I am in an advice-giving mood and thought I’d tackle another issue I often hear about from those venturing into Domestic Discipline for the first time. You reveal your desire to your partner, now what?
I’ve stated over and over that communication is key. Clear. Truthful. Open. Complete transparency and all the vulnerability that goes with it.
Easier said than done. Even if you agree in concept, how do you execute it? It’s even more challenging when you aren’t even sure of any of the details beyond you want accountability for your actions. Even more, your partner may still be processing the fact that you are apparently asking to be disciplined by them. Given all that, how do you start codifying and clarifying what it is you want and what the other person is willing to give?
When I first approached Mike with my idea of DD, I was armed with a list of “Duties and Obligations” that I made to help articulate the things for which I wanted him to hold me accountable. This helped him understand which behaviors I wanted his help with. From that, we were then able to talk about the consequences. Yes… gulp, the “S” word – spankings.
In interacting with other women, I found that many aren’t able to clearly articulate the “Duties and Obligations” they want, but they do have a vague idea. How do they “get it all out there” so the can discuss these things in a productive manner when you are still unclear on the details and they are still in a bit of shock over the idea of DD.
It’s like trying to place an order at a restaurant and not only do you not know what is on the menu, but they don’t yet fully comprehend that they are at a restaurant with you. What then?
Two bits of advice… or two-bit advice, after all, I always preface my advice with this disclaimer: Take it with a grain of salt. Relationships are complex enough that when you add in the range of emotions that come from considering DD, you can’t rely on a one-sized fits all approach. Seek input from those that have been there, but use it to form an approach that works for you, discarding what you feel won’t work. Your approach should be highly personalized and not based solely on what someone else says works.
BIT #1: SPACE
Give both you of you some space between introducing the topic and discussing the details. In my early posts I wrote of saying to Mike, “We don’t have to figure it all out right now.” I acknowledged that this was a lot to process. I shared that I have been reading about this type of lifestyle and we should read some stuff together. From there I suggested we both understand the pros and cons and get an idea on how we will incorporate this in our lives. For the moment, I just needed him to understand my general desires and my need to be accountable to him. That’s plenty for him to process. No need to dive into details.
The key is that this “space” is not days or weeks. It could be almost immediate – go to the internet and show him things you read. Or it could be the next day, at most. Whatever it is, make a time bound commitment. “Let’s sleep on it and tomorrow after work, I can show you some things online that can help explain this better.”
Yes. No. Maybe.
A deep, honest discussion about DD is daunting. Recognize it isn’t just you, and that he, too, is feeling intensely vulnerable. Call it out. “This is so hard for me to articulate and I feel very vulnerable right now, but is so important to me that I know we can get through it.”
I didn’t invent this, but it’s a good time for a Yes/No/Maybe list. As you read through things you bookmarked online, talk about what each of you think. Is it something you want? Something they want? Yes? No? Maybe?
Heck, take my contract as conversation fodder. Go through it with them. Of course, you may need to add a fourth option of, “Hell no!” LOL.
I recommend for you to have already gone through it on your own. Then, as you ask him, after he response you. . . gulp. . . show him your answer. If it doesn’t match his, then stop and talk about it.
I also recommend you agree to put it on the collective “Maybe” list and commit that initially the two of you are only going to implement the matching “Yes’s” Talk about the “maybes” but don’t dwell on them or try to reconcile them at this point. The goal in talking about them is to better understand each other, not to necessarily reconcile them on the spot, as you’ve already agreed in advance they will go on the “Maybe” list to be discussed in more detail later.
And before you start, you need to agree on what is meant by Yes, No, Maybe.
Yes – I want to.
It can also mean, “I think I am willing to.” This exercise is meant to elicit conversation, not just “yes/no.” It’s okay to not be definitive. “I like the sound of that, it intrigues me. What this infers to me is… What does it mean to you? ”
No – I don’t want to.
Again, can also mean, “I don’t think I want to. What that means to me is…. what does it mean to you?”
Maybe – I might.
You might want to add your own conditions or limitations. “Maybe, if…..” Or, it just might be, “Maybe, I will have to think about that one.”
None of these answers are a commitment at this point. They are just assessments of how you generally feel about them. Once you’ve gone through it and identified your common answers, then go back and more formally agree on what exactly you are committing to — ideally, a written contract.
You might want to add one more category to your answers
Meaning, “No, I don’t want to, but I love fantasizing about that.” It’s a great way to open up and share your fantasies. There are a lot of things we all fantasize about that are best kept on the fantasy list. I found sharing fantasies with my husband to be a way for us to connect more closely and feel more at ease being vulnerable to each other across a broad range of topics. It’s a great way to exercise your relationship muscle.
There’s my two-bits of two-bit advice on how you might go about introducing this topic to your mate!
NEXT: 378. Two Million Thanks, Covid, and a $281 Venti Latte. Where’s the Kink?
6 thoughts on “377. Yes. No. Maybe. – Starting Your Domestic Discipline”
I believe your story. There are many reasons why, but I like your positive attitude. There are always glitches and problems but positive people won’t dwell on them. Rather they showcase the end results which are often positive. Your ideas in this post are good. I opened up to my Queen while we were on a long car trip. So we were guaranteed some quality conversation time without interruptions. It’s important that there be a safe zone for the talk (enough time with no interruptions). It’s hard enough to be that open and vulnerable without having to worry about not being able to finish your talk.
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Thanks. And I agree, long car rides are great places for meaningful conversations!
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Jenny, though it has taken me some time, I have read all of your posts to date. I commend you for offering your own personal perspectives on the many nuances of DD themed relationships; and more so for trying to educate your readers. Of course, any individuals or couples reading through your “musings” and suggestions should amend them to suit their own comfort levels and circumstances. I know that you would agree with that approach.
Where I have struggled is with my total belief pertaining to the personal stories of your supposed, evolving DD journey. Be they stories about your husband, Kayla, your friends, family and/or neighbors. They come across as almost more fantasy than fact to me. Yes, I am sorry to say that. I want to believe them, but I remain a bit skeptical. Everything just seems to happen – or has happened – almost too perfectly for everyone involved. Now, I realize that my comments in this regard are not going to win me any fans or followers – but, I needed to be honest with my thoughts here.
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No need to apologize. Perhaps I am guilty of overly sanitizing things regarding what i choose to share. Clearly, not sanitized in so far as the specific activities I share, but about the reactions of those around me and how incidents seem to always resolve themselves in a nice little bow. Surely there is more angst, struggles, conflict, etc than i let on! Well, there probably is to a small degree. I tend to be a very positive person thus optimism prevails throughout my posts (at least i hope so). And i don’t often share much about the struggles, be they mine or that of others. I don’t do it to paint a false picture. It’s just that those struggles are more difficult for me to articulate in detail. I can’t help whether or not these come across as believable. My life is pretty unbelievable, even if i shared more of the conflicts and struggles. Besides being an optimististic person, I think sharing too much of the downside would paint an inaccurate picture. People may focus on that and not the end result — my chosen lifestyle is infinitely fulfilling for me. And that is what likely skews my outlook to always look at the bright side of DD!
Maybe i should share more of the occasional conflicts that arise? I don’t know. It’s just not what i like to dwell on.
Thank you for sharing your thoughts in a kind and straightforward manner.
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Trying to introduce anything that’s “outside” of traditional relationships isn’t easy to do and bringing the subject up can be rather difficult; I’ve said (and because I learned) that it’s in that moment where you’re not sure if you really know the person you’re with as well as you think you do. The main thing in any of this is communication and as you said it should be and I add the caveat that at this level of communication, it’s not going to be all that comfortable to literally put everything on the table.
Good advice, Jen.
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