Yesterday, my post was about our disciplinary relationship being a pressure relief valve for Mrs. Lion. When I write things like that, she generally rolls her eyes at me. I don’t think she believes that. Her usual stated reason for spanking me is because I want her to do it. It’s true; I do. That doesn’t mean there aren’t other good reasons for doing it.
My failure to set up the coffee pot is a perfect example. Let’s say that we have a “normal” marriage. We get up every weekday morning at 6:30. I forget to set up the coffee pot the day before. Mrs. Lion, bleary-eyed, walks into the kitchen and discovers it. Grumbling to herself, she sets it up. What happens next? Nothing. She takes care of the problem and continues with her morning activities. A few days later, I forget again. She grumbles to herself and sets it up.
I try hard to remember to do it, but sometimes I break my normal daily routine, and the coffee pot stays in the dish drainer. Over time, Mrs. Lion gets more and more annoyed that I can’t take care of a simple chore. At some point, she will bring it up and tell me that I forgot. I apologize and promise to do better. A week goes by, and I forget again. You can see where this is going.
Mrs. Lion realizes that this is a small matter. As a rational woman, she tells herself that it isn’t worth a blowup over something this trivial. So, she grits her teeth and does the chore herself. There are two problems here: The first is that I’m not conscientious enough about a small task that makes my lioness’s life easier. The second is that she has nowhere to go with her feelings about my failures. I suppose she could do a typical sitcom wife move like saying, “If you loved me, you would take care of the coffee pot!” She would never do that.
A lot of people will say that something as extreme as punishing me for forgetting is childish. Grownups should resolve this kind of thing in a mature manner. What is that manner? Talk!
Talk? You mean to hold a meeting to express grievances and extract promises of improvement? Yup, that’s the mature way to deal with domestic issues. Does a discussion like that provide closure? From my experience, such a discussion usually ends with the complaining wife feeling unheard and her husband feeling nagged. If the coffee pot is forgotten again after this meeting, the wife will feel worse than she would if she didn’t call that meeting.
I’m not saying that you can’t work out problems by discussing them. It’s certainly possible. I’m suggesting that discussions are very unlikely to resolve the trivial issues that build up into irrational anger. Punishment, on the other hand, provides immediate negative feedback for not completing the chore. Spanking, for example, is safe physical pain administered by the injured party. The equation is simple: Fail to do the chore, get a painful spanking. There are no meetings, no guilt-inducing cold shoulders, just a sore bottom.
Punishment works when there is a direct cause and effect relationship between the behavior and the spanking. Interrupt Mrs. Lion and get spanked. Not do a chore, get spanked—clear and easy causes. I don’t think spanking works with more complex problems. For example, drinking too much might be a spankable offense. The chances are that a hairbrush or paddle won’t cure the problem. That’s because the underlying issue isn’t simple carelessness or thoughtlessness. There isn’t a clear cause-and-effect relationship.
You could say there is. Drink too much, get spanked. Clear, right? Well, not so much. Drinking isn’t the cause. It’s the result of a deeper problem. That’s why Alcohol Anonymous is needed. Now, skipping an AA meeting could earn a spanking. That’s a clear cause-and-effect situation.
Anyway, I’m convinced that regardless of my sexual motive for wanting spankings, there is a significant benefit to our marriage. The reason it works is easy to understand. An unpleasant consequence when I slip up is a strong incentive to avoid getting in trouble. Sure, I’ll still forget. Each and every time I do, Mrs. Lion will spank me. That means each and every time, Mrs. Lion clearly communicates her displeasure. This activity doesn’t threaten our marriage. It makes it stronger. My willingness to be punished shows Mrs. Lion that I love her and trust her enough to correct me as she sees fit. Her willingness to correct me gives me a sense of security and the sure knowledge that she loves me and will go the extra mile to help me learn.
I don’t think domestic discipline is purely sexual or that it is kink. Sure, it’s sexy in one sense, but more importantly, it’s an alternative method of handling issues that could drive us apart. It may not be for everyone, but it is for us.