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dykegrrl
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Thank you very much for taking the time to respond! I sometimes forget that other people struggle with the same things I do, and how much it helps me to know I'm not the only one. Things are going a bit better right now. W instituted something she's calling my "bedtime potch," which is basically a chance for her to give me a couple of smacks at bedtime. It's not related to my behavior (or *mostly* not related to my behavior--if I get "fresh" at bedtime, she generally ups the count). It doesn't replace discipline, but it does give us a nightly reminder of who is in charge. And it gives us a low-stakes way of building on the dynamic. It can be as few as one or two smacks, on up to as many as W cares to give. This makes it much easier for her to follow through at the end of a long, tiring day. And it builds on a pattern we've already established, where I go spend time with her before she goes to sleep. It's not perfect, and it doesn't meet all of *either* of our needs, but it's progress.
Toggle Commented Mar 27, 2012 on Resistance at The Punishment Book
For me, it's usually a matter of losing the control I've been fighting for. Even if I rationally know that just letting myself cry and let go of the emotion is the quickest way to get through it... well, that's not my natural response. And, honestly, being told to calm down or someone trying to soothe me without first acknowledging how horrible everything is, just intensifies that feeling. Bleah. And being stuck in a job that makes you less than happy exacerbates all of it--W is in that situation right now, and I hate it, because we need the income, but I wish I could save her from the stress of the job.
Toggle Commented Mar 13, 2012 on Something Good at The Punishment Book
Thanks. I do try to write the things that I wish more people were talking about. Or maybe I just write the things that I need to hear, and hope that other people need to hear them, too.
Toggle Commented Mar 12, 2012 on Resistance at The Punishment Book
Oh, boy, have I had those days. The ones where it feels like everything goes wrong, or (in death by papercuts method) only *stupid* things go wrong. And all you need is something **GOOD** to happen, to remind you that the whole world doesn't suck. And for me, being told to calm down when I've gotten to that state almost invariably sparks an escalation. Really, anything that isn't sympathy for the fact that I'm feeling crappy will make me lose it even more than I already have. Given a good night's sleep and some time to reset, I can usually get unstuck from those bad feelings now, but it works much better and faster when something good comes from outside of me. I hope that the something good has come to you already, or will soon.
Toggle Commented Mar 12, 2012 on Something Good at The Punishment Book
Thanks! It's good to know that a post was useful--I generally submit the post and immediately feel like I have wasted internet real estate with my thoughts. I really do think that a large part of my struggle with accepting my need for discipline is tied to the lack of an in-person community. I don't do well with closets. W and I are actually somewhat open about discipline with our close friends, but none of them really "get it", and while they accept that it works for us, it's somewhat as I imagine it must be for people who don't know others who are queer--no matter how accepting their straight friends and family might be, there's still that wondering whether there's something wrong with you. And no matter how much of a community you find online, there's something more immediate about the flesh and blood people around you. At least, that's how it works for me.
Toggle Commented Feb 16, 2012 on Resistance at The Punishment Book
Thank you, Mija. I don't have much to add, particularly since I'm not particularly involved in the spanking scene. I totally agree that the discrimination against M/M spanking is not only just as bad as discrimination based on race, but that any oppression left unchallenged is going to support other types of oppression. I started the forum (thisthingwedo.com) because the domestic discipline forums I found at the time basically told me that my F/F relationship wasn't really domestic discipline, so I could only post in the "kink" section. I wanted to make a place where it was clear that anyone who considered themselves to be in a consensual disciplinary relationship was welcome. When I think about how M/M relationships are even more marginalized, it makes me furious. Just because something doesn't work for some people doesn't mean it should be hidden.
Toggle Commented Apr 14, 2011 on H8 - Keep 'Em Out of Sight at The Punishment Book
What struck me (naturally) was the discussion of the different "selves" that contribute to procrastination. It makes me wonder whether there *would* be a way for self-punishment to work when external discipline is unavailable (self-punishment as in topping yourself, not as in castigating yourself for failure).
Toggle Commented Oct 25, 2010 on The convenient kink at The Punishment Book
My take is that it's given her permission to behave in authoritative ways, which is probably both a bit of fulfilling her identity and shaping it. Her strengths with discipline are the same ones she has always had--she is caring, and loving, and nurturing. And that *is* a part of discipline. What has changed is that she is more able to speak up when she is displeased, and more assertive about what she wants. But discipline in general, and authority in specific, are still areas where she is challenged, and where we've been struggling in our relationship. We've backed off from discipline recently, in part due to her struggles with being authoritative, but even without discipline, it's an area she recognizes she needs to work on. I do hope W chooses to share (and gets time at her computer to do so!)
Toggle Commented Oct 10, 2010 on But what's in it for you? at The Punishment Book
Thanks so much for sharing this, you guys! I agree that, without there being benefits to the top/spanker/what-have-you, the dynamic fails. A relationship needs to be beneficial to everyone involved. W is away for the weekend, but I will point her to this post to see what she, as an initially reluctant spanker who is now unwilling to let the dynamic go, has to say. (Did that sentence make any sense at all?) I know that one thing she has brought up is that practicing being authoritative with me, has carried over into the rest of her life. It has made her more assertive, and more confident that she has the right to make decisions that other people might disagree with. (She's a teacher, so you can see where this might come in handy!)
Toggle Commented Oct 9, 2010 on But what's in it for you? at The Punishment Book
Thanks for this post. I'm thinking about that "because you need it" aspect of spankings (or punishment in general). I do *not* do well with getting a spanking when the sole stated purpose is something like "This is to make you feel better." And, perhaps because of W being who she is, the "I'm giving you this spanking because I can" justification doesn't work well, because she isn't convincing with it, or because it pushes all the wrong buttons for me. But there have been a few times when W could say, "You're getting this spanking, even though you haven't technically broken any rules, because your behavior shows that you *need* one." I like the idea of a punishment being something like a pillow for your mind to hold onto. It gets closer to what's not working for me when a spanking doesn't work. I've been thinking for a while about how, for me, discipline is actually meeting something other than a sexual need for me. Don't get me wrong, I love spanking-as-kink, and it's where my hottest fantasies go. But I can live without it, if necessary. When I go too long without discipline, it's as though I start to unravel, or tangle up, or just get to a point where I'm really not coping well. It's not much about my behavior, aside from the degree to which I get cranky and controlling when I'm stressed out from a lack of discipline. Honestly, when I'm desperately in need of discipline, I'm far *more* likely to be following all of my rules. I'm still trying to figure out what it *is* about discipline that I need, and your comment about needing something for your mind to hang onto helped.
Toggle Commented Sep 15, 2010 on Nowhere to go at The Punishment Book
This really resonates for me, too. My issues with W are different, but there's some similarity in the dynamic. We've been on a sort of hiatus for the past few months, and a lot of it has to do with the kind of shift you're describing. Thanks for sharing.
I'd send health vibes, but I'm pretty sure that the health gods have it in for me and would answer by giving you some evil new twist. So I'll send some sympathy instead. I hope you feel better soon.
Toggle Commented May 27, 2010 on O how I pity me! at el tercer ojo
I just wish I knew how to hit the reset button for myself. yeah. i've had that wish, too. i have to admit that w's referred to me as "the toilet paper fairy" for years: my brain works in a way that gives me several warnings as the tp gets low, and the warnings get even louder when i've only got a day before the tp runs out. too bad i can't share that particular mental quirk. on the other hand, i might want an exchange, because you rarely get punished more than once for something. i find myself repeatedly punished for the same two or three offenses. over and over. i might go a few months, or even a bit longer, but if something is an issue for me, it's where i'm likely to repeatedly fail to follow the rules. so my process around that is a little different, i suspect. but i digress. i recognize that struggle to accept that when we are being punished, it won't necessarily be on our terms. at the same time, and this may be more pertinent in my relationship than in others', w and i make a point of giving each other feedback about what's working or not working. this doesn't mean that she will necessarily change her choices, but we have a policy of going apart and writing just after a punishment, and sharing that with each other. it's helped, because i can say, "this is how _____ made me feel." and if that wasn't her intent, things can be corrected, or changed in the future. but at the same time, i've gone back and forth over the process of w establishing (and maintaining) authority. it can be hard for me (as someone with a good imagination, and who has spent my life thinking about what it would be like to be disciplined in a way that felt right) to accept that w's choices can be different from what i expect without being wrong. dang. i keep losing the thread of the comment i intended to make, so i'll just click "post" and go with what's here.
Toggle Commented Jan 23, 2010 on Closure at The Punishment Book
Thanks for sharing this, although it's making me more inclined than ever to become a hermit.
Toggle Commented Dec 9, 2009 on Party on! (But watch your drink.) at el tercer ojo
oh, i definitely will. the changes over the past week convince me that all of this really is worthwhile. and this thing we do--the thing, the forum, the people i've met--have definitely been a huge part of my healing process. if it can work for me, it can work for anyone. and i am thrilled at having more tops on the board--the more, the merrier!
thanks to everyone for the replies. something has shifted in our relationship in the past few days, and it feels like we are in a very good space just now. partly, this was from me: i was able to accept things that were happening to cause resistance on my part, and was better able to let w in. at the same time, w has been able to connect with her assertive side, which has made it easier for her to establish authority. the funny thing is, it seems that almost as soon as i (collectively) felt safe in her ability to be assertive and authoritative, i (again collectively) was able to understand that w *also* has a very submissive side, and the needs of that part of her were *not* being met. and so at this point, i suppose we've taken responsibility for each other. and i really want to thank mija for her suggestion of w changing her name, because i think that helped her to recognize a turning point in her own relationship with this. (the funny thing is, with the switching that has happened recently, i have a LOT more empathy for tops, because things are definitely hard from that side, too!)
Bah! It's such an aggravating situation! They won't support something other than the Microsoft, so if there's something people need to use, they will get in line with the monopoly, even if that's not what they'd prefer to do. I was really irritated that there were so many things I use that aren't compatible with the Linux OS. I like Linux, and it's more in line with what we can afford. But if I want to use a bunch of programs I use... I'm out of luck. And I admit that I'm ticked off at Microsoft for jumping into the netbook market as soon as they realized there was a chance they'd lose their stranglehold on computing. I hadn't tried Linux before the netbook, but Linux was what was available at the time we got the first one. Sadly, we went back to Microsoft for the second one, because there were too many things we couldn't do without falling in line. So yeah, they won't support something other than MS Word "because there aren't enough users of the other products" which becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.
Toggle Commented Nov 21, 2009 on Not a RefWorks Review at el tercer ojo
Would it help you and W for her to make some purposely silly rules, allowing you to break them and her to enforce them as more of a game than something so serious? well, in some ways, this is true of most of my rules. well, the ones i'm willing to break, anyways. yes, there are rules about safety and respect, and i do try hard not to break those at all. but honestly? rules like "i need to text w by 2 pm to let her know what i've eaten" are there solely to be broken. we have been careful to choose some things that i can consciously break. the problem is, with me being who i am, i'm very GOOD at following rules (well, less good about respect, which is hard for me to admit). so it has been frustrating, since we get into the power struggle where i resist authority by seeming to comply with it. rather than making rules "just because she *can*," I suggest she makes rules "just because she *wants to*." oh, wow. i'm definitely going to have to pass this along to w, because i think you really caught it in a nutshell. this isn't about her controlling me because i want that... well, i do, but still. it's about her asserting power to get things *she* wants. she said last night, after taking some of the much more specific suggestions from the forum (where they've had to sit through all of the messiness of us wrangling through all of this!), that she actually felt taken care of last night, because she was able to tell me what to do. it seems that this thing we do has benefits even for reluctant tops (which is my dear wife's name over on the forum).
thanks, both of you, for your responses. recidavist: the funny thing is, for a bit more than four years now, we've been working with something like what you describe. And it's been frustrating to me, and to W, because there's a level where if I'm telling her what to do to demonstrate authority, I'm still in control. And really, I'm very good at being in control (kind of like what Lily described). I think part of what's happening right now is that we're working on moving this to a different level. The growing pains of it have been... painful. But if W's response tonight was any indication, our lives will be much richer and happier for the change. @Lily--I really do understand what you say about this being a transgressive choice on our parts. On the other hand, it could be said that by choosing to do ttwd, which is so far against the culture, we are rebelling against prevailing norms by choosing to submit to our partners. We can get all SORTS of meta with that. :)
Not because I wanted to go to the party per se, but because it meant I could never be fully acknowledged in their lives. This is the same sort of thing, just reversed. I was surprised at how much this post resonated with me, given that I'm able to be fairly "out" in my day-to-day life (one of the few advantages of being too disabled to work). I don't necessarily talk about discipline with everyone, although quite a few of our friends know about it. We kind of cheated with some of the friends, by attributing my need for discipline to me being multiple, because it's way easier for them to accept that non-adult parts need discipline than that an adult does. But there's still the strain of needing to keep some things closeted for W's benefit. Technically, her workplace is not allowed to discriminate based on sexual orientation. But at the same time, she had enough trouble the one time she admitted to students that she was a lesbian that we're both immensely careful now. And that's just about being a couple, not even the parts about discipline. What's funny is that being my disciplinarian has really improved W's skills in the classroom as well, because she's had to learn to be much more authoritative, consistent, all of that kind of thing. But it's not the kind of thing one brings up in a performance review. :)
Toggle Commented Nov 12, 2009 on Discrection and Compartments at The Punishment Book
For me, the point of the rules (many of them, anyways) is simply because I need to have rules that I am allowed to break, and where I can feel safe in knowing that while I might not *like* the consequences, they are manageable consequences that won't cause lasting harm or frustration (ie, I can get a parking ticket, which would normally be a manageable consequence, but we're on a tight enough budget that spending an unnecessary $50 is frustrating). I need the punishment not just as a way of getting W's attention, but also as a way to know that someone is making sure I can let go of enforcing rules for myself. It's easier to relax about my internal rules if there are external rules to break. As for what would happen if you kept pushing the limits to get punished? At least for me, it goes through cycles. When I feel like W isn't there to catch me if I mess up, I'm very inclined towards testing, which means that she reinforces that she's there to catch me (by "catch me" I generally mean "beat my backside until I can't sit comfortably.") And after a few weeks of that, I'm absolutely confident that she'll be there for me and that I can relax and follow the rules without being hypervigilant about it. At least until the next time. And I totally need one of those disc shooters. >:)
Toggle Commented Oct 31, 2009 on Maintenance Fail... at The Punishment Book
it's good to see you again. The long story is probably much more convoluted, and something I completely blame myself for. I became a different person than the one he fell in love with, and I wasn't snapping back. please, please, PLEASE don't blame yourself for this. we can't know, we have no WAY of knowing who we'll be in the future. i count my lucky stars that w has been willing to stick with me through all of what i'm going through. looking back, in my case, there are a lot of warning signs of what was going to come, but i was oblivious to them. even with all the signs, it still wasn't my fault that i changed, and it really wasn't your fault that *you* changed. as for why we do it backwards... that was something that i chose not to do, for a lot of the reasons you list. it's such a vulnerable position to be in, and such a risk to open up that way. in my case, that meant i fell for someone who wasn't initially into spanking. and that's been a struggle, but since we match so well in all the other ways, we've managed to meet in the middle (if by "middle" you mean "85% over towards my way of doing things".) i suppose she's willing to stick with me for my book collection or something. :) writing is good. i've been trying to get back into it as well, so maybe we can encourage each other.
Toggle Commented Oct 26, 2009 on Starting Over ... Again at The Punishment Book
It's very rare for me to cry from pain. Maybe it's because there's just so darned *much* pain in my life that if I were to start crying about it, I wouldn't stop. But I do cry from emotional release sometimes. It's sometimes the only way I'm able to let go and allow myself to cry (see above). This was something W and I discovered not long into our relationship, well before we started with discipline. She could spank me, and something about it gave me what I needed to let go. The pain is a part of it, I think, since simply being close isn't enough. It's as though the pain of the spanking adds that final piece, and opens the gates. A lot of the time, I'm even crying about something totally unrelated to why were are there and what we are doing. It doesn't mean I cry most of the time I'm getting a spanking, or even that a spanking is going to let me cry all of the times I need to.
Toggle Commented Oct 24, 2009 on Tears at Bedtime at The Punishment Book
I'm fully with you on this one. Yes, it is a loss when someone takes down stories they have posted, or even blog posts they have posted (I find this happens frequently on the DID-related blogs I read). I've made the choice not to erase things I have put out there, but that is my *choice*. I feel like if someone wants to share access to something I've written, there's this handy thing called a hyperlink, where they can link to the story. I'm willing to accept that I might not agree with everyone who links to something I have created, but I do feel I should have a right to say where and how my writing is displayed. It's my work, and I want to have a certain level of control over it. Just because I put it online, and just because I give people free access to read it, doesn't mean that I want people to take my work and use it elsewhere. Also, I have to admit that there are some things that I think anyone who is capable of putting together a website should be required to be aware of, and one of them is that just because content is free to read, it doesn't mean that it's free to *take*, particularly without asking.
Toggle Commented Oct 23, 2009 on Archiving Ourselves at el tercer ojo
I ♥ the comment threading. :) @Nic: Depending on your cell phone service provider, there can also be a "chaperone" kind of thing, where one person can get alerts when a phone leaves a particular area. But that iPhone app that determines where it is to within 20 feet sounds like a great thing to have. It's nearly at the level of the micro-GPS I've been saying we need on W's phone (she loses it in the house, and it would be nice to be able to track it to within 2 feet). And also, Nic, knowing you, you're also a little disappointed that Mija isn't going to be reporting back about a shock collar. Just sayin'.