I am a man in my mid 50’s. I pledged my submission to Katie about two years ago having never lived as a submissive man before. I realized my submissive tendencies after much self exploration and realized some months after I submitted that submission enabled a man to be more attentive, caring, loving, adoring, and whatever other positive verbs you would like to include – to a woman. In short, submission promotes a love relationship. It forces a man to think of others before himself. It encourages him to look to her interests first. It promotes self-denial of one’s desires in lieu of hers. It promotes intimacy especially when the dominant partner wants it since true submission means complete vulnerability and openness. I know this for a fact because I’ve lived both lives. Or maybe I should temper that statement by saying that I know it works for Katie and I because I am a different man than when previously married. Each of my kids has told me just how different I am. My parents have even commented similarly. The common theme is that I am a happier man and that makes me happy that others see that.
But I don’t think that I could have submitted as a younger man. I was too insecure. I didn’t understand love the way I do now. I was too selfish. I wanted my world to revolve around me – even though I would have never admitted that, nor do I think I could have seen that even if it was pointed out. I was a great dad to my kids. I gave up lots when they came and loved them infinitely. I vacationed with them, camped, backpacked, went to scouts, dance, church, club and high school volleyball, downhill skiing, water skiing, critiqued school papers, etc, etc. But when it came to my marriage I wanted control. Maybe I felt like I needed to have something to control and subconsciously chose to control her. That’s probably a cop-out statement but regardless, that’s what I did.
Looking back I couldn’t imagine myself taking direction from a woman while in my 20’s or 30’s and maybe not even in my 40’s. I’m sure the seeds of my submission were there but for the life of me I would have never in my wildest dreams thought I would someday live submissively and be owned by a woman. It contradicted everything I was ever taught. Men were to lead, be strong, fight, control emotions expressing weakness, suck it up, push, strive and display all of those other manly traits that I saw in my dad and other men while a young boy.
Yet when I reflected on what constituted a submissive man and realized that submission also required strength, and guts and effort, and foresight, the light began to brighten. But whereas traditional men demanded and expected from their wives and lived avoiding certain jobs such as diaper changes, child care, cooking, keeping house etc. a submissive is required to do what most men would never do. I now view those avoidance behaviors as ones of either self pride and/or laziness (take your pick) and challenge any vanilla man to say otherwise. Submission takes more effort, more strength, more wisdom, more courage and demands one to be kinder, gentler meeker, and show more self control than the classic American male of a past generation or two.
I wasn’t that man when I was young. I was raised well. Had fantastic parents that loved me and taught me but I didn’t understand what it meant to love another as I do now. I grew up believing men did this and women did that. I grew up hiding deep thoughts, feelings and insecurities behind the shroud of being strong. How misled I was. I see things differently now and as a result I am such a better lover. I am more patient and kind. I know that a battle need not be fought with a woman who I love. I now understand what it means to be a servant and live life with a servant’s heart. I find that my selfish ways show themselves less. That wasn’t me 25 years ago.
The kinky side of D/s that draws so many men to this lifestyle is not what real service-submission is about. Being denied, being tied down, wearing panties, being locked in chastity, being beaten and paddled, etc, can ironically keep a man from fully submitting to a woman. None are a necessity to submission but rather are gifts a dominant woman may give as a way to demonstrate to both the power differential the two live under. They also run the risk of reversing who is actually serving who. I am locked and denied so it’s not like I can’t identify on some level with the kinky side of D/s, and l love that part of our life. But I am learning that service submission requires one to exhibit and develop maturer traits that are not ‘feelings’ based. There is a Biblical passage that speaks of suffering leading to perseverance and perseverance leading to character development. I think service-submission promotes similar changes in a man (and probably his dominant too). Suffering (working, caring, loving, giving) does produce perseverance and then it changes a man from the inside out, improving his character. It makes him a better, stronger, more complete man. It's a hard transformation to undergo and one that takes discipline and patients if true change is to result. What I am willing and wanting to do now as a submissive man, I am not certain I would have been willing to do earlier in life.
I wrote a comment to Nancy from Worshiping Your Wife blog asking about how important she and her husband thought creating feelings of dominance and submission in one another were. Her response was interesting, “I really don't understand where you are going with your question. We have roles, each accepts them, and we enjoy what we have.” Her response answered my question completely. Their lives are not about feeling dominant or feeling submissive but rather living dominant and living submissive. Period. I’m not there yet. I enjoy feeling submissive. Yet that is where we are headed. I don’t know if I could live a life in my 30’s devoid of being made to feel submissive. I don’t know how I will feel should we live lives that way in the future, but that won’t be mine to decide. It will be up to Katie and at this point in my life I am willing to go there with her because I love her. I can live this way now. Age has its advantages because so many lessons are learned through the teacher of time. I love being a submissive man.