The recent comments about switching have got me thinking about accountability in a Taken In Hand style relationship, and the apparent inherent unfairness of the discipline. Even once you've got past the fact that both partners have agreed to it, the fact that one person gets disciplined (be it physical or not) and the other just apologises can still, from the outside, look wrong. It just doesn't look right that one person—usually the woman—takes more blame for any transgression than the other does. Surely the man, if he is truly the head of household, and not just a bully, should take equal or greater responsibility for his actions? And can it be truly said he does if, for example, he gets to spank his wife if she misbehaves, but she doesn't get to spank him if he doesn't?
Well, yes, to be honest. The situation is not unlike a company with a CEO and their second in command. The CEO has the most power but also the most responsibility, and so on—see also this explanation. Now I've always been happy with this analogy, as far as it goes, but there's been a niggling feeling that there's more to it than this, that goes beyond the simple consensual agreement of the couple.
Well, recently something occurred to me. This may only be true for my relationship—it's certainly the only I can speak of with first hand knowledge. We've tried switching—we sort-of tried it before we'd gone all that far into a DD relationship. And it didn't really work. My husband quite enjoys erotic spankings, but it just felt odd—and wrong—if I spanked him for discipline purposes. Neither of us got any closure from it. So, we stuck with what's now our current arrangement—if I'm out of line, I get spanked and if he is, he apologises. What occurred to me was why this works for us.
Our rows, by and large, have followed a set pattern. It blows up very quickly, and the most violent part is over fairly quickly. But it takes a long time for it to fully subside. And that's usually because of two things. Firstly, I won't apologise until I'm calm enough to do so without feeling like I have to justify my side (I'm daft like that—if I feel I can't apologise without justifying my actions, then I don't feel like I'm really apologising, just making an excuse of an apology)—and that can take a while. And secondly, my husband wants to apologise quite soon after the worst is over, but will almost always justify his side. Which usually sparks things off again, although not on the same scale, simply because of this disparate view of apologies we have. I just want to give—and to get—a straight apology—no explanations. He thinks I will feel far better if he explains why he did what he did. And no amount of talking it over has changed things.
What has changed things is domestic discipline. Being spanked brings me out of any mood I may be in far, far quicker than anything else I know of. The pain and the sensations give me something far more immediate to concentrate on than petty stuff. And we only ever argue over petty stuff—the important things we can talk about. Once the spanking is over, I have let go of all that pettiness, feel calm and centred—if maybe utterly drained emotionally, and can wholeheartedly and genuinely apologise. I may apologise before he's finished, but with practice he's getting to know when I'm at the state I can apologise, and when I've let go of all of it—which may not be at the same time. And it also lets him work off his irritability and lose the need to justify anything he may have said or done. On the other hand, if he has done something that has reasonably upset me, then he apologises—no attempt at justifying it, or explaining it away, just a straight, genuine apology. Once things have calmed down, if he still feels I ought to know why he did/said what he did, then he'll tell me. But the relationship has given him the strength to realise he can just apologise without justifications and I will accept it.
So basically, we have both found a way to short-circuit relationship-damaging rows. We are both equally accountable for our actions—we just have different ways of it being dealt with. It is as much a big deal for him to admit he was wrong without trying to justify it as it is for me to swallow my pride and be spanked until I'm calm.
Have you seen the following articles?
Secretary: what did you think of this film?
Leadership, strength, emotional intimacy
Looking for a Taken In Hand relationship?
Spanking as connection
The coming battle
Does it have to hurt to be Taken In Hand?
Each relationship is a unique work in progress
I fear I have awoken a sleeping dragon
Each to his own
Who needs forbidden fruit when you've got this?!