Can you protect her, cherish her and handle her?

Well over forty years ago, my wife engineered our first date while a teenager. Coming from several generations of college-educated women, she let me know that she was not the stay-at-home type.

Nor was she content with a mere undergraduate degree. Both bright and ambitious, she charted her own course. She wanted a man able to share her vision.

Yet, underneath it all, she needed someone to quite literally take her in hand. As a result, she turned down young men willing to worship the ground on which she walked and, instead, chose the man finally willing to put her over his lap!

I have written the above to make a few salient points.

First, women choose men—not the other way around. Part of that expectation is that a man be able to handle her.

It is not so much a conscious choice as a biological drive linked to survival of the species. For if a man cannot tame the beast that is within her, odds are that he will not have the courage to protect her or their children.

Second, women test. It is in their nature. They have to make sure that they have made the right choice of mate. Again, this is a self-protective mechanism.

The more unsure a woman is of male prowess, the more likely she is to test. If the man continues to fall short of her expectations, she will come to loathe him. This creates marriages made in hell. Because if the woman is not happy, no one around her is going to be happy!

Third, the wise husband does nothing to undermine his wife. Talk to women in successful taken in hand relationships and they tend to say something like ninety or ninety-five percent of the time their husbands are incredibly supportive, considerate, affectionate, and kind. On the other hand, when he says, “No,” he means it!

I still open doors for my wife and seat her in restaurants. Sometimes, she will hang onto me like a teenager. I know there are times when people think that we are dating.

The truth is that women want men to win. Strong men—not tyrants—give a woman security. A woman must know that the man she has chosen is able to protect her, handle her, and cherish her. Knowing when to fulfill each of those roles comes in knowing the woman.

The supposed mystique of women is not that difficult to fathom. Women tend to be more alike than they will ever admit. Nevertheless, it takes patience to understand women. This is often not the province of impatient novices. The old truism is that men expect too much too soon and give too little too late. It is not a recipe for a successful relationship. Such husbands become relegated to that often-despised category of first boyfriends—unable to see beyond what they want rather than what a woman needs.

Given time, a woman will all but tell a man how to handle her. It is up to the man not only to listen with his ears, but also with his mind, heart, and instincts. To add to the lines of an old Kenny Rogers song, a man needs to know when to hold his cards, when to fold his hand, and when to lay his cards on the table.


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Finally, a Breakthrough

Noone, I really appreciate your posts, which speak to me so well, clarifying what I had not previously been able to articulate. My husband had found this site a few years ago, when most of the comments were made by men, long before I found it independent of him. Recently, after having read every one of your posts, I asked my husband to read them as well, and I quoted you on several occasions, having printed out some of your posts.

I am a newlywed, remarrying after widowhood. My new husband and I had discussed the value of a male-led relationship prior to marriage. However, theory and practice take time to come together. He had spanked me for fun prior to our marriage. He had also spanked me for discipline after about a week of being a married couple.

Recently we had a two week stalemate resulting from a series of negative interactions in which I disrespected him repeatedly, although not intentionally. We did talk about the events and I thought we were making progress in resolving the conflict. I told him that these things were part of our learning curve as a new couple and that it was to be expected that we would have conflicts, as every couple does.

I had asked for his forgiveness and answered his questions about the situation to the best of my ability. It turned out that he was holding onto the problems and the negative feelings, despite several productive (at least in my mind) "conflict resolution" talks. He was taking time to sort things out by analyzing every possible angle.

During this tortuous two week roller coaster ride, I asked him to spank me because I was feeling seriously disconnected from my husband and I wanted to feel close to him again. During one of our talks he told me he was concerned about going too far and becoming violent. I really appreciated his acknowledging that fear, knowing that he held back because of his love for me. He added that he knows that spanking me is the right thing to do, yet his concern about losing control was keeping him from doing what we both had decided we want.

I also told him that I hadn't felt his authority during this time. He knew it because he was withdrawing from me. Yes, I did feel myself pushing him to exert his control during this time. I also told him I was feeling resentful because he had disconnected from the relationship emotionally, physically, and sexually.

About a week ago I told him about maintenance spankings, hoping to open his eyes to a way to exert his authority that might be less emotionally laden, since they wouldn't necessarily be connected to any particular incident. He expressed interest, but it went no further.

Four days ago I was tearful during another talk and he questioned whether we were going to make it as a couple. I was highly alarmed to hear this. I wondered why he continued to hesitate taking me in hand, which I believed would restore our connection. As he sat at his computer, having told me to drop the subject, which, by the way, he had initiated, I felt desperate. I got on the floor beside his chair and wrapped my arms around his waist. He hugged me and told me it would be all right, but I was concerned that the situation was deteriorating past the point of a stalemate after his statement about our viability as a couple.

I got up and went to the bedroom to retrieve his paddle. I was terrified of rejection, but determined to present it to him, hoping he would finally spank me and let go of the conflict. To my relief, he took me up on my offer, escorting me into the bedroom to administer the much needed spanking. Afterwards I hugged him and asked him if he had forgiven me, which he affirmed. Later that evening, our sexual connection was restored in quite an intense way.

I think that because he was able to maintain control during the spanking and because his fear of becoming violent did not manifest, he had a personal breakthrough. He told me that finally spanking me for discipline helped him psychologically, which I think means it gave him the confidence to lead our relationship again.

Since that day, he has decided to spank me daily for a week, just to remind me that he is in charge. It seems we've had a breakthrough. Last night, three days into the "spanking week," (and after my spanking for the day) I became angry at him because of a behavior he did which I considered to be seriously selfish. My response was to leave the room with a book, fully determined to ignore him and sulk.

After only a few minutes, he appeared, paddle in hand. As soon as I saw the paddle, I thought, "I do not want another spanking; I'm angry." However, when he ordered me to get off the sofa and lie on the floor, I complied without question. I actually began to cry during that spanking, not because it hurt, but because I was so emotionally keyed up. Afterwards, he said he had done what he had to do and that these things (the incident that led to my sulking) were going to happen and we are still learning about each other. It was strange and gratifying to hear my own words coming from him!

Before we went to bed I thanked him for taking me in hand and not allowing the situation to fester. I thanked him again when he called me from work about an hour ago. I feel very close to my husband since he has decided to act on what he and I agreed upon. I know this is a process and it won't always go smoothly, yet I believe we are back on track.

He says it is his job to lead, provide, protect, and discipline me. I feel safe with him when he does these things. Right now, I feel very safe and happy to have married this good man.


Shelly, I read your reply to

Shelly, I read your reply to Noone with interest—specifically the part about he spanking you daily to remind you who is in charge. Years ago when I was first married, my husband did something similar. I routinely challenged my husband's decisions in inappropriate ways and although I agreed to our roles, I had a hard time 'getting with the program' (as my husband said). So, my husband decided to put many 'little' rules in place—sort of like micro-managing me and each time I 'broke' a rule, he took me in hand—not necessarily through a spanking. Because I was taken in hand so often, I eventually changed those larger habits that were causing problems in our life and he eventually provided me all the positive attention I needed. So after a while, things worked out quite well.

I wish you and your husband the very best!

Quite a Lovely Turnaround

Thanks, M, for your comments. I'm glad you had a similar experience that worked well for you.

Since the breakthrough we have been getting along swimmingly. We have managed to talk through minor difficulties and let them go quickly. He has reasserted his authority, which makes me feel safe and protected.

I did marry a good man. He is concerned for my well-being and the success of our marriage.


The Path Is Not Always Smooth

The emotional release induced by a firm paddling is usually the most satisfying aspect of Taken in Hand for many women. It is something that is quite easy to see in hindsight and quite difficult to explain to novices.

Your post also points out another important aspect of Taken in Hand relationships. The path to domestic tranquility is not always smooth. First really paddlings can be quite difficult for both husband and wife.

It may also be worth mentioning that a man's hand is seldom adequate to give a woman the experience she needs—and, even may want.

Very well said

Thank you Noone—great summary—seems so obvious to me, maybe there's hope other men might understand also.