Thursday, August 4, 2011

Label me That

I admit it... I used to get really hung up on labels. I needed one that described me. I needed one that I could easily identify with... hey, we all do it! We like labels, despite our insistence that we shouldn't do it, we like them! We hear the label and boom! we can deduce something about the person and whether or not we think they will fit in with us, or more apt, will we fit in with them? With that group? Will we be accepted? So for ease, for quick deduction, we label. We've always done it, and we listen to our kids doing it.

She's a cheerleader
He's a Jock
She's the Prom Queen type
He's a Lawyer
She's a teacher
He's a Republican
She's a liberal
They are really religious

The list and labels goes on and on. It's all well and fine really, it's what we do. 11 Years ago when I started exploring this thing that had niggled relentlessly in the back of my brain... I was flummoxed! So many labels that I didn't know, let alone could identify with. 

"So, what are you?" 

"Uh, what am I?"

"Yeah, are you a bottom, top, switch, slave, sub, Domme, spanko, brat, 50's lifestyler, what?" 

"Uh... is there an I dream of Jeannie group?" 

Wouldn't it be awesome to hear, "Yeah, next door on the left."


I tired them on, sub, slave, bottom, spanko, brat, but I seemed to caveat myself out of each of them. I mean, each one hit the spot (HA!) here, or there, but none of them were really all inclusive of who I am. I like all inclusive. I mean I understand there are exceptions to each thing, but when you feel like: I'm z, well, I mean I'm z, but with more s than t, and there isn't any r involved, and I'd be cool with more t, but he likes v better... give me a break!

It's taken me 4 years with Mr. Man to finally get what I am, what I always really longed to be:

Not a modern wife.
Not an independent wife.
An obedient wife.
His obedient wife.

For years I tried to figure out how to walk the line between how our relationship exists and how to portray myself to other people. I really struggled. You feel like you have a secret. You feel like you are pretending to be able to make decisions that are no longer yours to make.. and most women don't understand that. You can't say to someone, "Gee, Louise, I'd love to buy that, but I have to ask Joe for permission." 

Okay, maybe you can, but with the women I know, you sure couldn't.... at least not without some major blow back.  

I was constantly on this wire, trying to be seen "correctly", trying not to reveal "the secret" all while being asked, "How do you guys have such a great marriage?"

Uh......... blink blink 

I finally got it though... I can say, we have a traditional marriage. I can define respect, and obedience, and striving to make Him happy, under that label. And I can still be funny, and I can still be a smart ass (oh so carefully ;D). I can explain why I like keeping the house clean, and making Him breakfast, and listening about His job, and dressing in skirts and dresses, and being a wife. I can explain what being a wife, to me, and to Him, means. Suddenly I have a label, a definition, that suits me, that I don't have to feel like I'm hiding from. Freedom! And more importantly, I have a corner stone to speak from on why our marriage is so great. I want to be able to tell people. I want to help other people explore themselves, and their marriage. I want to help people find the love they doubt really exists. 

When you feel like you have to hide a piece of yourself from everyone else, especially a piece that makes you so happy, you wind up feeling really conflicted about it. You struggle with submitting to Him, because it's wrong. Society says so! And see how screwed up you are because you can't even tell people that you do submit to Him, further proving just how wrong it is... it has to be a secret! Look, submission is hard. Obedience is hard. Even though you desire it, it's still hard. It flies in the face of everything we've been taught. (I'm not supposed to like doing His laundry, I am suppose to bitch about Him leaving it on the floor! Really, just ask anyone!) Pile on the secrecy and you are talking about serious inner conflicts that compound each other exponentially.  

Once I figured that out, once I could let go of all the other titles, and secrets, I could just.. be. I could just be His obedient wife. Striving to please Him. Striving to be more obedient to His desires. I'm never going to be perfect at it. I'm always going to wind up bent over the side of the bed swearing I'll try harder, but now I have a label. I have the name of what exactly I'm striving for... An obedient wife, and everything that label encompasses in my (and His) mind.


  1. I does feel like it's a secret life. My other friends can do as they like, but I cannot. They don't understand why I rush to get home on time or MUST call home when told.

    But they are jealous because he is so attentive to me, and heaps affection on me. They say he's too controlling but they want what we have. I cringe when they talk rudely to their men and I think what a spanking I would be getting.

    I feel so lucky to have other blogs to read and to have people who understand how we really live daily in this lifestyle. It makes sense to us here!

    Welcome to blogging, btw!

  2. In the end you will be who you are, like some others but not exactly like anyone but yourself. I think labels are just for general reference, the heading, not the true definition.

    It IS hard to keep things a secret, but I have found tons of support here in this community, and ways to phrase things to friends who might question me. I get asked the question too "How do you two manage to be so in love after 26 years of marriage? You're like newlyweds!" If only they knew! ;) Sara

  3. It is wise to shed the labels and pick up on what is meaningful to you as a couple. We absolutely love being just Husband and Wife because of how we define those roles. The outside world doesn't understand but we do.

  4. Stormy~ Amen to everything you said! Especially~ lol~ especially the whole thing! I was going to pick the second paragraph, but I couldn't... the whole comment is perfect :)

    Sara~ I agree, in the end it's about how the two of you work together.. how you define it doesn't really matter. Mr.Man and I were talking about that last night. It can't ever really be the same for everyone because every person is different and they are interacting with someone else who is also different. I think I struggled with it more when we moved to Italy because where we lived before I just had more friends that didn't "know" but knew enough and didn't care. Here, any hint of anything sent off an explosion. Yet, at the same time I was being pressed for info since their marriages were really in the tank. I guess it just made me contemplate it a little more, if that made sense.

    Meow~ Husband and wife are underrated words :D When you really get what those words mean they bring in a whole new, wonderful, warm, happy place in your heart. Nice!

  5. Candy, I feel very much the same about labels. It really is a jumping off place for me too, like Sara said. I think the trick is to not pigeon-hole ourselves with one. I have a list of several that help me understand myself, but they are flexible and not set in stone either.

    I like how you say you can "just let go and be". I can identify more with certain women bloggers than I can with others, but we aren't exactly the same, and I keep that in my mind as well. I am me, and me is good! I'm a submissive wife, but I'm HIS submissive and "HIS obedient wife", which was the perfect way to say it.

    I feel so wonderful when I hear the women in Blogland say that *they too* ask for permission, and then I don't feel so self conscious when I say it to a R/L friend, which I did just last night. I think she's come to accept it. She no longer tells me how *she would NEVER*. I just tell myself, it's what I need, not what she needs. Or maybe she does and she just doesn't know it.(?) I'm just not ready to tell all, lol! :-)

  6. Loved this post and I definitely also tell people 'we have a traditional marriage....he leads and I try to follow." That pretty much says it. Thanks for the reminder....

  7. I love this post. As someone who is constantly trying to label myself I may try to just be who I am instead. Why I feel the need for a label is beyond me. Especially because I do live in secret. Isn't it sad that we all just can't be who we want to be and to let the world see. We aren't anyone, it is so sad that we have to hide this. I think that it would help so many marriages. Thanks for writing this post.

  8. Elysia~ thank you! I love hearing when others can relate. The letting go and being was really hard for me. Being submissive and obedient to him, I was completely comfortable with... but that was different than being comfortable in my own skin, with me. Once I got to a point internally where I could say... okay this is what I am... then yeah, I could finally just let go and be. Maybe I just like to make things complicated =) Probably I do! Lol! So glad you can relate and came over to read!

    Ashley~ Traditional... it's such a great way to sum it up, isn't it. It says it all, and yet, it leaves enough open for people to put their own take on it. No details required.

    ShafersGirl~ The secrecy used to really bother me. I resented that I couldn't just come out and say... hey this is how we do things. In my family women can be anything they want... except submissive! Anything you want doesn't really mean anyyyything apparently ;) Meh, then I got over it for one, and for two, figured out a title I could actually use without people freaking out. or atleast freaking out as much! I don't know why I need a label either. It isn't to pigeon hole myself in that spot, but rather to have a jumping off point that makes sense in my head. (as others have noted.) Thanks for commenting! Looove comments!!