him, or make out, and one thing leads to another. He loves when I run my hands over his chest or biceps or my finger around the strong edge of his jaw and tell him how hot he is. Loves it. When I lie up on his chest and curl my leg around him and tell him what a strong, sexy man he is, things heat up. 

Kiss him. Whisper naughty things in his ear. Straddle him. Work him up to a sexy blow job. Take his belt off with your teeth. Ahem. You get the idea. Show him you want him. Show him you need him. If he's stressed, offer to let him lie back while you please him, with no thought to your own pleasure. No strings attached. He doesn't have to spank you. He doesn't have to have sex whenever it's convenient for you. Be receptive to his initiating, and show him he attracts you by initiating yourself. 

Not all men welcome initiation, but almost all do want to feel wanted. Follow his lead and obey him.

If you do initiate, and he's not interested, accept his answer. It's not necessarily a rejection of you. If he is to be your leader and you submissive to him, it follows that you must obey him in all areas. 

This doesn't mean you only do what he wants and never share your own desires. Do be honest; do tell him what you fantasize about. But be prepared that he may not be into what you are, and that's okay. Again, it's not necessarily a rejection of you. 

I've covered a lot here, so now I'm going to sum it up and post this week's challenge. 

Overcome your fear in the bedroom. 

Are there things holding you back? Do you find you're reticent to give him oral sex, or to try other positions, or to do other things outside your comfort zone? Identify what those are, and try to let go of some of your reservations. Learn how to do new things. Make love with the lights on. Take a trip to the naughty shop and buy a little somethin'. Go to bed naked. Get on all fours. Be willing to accept lovemaking with no reciprocation. Be giving of yourself, and willing to take risks. 

Show an interest in him.

Make an intentional effort to show him he's attractive to you. Make out. Admire his biceps. Massage his feet, or back, while he's watching tv. When he's waking up in the morning, sneak under the covers and kiss his inner thighs. Lay in bed next to him and surprise him with your hand under the covers while you watch tv. Trace your fingers all over his chest. Hop into the shower with him. Strip off your clothes and crawl into bed while he's on his tablet. Yes, yes, I know, some of the things I'm saying here are making you squirm. Push past the squirm factor! 

Find what's holding you back

Are there things in your life that are holding you back in this area? Is it your own perception of how your sex life “should” be? Do you immerse yourself in erotic romance novels that leave you feeling unsatisfied with your own love life? Do you read blogs about other women with active sex lives and feed envious thoughts? Are you completely focused on spanking, and frustrated with his own reticence? Are you embarrassed about your weight, or feel unattractive? This week, identify at least two areas that are holding you back from the beauty of what you already have in front of you, then do something about it. 

Be willing to receive what's given

Does he like to wake you up in the middle of the night for sex? Does he like a quickie in the afternoon when he comes home for lunch? Has he always fantasized about a blow job in the car? 

Submit to him, push past your fears, and trust him. 

Be thankful for what you have. Guard your thoughts. Be giving and generous with yourself. And overall, be willing to follow his lead. 

Friday, July 10, 2015

To Whom Should You Submit?

I'm taking a bit of a break between posts on the submission series, because a comment by a reader on the first post concerned me a good deal. She asked if I was assuming the man is always right, and she pointed out that a marriage should not be based on domineering behavior. She also pointed out that in a good relationship, both partners need to be willing to make the marriage work. 

What concerns me is that my posts on submission could somehow be used to defend an abusive or dysfunctional relationship. So please, allow me to take a moment to clarify some very important points.

I have made some assumptions that perhaps I shouldn't make. You see, I've been blogging now for a few years, which means that I get quite a few readers. Of the many readers who visit daily, a very, very small portion comment and an even smaller portion write to me. We're talking a fraction of one percent who are in contact with me. Of the people who comment and write, the vast majority are either in a DD or DS dynamic, or want to be. Most are married couples, most in a traditional male-led dynamic. Some are just interested in DD, yes, but most who communicate with me are in a healthy relationship. So I assume, when writing, that the average readers is in, or wants to be in, a healthy relationship. 

Second, the vast majority of blog readers in general (not just my blog) don't just read the current post, but read enough posts that they garner an understanding of the blogger's philosophies, theories, personality, and the like. The second wrong assumption I've made is that those of you reading my series on submission have read some of my others posts, in which I consistently and clearly assert my opinion that not all men are worthy of submission, neither partner is always in the right, and that you must be very careful when approaching a dynamic such as this, which is fraught with danger. 

I apologize for having made these assumptions. It pains me to think that something I have posted could be used to defend an unhealthy, harmful relationship. So please, allow me a minute to assert a few important facts. 

Not all men are worthy of submission. 

I've said it before, but it needs to be said again. Leadership and domination are not the same as abuse. You should always feel safe and cared for; if you don't, then please ask yourself if your relationship is healthy. Please do not consent to submit to a man who is abusive, an addict, or mentally ill. When you submit yourself to someone, you put yourself at great risk. You are extremely vulnerable. You can be hurt both physically, mentally, and emotionally. 

Ask yourself: do I feel safe? Do I trust this person? Can he be depended on to make mature, responsible decisions? Can he handle the responsibility of being in authority? Is he motivated for selfish reasons, or does he love me? Is he mature enough to meet my needs? 

You are worthy of love. Please don't let your desire to loved, taken care of, and protected, cloud your judgment. 

Jason and I have been married for thirteen years. I've obeyed him since before we were married. But before Jason, I did not date anyone, except a handful of casual dates in high school. I didn't meet anyone who interested me or attracted me the way he did, but I also knew even then that I wanted a traditional, male-led relationship. I grew up with both a father and step-father who were not men I would have submitted to. One was abusive and had a hair-trigger temper, the other was a loving man who was an addict. Neither could be trusted to lead. Jason could. So I trusted him. 

Please, exercise caution when you choose to submit. 

Finally, I want to clarify why I'm writing this series on submission. It is certainly not because I think the man is always right. That would be foolish. There's no such thing as a human being who is without fault. All human beings make mistakes. We all act selfishly at times. We all have lapses in judgment. We all have imperfections. Certainly men are not mini-gods that walk on water. 

Why, then, focus on the submissive's actions? Is it because I feel this should be one-sided? Do I think the submissive needs to be the only one giving of herself? No. Definitely not. It is because the vast majority of women who read D/S blogs are women. 

We have no control over what our husbands do or say. They are in charge of themselves, not us. We can't control the actions of another human being. Should a relationship be built on the give and take of both partners? Absolutely. But in any relationship, we are responsible for what we put into it. We are the ones whose actions we control. So it makes no sense, to me, at least, to focus on how someone else “should” be acting. Instead of focusing our energy on what he should do, let's instead look at what we can do. 

Thanks for listening. Post two is schedule to go live Monday morning.