Pictures and stories from of a real life 24.7 D/s couple. Richard and Amy explore bdsm, daily life, and each other, from both sides of the relationship.

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August 18, 2008

Trust and Total Power Exchange

Filed under: D/s, Daily Life — Amy @ 4:53 pm


Richard is lying next to me, sleeping. Usually he works on his laptop while I nap (I need more sleep than him), so it is a rare treat to be able to watch him while he’s sleeping. He is the handsomest man in the world. I really do need to take some pictures of him for the blog, so that you can all agree with me. :D

Today we went to Costco to get some things for an upcoming weeklong camping trip and to pick up prescriptions - migraine meds for me and an Epi-pen for Richard, who has an amazingly serious allergy to shrimp. We had a huuuge cart that was hard to move around, and I had picked up about five pounds of wild sockeye salmon to freeze for the winter. I was feeling nervous about getting the salmon to the freezer, so I asked Richard if he would pick up the prescriptions while I tried to find the big coolers, which had moved since the last time we were there.

To make a long story short, I ran all around the store with various employees until finally a manager checked the computer and found that all the Costcos in our area were out of them. Argh. I went to the Pharmacy line and Richard was standing next to it. He looked annoyed.

“Where were you?”

“I’m sorry, they’re out of the coolers and it took a while. Did you get the prescriptions?”

“No, I didn’t. I don’t know what you’re picking up.”

“Daddy, all you need to do is give them our name. They’ll find them.”

We got into line and he was quiet. I asked him what was wrong and he told me he didn’t appreciate my tone. It was rude. I knew immediately that he was right. Richard cuts me a lot of slack - he lets me tease him and he is very patient when I’m feeling anxious or worried. A lot of Domly-types would not tolerate what he does. But he does expect me to be respectful, and I wasn’t.

This is important for me too. Like a lot of women, I am very organized and efficient. I have to be, to do my work well and keep my family safe, healthy and happy. In my past marriage, I took responsibility for almost everything. The upside of that was that everything was done how I liked it. The downside was that I felt like my husband’s mommy instead of his wife. And not in a sexy way. And I would get bitchy. Ooooh, I could be bitchy.

I don’t watch to be bitchy. I don’t like myself when I’m bitchy. It hurts me as much as it hurts my partner, probably more. I’m sure that a lot of you reading are thinking “My goodness, that was nothing. You should see how bitchy I can be.” I know that this was minor. Trust me, I can be way bitchier than that (although I haven’t been to Richard.) To me, though, it feels like a slippery slope. This bitchy today, and what happens tomorrow?

I believe (and I may be wrong, I’ll ask Richard when he wakes up and maybe he will reply to this) that, if I keep being disrespectful in this way, it will hurt our relationship badly. I believe that Richard would NOT respond by turning me over his knee more often, or by becoming stricter. That would probably help, but I don’t think that is what he’d do. I think he would withdraw.

In our relationship, I have given all power over to Richard. If I start taking that power back, by challenging him or being disrespectful, then I am betraying him. I’m betraying him in the same way that, if we agreed to be monogamous, having sex with another man would betray him. How could he trust me if I did that?

Now, if I said “Richard, I don’t want to have a D/s (or TPE or whatever) relationship anymore” then we could talk about it and he could decide whether or not he wanted to stay in the relationship, based on my wish to change the ground rules. (Again, just like many people have successfully agreed to move from monogamy to polygamy or polyamory.)

But the fact is that I DON’T want to change the ground rules. I DO want Richard to have total power. To do that requires trust on both our parts. This small episode (which I have warbled on and on about) showed me that I am wrestling with trust right now. (Much like meg at Obedient Persephone, whose blog I LOVE and highly recommend; see blogroll at right.)

Why am I wrestling with trust right now? It’s related to giving control of finances over to Richard (see a couple of blogposts down - Another level of submission). I don’t think he’s going to f**k up and get the utilities shut down or anything. And if he did, so what? They can be turned back on. I guess I’m scared that he’s not going to do them as well as I do them. Which is ridiculous, when I look at that statement in black and white, because I am no Suze Orman, yanno?

Richard, god bless him, when I was apologizing in the car, said “Well, why should you trust me? You don’t know yet if I can do it, do you? I have to earn your trust on this.”

I love how down to earth he is. Truly, he’s right. People talk in very noble and spiritual terms about just letting go and trusting and the gift of submission and all, but it’s HARD. I’ve worked hard to get where I am, and I still have kids to get through college, and southern California is not a place where you can f**k up financially and recover easily.

Now I’m handing all that over to Richard, who would have been perfectly happy to have me do all the financials forever. He’s only taking it over to make life easier for me. It’s a gift, pure and simple.

So. I need to trust Richard to deal with the finances and other “family administration” chores. But developing that trust will take some time. Until then, I need to stay respectful and try to keep my nose out of things while he figures them out. Not real sexy, not what I fantasized about in my pre-BDSM days. More “Surrendered Wife” than SexySlutSlave. The obvious next step in my submission to Richard.

I’ll keep you posted.


  1. Ok, so this may not have much to do with your topic, but I really hate how Costco can’t leave the stock alone. It annoyes me more than anyting that I always have to search around and ask where things are. Items that I buy there all the time, but are never in the same place twice!!

    Comment by Chantal — August 18, 2008 @ 8:46 pm

  2. It seems to me that in that situation Richard was wrong. He should be a big boy and be able to retrieve prescriptions w/o instruction. Now, I understand your role and you certainly don’t have a right to be bitchy, Amy. If he indeed believes that he must earn your trust in him to suceed at managing life then a simple ‘can you go retrieve….?’ should not require any further exchange. If he didn’t know what you were picking up and thought he needed to know in order to pick up why didn’t he ask you right away? Why stand and sulk by the pharmacy brewing annoyance that you were not available for consultation? Sorry Richard. You’re going to have to put your side of that one onto the blog, maybe it will clear up my view.

    Comment by sai — August 19, 2008 @ 8:01 am

  3. I can see this from both sides here. Amy, the annoyance that Richard didn’t get the ’scripts when you were trying your best to complete your shopping in quick time is acceptable, but in the same note, the fact he didn’t get them did not give you the right to chastise him.(as I am sure that is how it felt to Richard). It is easy for me to say this, but obviously in the same situation, if my husband didn’t do it, I would have been the same!! Now, if perhaps my husband was a Dom, things might be different!! ;)

    Comment by Heilan — August 19, 2008 @ 3:13 pm

  4. Ooooh…this is SUCH a juicy post for me, Amy…exactly what I’m doing right now in my relationship. I saw myself in you, your response, your references to bitchiness in your past and seeing yourself in the slippery slope. I totally “get” what you are saying. It has nothing to do with Richard’s actions. It’s about your inner response (which he may or may not know about depending on how much you decide to let him know).

    I’m three years downline from you. Our road has not been sweet or easy. In fact it’s been filled with more curves, bumps and loss of self (for both of us) than we’ve ever experienced (and he’s 60). There has been very little that has manifested in the outer world to trust him.

    After looking at the nuances and subtlties of the energetics of what we’ve been doing and how we’ve responding to life, I have decided to trust anyway because I know it’s in him and I’m in the “right place.”

    If it’s easy and evident is it really trust?

    We are finding our way back. As you say, it ain’t easy in the living of it, and man we can be tricksy in the ways we don’t see ourselves, yes? But wow…the journey is so amazing!

    Thanks for this!!!

    Comment by gillette — August 19, 2008 @ 3:26 pm

  5. Just wanted to say I know where you’re coming from. It’s a slippery slope for me between teasing and being disrespectful, and it’s enough of a chastisement (is that a word?) to know that I have hurt his feelings by being disrespectful. I also agree that Daddy (and apparently Richard, too) would withdraw from the emotional closeness if I were to be that disrespectful on a regular basis. That’s not D/s anymore when we get to that point, is it? And that would be destructive.

    While I agree that it would have been better if Richard hadn’t needed input or whatever on running this errand, the more important point to the relationship is your response. You’ve reminded me to be more careful of my tone with my Daddy. I’m always appreciative of your candor on this site. Thanks for writing!

    Comment by Daddy's Lucy — August 19, 2008 @ 5:29 pm

  6. Hi Amy,

    I dont’ know if it’s appropriate or not to comment on another reader’s comment, but I think Sai is out in left field. Richard didn’t make you get snappy and it’s not about what he did or didn’t do. This type of response on my part would do nothing to make the situation better and would most certainly make it worse.

    Just don’t beat yourself up too bad. You realize that you made a mistake and you apologized to your Daddy. I feel exactly like you do, it’s not about being right or wrong, it’s about being kind and respectful to each other. I see couples all the time that are sh*tty to each other and I think “why would you treat someone you love with such disrespect”. I don’t want to be one of those bitchy wives and I’m sure my Daddy wouldn’t put up with it.

    We have a way to deal with it in our family, I get to ask for a do-over. Sometimes I’ll come across with a crappy attitude and as soon as it comes out of my mouth (well, sometimes I get the look from Daddy before I realize the err of my ways), I ask for a do-over and then I rephrase my comment, usually with a smile and an apology (and a claim that my psycho twin invaded my body for just a moment). Daddy usually just smiles and kisses me on the top of my head and lets me know I’m a good girl.

    We all make mistakes and I’m sure your Richard will understand as long as you find a productive, meaningful way of dealing with your mistake.


    Comment by junebug — August 19, 2008 @ 5:35 pm

  7. I think we’ve counter-commented on this before. You’ve been in charge of a lot and you have triggers.

    And being married ain’t easy. D/s aside.

    Take it easy on yourself… OK?

    Line-ups suck the shit. I can’t be in one with ANYBODY. And Costco sucks the shit. Even if they are cheap. And I don’t even have one here, thank the somewhat malicious gods.

    Just keep the good stuff in mind… He loves you, you love him… You are good for each other. Until that stops happening, ignore those shopping experiences.

    OK, don’t ignore them. Just let them be what they are. You were shopping at COSTCO… That alone is enough to drive a person over the edge. (Not ignoring all the feelings that came up… just being clear that anyone could go nuts there.)

    All my love,

    Comment by Sulpicia — August 19, 2008 @ 7:28 pm

  8. Chantal, I think it was a seasonal thang - all the garden/camping stuff was gone and there was all kinds of furniture etc where it used to be. Trauma!

    Hi sai, thanks for your comment. It actually helped me think about this more and talk to Richard again. Richard told me the hadn’t heard me talking to the Costco employee, and then I asked him to get in line at the Pharmacy (not pick up the meds, as I’d thought). He assumed I was going to be there in a second, and since he didn’t know what we were picking up, just waited. Then I took much longer than he expected. We were both feeling anxious, for various reasons, and we both snapped at the other rather than assume there was a miscommunication. This ended up being a really good conversation - thanks for your help in that.

    Heilan, you are right. And I mentioned “Surrendered Wife” because a lot of vanilla woman have found the ideas presented there helpful - don’t micromanage, don’t nag, show some respect for the person you’ve chosen to spend your life with, etc.

    Gillette, how wonderful to see you here and I loved this “If it’s easy and evident is it really trust?” I want to ponder that longer…

    Lucy, you nailed it. That’s it exactly.

    junebug, I love the idea of a “do over”. What a generous and loving Daddy you have.

    Sulpicia - you are right, lines suck and Costco sucks (but I love it). And you’re also right that any long term relationship, D/s or no, takes work. And you’re also right (ooo 3 times!) that this was a trigger for me. It’s actually precipitated a couple of great conversations. I’m lucky Richard is so honest and so fair, and I feel grateful for people’s comments here, which have helped me work through this.

    Comment by Amy — August 19, 2008 @ 10:57 pm

  9. Amy, I don’t really have anything constructive to add. Master and I are going through this too. My last marriage was much like your’s was. I had to do everything. This meant it left me feeling like his Mommy. And that is pretty obvious where it left us. Apart.

    As a control freak, we have had issues over utensils in the dishwasher. He tells me how he expects them, and I look at him as if he was insane. In the end, I find a way to meet his needs. That is what this is about, right? He has very logical reasons for wanting things a certain way. He’s not insane about it, but it’s just different than my way.

    It is something I constantly have to work on. It’s incredibly easy to go from a snarky response one day to complete controlling bitchiness the next.

    Comment by His.stormy — August 20, 2008 @ 6:45 am

  10. Hi Amy. I am attempting to understand D/s and BDSM in general and sometimes I think of a D/s relationship as a D/T relationship, with T being Trust, with a capital letter. Because it seems like the sub is not so much submitting, but trusting her partner. Not as sexy sounding as submitting, and it implies great responsibility on the D side of things. Obviously this is the case, even when there is all the posturing of “I am going to do what I want and I don’t care about you or what you want” that sometimes shows up in print.

    Anyway, the amount of trust you (and other subs) have already demonstrated is simply amazing! You trust Richard with your body and your life, along with your love. You let him do things to you! You wear chains, you crawl. How could you do those things with someone you don’t trust? And he trusts you. When he grabs your hair and shoves his cock in your mouth it is aggressive yet totally trusting. There are TEETH in there, and while no one would ever dream of using them, it IS kind of a nuclear option (mandiblear option?) But I digress.

    Back to trust. Richard seems to understand your insecurities over the finances. I think it is human nature to regress to our worst behavior patterns when we are stressed and insecure as evidenced in your tone of voice at Costco. Maybe he could protect you and reassure you by showing you the balance sheet once a month or quarterly so that you could be reassured without micromanaging (this could be a challenge). There is a difference between blind trust and earned trust, and since this is real life not fantasy land, trust earned in baby steps might be the way to go.

    Comment by latebloomer — August 20, 2008 @ 7:34 am

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