An iron hand in a velvet glove

An iron hand in a velvet glove

My husband and I have a Taken In Hand relationship in which he is head of the household. He is a former military commander, easily capable of doing a lot of harm to myself or anyone else being well over 6' tall. But there is a fine line between the wuss, as some put it, and the brute.

I regularly beat my husband at board games, analytical thinking and other intellectual pursuits. Having a post grad degree and an IQ well over 140, it's a given. We both are leaders in our industry and I run a company of my own, albeit not a Fortune 500 one, I founded a successful business 4 years ago. Both of us are Alpha types and I am regularly dominant over other women I encounter... and more than a few men.

Submission is an individual thing. I run the finances in our home (each to their talents), my husband still has final say on matters but defers to my suggestions when they are clearly well considered and/or in the best interest of our family as we have several children.

I would laugh if he asked me on the sofa to get a beer, but if I hear a certain tone or word, I will get that beer right away. The mood comes and it goes, but we have agreed upon tones and words that indicate when not to trifle with him. And I must admit, that does it for me and it makes the power arrangement very neat and clean. If he told me to wash the socks, and pulled my silver chain while doing it, he'd have a pile of nice warm fluffy socks in an hour!

For some, that means physical conquest, but don't forget the deeper, more sinister and erotically powerful psychological form of dominance and submission. Once you have established that, you can trust more on the physical.

We did not start with physical and rarely use it. Iron hand, velvet glove, see. It is safe and less tiresome for the man to figure out your thresholds and maintenance level. I am high maintenance in that, but the word or look is enough to keep it up most of the time. I am not being very good at my role being submissive if my husband must work too hard at it all the time to keep up his end of the bargain—the sexy devil! ;-)

When you first know someone and don't have the benefit of 10 or 20 years together, see if you can establish that mental/emotional/psychological link of dominance first. Then it's safe to move on to bigger and perhaps spankier (is that a word?) things....

Bramble

Taken In Hand tour start | next

Comments

Psychological dominance

My husband exercises a certain amount of psychological control over me, but he doesn't use it to extract service from me, he's never regarded me in the light of a servant. I do periodically shovel handfuls of clothes into the washing machine, including socks, but so does he, it's not something he would demand of me. and it would never occur to him to ask me to get him a drink that he could quite well get for himself. Actually, in the service area he has always given rather more to me than I to him (he is in the kitchen cooking Christmas lunch even as I write this, while here I am messing about on the computer).

Psychological dominace and submission

Tone of voice, a certain tilt to the head or raising of the eyebrows, and I know something is serious. Usually we then discuss the situation, though there are times when he makes a decision very quickly. I have no fear about voicing objections, or filling in details he might not be aware of.

I don't need to be fought into submission (we are not into the physical dominance/submission activities), it was a decision made long ago about how we would live, something that at first we believed was right due to church teaching. Later we came to realize that it worked for us, not for everybody.

It worked for us, in a large part due to the same iron hand in a velvet glove quality you write about. I trust his judgement, his love and care of me. I have never been treated like a servant, ordered around for his pleasure(well, except in some private and fun type situations), while my own needs or desires were belittled or ignored. How could I respect a man that treated me like that?

Respect is a big part our relationship. We both respect each other. Also, thankfulness, that we found each other, that we learned how to live together without all the strife and heartache we've seen so many go through in their marriages.

If the love of your life demands a beer....

Bramble said:

I have never been treated like a servant, ordered around for his pleasure(well, except in some private and fun type situations), while my own needs or desires were belittled or ignored. How could I respect a man that treated me like that?

Just because someone is enjoying serving someone else, that does not mean their own needs and desires are belittled or ignored. The two are seperate events—getting abused is not a logical consequence of serving someone. It is a possibility—but if someone is prone to abusing others, they will do so in any other random way they can, and this is a case outside of the scope of this website.

Ladies (and Gentlemen)—if the love of your life demands a beer—why not just get it for them? No-one yet has lost a diamond out of their crown for being nice to someone special, and note—they asked you. I think if you love them, no matter what the true power distribution in your relationship is—you jump to it if you're serious about loving the other person.

Now, if the request was a silly powergame, either play it at that level or shift the level to where you can play—but if they are stuck in a thirsty situation they can not abandon (online game, phonecall etc) they will thank you for it (and it leaves a pleaseant vibe for the day and a smile on their face!), and everyone wins in the end if you can always smoothly co-operate with each other as a team.

Be excellent to each other,

Cinnamon

Ps.: For men who are slightly puzzled at this concept—consider picking the coldest beer in the fridge ;)

Asking or demanding?

My husband doesn't demand that I do things for him, and I would dislike it if he did. What he does do quite often is come into the kitchen and put the kettle on to make a cup of tea, for then he'll go back upstairs and carry on working, and forget about the kettle. When he does this I finish making the tea and take it up to him, and he's always quite pleased, but it's not something he demands I do.

Demand or ask?

My husband can ask me anything he likes--get him a drink, run an errand etc. He asks politely and has good manners, and says thank you, too. That is not a demand. I can ask him to do little things for me, just as politely. We use good manners.

I can say no, if for some reason I can't do the thing asked, such as run an errand when my schedule is full.

I have no problem serving my husband in many ways, even if it is something he can do himself. Perhaps he is tired etc. I also serve my children in ways that make them happy, and even friends who are visiting our home. My service is freely given because I love these people.

He is the head of the household, I'm his wife. I'm not an employee or a servant. It is our marriage, our family, our home, as in a partnership.

I don't see where 'demands' for service would enhance this relationship or make me a more loving wife, or him a better husband.