Sharing the load

In one of my pondering sessions, one of many that I have while I’m in the bath, sitting on the bus, doing laps in the pool or pounding the pavement (while talking to myself…am I the only one who walks along talking to herself?) I came up with the answer. The answer to something that has puzzled people all over the world for centuries- why do men piss women off? 

I’ve come to the conclusion that most of the angst in any given relationship generally comes about when one party thinks that the other party isn’t doing their share. This dissatisfaction can come in many forms, but let’s just take one example- cleaning. I’m actually pretty convinced that this is the straw that broke the “gaijin’s” back when I was in Japan. For the whole 9 years that I lived together with my ex-hubby, he never once, not once, lifted a finger to help around the house. Now, from his point of view, he felt that he was contributing to the relationship in other ways- working, earning money, organizing trips away etc. (I’d also like to add that I was equally working and earning more money.) But, what boys need to realise is that it just doesn’t work that way. You can’t substitute a ‘share’ of something for a ‘share’ of something else. “Shares” in relationships are absolutely, one hundred percent, non-transferrable and non-refundable. Giving me chocolate on Valentine’s Day or surprising me with a weekend mystery tour certainly gives the other party brownie points, but it ain’t going to do anything about their ‘share’ of the cleaning that needs to be done. The sum of the total doesn’t equal the sum of the parts as far as relationships and living together are concerned, because every little share in every little category needs to be done and satisfied.

There are a lot of different categories for shares in any given relationship- things like, “spending time with your partner’s family”, “special occasion celebrations”, “washing and ironing”, “getting a haircut before you look like something out of the Addam’s Family”. Basic stuff that you expect the other person to do and that drives you absolutely insane when they don’t. How you divvy stuff up depends on each individual, but most boys will realise the shares that they need to do because there will be copious amounts of nagging involved. Ignoring the nagging does nothing to decrease your shares, and in some cases, it might increase them.

So how does all this fit into D/s I hear you ask? Well, in my case, the categories are a bit different to your run-of-the-mill housework and family stuff. For example, I don’t require him to do any of the housework because he does the cooking. That is our little arrangement and it suits us just great.  But there are still other things that I expect Master to do and it drives me absolutely insane, when he doesn’t.

The whole idea of ‘shares’ involves the idea of equality in the relationship. Not necessarily hierarchical equality, but an equal amount of roles and functions. It’s the idea of “Well, fuck, I’m submitting to all this shit, why don’t you do a bit of domming every now and then?” I figure that if I’m literally putting my ass on the line, there should be an equal amount of input from Master. If you have a relationship where only one side is inputting, very quickly your D/s fountain is going to run dry.

At the moment, I have the following shares that I expect Master to input:

A share of nice, hard play
A share of non-leniency
A share of going through with what he says 
A share of absolute decisiveness
A share of treating me callously and as an animal
A share of communicating clearly and thinking things through carefully
A share of non-knee-jerk reactions to things he doesn’tlike
A share of education when I need it
A share of slapping me down when he needs it

I hope everyone noticed that the words ‘a share of’ can be replaced with ‘I want’ and there is very little meaning loss. That’s because my expectations of him are invaribly my wants. My wants, my image of what a dom ‘should be’, will be what I compare him to. When the image and the reality differ, some compromises can be made,  you can learn to live with some different aspects and alter your expected shares, but there is a saturation point- also known as a breaking point. This is the straw that breaks the slave’s back and is generally when things fail.

One thing I find with Master, is that he fulfills a lot, and I mean a lot of shares in the “nice-ness” category. He spoils me to distraction and basically everything that I want is given to me in one form or another. He has amassed a huge, mammoth amount of brownie points, and has done more than his fair share in the ‘treating the slave well’ department. But to me, that doesn’t give him dispensation for the other shares that I want, and expect him to do. 

It sounds harsh, cruel and I’m sure a lot of people reading this are thinking “you don’t know how good you’ve got it, shut the fuck up.” I’d probably agree if I was a reader reading this too. I suppose the bottom line is balance in all things.You need a little bit of spice with your sugar and sour with your sweet. 

Today, he has been frosty with me all day because I told him to be ‘decisive’. An incident at the tattoo shop when we went to confirm the final design for my ownership marking that was to be done on Tuesday, resulted in him cancelling the appointment and storming out of the shop. This is what happened:

We’d both looked at the basic design of his initials and said, ‘It’s boring, it needs something.’ and then one of the receptionist chicks said “Well, you can just get this, get something simple to start and you can add to it later.” We had both liked the idea of a collar (maybe with celtic banding) with either a padlock or a name plate with his initials on it and after they said that celtic wasn’t possible in a design that small, he started talking about just getting something celtic, bigger, with no initials, nothing. I assumed that his name or initials were an absolute given in the design. So I pointed out that if he didn’t want his name on me, “What were we here for?”

By this stage, I didn’t know what he wanted and it looked like he was about to put something on me that he wasn’t fully happy with. I told him to be ‘decisive’ and think about what he wanted. Then he asked for his money back and stormed out. I thought that he was pissed off at me for talking to him like that. For not ‘submitting’ to his will and standing there like a dumb mute. After finally getting him to talk about it, I realised that what I took for indecision was actually him making a decision not to do it, so I apologised. He wasn’t clear, he made me think that I had pissed him off, rather than him being pissed at the receptionists and their lack of help.

In the tattoo shop, making a decision about putting his name indelibly on me for life, I’m sure you can imagine that I needed him to be decisive. I needed him to say, ‘Yes, this is what I want. It’s going on your ass. The end.’ And if the design wasn’t what he wanted, say, ‘This is not what I want. I’d like to cancel the appointment. Bye.’ From my point of view, I’m putting my ass on the line, a huge, massive input from me. All I’m asking from him is a firm decision that that is what he wants and that’s what will make him happy. A share of being clear and decisive is all I want him to do. It’s a trust thing. Standing there with design in hand having him say, “Hmmmm….” is akin to pushing me towards the gaping hole in an airplane and saying “Yeah, I think I folded your parachute right.” I can’t do itunless it’s a “Parachute, check. Go, Go, Go!!!!!”

So that’s my vent, from my view and my ideas about why men piss women off. Think I can patent it?

P.S Master has just read this and said,

‘You piss me off. I’m not going to discuss it. I’ve given you a chance and it seems you are going to throw it away again.’

and now he’s gone off into his bedroom, turned off all the lights and left me in the dark… in more ways than one.

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8 thoughts on “Sharing the load

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  1. IMO, as a Dom with a live in sub: This post is a perfect example of topping from the bottom, and trying to exert control over your Dom.

    There is a huge world of difference between “I am unhappy, and I think this is the cause, and I think this change could fix it, but you are the one in charge” and “You are doing this and this wrong, and I expect you to do this and this better / more, or else you are failing the relationship”.

    The latter is Vanilla, and the root cause of Many, MANY (perhaps even most) relationship fights. The former is a submissive who genuinely wants things to be better, but knows she must follow, not lead.

    I am not saying you are wrong. Im not saying he is right. I *AM* saying that, in my opinion, the WAY you THOUGHT about these issues shows through in the way you talk about them here, and that THOUGHT process seems to be one of demanding, rather than begging for. One of of Command, rather than one of concerned followership. One of dominance, rather than submission.

    But I could have missed the target completely.

  2. I had a partner, for 7 years. Her mantra was, “I don’t care what you meant, it was how I perceived it. Perception is reality.”

    Perception isn’t reality, as you’ve discovered. In his mind he was being decisive, you perceived it as the exact opposite. So it appears that instead of telling him you want him to be decisive, you should have told him you want him to appear decisive. His “hmmmm” as he thought things over sealed his indecision…in your eyes. Not his. No wonder he’s pissed.

    Both of you’d best start working on seeing things from the other’s POV.

  3. …lightd off and not discussed it? Not in a ‘this is our paradigm’anner? Hmmmm IMHO he needs to address things with you – even to say “no” so that you know *where* things are.

  4. L don’t believe it’s appropriate for me to respond or further explain in public on this blog topic.

    Kitten is free to blog on any topic or issue she chooses and remains free to do so.

    Master

  5. I am not speaking for here, but my own thoughts that have nothing to do with her.

    Sometimes, sometimes, a submissive HAS to go to the extreme of the latter example you use. I don’t know how many times I went to my husband and told him, “I’m feeling unhappy with how our relationship is going,” adding in what I thought I needed and left it in his hands. It simply ended with me being unhappy for a very long time, feeling unheard, unappreciated, and uncared for.

    It took the ultimatum of me saying, “You need to fix this or I’ll be thinking of leaving,” for him to take me seriously/realize just how bad it was.

    Some people need a kick in the ass instead of a nudge in the right direction when it comes to some stuff.

  6. I agree completely. Some people need HUGE amounts of pushing before they respond. I also don’t believe that just because someone is sub, they have to always act submissive.

    What I was trying to get at was this: If a sub pushes hard like that, they should expect some ego bruising as a result. Most Dom’s don’t like being pushed around, react badly to it, and react further negatively to the ‘you aren’t fulfilling your duties’ card. As a sub, one should be conscious of this sort of situation, and expect the likely results.

    If the Dom is a good one, things will work themselves out, Once said Dom cools down, work will begin to find a resolution. Things will get better

    But in that first moment, when the words spoken resolve themselves into a pattern that feels (male perspective here) very emasculating, don’t be surprised if the first response equates to “No! You are failing at your responsibility, to be submissive, and the words you just said / wrote are proof!”

    Some may not. Some may immediately admire the strength it took to stand up like that. Unfortunately, I can say that I am not one. I the end I will, but in the beginning, it will make me question the trainability / suitability of the sub to fill that role.

  7. You are allowed to feel what you feel and want what you want. You can’t read his mind and are feeling a bit lonely and direction-less out on a limb by yourself, and I would have thought that expressing that is a good thing. What is the alternative – should you keep your frustration and coinfusion bottled up because that’s what a ‘good slave’ ought to do? Hell no. For me this goes back to the difference between a slave-with-a-brain and a doormat. If our tops say they value our brains, they need to understand that we are going to use them periodically and that those brains come with emotions, and that it is better to express stuff than keep it bottled up to exploding-point. By expressing it now you two can work on it now – Amo says that if he doesn’t know what’s bugging me we can’t fix it, and it isn’t ‘topping from the bottom’ it’s just a perfectly damm normal expression of my (thinking, feeling, non-doormat) needs. How he reacts/chooses to deal with it is of course up to him – but he can’t read my mind either. My journal is supposed to be the place I can say stuff and not get punished for it.

    ~validation over~

    hugs

    tesoro

  8. Happy Anniversary, k! (belated)
    (Beginnings may have bumps, but it’s been my experience, that as you walk further down the path, there are less.)
    I wish that for you both – a path with very few bumps!
    smiles and kind regards,
    mel

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