One of my duties in my female led marriage is to build up my submissive. Over the past few years I've learned a few lessons as to how to do that. The goal is to make my submissive dearheart into the best person he can be, so that he can offer himself up to me.
Everyone should keep growing throughout life, but that growth will take on different forms at different levels of maturity. For my partner and I, since we are relatively young, that growth is more groundbreaking. We're doing new things, discovering ourselves, and developing core competencies.
For those with more experience and maturity, growth is more about refinement. Handling conversations better, working faster with less waste, or being more thoughtful about others.
A lot of the lessons for managing my dearheart are based around my youthful form of growth. As I'm encountering situations for the first time ever in life, I'm prone to making mistakes and sub-optimal choices. I expect with time I will grow more capable and begin refining my control over my submissive husband.
That said, I've learned a lot about my relationship – some of which is worth sharing. Writing down my tips and tricks helps cement them in the toolkit that is my mind.
My power comes from our female led relationship
I'm not keen on labelling my relationships, but what my dearheart and I have a D/s arrangement with elements akin to Gentle FemDom. My dearheart "likes it rough, but gentle." I lead our relationship 24/7, and with that influence comes many duties.
Fulfilling my responsibility to my relationship would be nigh impossible if not for my dearheart's willing engagement. As he chooses to submit and follow, I can guide him to growth. Especially when it takes him out of his comfort zone.
I imagine that if we'd structured our relationship without power exchange – as equals without someone clearly leading – my dearheart would not have the drive to push himself to grow. By relying on my Dominant leadership he gets my discipline as well, and my drive to achieve more.
It works well for us because my dearheart is submissive towards women and dominant towards men. Pair that with the fact that I'm service oriented and a leader, and our relationship is on solid ground. We trade acts of service back and forth as our main love language.
How I train my submissive husband to better serve me
First and foremost is that I give my dearheart unconditional love. He's been shocked to discover the extent to which I accept him and his flaws. We've been through work-obliged long term separations, mental health crises, injuries, and more. Even after all these years he has trouble believing how much I love him, in spite of his flaws and mistakes.
He has many, many flaws, but they're all mine for the taking! Nobody is perfect, and my dearheart has more admirable traits than negative ones. I love owning him, and by extension all his flaws.
Besides granting him unconditional love, I loosely see three offerings I want my sub to give me: his health, his skills, and his engagement. Yet that is not something he does alone. I need to cultivate each of these in my dearheart.
His health is the easiest to address: I want him to last for a long time, and to do so he must take care of his body. I push him to exercise, but really the motivator is to make him understand that his service to me includes his well being. Once he gets that, he will want to take care of his body proactively.
Though the external discipline I provide is helpful. It can be difficult to push yourself every day to do the workouts you need to. Having a helpful reminder from your Dominant can be the spur to action you require.
As well, my dearheart needs to take time finding the right method of caring for his body. Right now that looks like cutting junk food, cooking healthier, swimming, and walks. For someone else, the method will be understandably different.
Next, I need my dearheart to be a capable partner that I can offload tasks to. I also need him to be an autonomous partner. If he waits for my every order, that's worse than making me do everything myself. A lack of anticipatory service is one step away from malicious compliance in its impact on me.
Instead of directly ordering my submissive around, I prefer to direct him on the grand scale. I enjoy shaping his skills and life, not just to suit my whims but also to suit his own self-sufficiency.
To do so, I push my partner to learn and grow his skills. Lately this has taken the form of encouraging him to fill in his mathematics knowledge gaps using Khan Academy. The next step after he brushes up on those refreshers is to send him back to community college. From there he will train up into a new career, preferably more fulfilling than the one he recently quit.
I'm also encouraging his hobbies, especially those that develop practical skills. He's slowly becoming more handy. I dream of turning him into a handyman, capable of constructing all manner of toys and things!
Really though, at the core of all this learning and development is one feedback loop: Does he enjoy the skill, and is he able to grow his competency in it? If so, encourage it and support him in it.
Mathematics is a special case where he hates the skill, but it's so foundational that I overrule that feedback loop to ensure his basic well-being is handled. In other words, "It's for your own good, dearheart."
My third preferred offering is for my submissive to be engaging. Not merely talkative, but skilled at being open and attentive. It's the measure of an engaged person if they respond to subtlety and understatements – all too often have I met people who completely miss what I say, forcing me to reiterate it more clearly or drop the point.
Likewise the openness is something I admire. When I first met my dearheart, he told me everything I needed to know about himself – including many of his flaws. Authenticity made him more interesting.
Maintaining that openness takes work however, so I require that my dearheart strive to always improve his communication around it.
Tips I rely on as a Dominant Wife
Gosh, can I take a moment just to lament how many tips for wives falls in line with traditional gender roles? Not to mention how often people think that being a wife means being subservient. I've rarely run across good advice that suits me as a Domme. And I mean advice for a lifestyle Domme, not for being a fantasy-dispensing service top.
That said, I invite to your attention this rare and wonderful collection of tips from Miss Pearl:
Here's my own tips, mostly for my future selves:
Life is a process of becoming: discover what you want to be and don't let anyone else define you. It's one thing to compromise with your sub, which is a healthy part of relationships. It's another thing entirely to do stuff you dislike for them. If you find that something you do doesn't fit in your true self, get rid of it.
Let the small stuff go. Conserve your relationship capital. For instance, my dearheart recently got a mat for the bathroom. It's the wrong colour, matching literally none of the palette already in place. I would love to improve his aesthetic sense, but it's not worth it to raise the point – especially as it would feel like a criticism.
Likewise small, one-off occurrences of bad behaviour are forgivable. It's only when a pattern develops that I swiftly step in and address the issue.
Accept that you will have an impact on others, and be ready to apologise and correct yourself when necessary. As mentioned above, small points can feel like criticism to my dearheart. In that case it's his own insecurity, and nothing I need to apologise for.
However, there are situations where you overstep. You can't let your ego get in the way of apologies, and you need to be committed to doing better next time.
What you permit, you promote. You need to take the time to address problems, or they'll get worse with time. Your partners aren't telepathic, if you have a problem you need to speak up about it.
One thing that really bothered me for the longest time was that my dearheart spent money carelessly. It was an affront to my frugal sensibilities. Yet I took far too long to bring it up, which embarrassed us both.
With that in mind, give problems time to cool off. Usually I figure one or two days for the both of us to calm down, think problems over, and come back to discuss it honestly with each other.
Always talk about "large" purchases together, after you decide the threshold for "large." In my case, I set the threshold relatively low: $25 or more requires me to be informed of it. Money surprises are never good, especially when a minute of conversation can prevent unnecessary purchases.
Celebrate the small stuff. Be specific. Tie in your emotions and use "I" statements. Praising my sub for doing the dishes well is recognition that affirms his continued service. "Thank you for making me laugh" is a good one that often goes unsaid.
Always remind yourself "How can I make things easier for my partner?" It doesn't matter what side of the slash you're on, in a partnership you should be lightening each others' loads.
This is especially important as the Domme in the relationship. I shouldn't be excessively lazy and adding my own work to my partner's burden – that's an abuse of my power. That's also taking my partner for granted. Knowing what I should do versus what I can offload on my sub takes a lot of experience to winnow between them.
Encourage honesty and vulnerable emotions every time. Never make your partner feel like they shouldn't share their truth with you. You need vulnerability to communicate effectively. In my generation we like to explicitly state our thoughts when addressing openness, such as "That's valid, and brave of you to be so open about. I feel like..."
If you flip it around and want to ruin your relationship? It's easy: tell your partner that their feelings are wrong, or otherwise invalidate them. Get angry when they tell you the truth you don't want to hear. Refuse to give them affection or reassurances during duress. Lie about your own feelings, or better yet not say a thing at all. These are awful ideas that will doom you to failure. Do the opposite, please!
Avoid stonewalling at all costs. It's one of the "four horsemen of relationships" for a reason. Stonewalling is where you withdraw or otherwise disengage from the relationship to avoid conflict. It's important to recognise this, and to differentiate it from disengaging to cool off and return at a later date.
Defuse and address defensiveness when it comes up. Quite a few times now have I brought up my feelings, only to have my partner get defensive about his role in them. As defensiveness is yet another horseman of relationships, it's better to tackle this one head-on.
Reminders like "I'm not trying to criticise you, these are just how I felt" go a ways to smoothing that over. In some cases, but not all the time, it's helpful to be straightforward. For instance, saying "I noticed you're getting defensive, can you explain why?"
Be unassailable; use "I" statements. Your feelings can't be taken away from you or argued with. Sharing them helps your partner understand you, and your responses to their actions.
Don't accuse your partner of anything. Stay respectful. Again an indicator of death-spiralling relationships. Insults have no place in relationships outside of consensual degradation. It's fine to ask if your partner feels a certain way or did something, but don't assume and accuse.
Communication involves restating things until it's clear. Ask your sub what they understood, so that you can catch misunderstandings in the act. Don't just repeat what you said, but change up the wording and approach you take.
I love being the Domme wife in my relationship. I'm dutiful, so having a submissive partner to shape and better is the best gift he can give me. If you are interested in reading more about the particulars of my relationship with him, I invite to your attention this post: