I am a very independent, intelligent and business-accomplished woman. Being divorced with young children forced me to take on the role of mother, father and breadwinner. Although I was surviving, and on the outside I presented a happy face, I was not happy. I was simply exhausted from doing everything alone, from having every ounce of responsiblity myself and of worrying about my children in the middle of the night with no one to speak to.
One evening, in the rain, S offered to change a tire—as he said any gentleman should do, and we have been together ever since.
From the beginning of our relationship I knew that S was an old-fashioned type of man, opening doors, being extra polite, etc. I loved those habits that made me feel special. What I also loved was that he listened to what I said, we talked about our lives, dreams, and fears. As time went on, S would stop by while I was out of town and the kids were with their dad and cut my grass, or clean out the garage, or make dinners and leave them in my fridge with a note that said, 'No one should have to work as hard as you do—I hope the dinners give you a little free time'. (I still have the notes—13+ years later!). He did all this without me ever asking him to. And he did all these things without expecting anything in return. That's how I know he was listening to me, because all those things he did—big or small—were things that he and I talked about at one point or another.
One day I asked why he did those things for me, and he told me it was because he could see how capable I was of juggling my and my children's lives, but he could also see how tired I was—and he wanted to take care of me—to do something to give me a little rest. A few weeks later we were engaged.
When we married, we decided to live a 'traditional' relationship with him leading. I don't think it was because I thought this way was best—I didn't give it much thought. It was because I was EXHAUSTED and very happy to share the work of life with anyone who asked!!!!! I was thrilled to have him make decisions for us. I was thrilled that he paid the bills. I was thrilled that he and the kids took care of the yard, the cars and all the sports stuff in the garage. I was thrilled that he watched out for my health and would tell me to walk a bit every day. I was thrilled that he would do things just for me, just to make me happy! I was thrilled to be able to have some rest—mental and physical—from the draining job of raising children alone. The bottom line for me was we fell into this Taken In Hand relationship because I saw all the benefits.
Today, after many years of marriage, we still have a Taken In Hand relationship. Over time I have 'tested the limits' of my husband's patience and strength and each time he has responded by taking me in hand. I have at times (after our child was born) questioned his decisions and wondered if I am just being controlled because I am too mentally lazy in our home life to give issues a lot of thought. But what I discovered is that I enjoy his leadership, and in my marriage, I am always safe, so I don't do a lot of unecessary worrying. I also found that I have no desire to be in control. My husband relishes control. So for us, this works just fine.
And finally, I have found that I respond quite well to S's controlling nature, to his protectiveness of me and our children, that because I don't have to be responsible for everything, I have time to be me. This life for us is easy—not perfect, but it is definitely easy.
Both S and I came from 'equal' relationships with lots of negativity—but had no good way to deal with it. Our traditional marriage with him leading may not be equal, but it certainly is equitable. S sets limits and a few rules that are good for us. He has our best interest at heart—I know that, so it is easy to 'get with the program'—plus after 10 years, he has not been wrong very often in his judgements and when he is wrong, he apologizes—(the sign of a strong man)!
I think the reason I have evolved into a Taken In Hand wife/advocate (LOL) is that I see this as a way where each person can use his or her strength to build a relationship based upon love, honesty and respect. It is also a relationship where neither person needs to be overwhelmed by 'doing it all alone'.
Now we certainly have 'our days' and I have my times when I am too resistant, but gentle or not so gentle reminders always seem to bring me back into line. I've come to see my husband's rules not as bossiness that I am putting up with, but as a constant reminder of how much he cares for me. What could be more perfect than that?
By the way, when I asked S what he gets out of our marriage, he said, he gets a loving, adoring wife, sex whenever he wants, happy kids, and the peacful home that results from him leading and controlling me. He finished his comment off with the following statement "I guess it boils down to I get a happy wife, and a happy wife means a happy life".
A Happy and NOT Exhausted Taken In Hand Wife...
Have you seen the following articles?
Why are Taken In Hand relationships so intimate and connected?
Who wants a slave?
Forget 'ideal'—look for the real
How do I know whether Taken In Hand is right for me?
Why is commitment important?
Circumventing consent in a Taken In Hand relationship
Do you show your appreciation when she obeys?
How do I broach the subject of Taken In Hand?