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...when the fantasy of erotic spankings meet the reality of DD.


Dear Bethany,

I would like to know if anyone else out there has this particular situation and how they deal with it, from the male view or the female view. My husband and I have started domestic discipline this year and to me it has taken a strange twist. From everything I read, it seems the husband is directly involved in the daily progress of his wife and "catches" her not living up to her commitments or deliberately being bratty or whatever and he takes the initiative to "correct" her ways and instill proper desire to do better.

We decided on some things that we thought would be important to our marriage and money was a big one. We have had some serious problems in the past and I have had to recognize that I am largely at fault. Procrastination is a very bad habit for me and causes me no end of problems in lots of areas. Working through the concepts of domestic discipline and how to apply it to my life has been a continual process for me.

I admit I expected my husband to suddenly become the disciplinarian and make fantasy become reality etc and was even somewhat apprehensive. To a small degree, there has been some of that, but the main theme that seems to be coming out here is that my husband expects me to more or less monitor my own discipline. He is not a man that is into spanking but has made a heroic effort to understand my need for rules and discipline and is not to reluctant to spank if I overdraw the checking account. He has never been very hard on me, but he has made it clear that he expects me to come and tell him when I have not met our commitments, or I have felt that I need a reminder to work harder on the house, or if I need a spanking for anything.

In other words, he does not monitor me. He has made it plain that if he catches me hiding something like a bounced check from him, the consequences will be worse, but he is not going to look for offenses. He expects me to monitor myself, that I am an adult, mature and responsible, (we have been married for almost 19 years now and have 5 children) and he wants to help me achieve the better, more responsible behavior that I lack at this point in time, but I have to ask , whatever happened to " honey, you need a spanking, get over my knee!?"

I guess I fantasized a situation where he takes the control away from me sometimes and I get to experience the dread of knowing I am in trouble and am going to "get it" when we go to bed that night! I think all the ladies know what I mean, don't you? There is something fascinating about knowing you can't do anything about what’s coming and that embarrassing and helpless feeling of being over his knee is supposed to be part of what motivates you to do better? Somehow it seems very clinical and dried out to say, "okay honey, I screwed up today, I need a spanking tonight to get me back on track."

Is this a normal DD relationship? It doesn't seem to follow any of the storylines? Is it because spanking is not something my husband is really into? I feel like something is missing here? Is there? Or am I looking for something different than true DD? Its not the play or erotic, because we like to do those too, so why do I always feel like I am in control instead of the other way around? Jim, do you have any comments?


From Jim

Bethany and I have spent quite a lot of time discussing your question. Although it may seem like a simple issue, this kind of situation goes to the very heart of DD.

First and foremost, I want to say that this issue has been thoroughly and expertly discussed by two of our authors, Brenna and Vicki Blue. We have their articles here The Woodshed. Vicki's are in the non-fiction area of our members' area, and Brenna's are in the Library on our free area.

I will give you some of my thoughts, from a man’s perspective, and Bethany will then discuss it from a woman’s point of view. Her discussion (and that of Brenna and Vicki) will probably be more helpful to you, but I think I might have some insight into what may be going on in your husband’s mind. Firstly, I think the predisposition to spank is “hard-wired” into a man’s brain. I cannot ever remember not being interested in spanking, even as a very young child. I am also an alpha male; I naturally seek to lead; I am not a good follower.

I think that for a man to be most spanko women’s “fantasy husband,” he really needs to be both a natural spanker and a “alpha male.” Conversely, I think the fact is that if a man is not a natural “spanko”, he can never really “get it.” This doesn’t mean he cannot become an accomplished spanker—I know of many men who have learned to do it quite well--but it doesn’t fall as naturally to them as it does to a dominant male who also is genetically a spanko.

Spanking and domestic discipline are closely related, but sometimes it helps to discuss them separately. Bethany and I like to think of the two things as being a spectrum, rather than an all-or-none phenomenon. On one end of the spectrum is the husband who has no interest in either spanking or domestic discipline. On the other is the husband who would not consider a relationship that did not include both. In between is the man who has varying degrees of interest. For example, one man may just not be interested in spanking, not understand it on any level, and feel that he would never “beat” his wife, even is she wanted it. Perhaps further along is the fellow who feels that, “Anything that involves you with your pants down is OK by me!” The next level may be occupied by a man who is interested in spanking on an erotic level but really has no interest in “bossing (his) wife around.” Perhaps the man who is closest to a real spanko is one who really doesn’t get turned on by spanking so much, but sees the clear advantages of a tightly-run home with a man in charge (him). He is the classic alpha male, but with no “spanko genes.”Of course I can’t know what’s going on in your husband’s head, but from your letter I would offer the following as one possible scenario:

He sounds like he loves you very much and he is sensitive to how difficult it was for you to broach this subject. Perhaps he is not a natural spanko, but is trying to learn because he knows it is so important to you. Imagine how difficult it is for even an intelligent and thoughtful man to figure out how to implement D/D without any internal guidance at all. He knows he’s supposed to “take charge,” but he’s not comfortable. He knows he’s supposed to spank you, but he really doesn’t feel that he knows when it’s appropriate or feel comfortable doing it against your will.

One way for him to get out of this bind (and learn at the same time) is to act all macho and tell you, “You’re a big girl—I expect you to act that way and report your misdeeds to me.” (There’s the leadership/bossy part he knows he’s supposed to do.) This works well for him, because when you feel something is important enough to report, he knows or suspects that you feel it’s important enough to be spanked for. This lets him play the part he’s supposed to play—he’s the boss and he spanks you—but still not make mistakes that might hurt your relationship.

This explains his behavior to me, but as I said above, I don’t really have all the facts to make a clear judgment. The best advice I can offer is for you to behave in a way that you make it clear that you want him to be the leader and you will absolutely abide by his judgment (This might be a bit uncomfortable at times!) When Bethany and I first began seeing each other, I remember clearly some of the things she did to nurture our relationship. The one thing that I found most helpful in letting me know exactly where we stood was that, when I felt she needed a spanking, or I felt that she needed to be required to perform a certain task and I would tell her so, she would say, “Well, I guess that’s not my choice, is it?” Think about things you can say or do to help him understand where you envision his place in this wonderful lifestyle—and be patient with him—I’ll bet he’ll have you over his knee in no time!


From Bethany:

I think Jim’s perspective is an interesting one; he focuses on what your husband might be thinking. I want to focus more on you and what you’re thinking – as well as some much broader issues here.

I’ve said this before and I am sure I will say it again: just because two things look the same does not mean they ARE the same. I believe that you are confusing, on a fundamental level, domestic discipline with an erotic spanking relationship. You use the word yourself: fantasy. You want all the elements of the fantasy spanking relationship under the cover of DD. You want that "thrill" of knowing it's coming - of waiting for that sore butt. You want him to take control, toss you over his knee, rip your panties down, and spank the snot out of you whether you want it or not. I know. I understand, because I want it too.

But this is NOT DD.

Domestic discipline, in my opinion, is relationship which depends completely on a 50/50 give and take dynamic – two people working together to create a happier, healthier home for themselves, and possibly their children. As soon as you’re even considering being “bratty” or intentionally misbehaving to get spankings, that’s not DD. This is, in the words of some, topping from the bottom, and it’s often the death knell for "DD" relationships.

A typical scenario is as follows: a husband, who sounds much like yours, strives to please his wife by trying to understand her request for this lifestyle. He’s not “into” spanking, but he has testosterone, and hell, a better functioning, happier household would sound good to anyone. But the part that often goes unsaid is that the reason a DD relationship SOUNDS good to the wife in the first place is that she IS into spanking. I mean, think about it. How many women who do not have a pretty powerful “interest” in spanking are going to go up to their husbands and say, “Uhh, honey? Why don’t you spank me when I’m bad?” Get real. That’s just plain not going to happen.

The fact is that for many women, DD – initially – is nothing but an excuse to GET what they’ve always wanted, which is erotic spanking. I’ve been writing about women and spanking for more than ten years now, and my opinion on this has NOT changed. There are many women who are very comfortable selling their hubbies on the idea of DD; it’s MUCH harder for many to admit that they want to be spanked – hard – because it’s erotically fascinating. The former makes you a good wife; the latter makes you a perv.

So, returning to our scenario we started above, what happens? The husband is willing to give DD "a try.” The wife gets her first spanking. Hopefully, the guy hasn’t stinted too much and she ends up with a good sore bottom, and nice lap time. Those endorphins get released, they have great sex, she's never felt better or more in love. She thinks this is the best thing that ever happened and is so glad she thought of it. For several days, as she glows in the aftermath of her first real spanking, harmony reigns.

Then what? Well, ---- she wants it again. But she’s faced with the great contradiction here – the spanking that she’s just gotten has not, on a fundamental level, really punished any bad behavior. It’s rewarded it! Understandably, the wife wants more spanking; she’s been erotically interested in it since she was about five. But because she “sold” her husband on the DD paradigm, the only way she can really get the spanking she craves is by being bad. So begins the baffling, hurtful, frustrating downward cycle that plagues many “DD” relationships – which is the wife’s behavior does NOT get better after DD is implemented, it gets worse. And the husband pulls back in complete frustration. He's tried to fulfill this rather odd request that he was ambivalent about to begin with – and instead of making his home life better, he’s got a brat on his hands.

So what to do?

1. Be very clear in your mind of your definitions. DD is NOT spanking. DD is a conscious lifestyle choice which involves one partner (for our purposes, usually the wife, but it doesn’t have to be) choosing to live in submission to the other partner and acknowledging his right to set boundaries, limits, and rules, and ENFORCE those rules through some sort of correction. This does not have to be spanking though, let’s face it, for most of us reading this, it IS spanking because spanking “sounds good” to us. DD should not involve the “hope” that one’s partner will catch her at something. As soon as you expect your husband to “look” for offenses and “catch” you being bratty, it’s not DD – it’s a game. When I have done something in my relationship with Jim to earn a punishment spanking, I am generally very disappointed and disgusted with myself. We still do practice DD spanking – because he feels that there are two parts to it. The first part is realizing I’ve done something wrong, and the second part is redemption. But I honestly believe for us, punishment spanking has become mostly symbolic - and why is that? Because we really DO have a DD relationship.

Give yourself a little test. What if your husband decided that your DD "correction" was not going to be spanking. Instead, you have to go the pool and swim two miles, or walk four, or work at the soup kitchen for two afternoons because you bounced some checks. If your immediate reaction is to recoil and say, "Well, no, I don't want that - he can't do that, etc," then you don't really want DD - you want spanking.

2. Try to acknowledge and embrace your erotic spanking interest. It’s OK – perfectly wonderful in fact – to be thrilled to your toes by the idea of your husband saying, “Honey, you need a spanking – get over my knee. I'm going to turn your butt so red you won't sit for a week." Come to terms with the idea that this is part of your sexuality. You don’t want it because you want your house to run better – you want it because it turns you on incredibly.

3. Realize that erotic does not have to equal “fun.” I get what we call “submission” spankings that are every bit as hard and long (actually almost always more so) and “real” as any punishment spanking I would ever get. I get them because Jim knows I need it and he loves to give it to me. I get them because Jim loves to spank me hard and watch my butt get very red. And he knows, that no matter what I say at the time, (!) I need it and want it to.

4. Accept that you’re going to have to explain a lot of this to your husband. I know it’s not part of the fantasy, but he doesn’t GET the fantasy. Period. And no amount of hoping will ever change that.

You ask if what you have is “normal” for a DD relationship? Actually, I say that it mostly is. Your husband is doing exactly what he should which is helping you set limits and guidelines and providing consequences when you don’t meet expectations. But he’s also treating you like an adult – which is what you are – in expecting you to be an active participant in the process.

What he’s not doing is also meeting your erotic spanking needs – because he doesn’t understand them. And I suspect that one reason he does not understand them is that you do not totally understand them either. But look at the bright side: You already have a husband who is willing to spank and seems as if he wants to please you. That's a lot more than some of the women who write to me have! By reading and doing some talking I think you have a great chance of getting the relationship you want.