Saturday, December 1, 2012

Respect, Courage, and Learning to Lead by Listening


  When you hear the word respect, it may inspire thoughts of  learning, reconsideration, contrition, love, discipline, courage, honor, or any of a number of other adjectives.  Respect is something that is earned, learned, honored and freely given. It should never be taken for granted or forgotten. 

  Sometimes respect isn't so simple as dominance and submission, sometimes, true, real respect is the measure of a man or woman. It can be the difference between the unspoken part of the truth,  and clearing the air. It can be the difference between little gestures that create fissures and gaps, and a full functioning partnership that effectively considers and weighs all factors without purposefully dampening or alienating the other person.

  In the light of dominance a man should learn that sometimes respect should guide his decisions, words and actions toward his wife and children. I cannot say what may be for others, but in my relationship with June, I make it a point to use and select my words with the utmost care. I know that sometimes my decisions and my words may not be easy to hear or accept, but I know that my demeanor, my attitude can influence the way conversations and expectations are received. Sometimes I know that I must do or say something that won't exactly be well received... but let's be honest nobody said that this life was easy or fair.  No, being in a DD marriage isn't for cowards or those that  are looking for the easy way out.

 Honesty is a pillar of any kind of strong relationship. Honesty's value lies in it's solidity and unyielding love and devotion.  Sometimes honesty stings and even hurts...but at least it's real. Respecting your partner enough to give them honesty in all things, even the small ones are important... having the courage to approach your partner when they are struggling and tell them the truth, even when you know that it is a sensitive issue  is easier said than done, but If you can't be honest with your partner, then how can you really be honest with yourself?  Respect, courage and honesty are all pillars of a healthy and thriving relationship... They test us all from time to time and we all become stronger due to their influence.  When we choose one we are choosing all three... Gone is the halfhearted conversation with the tv on, gone are the rolling eyes, gone is the interrupted speech and the "whatevers"  Cohesion, reciprocity, and a willingness to make things right when we mess up have granted June and I that something that cannot easily be described, it is like a warm blanket on a cold rainy day.  It is like ambrosia on the tongue, and relaxing music to the ear.


   We work at it every day... June gave me so many gifts in our relationship. She empowered me to lead. She welcomed my strength, didn't cower from my intellect, or run from my dominance.  Together we have learned and continue to learn much from each other. I know that I mess up sometimes... Sometimes being an HoH is a difficult thing. She sometimes tells me that I am harder than I need be on myself but I guess that's only because I want to do this right. I know that even when it won't be easy or fun, that I have a privilege, a responsibility and a calling to do the right thing by my family. June is also one of the strongest people I know and I know that even if it's something I don't care to hear that she loves me enough to be honest with me. Our respect for each other continues to grow and thrive in the wake of the world around us.

How many times have you been out with your partner and you noticed that vanilla couples seem so disconnected, even  when they are holding hands? How many times have you seen or heard people being rude or cruel to each other?   Maybe I'm just a fuddy-duddy but I think any man that calls himself husband or leader should never be so disrespectful to his wife or partner as to swear at her or bully her when she's trying her best... I also believe that no woman who calls herself wife or partner should ever be so self absorbed and disrespectful as to blatantly ignore his wishes, try to talk over him in conversation, or belittle and besmirch their relationship. Part of me pities these folks and would make a suggestion or two on what should happen and how communication should work, but I use these types of people as an inspiration for what I strive to never be as a husband and father. No it's not always easy, but even when it's hard, it is good, and it is real. 


Strong leadership, love, and a dedication to treat each other right is something that any couple DD, TTWD, or otherwise can gain something so deep and pure from. These things are the foundation for a lifetime.


Her POV:
This is a topic that Daddy and I talk about all the time. I see things that make me know that Ward is my Daddy...we have accounts on FetLife. A lot of the littles seem to take pride in being brats. It makes me uncomfortable. It's not who I am, it's not what I want to be, it's not what I want to give him. He deserves better than that from me. Even I read today... she found it hard to say - yes, Daddy - please, Daddy - thank you, Daddy. Gosh, no matter what kind of relationship you have, vanilla, D/s, M/s, D/lg....doesn't matter, those things are basic respect.

Respect implies connection, honesty, being open to your partner, not shutting them out. I've said it before, we've been out and come around the corner of an aisle and seen people fighting, snarling, voices raised, mean looks, or talking to each other with ugly feels like an affront. I sink a little further into him. We live in a college town, at graduation last year, the streets were packed with people. The thing I noticed was the physical and emotional distance. No one touched, no smiles, no talking, no looking at each other, not connecting on any level. Out of all the thousands of people we saw, there was one couple holding hands, and they were so far removed from each other that their hands were at 90 degree angles to their bodies.

I am far from perfect, I got as little snappy last night, but when I realized it, I apologized, and he apologized for the statement that led me to react not so much as myself. And it turns out that he did because he was troubled by an exchange with a friend. But we had not crossed so far that we could not hear each other and communicate about the real issue and our little momentary rough patch.

I had a live in  example as to what I did not wish to be. The woman who gave birth to me had no respect for anyone. She thrived on denigrating people...every man she was ever with. It repulsed me. And I joked with my therapist on more than one occasion, I had no example of what to a wife and as a mother....but I sure had very clear examples of what not to be. We are unfailingly honest with each other....if we are not, what do we have? We can let each other know that we were hurt, put off our feet, disarmed, upset...respectfully. Sometimes not in the moment, but later when we have out thoughts elucidated... we can ask to speak to our partner, and say "I was hurt/upset/didn't understand/need clarity on..." And we retain and enrich our relationship...we enforce that we can turn to each other.

He is my greatest blessing, thinking of what to write here, I am writing with tears streaming down my cheeks. I empower him to lead, and he empowers me to be who I am. He empowers me to express my heart in the soft way that feels good and natural to me. I have all my life been a step out of time. I am the Kool-Aid mom, loved the smell of fresh laundry, and flour on my face and clothing with the aroma of fresh bread permeating the air. I have had to carry my family before... alone....from the time I was about 5, thinking of how I could make peace in the house. When I was 9 and cooking, cleaning, paying the bills so it would get done, and through my first three relationships. I should be more, want more.... money,  promotions, status. I was the hamster on the wheel that drove me into the ground.
I longed for reciprocity, and I gave myself dry.

I am submissive to Ward...that is a gift because it is who I am. I only have to be exactly who I am - I can be soft. I can be vulnerable. And I am elevated, never looked down on or thought weak. To hear Ward say that I am strong amazes me. In bending to him, in surrendering the trappings of this society and the mask I was forced to assume, in yielding my will to him, I am stronger, and have a joy I have never known. I receive respect that I have never experienced before. I enjoy honesty that has been lacking all of my life. Courage? Ward is courageous, he says I am, but I don't know about that. I know that I am free from fear for the first time ever.

I don't know how much sense any of this has made. I am a jumble right now. So much emotion bubbling, so much love, so much respect for this man who lets me be, lets me feel, who love me, who lifts me up. You have worried, my love, that you are lacking, but you are more than I ever dreamed. You ARE the ideal that I cobbled from my needs, desires, hurts, hopes and dreams. You are honest, and I am completely without guile in your love. I am honored to call you my love, my heart, my man, my leader. I love you, simply, fearlessly, courageously, and with complete honesty. 


  1. Ward and Junie,
    Ian and I have both remarked on how very different life is now that we Iive dd. The superficial life from before is gone, and we seem to be existing on different level with each other. We had become politely hostile of each other - now we are passionate, intimate and so real to each other. I think we were sleeping - awake is better.

    1. That's a perfect way to describe it, Lillie-Belle! Yes! It is as thought I have been numb and asleep my entire life, until my Prince kissed me into wakefulness! Awake is infinitely better. (((hugs)))

  2. Awesome post, Ward and June. You captured the importance of respect in a relationship. Respect is vital to the growth of marriage, yet so few people place any emphasis on developing their respect for their partner. Disrespect may seem trivial at first, but if it is allowed to continue, it eats away at the stability of a marriage. Thanks for focusing us again on the importance of being respectful to each other.

    1. Thanks so much, OFM. Simply as a person, Ward is most deserving of my respect. For the fact that he accepts me as I am, accepts the children I brought with me as his own, wants to teach them strength and honor and models that for them, and shoulders the heavy burden of leading this family...I'm not sure that I could give him the huge amount of respect that he deserves. He says that I lift him, and that he feels it. I'm grateful for that. He, for his part, heaps respect on me, that is a new experience for me.

      I love that we are mindful, each of the other. I like that we weigh our words, knowing that they have the power to lift or to damage. We say quite often to each other - I'm glad we are who we are. I would not trade 'us' for all the gold in the world. I have all the wealth that I will ever need.

  3. Dear Ward and June - The love and respect that you consistently show one another here and your absolute honesty - even when it might be painful or unpopular truly humbles me. You both continue to grow individually and as a couple and are a shining example of what a good relationship (DD, TTWD, vanilla, D/s, M/s, D/lg, or any combination) should be. Thank you for sharing.


    1. Cat, you made me cry! Thank you for your very kind words. Growing in love with Ward, and as a family, is the very best place that I could be. I am ever grateful to my God for this most astounding of gifts. I pray that I am always deserving.

  4. Love your concept of leadership, Ward. You lead your family with love.

    June, you and I have much in common - your post touched my heart.

    Thank you both for sharing your ever-evolving love story.

    1. Thank you so much, Elisa, and welcome. Thank you for reading. Ward is a most amazing leader, he leads with love, warmth, compassion and passion. It is my honor to follow. I am humbled to be deserving of his leadership.

      And thank you so much for that. There was so much in my mind that tumbled to get out on the paper, I asked him if it made any sense, it felt disjointed at the time. Coming back to it today, I feel a bit better about it.

  5. Awesome post. Thank you for sharing.

    Respect and honesty are vital in a relationship an it is hard seeing disconnected couples everywhere. The way we communicate has completely changed since DD and we are far more attuned to each other and each other's needs.

    You really are a shining example of a good relationship and I am thankful for you sharing your journey with us.


    1. Thanks very much, Roz :) I have never enjoyed such full and complete communication and honesty as I have with Ward. If we shine, it is because I am a reflection of him.

  6. this was lovely to read. thank you for sharing.

    I just mentioned recently to someone that for the first time, i have NOTHING to hide. from trivial things like smses and emails all the way up to emotional insecurities and fears / shames.

    1. Thank you, Fondles. That is a most amazing feeling! We are lucky indeed.

  7. @ ians mrs - Thanks lillie, everything becomes so much more intimate in the wake of honesty.
    @ Old Fashioned Marriage - Thank you so much OFM, we felt that this was a a timley post that will help people!
    @ Cat - Thanks so much! We live for each other and try to show each other that every day.
    @ Elisa Will - Thank you Elisa, love and life is what its all about.
    @ Roz - Thank you for reading it! Honesty and Respect are vital to communication, and healthy growth! Thank you for coming on the journey with us!
    @ Fondles - Thank you for taking time to check us out. Glad you enjoyed!

  8. This is so beautifully written, it felt like poetry. Thanks for sharing so much of yourself with us. Honesty, and love, and respect, and what it means to each of you. It inspires me to keep making that our goal, even when vulnerablity is a challenge and in our lazy moments, we forget to be selfless.

    Beautiful, June.

    1. Thanks very much, Stormy, and thanks for reading. I really didn't feel like it made much sense when I wrote my part, his did...his always does, lol. I have had such negative experiences in my life that what I share with Ward amazes me. Sometimes these things are exactly easy, sometimes they are challenging. Sometimes I bite my tongue a little or hesitate that bare second to say he is worth this effort, but when I see the effect it has on him...that is worth it...that is heavenly.


We love to hear your thoughts. Thanks for being part of our chosen family!