In an earlier article I explained that women who want their husband to take them in hand sometimes inadvertently undermine their husband's efforts to change. In that piece, I made some suggestions to help you facilitate rather than sabotage change. In this piece, I'd like to take a closer look at one technique that can make all the difference: “acting as if”.
If you want your husband to take control, one of the many things you can do that might help is to act as if the change has already happened. I shall explain why this works to facilitate change in a moment, but first, what exactly does it mean to “act as if” the changes have already happened? How do you “act as if”?
Begin by asking yourself the following question: If the change had already happened, what specifically would I be doing differently?
That is to say, what observable actions of yours would be different. Be specific. The answer is not “I would feel great!” I am asking what you would be doing differently, not how you would be feeling.
Yes, of course you would feel great. How would that show? What would you be doing that would tell your husband and others that you feel great?
You would be smiling more. You might be more animated. You might speak with a more enthusiastic tone of voice. You might be giving your husband more of what he wants. You might be unusually laidback about problems. (How would this manifest itself in specific, observable actions?) Your face and body language might look more relaxed, peaceful, serene, and happy. You might be more attentive to your husband's needs. (How would this manifest itself in specific, observable actions?) You might go out of your way to please him.
If he were taking you in hand, you might speak to him more respectfully, more lovingly, more happily. You might be more careful not to do things you know he hates. You might make more of an effort to do things for him that he would like. You might consult him more. You might be expressing more appreciation for him. You might accept decisions he makes instead of fighting him. (How would this manifest itself in specific, observable actions?) You might want him more sexually, and convey that with your eyes and body language. You might be less demanding and a lot more giving. (How would this manifest itself in specific, observable actions?) Even your tone of voice might convey more respect and deference and admiration for him.
Ask yourself what you would be doing differently if things were as you want them to be, and make a written list of every possible specific, observable difference. Check that everything on your list is specific and observable. When you have created this list, instead of waiting for your husband to change (and as I have said, often the husband has already changed and the wife simply can't see it) change yourself. Start making the changes you have listed—the changes you think would be the result of your husband taking you in hand.
Yes, I know. You think this is a crazy idea, but it is not. It is actually a standard technique that gets results. It is a way of facilitating change instead of sabotaging it.
“Acting as if” works in a number of different ways. Dwelling on the negative makes people feel worse. Acting as if things were how you would like them to be takes your focus off what is lacking and encourages you to focus on the positive. It takes your focus off yourself and puts it more on the relationship and the other person. This makes you feel better whatever else is happening.
“Acting as if” stops you pushing for change, and makes real change possible. It concentrates your mind on changing yourself instead of changing the other person. Trying to change the other person is fraught with danger and likely to be counterproductive. It is disrespectful and can be controlling. When you instead “act as if” things were how you want them to be, you are effectively giving him control, and you are also being nicer to him. And when you are kinder and more considerate, most people respond positively and become more generous-hearted towards you in turn.
Think of the relationship as a system. When you make changes by, for example, “acting as if” things were how you want them to be, you are making changes in the system that affect the system as a whole. Other parts of the system can be affected by even a small change somewhere in the system.
Some readers may be asking: isn't this technique manipulative? Actually no. In no way does it depend on keeping it a secret. Your husband might well be a psychologist who fully understands this technique, and it could still work. You could mention that you are “acting as if” and that would not be a problem (unless in telling him you were dumping yet more unhappiness and dissatisfaction on him). It is more about taking the pressure off your husband and changing yourself instead. That is not manipulation; that is taking action yourself to solve your own problem.
You may think that “acting as if” would make your husband less likely to take you in hand, because he would have less reason to take you in hand. You may think that behaving badly would be more likely to have the desired effect, because then he would have more reason to take you in hand. Big mistake. Colossal, egregious error! To provoke him by behaving badly (apart from playfully, which is entirely different) would be to subject him to a very nasty form of blackmail. If he has any sense, any self-respect, and any dominant tendencies, that is likely to disgust him. It may even make him do the opposite of what you want. He is much more likely to find it in his heart to give you what you want if you are being kind to him than if you are behaving badly.
“Acting as if” things were as you want them gives both of you a taste of the experience of your husband being in control. This can be surprisingly powerful for the woman as well as the man. You may be thinking that this is a lot of nonsense, and that the only thing that will satisfy you is being taken in hand and brought to submission, and I have every sympathy with that idea. However, if we have already established that that is not happening (at the moment, at any rate), it is in your interests to stop thinking about what you don't have, and start enjoying what you do have. And when you do things like “acting as if” he were in control and taking you in hand, you are giving him authority and control, and this helps you to become attuned to much more subtle control than you may currently think you need.
Women who put their heart into this tend to grow to appreciate the smallest expression of authority on the man's part. When the woman consults the man, this in itself can be thrilling. At first, the man may well react as though he finds it most peculiar to be consulted, but at some point he may simply reply by telling the woman what to do. The woman then experiences the pleasure and the thrill of being controlled.
The power of that thrill can be very surprising if you have in the past been narrowly focused on control through spanking. You can become attuned to much more subtle control if you give yourself the chance. But it might well be that when your man has the experience of being in control over time, he will develop a taste for it and change himself.
You may not notice any positive changes immediately. It takes time, sometimes a very long time. But often, when a man gets used to being treated well and to having control, he grows into that position of authority, gradually changing as he does so. As he learns to enjoy having control, that starts to inform his thinking and actions. And as a result of his consequent changes, his wife gets very excited and feels deeply peaceful too. She melts, and becomes ever more adoring and thrilled, and that inspires him further.
“Acting as if” things were as you want them tends to stop any vicious circle in its tracks and replace it with a virtuous circle in which each tiny positive change leads to a host of other positive changes, which snowball into more and more positive changes. Somewhere along the line, you may yet find yourself being thoroughly and violently and painfully taken in hand and cursing yourself for having given your husband the idea!