Mrs. Lion and I have agreed to a female-led relationship with discipline. We signed up for it several years ago. So far, her authority is expressed by making and enforcing a few rules. They are:

  1. Set up the coffee maker every day
  2. Do not spill food on my shirt
  3. Make sure Mrs. Lion eats first unless she gives me permission to eat before her
  4. Update the Days-Since-My-Last-Orgasm whiteboard every day
  5. Don’t interrupt or act like a know-it-all (very rarely enforced)

That’s it. If I break any of the rules 1 – 4, I get spanked. Mrs. Lion is absolutely consistent. She almost never enforces rule 5. We’ve struggled with why it’s so difficult to move beyond those first four rules. I’ve believed Mrs. Lion has trouble enforcing corrections to my behavior when it affects her. She agrees. But that isn’t all.

No matter how you talk about it, FLR is essentially maternal authority. A male-led relationship is paternal. As I see it, authority can either be parental or judicial. We want spousal authority, but there aren’t any models of it that Mrs. Lion and I have seen or experienced. We resist the idea that Mrs. Lion has a maternal role.

We both feel a bit squicked at the maternal concept. It’s true that Mrs. Lion jokes that I am her oldest child. Like most women, she likes to think of her husband as strong and protective. She doesn’t want the pressure of having to be accountable for every aspect of our lives. She may reason that if she has a maternal role in our marriage, then I would be a dependant child. That’s unappealing to both of us.

In a male-led relationship, the husband is a sort of father figure. His wife isn’t a child to him. She is accountable to him and expected to be obedient. That model feels acceptable and easy to understand. Why does the same power exchange cause us trouble when the woman is in charge? In the paternal model, the woman isn’t expected to be a mouse with no thoughts of her own. She is a smart, independent woman. The only difference from a vanilla situation is that she has agreed to be obedient and accept punishment as needed.

I am sexually aroused when Mrs. Lion exercises her authority. Her consistent enforcement of my rules has effectively trained me. I like that. I’m not sure she agrees. Accepting that she trains me is difficult for her. It may be the idea that training is a maternal duty, not one appropriate for a wife. I think embracing the idea that maternal authority is just as valid as the more-generally-accepted paternal spousal authority is important for us to succeed.

A paternal leader/husband doesn’t think of his wife as a daughter. He sees himself continuing the authority her father had over her. She left her father’s domain and now is in his. There is no implication that she remains a child. In the paternal model, the woman remains under the loving, paternal authority of her husband.

Why can’t we accept this in the maternal model of our FLR? My obedience and acceptance of Mrs. Lion’s authority don’t imply that I am a child. She is just resuming the maternal authority I should have lived under as a child. I suppose the most child-like aspect of this for me is my desire to have boundaries that Mrs. Lion enforces. If she maintains strict control in areas of my life that would benefit from it, I will feel it as love and will benefit from the stability it offers me.

Maybe thinking of our FLR this way will help Mrs. Lion expand her control. She’s already exercising this authority when she enforces my small set of rules. She has no trouble paddling me when needed to enforce them. I think that once she (and I) embrace the maternal authority model, my boundaries will become clearer and my bottom redder.

Mrs. Lion made an offhand comment about our female led relationship that may puzzle some of our readers. She said in a recent post:

“Although we’re in a female-led relationship, I maintain I can’t insist Lion be ready to play at any given time. While a woman can have sex when she’s not turned on, it doesn’t quite work that way with a man for obvious reasons. It’s apparent when a man isn’t in the mood. “Not tonight, dear. I don’t have a boner.” It’s hard (groan) to argue with that. So until Lion is ready, we wait.”

If the sex Mrs. Lion seeks was for her, there would be no problem. My tongue is in perfect working order even if I don’t want sex for myself. I suspect that even if she wanted sex, it would be unlikely she would insist if I’m not in the mood.

That’s the thing about an FLR, it’s not some sort of 24/7 femdom scene. It would be suffocating to both of us if it were. Having power doesn’t mean continuously exercising it. For one thing, as I’m sure you know, I’m not particularly submissive. I don’t need Mrs. Lion to make all the decisions.

As far as I’m concerned, I want Mrs. Lion to have a strong voice. I want her to insist I correct the behavior that upsets her. I also want her to let me know if she wants something. Yes, these are my “I wants.” I understand that I’m not in charge.

Why do I get to say how I want Mrs. Lion to operate? I guess I don’t. However, I asked her to take charge. When I did, I explained those two wants. I didn’t suggest that was to be the limit of her authority. I just said that I thought they were very important to our relationship.

Lest it goes by unnoticed, I just said that I asked Mrs. Lion to be in charge. It wasn’t her idea, it was mine. The same is true of male chastity. I asked her to lock me in a chastity device.

I’m not alone. There are very few couples practicing male chastity at the woman’s request. There are even fewer FLR’s started by the woman. I don’t think a single domestic discipline arrangement was initiated by the dominant partner.

How many wives are ready to say, “I want to be your mommy and spank you when you are naughty.”? Most wives may think of their husbands as their oldest kids, but it’s unlikely they want to initiate a disciplinary relationship with them.

Mrs. Lion doesn’t want to be my mommy. She’s done with child-rearing. The last thing she wants is for me to regress into a little boy. There is an inherent parental aspect of domestic discipline. It’s hard to deny that when Mrs. Lion punishes me, that it doesn’t have a maternal flavor.

I don’t think of her like my mother even when she paddles me. I realize that the power dynamic that gets me punished can best be described as maternal. We have no notion of wifely punishments in our society. But that’s exactly what I get.

We don’t have a definition of how the archetype disciplining wife behaves. There aren’t any self-help books on the subject. Blogs like ours offer discussions of how we practice it. We are a rare breed. Mrs. Lion doesn’t know any other women who punish their husbands. [Mrs. Lion — It’s possible I do without realizing it. It’s not something we advertise. Lion may know other husbands who are punished without realizing it. That’s his point.] External support groups don’t exist.

Most discussions of the subject are centered around the punishments themselves. While this is potentially useful since most wives have no experience spanking grown men, it isn’t really the point. The more important information is how to structure a healthy, loving marriage around explicit female authority.

A lot of men, including me, express thoughts on the subject. Maybe some of what we have to say is helpful. It would be far more useful for women in disciplinary relationships to share how they do it and how they feel about it.

Mrs. Lion is absolutely effective as my disciplinary wife. She knows how to deliver a meaningful spanking. I imagine she might want to share with other women how she feels about my request to punish me for annoying her. That seems to be difficult. [Mrs. Lion — Difficult indeed!!]

I’m sure there are other useful topics to share. I suspect the least interesting subject would be how to spank a man. Men like to read about that. Women don’t need classes on that subject. What’s more important is how to handle the emotional weight of real-life disciplinary marriage. Did I get this right, Mrs. Lion? [Mrs. Lion — I never thought of it that way, but I guess so.]

There are times when Mrs. Lion and I are out of sync. I’m tired and she’s wide-awake, or she’s tired and not feeling particularly frisky while I’m raring to go. It isn’t very often that we are that polarized. More often then not, I may not be completely ready for fun or she may be thinking about something else and not very interested in being disturbed. This doesn’t bother me. It happens with everyone. The only problem is the side effects of these differences. We aren’t very touchy-feely people. We don’t like to be wrapped around one another when we sleep. However, we do like to hold hands even in our sleep.

We both feel better when we have more physical contact. It doesn’t have to be sexual, but it generally is. Somehow we seem to have gotten out of the habit of hugging and kissing and touching when sex isn’t part of the equation. We are both extremely confident and secure in our relationship. Strictly speaking, physical contact isn’t necessary to sustain that. That doesn’t mean we don’t want or need it.

As you may have discovered, we aren’t particularly social critters. We are completely happy in our own little world. We barely noticed the shelter-in-place requirement because that’s what we do anyway. We don’t have a lot of interests in common. I like classical music and opera. Mrs. Lion likes alt-rock. I like watching television, she likes playing games on her iPad. The result of this is that when we are together, I’ll be watching TV and she’ll be playing on her iPad. In the car, we don’t turn on music because we can’t agree on a genre we both like. On the surface, it sounds like we are very poorly matched.

Even when it comes to sex, our interests were quite different when we first got together. Fortunately, right from the start, we were very attracted to one another. We were able to sexually satisfy each other easily. Over a relatively short time, we fell in love. It wasn’t one of those symbols-crashing, violins-playing moments when we discovered how much we care for one another. Instead, we both realized it was getting harder and harder to say goodbye. We didn’t want to be apart.

You’d have to agree that we are a very unlikely couple to have so completely adopted a female-led relationship, domestic discipline, and male chastity. I don’t think you’d have trouble believing that I would be part of this. I had been a member of the BDSM community for many years. Mrs. Lion, on the other hand, led a very vanilla suburban life until she had the misfortune of meeting me.

I introduced her to all this stuff. I taught her how to do most of it. It’s remarkable that she not only learned, but adopted as her own all of these exotic, kinky practices. In the beginning, when I first introduced her to the things I like, she agreed to try them with no particular commitment to go beyond that. A perfect example of this is spanking. When I first asked her to try, I could barely feel her hand touching my bottom. It took a long time, but she learned to be a very effective disciplinary spanker.

Okay, you might say that she picked up the skill because she knows it’s something I like, but shouldn’t she acquire a taste for it as well? That’s a hard question to answer. She’s never found spanking me to be sexually exciting. I don’t think she’s ever considered it fun. She has learned that it’s a useful marital skill. She can give me a “play” spanking that I find sexually arousing. She can also give me a disciplinary spanking that will make me think twice before repeating whatever it is I’m being spanked for doing. She’s perfectly comfortable providing either.

Essentially the same is true of orgasm control and male chastity as well as her role as my disciplinary wife. You could argue that she’s learned to do this because she knows I need it. I can’t argue with that. Only recently, we learned that she actually misses these things if we can’t do them. It’s taken a while to understand, but the fact is that she actually does enjoy her role. She just enjoys it in a way differently than I might have expected.

For example, spanking me isn’t necessarily fun for her. However, catching me breaking a rule is something she likes. Even those times when I do something that annoys her when she realizes that I need to be punished for it, she gets a little smile and lets me know. Mrs. Lion has always enjoyed finding inconsistencies. She gets a kick out of discovering continuity errors in movies and television shows. I think that one of the reasons she enjoys some of her iPod games is that they let her discover little things that get her to the solution. In that same sense, it’s fun for her to catch me doing something that will earn me a spanking.

The thought of being spanked is what turns me on. I’m not terribly fond of being caught doing something wrong. However, I understand it’s part of what has to happen. Similarly, I think that orgasm control interests her because she can test herself to see just how far she can push me without letting me ejaculate. Unfortunately, she really likes making me ejaculate. As a result, she doesn’t play the game quite as strongly as I might like. I’ve talked about this with her a few times and she is very noncommittal about whether or not she wants to change her approach. Fair enough.

There are probably many other things that she likes about what we do that are very different from the things I like about them. The activities may be the same, but what we get from them can be entirely different. It’s taken a while for me to understand this. Part of me wants her to get aroused by beating my butt. That’s just silly. I realize that she doesn’t mind spanking me. She has fun catching me and seeing my reaction when she does. My reaction has become stronger over time because the punishments she gives me are more meaningful. That gives her an incentive to become a stricter spanker. Somehow everything fits together in the end.

The other day Mrs. Lion posed the question as the title of her post, Is He Looking for Another Spanking? She was referring to some things I said that bothered her. She appeared to be trying to figure out where the threshold is between a little snarky and spankable behavior. She wondered if I would earn a spanking two days in a row.

I appreciate her thoughtful approach. But I think at this early stage in disciplining me for behavior that upsets her, this may be a way to avoid the inevitable confrontation that punishing me creates. It’s not that I resist her demand that I get into position for a spanking. I don’t. I don’t even ask why she is spanking me. Usually, she tells me. Sometimes, she will tell me that I will be spanked but doesn’t explain why at that moment. I’m fine with that.

In the cold morning light, I think that if I do something that makes her wonder if it is sufficiently annoying to warrant punishment, almost by definition it is. At least in the beginning, it seems to me that if the thought of punishing me goes through her mind after I do something, that is sufficient grounds to spank me.

Mrs. Lion wants to be fair. Her strong desire to treat me fairly seems to be getting in the way of taking the next step in our disciplinary relationship. It’s not that she is unwilling to punish me for upsetting her. She demonstrated that last week. She bruised my buns to let me know she was unhappy with my behavior. That was a great start.

I think the next step is for Mrs. Lion to turn off that filter. If she starts thinking about whether or not something I’ve done deserves punishment, the filter is on. I’m proposing that for the foreseeable future, the simple act of asking herself that question automatically earns the answer, “Yes, he needs to be spanked.”

There is no doubt that for a while until I learn better communication skills, I might be getting several spankings a week. I certainly won’t like this. That’s not the point. We both agree that I need to be more careful in the way I speak to her. I need to think about what am about to say in terms of whether or not it might upset her. I don’t intentionally try to make her angry or sad. I can be thoughtless.

For example, Mrs. Lion gave me a haircut on Saturday. She’s getting quite good at it. However, she made a little slip in a very visible spot. I commented on it because I worried that people might see it and think I look silly. This hurt her feelings. After all, she worked hard to cut my hair and she rightly believed I should be grateful for her effort. She’s right. I’m very grateful that she does this for me. The fact that she didn’t do it perfectly doesn’t change my gratitude at all. I was thoughtless being critical.

Mrs. Lion was quiet after dinner on Saturday night. I finally asked her what was wrong. She told me that she felt badly about my comment regarding my haircut. Was that comment a spankable offense? The fact that she reacted so strongly and felt bad tells me it is.

I’m pretty sure that Mrs. Lion didn’t think spanking me would make her feel better about my thoughtless remark. She might be right. However, given our disciplinary relationship, I think I need to learn to be careful about saying things like that. We’ve established that consistent spankings for misbehavior of any sort condition me to behave the way she wants.

The challenge is for her to consciously decide to consistently respond to any thoughtlessness or other behaviors that cause her upset with punishment. Until she has developed the same level of consistency she has when I spill food on my shirt or forget to do a chore, it seems to me that she has to always err on the side of punishing for very minor offenses. It worked for us before in terms of chores and rules. It should work equally well for upsetting behavior.

I admire Mrs. Lion for her fairness filter. I just think it’s a little broken. That haircut comment was seriously upsetting. Based on our agreement, that certainly earned me a spanking. I know it’s going to be difficult for her to work through feeling bad and focus instead on educating me. I think she needs to turn the filter off for my sake.

Guess what? She spanked me!