trust

Dancing and D/s

 

heal

“After all, Ginger Rogers did everything that Fred Astaire did. She just did it backwards and in high heels.” — Ann Richards

Maximus and i had our first introductory dance lesson last week and it was Wonderful!! It really was a great date night idea and Maximus was in heaven. i wore my new John Fluevog Heal shoes, which the instructor fell in love with, and they were perfect for dancing in (the instructor even remarked on that after checking them out).

Besides the instructor, i was the only woman and there were three men, including Maximus. It was nice to have a small class, but it would’ve been nice to have an equal pairing. We learned the steps separately, at first, and then paired up, switching partners between songs. While i didn’t want to switch partners, it gave me a chance to experience different styles and what worked, and kept me from trying to manage my lead, as while i might be tempted to do that with Maximus, i wouldn’t do that with a stranger! We learned the Waltz first and then American Tango. We spent considerably more time on the Waltz, learning how to turn the woman and then how to rotate the step together. i thought it was a lovely dance. We rushed through the tango as we were running out of time, and it required a lot more work by the woman, and i’d like to spend more time learning it.

i discovered that ballroom dancing is just like D/s:

  • There are defined roles

There is a leader and a follower. It is clearly defined and the leader is in charge of deciding where we are going and how we will be proceeding. Should the follower try to take the lead, toes are going get stepped on! Staying in your roles makes for a smooth and beautiful dance.

  • The leader must be strong and confident

my mom has always said, “Fake it ’til you make it,” meaning, be strong, even if you’re scared to death. The follower is depending on the leader to initiate the movement, even when they are learning. The leader’s arms must be strong so they guide the follower in the direction they wish to go.

  • Communication is paramount

In dance, you communicate with your connection, your body, your eyes, and this is vital. The leader must be able to convey their expectation for the next step, the direction they are going, how they are doing it. Without this communication, things fall apart.

  • The follower must trust their leader

The follower is not in charge and they have to trust that. If you don’t trust your leader, again, toes will be stepped on! Breathe, relax, and allow your partner to lead you. Don’t top from the bottom.

  • The leader is showing off their follower

In dance, as in D/s, the leader shows off the strengths of their partner, spinning them, doing things that show off their body, taking advantage of clothing to display their best.

  • It takes practice

You’re not going to get it right the first time, or the second time, and after you do get it, you’re going to have hiccups! It’s not a “one and done,” it’s a skill that takes attention. There’s always more to learn, things to add, things to refine.

  • It takes patience

You’re both learning–be patient. As the follower, you can’t rush the leader. Don’t get frustrated, be a helpful follower. Toes might get stepped on, steps out of sync, moves forgotten–it’s ok. Pick up, carry on, and continue to learn together.

  • It is supposed to be fun for both partners

It really should be! If it’s not, figure out why and fix it. Perhaps you’re not following your role, not communicating, not being patient. And sadly, perhaps it’s not the right partner for you.

  • Connection is the key

Hold on tight–we’re in this together!

We’re both looking forward to the next lesson Friday night. This time we’ll learn Salsa and Bachata. Maybe we’ll stay for the open Argentine Tango lesson afterward to figure tango out better. Maximus wants to do private lessons with our instructor after we finish this series, and i think that is great!

i think this is good for us. Not only because it’s something fun and social, but that it builds upon our D/s, teaches us skills we can apply in our relationship, makes us better partners. i’m excited for our future, to see how we grow from applying these skills, both in dance and in D/s.

Categories: 24/7, BDSM relationship, D/s, dancing, date night, Fluevog shoes, relationship, trust | Tags: | 1 Comment

Utility sub

So not all of our D/s is sex…a lot of it is, in fact, utility.

When i moved in with Maximus two years ago, i asked if He would add me as an authorized person on the utility accounts, that way if something went wrong with telephone, internet, gas, water etc. while He was traveling i could deal with it. And it turned out to be a good thing, as problems did occur while He was gone every once and a while and i was able to fix them without bothering Him. This is a prime example of how i am COO in our CEO/COO D/s relationship.

We rented out our condo and moved into a beautiful lake house the end of this summer. i was tasked to handle the transition, which i took on happily. Maximus likes to brag that He did 0.4% of the move and that i only did 99.6%! It went smoothly and i accomplished my main goal which was to have Maximus unplug His computer at the hotel, come to the house, plug in His computer and be able to start working again without interruption. i handled the installation of new hardwood floors, utility stops and starts, landscaping, movers, packing and unpacking, arranging, etc. We moved in on a Saturday and had the house ready for overnight guests the following Friday and weekend!

The Pacific Northwest has been inundated with rain for the past three months–record rain–and it’s kept me from doing a bunch of stuff in the yard i want to do. We finally had a sunny morning two days ago and i was able to get out and get things winterized. With all the landscaping work, we’ve amassed a huge compost pile that is really just too big to deal with and is full of evergreen boughs, sod, rose bush trimmings which are near impossible to compost effectively. So i decided it was time to add yard debris to our garbage service so we can whittle this down over the winter when we don’t have grass clippings to deal with. i went into the house and got the last billing statements from Maximus’ file so i could call the company to change our service. To my surprise, i found we had an invoice dated that day with a huge credit on the condo and a past due notice on the house for garbage service! Maximus hadn’t said a thing about it–which He was under no obligation to do–but usually He asks me if there are discrepancies like this. When i got through to our service provider, they added the new service and checked our accounts, confirming that i did close our condo service and start house service in September, and that we had no credit or outstanding balance. Maximus had probably just taken care of whatever the problem was. Being that we’d traveled to Desire and work had been so hectic for Him before we left, i figured the mix up was due to that.

Maximus got home from three days of work travel that night and as i updated Him on everything i’d done while He was gone, i mentioned the garbage service invoices. He did not recall seeing them, the credit, or the past due notice, but did remember filing the invoices. He’d said He was just so distracted with work stuff (it’s open enrollment time and His company is finally switching to benefits packages of the parent company that bought His. He’s had to figure out and change EVERY benefit program He’s in and it’s been confusing, frustrating, and time-consuming).

So i offered to take this off His plate. i already deal with all the utility changes and set them all up for the new house. i had been watching the utility bills the first month or two when they started coming in because i wanted to confirm they were billing us as they said we were when i set things up after Maximus had a question about a huge cable bill we got.

“Why don’t i just take utility bills off Your plate, Sir?” i asked. Long pause…

“I’m handling that,” He replied.

“You’ve been so overwhelmed with everything with work. i already am the contact with our utility services and know what should be happening with our bills. i can simply log on to your banking and take care of them, and take care of any issues that arise.”

Uncomfortable silence from Maximus.

Per our contract, Maximus takes care of the finances other than my few bills. Per our contract, i come to Maximus every month, kneel in front of Him, and present a written request for a check to cover my expenses. i must perform whatever act He requests at that time in order to receive the check. i don’t have any problem with this and it’s worked fine, but since we’ve moved, my bank is further away, making depositing the check kind of a hassle, thus i often hold them until i have two or more checks to deposit and simply transfer money around to cover my bills.

“It could make things easier for You. Instead of having to write me a check to cover my expenses, i could pay those expenses directly from Your account when i go to deal with the utility bills. Less interruption in Your day and something off Your plate.” And i explained the issue with depositing the checks from Him.

“I’ll have to think about it,” He replied. And we went to sleep.

Last night during Happy Half, Maximus shared His trepidation over me paying the utility and my personal bills from His account. It triggered Him, and i hadn’t known. Turns out that JB, his second wife, approached Him to do this very thing and ended up taking large sums of money from Him and overspending His accounts before they got divorced. After thinking about it overnight and during the day, He determined, “This is a great thing! gabriella’s taking something off My plate, which is what i want and need her to do.” He realized that with everything on His plate He hadn’t changed the account number in His bill pay and had been paying on the closed garbage service account rather than the new one–and He missed the bills that should have caught His attention about it. And unlike with JB, we have a contract, intense trust, and would not have the issue He had before. And, we have separate banks, i added, i cannot easily transfer the money between the accounts between the two institutions.

But He had one request. “I really, really like to read the inserts in the utility bills…there’s good information in them a lot of the time.”

And i replied, “And i would really, really like to read those too! Right now, i never see them because You recycle them when You’re done reading them when paying the bills. How about i put the flyers on Your desk next to the bills i’ve marked as paid when i’m done paying them and ready for Your review and filing?”

Win-win!

“And will you pay the paper bill, too?”

Categories: 24/7, D/s, financial submission, relationship, submissive housewife, trust | Leave a comment

Reflections on Desire, Part 2

desirereflections

A Fantasy Fulfilled

As noted in my last post, we had themes for our Afternoon Orgy parties at Desire. One of the themes, Eyes Wide Shut, was specifically for me. This fantasy was spurred by something i saw the first time i went to a swingers’ club, Club Sesso, in Portland (which is now closed). During that trip, we (my ex-husband and i) encountered a man leading his wife around the club–wearing a man’s blazer, stiletto heels, and blindfolded. He would set her someplace, in our case, the orgy bar, and invite people to come play with her. The stipulation was that no one was supposed to let her know who they were, during or after playing with her. He invited us to play with her, but it was just too uncomfortable for me at that point in my swinging, so i declined, however, One Guy went and played with her tits.

That memory has stuck in my mind for all the years since that night. It disturbed me at first, and for a while afterward. i think the thing that bothered me the most when thinking about myself in that position was that i didn’t actually trust One Guy. i really didn’t. i didn’t trust that he’d make good decisions about the people playing with me or how they played with me.

i encountered another similar situation with Maximus three years ago at Kinkfest. i can’t believe i didn’t write about it in my post, Being Kinky, as it triggered feelings again. In this Dungeon scene, a woman was naked, blindfolded, her arms bound at the wrists and pulled up over her head and tied to a scaffolding. On the scaffolding was a sign asking people to play with her, instructing people to don exam gloves and use lube for any clit or pussy play. Her master was standing near her, watching out for her. Once again, i declined to play, still unsure of how i felt about it, but watched Maximus play a little with her.

These two scenes have rolled around in my head for years. i know i had trust issues. But after being with Maximus and really trusting Him, i became more and more intrigued with the idea. We have done sensory deprivation play together, which i love. i love being blindfolded in scenes and visually not knowing what is coming, using only my hearing. But i really love having my ears plugged while being blindfolded, really not knowing what is coming next and actually hearing a cock slamming into me internally, it’s the craziest, most amazing sound! We’d actually done some sensory deprivation play with Sunflower and Mountain Man, and also at one of M&S’s house parties, but i knew the identities of who was playing with me.

When we were coming up with orgy themes, Maximus and i started talking about including sensory deprivation play. And suddenly, the idea of it really turned me on. i asked if we could have a scene for me where i was blindfolded, ears plugged, Him near as a gatekeeper watching over me, where people, men and women, could come play with me. The catch was that i couldn’t know who they were, during or after, and when they were done, they were to sign their name on my body with markers.

So the day came for the Eyes Wide Shut orgy. i was so turned on. my pussy literally dripped down my legs as we were walking upstairs to the hot tub area! i sat on the bed and Maximus and i reviewed the scene. He asked if there was anything i did not want to happen during the scene and i asked that all cocks needed to be in condoms for intercourse (including His so i could not determine whether it was Him fucking me or someone else), no anal, and no men cumming in my mouth. i also asked Him to use His judgment to decide who had access to play with me. He agreed and said He’d be no more than four feet away at all times. He blindfolded me and i put the earplugs in and laid back on the cool sheets of the hot tub beds.

i laid there for a long time with the breeze gently caressing my body. It worried me that no one was playing with me, no one touching me. i worried that maybe we had set up a scene that was too scary for others. i spent a lot of time in my head worrying about it. i asked Maximus if we were freaking people out and He removed an ear plug and replied, “there is a lot of interest, be patient.” Ah, this scene was about learning to be patient, something i struggle with, and Maximus is helping me to learn.

Finally, i feel hands. They tweeked my nipples, caressed my body. A mouth, lips, tongue, nibbling teeth. And then they were gone. But then, a sensation of cold, wet, scratchy-tickling–the marking pen inscribing my skin! It tickled, i giggled and wiggled! Another mouth, this time kissing me. Fingers on my clit and in my pussy…then a cock fucking me. Another tickling signature. Over and over, mouths and fingers, exploring, pinching, caressing, and then tickling signatures. After the signatures, i felt my legs positioned, opening my pussy toward what i knew was the gawking eyes of those in the hot tub–Maximus was displaying me. No more worrying, no thoughts or concerns about who or what, just reveling in the sensation–the breeze, the touches, the freedom of not having to choose or control. It wasn’t subspace, but freespace, i guess, something just below, being carried on a breeze, fully enjoying sensations, but still present.

i had thoroughly enjoyed myself and it was time to conclude our scene. All of a sudden i got hot and told Maximus i was ready to be done. He sat me up carefully, held me as He removed my earplugs but left my blindfold on. He stood me up and told me to stay holding onto one of the bed posters while He left to get a towel to wrap me in, but my knees were buckling, so i gently knelt onto the ground, still holding onto the poster. He wrapped me in the towel, gave me a sip of water, helped me up, and walked me blindfolded down the many stairs and back up to our room. It was there that He finally removed the blindfold and revealed my marked up body in the mirror:

Wow! There were a lot more signatures than i expected! And, because it tickled so much when people signed, i looked like i’d been attacked by a 6 year-old with markers! i couldn’t read the signatures, had no reference to know who was who.

After some time regaining my composure, Maximus took me back up to the hot tub, this time not blindfolded. He had me wander through the crowded hot tub to feel everyone’s eyes on me. Some people asked about it, about what the ink marks all were about. A lot of those reactions were good, interested, some had seen from a distance but not understood what was going on. Many were friends, and i wondered if they were owners of some of the signatures and were just acting like they had no idea so i wouldn’t know they had played with me. Some were uncomfortable about it, like i had been years ago, so i understood. Some thought it was non-consensual and that had concerned them until i explained the consent process and agreements Maximus and i had made prior. Many others said nothing, gave me odd looks, turned away. It was interesting to me, this range–all the feelings i had felt over the years were being displayed in this hot tub.

Maximus agreed to let me go back to the room and wash off the signatures. The colors ran down my body and swirled onto the floor of the shower. It had been a marvelous scene.

Categories: Desire, Orgy, patience, sensory deprivation play, Sex resort, submissive, Swingers resort, trust | Leave a comment

Insecurity

Her insecurities drown her;

rip and tear her apart.

It’s all in her mind,

if she only saw herself

the way that He does.

~unknown

Maximus and i are in Vegas as He has a convention. We’ve been looking forward to this as M&S decided to come to Vegas as well to share our trip and we hope to see our good friends Italian Stallion and Sparkle, who we met at Desire last year. The trip out was great, we had some good discussion on my M/s research and one of the books Maximus is reading. We’ve talked about some changes to our contract to reflect our M/s and separate out some things currently in it into rules and protocols, as well as some existing expectations of His that should be documented as rules and protocols.

Last night the plan was to have dinner with M&S and some people who we had thought were friends of their’s from Vegas and then go to their suite for playtime afterward. Turns out it was just us for dinner, which was fine. We had a wonderful dinner at Bouchon. i asked about their friends and S told us that they’d never met them, but that M had been corresponding with them for a bit online and by text. She said she was very excited to meet them and showed me a picture of a man with a gorgeous body. i asked to see a picture of the female half but she didn’t have one. She then added, “Well, the biggest reason I’m excited to see him is that he’s bringing pot,” which i misheard at first as he’s freaking hot until she repeated it. Maximus and i do not imbibe. We don’t have problems that other people do, that’s their choice, but Maximus cannot be around it due to possible random drug testing for His work, and M&S know this.

We went to M&S’s suite after dinner, which is beautiful and has a panoramic view of the strip and dead-on view of the giant High Roller ferris wheel. It was there that we learned a single female was coming over–someone they’d never met before. That surprised us and they really didn’t have much information on her. They told us literally five minutes before she arrived. We kept turning on lights in the suite so we would be able to visit with this girl and see her, but oddly M kept turning them all off, which was kind of disturbing to me. She arrived in the dark, really couldn’t see her, and we started to chat with her a bit. Turns out, she really wasn’t a swinger, this was her first time meeting a random couple, just has sex with lots of people–which surprised S as she’d had the impression from M that she was an experienced swinger from the online conversations he’d had with her. i wasn’t really impressed or comfortable with the situation, so i took Maximus into the other room and told Him that i really wasn’t feeling it, didn’t want to play, and really would like to head back to our hotel. He replied that He felt the same way.

Shortly thereafter, M announced that there had been enough talking and it was time to play. i looked at Maximus and said to the group that i really wasn’t feeling it. M&S said that was ok, we could just watch, as they were taking this women into the other room to play. Maximus got up and followed them in, saying He was going to watch. S came back out and sat with me and said she wasn’t really feeling it either. Soon, we heard the woman moaning and the sounds of squirting, which is Maximus’ thing, and the woman called out for S to come into the room. We both did and found Maximus finger fucking her. Well i was upset by this, as He told me He didn’t want to play with her and was going into the room to simply watch M play with her before we left. i gave Him a tug on the back of His shirt and whispered to Him that i needed to go. He knew i was mad.

We said our goodbyes and left. i was upset, didn’t want to talk to Maximus about it in the hall, elevator, cab, and by the time we got back to our hotel, didn’t want to ride in the elevator with Him and really wanted to go home. i felt He had betrayed my trust.

In the room, we decided to talk about it. i told Him that i didn’t feel like i could trust Him because of the situation that had just happened. He told me He was going into watch, wasn’t going to have sex, and that we were going to leave–but He didn’t do that. i had been very clear with my feelings and He had been clear in His response agreeing to that plan. i was calm, didn’t yell, but i told Him i wanted to go home, He could stay, and that i felt because of this lack of trust i couldn’t continue in M/s or our relationship.

Maximus started to respond by explaining what He had done and i stopped Him and asked that He use the Imago dialogue process that we are contractually bound to use in times of disagreement. i said that His explaining sounded like justification and we needed to use Imago as our contract required, and so i would not get angry. He did and communicated that He absolutely went against what He told me He was going to do, that He had betrayed my trust, understood that it felt like He had lied to me and how that would make me feel, and that He had prioritized not making M&S feel uncomfortable over my feelings, and apologized. He said it was a mistake and it made Him feel horrible. He also didn’t want me to leave Vegas, M/s, or our relationship, which i agreed not to do.

i was emotionally drained and after we finished that dialogue i shared with Maximus some feelings i was having, insecurities. Like i briefly mentioned in my last entry, i’ve gained weight after my hysterectomy and despite exercising and continuing my vegan diet, cannot lose weight, while Maximus’ clothes are falling off of Him. My running has become so difficult and exhausting that i cannot do it anymore. i am embarrassed by how i look, frustrated i cannot seem to fix it, disappointed in myself, don’t feel sexy, and getting quite insecure about it. His actions to pull back over the past year has compounded my lack of sexiness, to the point that i have lost interest in swinging, our swinger sites, etc. i communicated i was fearful about going to Desire next week because of it. However, i didn’t want to make a decision about canceling that trip while i was upset, emotional, and tired.

Maximus assured me how sexy He finds me and understood how pulling back compounded the situation. He promised to correct that. He agreed to talk about Desire later. We went to bed and i was still emotionally upset. Maximus got physically sick a couple of hours later, something i’ve never seen with Him before. i don’t know if it was our discussion or food. But by morning He was better and we had sex.

We had a late breakfast this morning with M&S. Prior to me arriving, Maximus talked to them about the prior evening. Turns out, they asked the woman to leave about twenty minutes after we left, as it was not working out, and the other couple never even showed up. It was a bust. Maximus explained that we (it’s primarily me) really prefer to spend a little bit of time getting to know people, or that they really know the people before we start fucking them, and last night just didn’t accommodate that for us. They totally understood. This evening should be better for that.

Maximus and i talked alone after breakfast and i told Him that i was feeling better. i shared that i need to get over this insecurity about my body because it is going to ruin me and my sexual feelings. i feel that my hormonal imbalance is not only affecting my physical body, but it is really messing with my thoughts and impressions of myself. He asked if that was why i had gotten upset about His actions with the woman the night before, and i said no, that was a trust issue about being told one thing and having Him do the complete opposite. i shared that i felt our M/s may be helpful in supporting my steps to regain my sexy security and He agreed. i also told Him that i wanted to keep our Desire trip as planned.

i feel badly that we had this hiccup. He was very appreciative that we did not have a fight last night, as would have happened even a few months ago, rather, we had a discussion without yelling and i/we stuck to our contract accordingly. i feel badly that i got upset at Him and don’t feel like a good sub because of it. However, i know that Maximus is human, and that human Masters make mistakes sometimes and i forgive Him for it. So despite our hiccups and my insecurity, i think we’re on the right path with our M/s, certainly are growing and interacting better when we comply with our contract and rules contained in it. i trust in Him and in our agreement. i will trust in how He sees me and grow from that.

Categories: communication, Imago, lying, M/s, swinging, trust | Leave a comment

Gah!

gahi have race brain….bad. GAH!

First, i’m emotional. i cried when i drove the last several miles to the race start, overwhelmed by the beauty of the venue and how unbelievable it is to me that i am here. i’m not a crier, either.

i will stop crying. i will stop crying.

Maximus is in Chicago for business and for the first time, i’m a mess about it. Saturday morning, as i was driving to the race venue, Maximus was flying to Chicago. We had a great conversation that morning before i left and He said He would get a hold of me after He got through security at the airport. i never heard from Him…not even the normal texts letting me know He’s getting on the plane or I love you’s when doors closing. i finally got a text He had landed and was in a cab enroute to the hotel, but after two hours, still nothing. i was upset by this–what’s going on? For the first time, i felt suspicious about His travels…and i told Him that when we talked about it. He understood where I was coming from and we moved on.

Then last night, i called His room at 11:30 PM His time after not hearing from Him. The phone was picked up and promptly hung up on me. Then i called back and it went to voicemail. As i got voicemail the second time, i got a text from Him that He was walking to His room.

“That’s odd, because i just called Your room and someone hung up on me,” i texted back.

Then He immediately called saying He’d been in His room for five minutes and missed the call while in the bathroom.

It didn’t make sense to me and i was suspicious again. Gah. And it ruined my whole day. i was upset that the chain of events happened and that they were making me feel suspicious. And i hated feeling suspicious! We talked through it but i was terribly upset by it and by the time we were able to talk about our days, i was just destroyed and couldn’t talk. i asked Maximus to let us just end the call because i was upset and couldn’t talk, which He did. i cried for about 10 minutes, rested, and called Him back 20 minutes later and we talked about our days.

Second, i’m forgetful. i lost my wallet and my Garmin GPS triathlete watch this morning, which is essential, expensive, and setup EXACTLY how i want it, a task that’s taken 3 years to figure out. Turns out, it was in my car in the center console where i put it when i left the car to use a restroom in a park.

i know it’s the stress of the upcoming race. i’m distracted, feeling a little overwhelmed perhaps. i had major burnout last week, couldn’t even train and had three days of intense stomach cramps. i’ve just not been myself.

i even forgot my birthday is in three days, until Maximus reminded me today on the phone.

Hey brain! Come back here! i need you!! Gah!

i love You, Maximus. Thank You for being patient with me right now. i’m sorry i was a mess last night.

Categories: relationship, trust | 2 Comments

Forgiveness

forgiveness

Maximus and i were finally back together this morning. We took some time to dialogue two things that we needed to go over to finish the resolution of our conflict. The two things regarded eliminating absolutes and Ms. W.

Eliminating absolutes revolved around how my discovery that Maximus had lied and concealed His communications and meetings with Ms. W during the last two months while i worked on my rage set up a perfect storm of three major rage triggers that overwhelmed my ability to control my rage about it. The triggers were being lied to by my partner, having my partner conceal important issues from me, and abandonment. What do these have to do with absolutes? Well Maximus had told me from the beginning of, well actually before, our relationship that if He ever lied to His partner, the relationship would be over–this was how He described how important honesty and trust was to Him in a relationship. So when He admitted that He had lied to me, these triggers, especially the fear of abandonment, were just too much for me–i was simultaneously hurt, scared, terrified, and overwhelmed by my belief that He was now done with our relationship and i didn’t understand why. i had nothing to lose, He was going to leave me, and i raged–the worst rage ever. i acknowledged that He had made a choice to leave me and told Him to go, and then begged Him not to leave me, back and forth and back and forth. So in our dialogue today, we agreed that absolutes like that set us up for failure as they do not allow us to work on issues in our relationship that lead us to feel insecure, unsafe, and risk or lead to changes in our behavior that aren’t congruent with our morals. If y/You do _________, i/I will _________ doesn’t let us be human and recover from mistakes, and we ARE human and WILL make mistakes. Moreover, i really feel that i have made great headway against my raging, and had i not been confronted by this perfect storm of triggers, i don’t think i would have raged again.

In our talk about Ms. W. i shared with Maximus something that Fern had said to me at my last counseling session, something that i did not understand at the time but became clear yesterday after He and i had dialogued over the phone. Fern told me that Ms. W was a symbol for something. i didn’t agree with her, replying that no, Ms. W was a person, not a symbol. However, after doing some reflection about our phone dialogue yesterday, i realized that Ms. W WAS a symbol, a symbol of my fear of losing the emotional intimacy in our emotionally monogamous relationship. i had a belief that Maximus and Ms. W shared emotional intimacy, but that just isn’t the case, it isn’t fact. Ms. W may desire emotional intimacy with Him, but He has not, does not, doesn’t engage in that with her. The fact that Maximus had lied and concealed the continued contact with Ms. W reinforced my belief that not only did i think they were emotionally intimate, but were having an emotional affair; but when looked at factually, He had not had time to meet with Ms. W yet to go over with her the changes He was going to make in their relationship.

The significance of these two dialogues had to do with trust for both of us. First, a request for Maximus to trust in me that i am able to control my rage, that this was an isolated event due to extraordinary compounding of triggers for me. Second, my promise to trust in Maximus that He is not emotionally intimate with anyone other than me, that we are indeed emotionally monogamous.

At the end, i asked Maximus to forgive me for my mistrust and for my rage, and He forgave me. Maximus then asked me to forgive Him for lying to me and concealing the contact with Ms. W, and i forgave Him. Honestly, before yesterday afternoon, i did not even think forgiveness was going to be possible for weeks for me. In fact, prior to yesterday’s dialogue, my agenda for today’s discussion was going to be about confronting Maximus about the emotional affair He was having with Ms. W. i am so very thankful, again, for the courage Maximus had to initiate the dialogue yesterday that opened up my eyes, mind, and heart and allowed me to understand.

i am extremely hopeful that this, indeed, is the end of this chapter for us. This past week has been full of brutal truth. And as Gloria Steinem said,

The truth will set you free, but first it will piss you off.

Ending a chapter on brutal truth is so much better, in the long run, than ending a chapter on concealed truth. Even though it was painful, it got everything out on the table, in the open, for us both to see and deal with. It gives us a true clean slate to move on.

While this blog is my submissive journal and the main purpose is as an outlet for me to process my feelings and document how we develop in our D/s relationship, i do realize that it is public and we have had followers who came to it interested in the BDSM, D/s aspect, not relationship drama. So to those readers, if you are still with me after this two month period of drama, thank you for sticking with us, and we will be getting back to our regularly scheduled program! That being said, however, i do think that it is important for me to share the reality of developing a D/s relationship, in that it involves real people, with real emotions and real lives, and all the baggage that comes with that. D/s requires enormous trust and a grain of sand can cause enough irritation to hobble. Perhaps our story may help another couple dealing with their grain of sand whatever it may be, to help them seek counseling and learn to really communicate, really listen, and make it through the other side. And to not give up on each other.

Text from Maximus: Hey, I got a message from your ass saying it needed a butt plug. Just wanted to alert you…

Text reply from gabriella: KK. i’ll check in with my ass…my ass says “ahhhh, thank you Sir for informing g what i needed!”

butt message1

Looks like we’re back!

Categories: balance, BDSM relationship, communication, conflict, forgiveness, honesty, Imago, relationship, relationship needs, trust | 1 Comment

What Do i Do Now?

Ok, so i came to the conclusion in my last blog post, Can Trust be Restored?, that i should stay and give Maximus another chance.

i’m still hurt, still angry, still horribly disappointed, confused, lost, disoriented.

Kirshenbaum has another six questions for me to answer. These are the questions i need to answer in order to restore my feeling of trust. There is no timetable for this process, it varies for everyone, but they work as a guide:

  1. How will I ever cope with this?
  2. Does the other person really care about me?
  3. Can the other person really see me and understand how his betrayal hurt me?
  4. Can our relationship survive?
  5. Can we make things safer and better between us?
  6. Can I forgive him?

1. How will i ever cope with this?

It is normal to feel and act crazy–most people encounter an overwhelming sense of insanity when betrayed because someone we trusted to take care of us hurt or abandoned us. Nothing makes sense anymore. However, you are not actually crazy, it is what you are feeling, and it’s part of the natural healing process.

Now is when everyone is expecting the crazy, so you might as well give it to them.

You are coping, this is coping, hang in there. What you feel now is not an indicator of whether or not the relationship is worth healing. Don’t do anything you’ll regret.

If you still have any kind of relationship left by the time you start being a little less crazy, you’re in good shape…If you’re not blown apart, it means there is some glue, some degree of caring, and that makes all the difference here. Believe it or not, the trust-restoring process has begun.

i felt like i lost my mind when Maximus admitted to intentionally, justifiably lying to me about Ms. W. The rage was horrible, exhausting, frightening. i even told Him that i thought i had lost my mind. i truly felt i had lost my mind. This is what confused me about what to do next–if this relationship had gone to such an extreme that i lost my mind, went insane, why on earth would i want to stay in it? Why would i put myself in that position to permanently damage myself?

i eventually calmed down. But i still get swirls of anxiety. Swirls of extreme hurt. Swirls of solutions, things that seem like solutions anyway, that will do nothing but cause more hurt, to both of us. i feel like Odysseus tied to the ship’s mast, agonized by the Sirens’ songs of craziness. When will i get past earshot of the Sirens? Perhaps i am coping by the sheer fact that i have somehow tied myself to the mast, unable to break free and lose my mind.

But i’m also just overwhelmingly sad–and it upsets me that i’m so sad.

2. Does the other person really care for me?

The anger in the aftermath of betrayal is what people expect but find the most difficult to deal with. While anger is a feeling, it’s also a tactic, a way to sort out if the other person really cares about us. If the person who betrayed you can hang in there while you’re furious, they’ve passed the “do-you-care” test–they really do care.

…when you realize that the other person cares about you, however ignorant, confused, and clumsy he may be, then you’ll have the motivation you need to rebuild trust.

This may take weeks to figure out. You’re angry, you want to know why. You will grill them for answers. But the danger is that while anger makes you feel safer, makes the other person scared of you so they’ll never hurt you again, it makes them distance themselves in order to provide for their own feeling of safety. Don’t get into a cycle of anger where you hurt the other person, they hurt back in defense, you retaliate and hurt them more, and on and on and on. This will kill the relationship. The less anger we allow ourselves, the faster healing will happen.

Consider saying this to your partner:

Look, I know this is hard on you too. And I wish I had some kind of timetable or road map that would tell me when my anger will start to die down. But I just don’t know when that will happen. I do know that I want it to happen. I want to find a way to trust you again. And I know you want to be trustworthy. But here’s the thing. When you hurt me, that gave me the message that you don’t care about me. That I wasn’t worth your caring about me. But if you can hang in there with me while I’m still so angry, that will tell me that you do care, and that means everything to me.

Be aware that if you can’t trust each other, don’t trust each other, you’ll be watching every moment for an attack or scary gesture, causing you to bristle and attack. This is a mistrust cycle, where mistrust breeds more mistrust, just as the anger cycle breeds more anger. Break the mistrust cycle by sharing with your partner what you need to feel safe, and allow good things to happen. This lets your partner know that rebuilding trust is possible, that your anger is not infinite, that he can recover from his mistake.

i do believe that Maximus cares for me. i just am having trouble understanding why He did this. i want to be able to trust Him again. i know i am stuck in the mistrust cycle, that i am watching for proof, making Him feel under the microscope. my mistrust risks pushing Him away, which will make me feel more abandoned and give me proof that He’s not trustworthy and doesn’t care. This is a big step for me.

And it’s only been 4 days. i’m certainly not here yet. Kirshenbaum notes that it can take a month to get out of the anger stage, but i don’t think i can handle being there that long. And i don’t think these steps are particularly linear, that you have to complete one stage before going into the next one–i think they overlap, at least they seem to be for me.

So this is where i’m going to stop for today. i have a lot of work to do in these first two steps. i can’t rush this. i, we deserve that i not rush this. Just because the cast on a broken arm is awkward and itchy doesn’t mean it’s ready to come off–you only want it off because it’s unnatural, restricting, bulky and keeps you from doing things you regularly enjoy. You have to go through the healing process in order for things to heal correctly.

Maximus, i’m upset. i love you but i’m hurt. i want to trust You again and i know you want to be trusted again, without suspicion. i don’t know how long this will take. i felt like you didn’t care enough to really listen to my fears, didn’t care enough to protect me from repeating things that have harmed me in my past. i felt like i was given a false gift, a fake, a precious package that turned out to be a Jack-in-the-Box with a mocking jester that blew-up in my face and mocked me. But if you can hang with me, stay with me even while i’m hurt, when i need you the most, give me aftercare i need from this scene, it will show me that you do care, will start to put drops back into my love tank. That will mean everything to me and help me come back, help me trust you with my whole heart again.

Love,

gabriella.

Categories: aftercare, anger, balance, communication, conflict, counseling, trust | Leave a comment

Can Trust be Restored?

xray heart hands

They say that broken bones heal to be stronger than they were before. While that’s not necessarily true, bones are temporarily stronger at fracture sites during the healing process, as calcium is being deposited, they do eventually return to a state of being equally as strong as they were. Trust is not a bone, but can it heal like one? Can trust heal as strong as it was before it was broken?

This has been my question, my dilemma. i’m not new to broken trust in a relationship, it’s why i’ve been going through counseling with Maximus, to learn to be trusting. The problem for me is that in my past relationship there were so many betrayals that the only way for me to heal was to remove myself from the relationship–the relationship was just too fractured to heal and had to be amputated. Is that the case now? i’ve been stuck trying to figure out, What should i do?

As i’ve done with questions about BDSM and rage, i’ve started reading about restoring trust. i have begun my research with Mira Kirshenbaum’s I Love You But I Don’t Trust You and i’m finding it quite helpful.

The first important thing i’ve learned from Kirshenbaum’s book is that the mere fact that i am questioning the impulse to flee, to run, to leave the relationship is a sign that it has cause for working on to repair and restore trust. She gives six signs to look for when deciding whether to stay or leave.

1. Would you want this relationship if the trust could be restored?

Looking past the blind rage, remember the past month, the past year before you knew of the betrayal…would you want that relationship? Were you happy enough or were you looking to move on even then before the betrayal?

i was happy right before learning that Maximus had been continuing His relationship with Ms. W. We’d just been to a counseling session with Fern where i shared that i felt the most connected, happiest that i have felt, free of static of mistrust. We had been communicating, understood our love languages. This is why learning of the betrayal was such a shock to me–it had been pure bliss since His epiphany, now shattered.

i want that relationship, the relationship where we communicate, pay attention to each others needs.

2. Does the fact that this betrayal happened ruin everything for you?

Kirshenbaum gives caution here. She shares that while the anger that makes you not want to have anything to do with the other person can last months, that kind of anger eventually subsides, and mostly evaporates with healing. If the betrayal has completely caused you to “re-vision” your partner into something hateful and awful, you can’t stay, but if not, if it’s not clear, then give healing a chance.

i don’t feel like this has changed my vision of Maximus into that of a monster. i am, certainly, extremely disappointed in His decision and it has ruined the feeling of bliss and trust i had finally achieved with Him, but it hasn’t ruined everything. And this is a big realization for me–that it hasn’t ruined everything, just the recent feelings i’d gained.

3. Can I imagine the possibility of forgiveness?

The amount of anger you feel now is not predictive of whether or not you can forgive one day. Forgiveness comes from a realization or understanding that we can decide to let this go; perhaps better understanding their motives, what they were dealing with, or appreciating their limitations. Is your lack of forgiveness destroying your own peace of mind and happiness?

Yesterday, i came to the realization that Maximus had come to a crossroad when i’d last raged two months ago. He had to choose how to proceed with Ms. W while i and we were going through counseling to deal with my rage and mistrust. When i wrote my blog about it, i shared that i was disappointed in the lack of integrity He showed in choosing the easy wrong. Later i was reflecting on what Maximus had said when admitting that He had lied about the continued relationship with Ms. W and concealing it from me, and that was He believed that if i knew He still had a relationship with Ms. W it would slow down my recovery and prolong the process. This was true, it would have. But that still didn’t make sense to me why He would intentionally make a decision that would cause me such pain and hurt, until i recalled how Maximus kept insisting that this was the past not the present. This statement infuriated me, because i took that as Maximus knowing about the continued relationship and lying about it for two months and therefore it was in His past, but it was in my present. However, after thinking about this, i believe that Maximus was not communicating well. i have come to the realization that what He was trying to tell me was that He had made this decision to continue His relationship with Ms. W under the influence of His feelings of guilt about the breakup of her marriage, which was His past belief that influenced His decisions about her. He was not able to make a decision to distance Himself from Ms. W at that point, as He felt enormous guilt, and therefore, knowing it would hurt me  if i knew, decided to conceal the relationship. It was wrong, it probably would not have been the decision He would have made now after discovering the fallacy of His belief of guilt versus the reality in fact.

That being said, i am still extremely hurt by the decision. And there was communication with Ms. W the day after His epiphany, much of which was deleted. But i do understand His intention, even though the execution was poorly chosen. i don’t believe He was malevolent in this decision, and that will help me to someday forgive Him, when i’ve had a chance to heal, to get rid of this anger and hurt and toxin.

4. Does the person you mistrust care about how you feel?

Has the other person gone out of their way to show their caring? If not, rebuilding trust is impossible. “With caring, anything is possible.”

i have to say that Maximus has shown care and concern about how i feel. The most important thing He has done was to give meeting with Fern the utmost priority when He had an enormous amount of work to do the day before going offline for the rest of the week on vacation. He could have easily refused, but He did not. In addition, He kept in contact with me during His travels until He was out of cell phone range, despite me continuing to be upset with Him, and did so in a positive and upbeat manner. He could have well chosen otherwise.

5. Can the other person work on your relationship with you?

You’ve got to talk, share information about things that are difficult to say and difficult to hear, and do it without destroying each other. Neither of you can tell the other person to go figure it out on their own and come back to see if it works. You have to listen when you need to be heard and make yourself be heard when you don’t want to talk anymore. Don’t attack, don’t blame, don’t call each other names when that’s really all you want to do–it will make you feel better in the short term, but destroy any feeling of safety, the safety the other person needs in order to talk.

i do feel Maximus is willing to work on our relationship. He has been willing to work on our relationship when i have been dealing with my raging. He’s going to counseling with me, He’s read and discussed books, He’s listened to me, He’s shared His feelings and experiences when it was difficult. We have a framework, Imago.

6. What do you have to lose by giving your relationship a chance?

What’s the worst that will happen if you try? If you try and find out that this person can’t or won’t change, then you know for sure, no regrets later for not trying. But it could also work out, if you go through the process correctly, if they want to earn your trust, it will work out, and you’ll be glad that you did not give up on it. Right now, you don’t need anything more than just a wisp of a feeling that there is even just a chance things can be salvaged. All you need now is the thought that it’s worth attempting.

i do believe it is worth trying. i’m not ready to give up on us, we are worth trying to salvage.

Kirshenbaum believes that broken trust is not like a house on fire, where what’s burned is burned; she believes it is like a broken bone, that what’s broken can heal.

Broken bones heal all the time. Yes, it’s painful. And yes, it can feel like it’s taking forever. But it doesn’t take forever at all.

She also shares that when we discover that our partner has done something bad, we believe it reveals their true character, when, in fact, all we’ve discovered is one truth about them, that they did this bad thing. You can’t let this one thing make us blind to all the good things they do, just as we ourselves are capable of doing stupid, weak, ignorant, selfish things as well. Let the other person have the chance surprise you with their good qualities, just as they’ve surprised you with their bad one.

i will be continuing to discuss what i’m learning from I Love You But I Don’t Trust You in the next blogs. The next posts will discuss the process of restoring trust.

Categories: anger, conflict, counseling, honesty, trust | Leave a comment

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