So here we are.  Been a while hasn’t it, but I did warn you.

So settle in.  A little over a year has passed since sweetgirl asked me to consider being her dominant.  If you’re  new here are wondering what you have missed click this link to my first post.  and sweetgirls journal here much more content from SwG.  So I thought we would check in.

So what is there to discuss? Well that is simple, whatever we want.   Feel free to ask questions and I will try to answer them.
However, let me tell you about my year.  I have found a number of things to be true over the last year or so.   Firstly if your communication slips everything slips.   It is hard as we try to be D/s all the time (notice i didn’t say 24/7, that’s  because I hate that phrase) but life gets in the way.  Over the last year Sweetgirl has changed jobs twice and this puts obstacles in the way such as her bringing work home.  I know what you’re  thinking “You’re the Dom tell her she can’t” well that may seem to be an easy solution but has consequences as her mental state will change with worry.  You see she is the type of lady that gives her all to everything she does.  (Remember I said we would have had a fully fitted playroom and rack full of toys in the first week if she wasn’t controlled).  So when starting a new job I find it best to give some slack so she can focus on what she has to do outside of the home and the dynamic.
We, like most people have rituals and this helps but there is a diffrent connection made when playing compared to when we do her day/night collars.  Sweetgirl goes deeper into subspace when we play,  even the limited play we can do at home can send her down.  But playing at home comes with it’s own challenges as I am sure it does for anyone with kids and pets.  Our two children are all grown up and we had a routine with the youngest as he is a bit of a gamer so spends most of his time in his room with headphones on wageing war on some distant land.  So the sound of the flogger doesn’t register.  However our eldest has come home before hopefully moving to London in a month or two but this has changed the dynamic of the house as he spends more time watching tv or reading in his room, so noise registers and he has been known in the past to let us know when we are disturbing him.
Another thing I have noticed over the last year is the amount of planning and structure I like, not only my everyday life but in play and scenes.  Before one particular incident I would have said I do little planning or prep for play/scenes.  But this false hood was highlighted to me recently.
When sweetgirl and I started on this journey we agreed that play at home would be problematic due to kids and pets.  Yes there are ways round everything given time and money, but with that comes a sudden change of day to day routine.  For instance if we were to suddenly start fully closing doors to keep pets out the room then it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to work out what we are doing.  So we agreed that we would invest in ourselves and book a hotel night or two away every month.  Now this went well and we have a favourite hotel which we go to every couple of months and we use a chain hotel to keep the cost down for other monthly getaways.  Normally we have them written down so we know when we are going etc.   I tend to send email instructions to sweetgirl telling her what to pack and giving a brief outline of what will happen during our time away.
Well this one particular week we appear not to have wrote it down thankfully a email reminder from the site that we use to book was received but instead of having our usual week to prepare we only had a few days.   Unfortunately we couldn’t cancel without still having to pay and on top of this it was new hotel.  So we packed on the day and decided to go to a pub/restaurant that we pass on the way to our local munch for something to eat before heading to the hotel.  It was disappointing to say the least but once at the hotel things just felt odd for us both and the evening didn’t flow.  We are due back at that hotel soon to see if we can break that feeling.
Now when we started out full time D/s we decided that we would have a collar for play and one for everyday.   But the one for everyday needed to be something that Sweetgirl could wear everyday and not raise suspicion.  After all it only needed to mean something to us.   So in 23 years of being together I think I picked my first peice of jewellery that Sweetgirl would wear.  It was a long silver chain with a eye and a silver bar that passes through it.  I also made her a night/play collar from paracord that we swap in a ritual before bed.  Recently however we have changed the day collar that we bought for a collar I hand made out of silver.  I like to be busy even when sat down so I started looking at chainmaille as it is something I can do sat on the sofa.  I made her a byzantine collar and I believe she likes it as it is tighter around her neck and reminds her of her submission.   I am hoping to get into leather work but feel I need a dedicated space for this so need the kids to leave but that is another story.
So social media is and has been about for sometime and for a variety of reason I decided I would join twitter and instagram this was for a number of reason but mainly because I do not know everything and although my imagination is good it has it’s limit.  It is going well, although I am amazed at how many men seem to think it is acceptable to send unsolicited pictures of their penis to women they have never met or even introduced themselves too.   I am learning lots and filing stuff away for the future.
We were lucky enough to be invited to our first event by a friend that has amazing knowledge and has been on the scene for some time.   This was a big step for me personally and for Sweetgirl.   Sweetgirl’s out fit was risqué but not the risquést one at the event by any stretch I know she was out of her comfort zone with it as it was quite revealing, again not the most revealing.   We got there quite early and introduced ourselves to the organiser.  We also got to meet our friend’s slave for the first time.  Seeing some of the protocols in place was interesting.  For me personally I am not nor have I ever been a fan of large crowds.  I remember when I first met Sweetgirl she asked if I would attend a meatloaf concert with her, but due to my dislike of large crowds a concert is just a no go for me.   I cant explain it really I am just not comfortable, not anxious or anything it is just a feeling.  Think i have been to 3 rugby games in my life despite being a fan of my hometown rugby club all my life.
I do find rope work and flogging very enjoyable and do plan on attending the local rope workshop soon (if it doesn’t co-inside with my week on call).   We recently had the opportunity to attend a Flogging workshop held by Aemellia Hawk and was excited and booked early.   This workshop was a talk and demonstration by Aemeilla and the opportunity to practice in the club and receive coaching from this wonderfully funny and talented practitioner.   However as some of you may know Sweetgirl has had issues with her back for more than a decade.  Earlier in the year she had a procedure done that made her pain free for 2 days as a test.   When we booked it we knew there was a chance that the proper procedure would be done around the time of the workshop.   Yip you guest it the procedure was scheduled for the Friday as the workshop was on the Sunday.   A long story short we attended but due to Sweetgirl being 48 post surgical procedure we didn’t play despite Sweetgirl’s remonstrations (remember my love part of my role is to protect you even from yourself)  but learned lots and have ordered some new floggers from amealia
What does the future hold?  Well that is difficult to answer as it depends on what the future gives me to work with.  There are lots I would like to do and try that will not only push Sweetgirl but push me too.   As I have said I want to attend the rope workshops and there is always the option to play at the munches we attend.  I would like to make more friends in the kink community as there is so much to learn.

Here we are around 6 months into this journey. I was asked to write this and was initially nervous about writing it as I consider myself a private kind of person and consider this very private. However, this is about pushing limits and it is only fair that if I push Sweetgirl’s limits, I should push my own to better understand her needs and reactions to being pushed.

However, I feel a bit of a disclaimer is needed.

If you are expecting a literary classic you will be disappointed, I am no Charles Dickens, J R R Tolkien or George Orwell.

“Zero Option” by Chris Ryan is my goto book. By this I mean it lives in the car; it is not great a work of english literature but I enjoy the escapism. I see you’re asking yourself what has a book about a fictional member of the SAS trying to rescue his child from an IRA terrorist got to do with D/s relationship?

Well, are you sitting comfortably as this may become a bit of a waffling tale (but i refer you to the disclaimer at the beginning)? Sweetgirl has suffered with back problems and chronic pain from around 2008 and it has taken us to 2016/2017 to really get that to the point where she is comfortable and able to move about.

However, it was at a hospital appointment in July 2017 that the first tentative steps on our journey began. Hospitals have featured in or lives throughout our relationship so we tend to “go prepared”. This was her second visit to the “Pain Specialist” (only took 8 years to get to see him the first time). So once booked in and settled in the waiting room Sweetgirl pulled out her kindle and started to read. Now I admit to being a bit of a people watcher and, other than a pub there are few places better than a “waiting room”. So I am looking around and hearing snippets of conversations as the conversation in the room flows. I get to the point where I need to do something different for a bit, and notice Sweetgirl is reading 50 Shades of Grey. I remember being vaguely aware of the book when it launched as all the women in the office where reading it and again when the films were released I remember that same group of women organising a trip to the cinema with friends to go watch the adaptation. Can’t say I remember anyone’s opinion but knew roughly what it was about when I noticed the title.

Fast forward 30 minutes and the main character in my book had just returned home from a mission in other part of the world to find his girlfriend and son missing and an envelope left on a chair. Sweetgirl leans over and asks, “just read that”. I will admit I don’t recall the detail of the contents of the page, but I am reliably informed that it was a scene between Christian and Anastasia. Being honest it didn’t rock my boat as not the kinda book I would read (no one gets shot 🙂 ).

What followed next would be classed as the start of our Journey as SweetGirl leans over and says something along the lines, “Can we try that?”

Essentially what my wife of 17 years was asking was ‘can you tie me up and spank me?’  We’re sat in the waiting room of the hospital waiting to see the “Pain Specialist” – oh the irony! My wife who has been in pain for nearly a decade is asking me to give her more pain. If you have ever been to hospital and been asked about the pain you’re experiencing they have a pain rating of 1-10. Now, to give you a little perspective, Sweetgirl, for the last 8 or so years at this point, had existed at around 6-7 on a daily basis and that is with a cocktail of drugs. Here she is asking me to add to it, so I say ‘OK maybe’, and I’m thinking she is just trying to tease me a little, to pass the time.

Following the appointment we are driving home and talk some more. I expressed my concerns about adding to the pain and causing further pain/damage. After all, it is my job as her husband to keep her safe. She assured me that she would let me know. On top of that Sweetgirl is a little bit of a control freak so I wasn’t sure she would enjoy not being able to move etc.

So that evening I thought I would test the waters. Following getting ready for bed I decided I would see how well she would take instruction. So I had Sweetgirl lie on the bed and move her limbs out. I leaned in close and told her not to move and the rest of what I consider our first scene will remain private. However, I will say that Sweetgirl did very well.

That very simple scene, I think, can be classed as the start of our D/s relationship.

First Steps

What followed was the start of a lot of reading. They say google is your friend and can answer almost anything. This is true, the issue with this is that not all answers in google are true and verifiable. There is a lot of material out there.

I have on more than one occasion said, “an opinion is like an asshole – everyone has one,” and wading through the answers from Google it certainly seemed that way. In those early days we discussed a lot of things. One of the first suggestions I made was to join Fetlife. This was a kind of test to see how serious she was. Fetlife is an online community. It also has a lot of articles on it and is not a dating site like some of them are.  To my surprise she said yes.

On there is a questionnaire that will give you an idea of if you are Dominant and Submissive etc based on your answers to a series of questions. Sweetgirl completed a list of things she was willing to/wanted to try. I hear you saying to the screen why didn’t you do one? Well there were no differences between what Sweetgirl ticked and what I would have ticked.

This is where looking back has been interesting. When we first started we drew up a contract and looking at that contract it was Friday to Sunday only and Caning along with a few other things needed to be removed and it was decided that we would do some play at home but look to go away regular to a hotel to play properly.

However we seemed to move to full-time D/s quite quickly.

Those first few months were interesting, trying to balance learning and practicing enough to keep moving forward and reigning in Sweetgirl, as her natural personality is to run at a million miles an hour at anything she does. Left to her own devices and an unlimited budget we would have had a fully fitted play room by week 4.

Communication

Sweetgirl and I have been together for 23 years and married 18 of those and I would say that our communication before starting D/s was better than average. We have seen several “Friends” split up so consider our relationship strong and I put this down to us being a good fit and great communication. I do have a few sayings that I roll out all the time. One of my favourites is “I am not a mind reader. I can’t fix what I don’t know is broken”. Also I am a firm believer in “to the point” communication.

Every website/forum I have been on expresses good communication and I think this is important in any relationship but feel it is one of the main foundations that any D/s relationship grows from. I think you need to be able to be honest with the other party and not be worried about being embarrassed or worried they will think you are weird.

Regular communication I think is key. The ability to discuss things openly like any skill is one that needs practice. In the beginning we instigated “Downtime” this was an opportunity to discuss the dynamic. What was working. What wasn’t and if we wanted to try something.  Sweetgirl also kept a journal that I would read during this time. Writing things down made it easier to discuss sensitive topics that she may have found embarrassing.

Expectations of others

As part of my research into what being a “Dom” is I joined one or two forum/sites and started to chat. One particular evening I was chatting and someone asked if Sweetgirl would be chatting and I said that yes she would and more than likely do more chatting than I would. However, I wanted to get a feel for the forum first as I wanted to make sure she would be treated with the respect and consideration that I would treat other submissive’s with. One gentleman who was a sub by his own admission laughed at this and essentially said that as a sub she should not expect that. Funnily enough after about a week I left that site for a number of reasons but that response bothered me. I know and understand it was one person’s opinion. However the rest of the chat didn’t seem to disagree with him. This left me thinking that, if that was what would be expected of Sweetgirl then, honestly I have an issue with that. Forgive me if this sounds a little “man beats his chest”.  First of all in any setting Sweetgirl is first and foremost my wife and I expect anyone male or female to treat her in the same way Sweetgirl treats you. I do not ever envision a scenario where I would be happy for someone to treat her badly or with disrespect. In a social setting be that vanilla or D/s, my wife’s response to you will be dictated by your actions, and let this serve as a warning, she has over the years shown me the strength and fierceness of a lioness and she also has a razor-sharp wit, you better be prepared to get back what you give out and if you upset her then I will certainly have a few words for you.

From a D/s perspective she has been kind enough to give me her submission. I did not just take it! Therefore as far as I am concerned no one else has a right to expect it. She will always be respectful and polite as that is her nature, until she knows you well enough to be cheeky or you need reminding that manners cost nothing. As they say Manners maketh the man/women.

There have been other instances where I have got the impression that people think we are not doing this properly. The only thing I would say to that is that we are doing it in a way that works for us. But if you can show me a definitive globally agreed upon method (not sure it is possible) then I am all up for reading it and I will take the bits that work for us and incorporate that. We are in this for us no one else.

Practicalities

To give you all a little bit of back ground as I said we have been together for 23 years have two children (19 &25) both still living at home. The children’s ages bring about its own challenges as they are up later and more aware of “adult” themes.

There are I am sure that if you asked members of our vanilla friends and family they would suggest that Sweetgirl rules the house (believe her Mum recently suggested as much). However I have never felt not in control and the simple proof of this is the fact that I do not have a football team size brood of children, nor do we live in Noah’s ark. I have always felt that if I said No it was respected. However I think the biggest issue in taking the lifestyle fulltime stems from being together so long. If for instance I was to insist that Sweetgirl was to get up and make me a drink every time I desired one, when in the company of the children and family, this would be such a dramatic change in the relationship dynamic to people who know us questions would be asked. One of Sweetgirl’s recent requests was to kneel at my feet for a period time to help keep her focused. This is impractical as the kids would question it. So we got round it by her snuggling on the sofa. This seems effective as there are a number of positions that are available that mean her head is rested on parts of my body. However as long as her head is lower than mine she seems content.

Sweetgirl wanted a collar to show her submission early on and although collars and chokers are sold in most shops these days I felt I wanted something a little more personal. So I chose a piece of jewellery (this is the first piece of Jewellery I have had input in buying in 23 years as we have never really gone in for gift buying) that she could wear in everyday life and the only people who would know it’s significance is Sweetgirl and I (as ultimately the only people who this relationship matters to is us). We also bought a collar for the evening. With these two pieces of jewellery we have a ritual for swapping them that I think helps us remember what we are to each other. It is very simple Sweetgirl will kneel and I will remove which ever one she is wearing and replace it with the other. I will then ask her “who’s are you?” to which she will say “I am yours” that way she reaffirms to me everyday that she is mine. Recently I have made her a night collar that she sleeps in to replace the early purchases.

Actual “D/s play time” has presented challenges as when the kids were younger we were able to get away with more things and pass them off as playing games, however the age of the two kids is such as stated they are more aware of adult themes. They are very respectful and would never enter our bedroom without asking, however, we have had an incident recently when at home that Sweetgirl was getting a spanking and our youngest came out of his bed room and said, ” is that noise coming from your room?” Well I am sure you can appreciate that kinda put a stop to that scene. It has to be one of the few occasions in the last year that he did not have his ear phones on talking to his mates while trying to conqueror some distant island.

With the above in mind we decided early on that they were old enough to look after themselves and the two cats that we have for the evening/weekend. So we started to go away once a month to a hotel for the night where we didn’t have to worry about them walking in or the cats jumping on the bed. It made doing a scene so much easier although I do worry about disturbing the people in the next room as spanking appears to be quite loud.

We have used cheap chain hotels and some more expensive ones where we have had a suite. The options to play in the suite are expanded. I think Sweetgirl’s second spanking was taken with her bent over a table. Next time we go there I may tie her to the table.

I do find my self looking at everyday objects and asking myself, how can i use that in a scene???????

One of the funniest challenges we have encountered is the storage of all the toys we have purchased.

Under the bed restraints
Over the door restraints
vibrators /plugs
Spreader bar
crop
flogger
rope

Although it may not seem like a long list nor do i think it is exhaustive, I can assure you that it weighs some even without clothes. For the last five years both my children have “borrowed” clothes “by accident” and can only imagine their face where they ever silly enough to open the bag at the bottom of the wardrobe. This is why we keep it locked.

Recently when going back to see some Uni friends for the weekend our eldest asked if we had a bag he could borrow. Now I am of the opinion that he was aware of the bag we take away and expected us to say yes you can use the one we take away for the weekend. However his face showed disappointment when we said that we did not have one that we could spare.

Things to watch for

One if the biggest things for us was discovering “sub drop” this hit Sweetgirl hard the first time and neither of us where aware of it up in till that moment. As I understand it, it is the “coming down” portion of the rush of chemicals the body produces during a scene. It happened a few days after one of our first nights away and her first spanking. I am sure the effects will manifest themselves I different ways for different people and the effects will I suspect be different.

Immediately after a scene Sweetgirl gets shaky and anything up to a few days later she can feel really down. Just not herself. This I believe is the come down from the flood of endorphins that the body produces especially through impact play.

Now this brings us to after care. Again I think what works for Sweetgirl may not work for others. But cuddling and keeping her warm after a scene along with fluids and chocolate helps to stop the shaking. I keep an eye on her over the next few days just to make sure she is ok.

Benefits

One of the benefits I have noticed in the last 6 months is that Sweetgirl is calmer. I also feel calmer. Not sure if you will have heard of the chimp paradox by Dr Steven Peters. I first heard of this while reading the autobiography of Guy Martin and could relate so much to what he was saying about it. I have even given my chip a name. I have always had reasonable control over him, I consider myself a logical person, I like to have a plan, I accepted long ago that they never work but they are always a starting point and a base to fall back on. I find that especially useful in a scene. Following the loss of the family dog a few years ago I found that the chimp “rattled his cage” more frequently than he had in the years with the dog. Now like I said he is easy to control, a walk in the local woods, a run around the block or some problem to solve usually keeps him calm. But the last six months he seems to be quite content. This could be the mental and physical requirements of planning and acting out a scene I am not sure.

I also feel that my relationship with Sweetgirl has gotten stronger as a result of the D/s relationship.

Plans for the Future

We attended our first munch yesterday. A “munch” is as i understand it an informal meeting of people in the lifestyle. I feel it will benefit us both. She will hopefully create a circle of friends that will be there to help her through this journey when I am not the right person to help her.

Now people who know me well would be surprised that I have done this as I am not “A people person” and certainly not fond of large groups of people. In fact one time we went out with friends, one gentleman told Sweetgirl that I don’t suffer B.S. and it shows on my face. So I tend to not put my self in that situation.

I enjoyed the night. Sweetgirl was enjoying being able to discuss D/s without worrying about being judged. We had the benefit of meeting someone there that was a member and we had spoken to a number of times. But I would say that we felt welcomed and spoke to a number of people and even had a tour of the club. It is always nice to put a face to a name. Would recommend attending them if you can find one near you that you feel comfortable with.

I plan on taking Sweetgirl to some BDSM events this year. A wise man once told me that you can’t know everything at the same time. So I plan on taking her to some events so we can both learn and experience how other do the lifestyle. We have both ventured into the World Wide Web and from a dominant point of view we are not the most chatty. But i stumbled on a post from HisLordship on Fetlife advertising their website The Safeword Club and was thrilled to note that it was UK-based.  I think one of the issues we encountered where so many of the sites are global in nature and timezone can often dictate who is available to chat.

Times and preference have changed I think i have touch on than before but one for me is Rope. Shibari to give it what I believe to be it official title is truly an art form. Although due to Sweetgirl’s health issues and the practicalities (don’t have the space at home) I don’t ever see my self suspending her (but never say never). I do find just the basics of tying to be relaxing and a good way to end a play sessions as Sweet girl tells me that she feels calm and relaxed both during and after a tie.

When we first sat down and did a check list, Sweetgirl said NO! to the Cane but that has changed recently and I am now the proud owner of a cane, there are many like it but this one is mine. We tried it out recently for the first time at home and I was very impressed.. They are controllable and seemed to have Sweetgirl relaxed in no time at all. There is also a lot of scope for progressing with it. But I do need to practice more with it, but unfortunately the cat loves it.

The Flogger, we recently purchased a bigger flogger with suede ends. Our first was part of a kit purchased from Lovehoney, it is quite small and has rubber ends. I can only liken it to buying your first large engine car after driving a little city run around. I again need more practice with it but that little cat does like to hunt.

Closing statement

I apologise for the waffling, but you were warned. Also it is by no means a definitive review of the last 6 months. Part of the reason for that is that it seems to have passed so fast. But they do say time files when you’re having fun. I may even start my own blog just to be able to look back on.

So the ultimate question is what advice or what do I wish I had known before starting? I think that is a difficult question to answer, as the answer will be different for everyone. I think there are a few cornerstones that every relationship needs and this is applicable to a vanilla or D/s relationship

Trust
Communication
Respect
Patience

With these in place you can build the relationship to be what you need/want it to be. Also, don’t put too much pressure on yourselves as you won’t get it right first time all the time. Both sides need to be prepared to accept they have made a mistake. The ability to say ” I don’t like that” without worrying the other parties response will be “right I am not doing this anymore if you don’t do x.”

Think most important for me is to have fun.  If it becomes a chore, you need to re think.