If you thought I could end my last post the way I did and move on to something else, you must be new here. I was dying to elaborate! And in doing so, I’ll share two of the secret ingredients that I feel helped Mike and I flourish in Domestic Discipline.
My last post shared several “trivial” things for which I was punished. Early on in our DD it was these “trivial” things where Mike had the most difficulty. He didn’t want to be seen as being mean. Even with me telling him it was okay and that it was what I wanted, it took time for him to be convinced. I don’t think that is out of the ordinary for a DD dynamic that began at the wife’s behest.
But frankly, early on, I also had difficulty with accepting discipline for these “smaller” indiscretions for all the reasons I wrote on my post before last (in the “Smells Like Jens Spirit” section).
INGREDIENT ONE: CONSISTENCY
I hear sometimes from people who are struggling with adopting DD. I remind them that I didn’t start from where Mike and I are today. We had to go through a process of learning and accepting our roles. It didn’t just happen over night, but what helped us immensely was a commitment to consistency.
I was extremely fortunate as a newbie sub, in that, while not perfect, Mike was highly consistent from the start. He put aside his reservations and just “went for it” as he puts it. He would overcome his hesitancy by telling himself, “Well, this is what she said she wanted.”
Mike was extremely fortunate as a newbie Dom in that, while not perfect, I was highly consistent from the start. I put aside my reservations and just trusted my instincts. Those same instincts that gave me my DD epiphany.
When you both adopt a firm commitment to consistency, it helps you overcome your doubts and anything that may cause you to otherwise hesitate (such a the things I shared in 246. Subconsciousness of Wrong). Over time it all became more natural to us and more fulfilling and second nature for us. Mike is a wonderfully consistent Dom and, if I do say so myself, I am a very consistent submissive.
INGREDIENT TWO: COMMUNICATION
Our commitment to consistency was backed by our commitment to frequent, open, honest, and complete transparency in communicating our thoughts, dreams, and desires.
What’s tricky about this ingredient is that it isn’t an ingredient by itself. It is a compound that is formed from lots of other ingredients. The primary one being, you guessed it, vulnerability. Showing all your vulnerabilities and accepting all of your partners vulnerabilities requires love, trust, compassion, empathy, respect, understanding, and host of other ingredients. And guess what, you can’t just feel those things towards your partner. You have to feel them towards yourself – and that is even more difficult.
Love your partner? Trust them? Respect, empathize, etc, etc? No problem. Now, love yourself? Trust yourself? Respect yourself? Humm, sometimes that’s really difficult.
Yeah, getting all those mixed into the powerful “communication” recipe is not easy. You may be great in some, and need work in others, and if any aren’t “just right” then it will show in how fulfilling your final baked product is.
And both Mike and I agree that our Maintenance Sessions were invaluable in the successful development of our DD. Not only are they phenomenal communication tools, but they aided early on in making our commitment to consistency easier. Knowing that we were never more than six days away from discussing our concerns, allowed us to worry less about what happened in between those six days, giving us confidence to do what was necessary to be consistent in applying and accepting discipline.
Ultimately, communication comes back to vulnerability. I won’t repeat all my thoughts on vulnerability, other than to say it is the most elusive yet most powerful ingredient in any relationship, DD or otherwise. (several posts on Vulnerability are linked in FINDING MY HAPPINESS section of my Shortcuts).
And getting this recipe right is not a destination. It is the proverbial journey. It’s never perfect, and perfection can not be the goal. Progress, not perfection!
Mike has told me that once he fully understood what I wanted — not just heard me say it, but understood it in his mind and soul – he found it easy to be consistent. And what helped him understand it was my consistent feedback to him – especially when I would thank him. He said he desperately needed my approval and gratitude. Without it, he believes he would still be struggling with consistency. And THAT is why a sub giving thanks is part of my Golden Rule of Domestic Discipline.
And the other part of my golden rule is for the Dom to give the sub praise, and I told Mike that his praise was equally as valuable as my thanks was to him. He never fed into my own “consciousness of wrong.” He was always supportive, praising my efforts and my commitment to “finding myself.”
I realize Mike is Mike. Everyone is different. There are newbie Doms who don’t need such reassurance, and newbie subs who don’t need such praise. Thus, while I believe the basic ingredients of my recipe can help improve all relationships, D/s or vanilla, the mix of those ingredients must be based on what works for each individual person and couple. And you can’t figure out that mix if you don’t communicate. So if you are looking where to start, start with communication.
MIKE LIKES TO DOMINATE ME
Mike told me that he realizes now that he enjoys the power and influence over me. He didn’t always feel that way. Just as I had to overcome my “subconsciousness of wrong,” so did Mike. Just as society tends to view my submissiveness as a defect, they view Dominance as mean at best, brutal at worst. And those views once weighed on him.
Even for those who accept D/s, I sense that there is a tendency to more readily accept the joy the submissive gets from being submissive than there is to accept the joy the Dom gets from being dominant. Somehow the latter is more likely to be deemed as inappropriate. Submission is soft, beautiful, vulnerable, evoking empathy. Dominance is hard, brutal, and invulnerable, evoking disdain. That’s unfair.
It took Mike a long time to admit he enjoys disciplining me. As he explained it, he misconstrued enjoyment as being a preference; meaning a preference to spank me, find reasons to do it, lookto do it above all else, delighting in my pain. No, it is NOT any of that. It is not a preference he has. But, he does enjoy it.
I can enjoy my submission, not because of the pain, but because it represents fulfillment, joy, and pleasure in my oneness with Mike. Yet, somehow we want to deny the Dom from enjoying his Dominance for the fulfillment, joy, pleasure in his oneness with the sub. The truth is, Mike can enjoy it. And he does. It’s not a preference to the act of discipline. It is simply my preference to be submissive and his preference to be Dominant.
So back to the topic that started this rant. When it comes to “trivial” things for which I am punished – there really is no such thing. A failure in a commitment is a failure in a commitment, no matter how small or large. While the significance of the failure may influence the type of discipline, it should never influence whether or not I am disciplined.
Not every transgression requires a physical punishment. Sometimes sufficient discipline is simply Mike’s disapproval – a verbal discipline. Mike sometimes gives me a warning when he believes my actions are inappropriate or teetering on the edge – but a warning is not the same as ignoring – and frankly, sometimes his disapproving words are as powerful as a smack on the bottom.
Consistency is sacred. It is more important to be consistent than to give thought to ignoring a transgression. And if you agree with that, then remember what it takes to be consistent. . . communication. And what does it take to have great communication? All that stuff I already wrote about.
Experiment with your own recipe using my ingredients. See what wonderful things you and your partner can create for your relationship.