Sunday, December 18, 2005

Respect for yourself and the other

My Darling C,

Recently, the theme of respect has been at the forefront. I would like to elaborate on this theme. Through this blog, I will be changing the course of our LDD practices slightly as well as addressing two major stumbling blocks you have had to respecting yourself and me. LovingDD’s recent article has helped place into context many things that have been going on for us recently and it has helped me understand what your next most important lesson needs to be, namely to learn how to respect yourself and others. Almost all of the things I have either disciplined you for or expressed dissatisfaction about have their roots in your lack of respect for yourself and others. These range from your most serious problem to the apparently trivial action such as missing out on a small chore or duty. So far, we have overlooked the cause and emphasised the symptom. I have previously attempted to ignore small symptoms and focus on the large ones. While it may be reasonable from a practical aspect, this approach has not sent a clear message about what needs to be corrected. So, for example, you get a clear message from me that dealing with one serious problem is important (and you are making very good progress) but you are not having this reinforced when other smaller behaviours go uncorrected or even undiagnosed as part of the same problem. This is about to change!

On the whole, you have low self esteem. You are not able to function well, even in an environment that you are extremely familiar with. Changing that environment as we are about to do, will raise opportunities as well as threats. I know this daunts you and I also know why. You lack confidence and this stems from a lack of respect for yourself.

Therefore, until I am happy that you have lifted yourself out of this destructive phase in your life, I am going to frame all of your punishments and disciplines in terms of respect, especially self respect. I hope you agree with me that my diagnosis of your behaviour as being rooted in a lack of self respect is a valid one. I am no psychoanalyst or counsellor so I am prepared to admit that I may be mistaken but most of the greatest breakthroughs in the world are borne from a simple hypothesis and this one is certainly simple. It also appears to be valid. You really do seem to have such low self esteem that you are not able to function as well as I know you are capable of. I have experienced this myself and it took life changes to make me realise how silly I had been. I am living proof of my own hypothesis about your need for more self respect in order to respect others.

So what do I really mean and how are we going to achieve this state of respect? Well, like love, the capacity for respect is infinite as well as spiritual. Apologies to the non religious readers but that is my belief and I hope you will respect that our relationship is a spiritual one. That means that you cannot have too much and also that no display of disrespect is too small to be ignored. However, respect is an internalised thing – an emotion - and you cannot truly measure that but you can measure the outward expression of that emotion – the behaviour. So we are going to measure respectful and disrespectful behaviour and correct the disrespectful behaviour through Loving Domestic Discipline. That’s it! That’s all that is necessary! So, I would like you to change your journaling methods. Instead of disobedience, disrespect and dishonesty, I want you to explain ALL of your misdemeanours in terms of disrespect, either to yourself or to the other. So, for example, you said in one journal that you were disobedient because of a “bitchy conversation with Z”. It is true that you were disobedient to me because I had warned you about that behaviour before but that was merely a symptom. If you need to journal the same kind of thing again, I expect you to describe how you were disrespectful. In this case it would be to yourself for allowing yourself to repeat a destructive behaviour, even after you had recognised that it was destructive and had the benefit of my guidance. It was also disrespectful of Z, who is a good and loving (albeit spirited) young woman. Finally, it was disrespectful to me. Disobedience shows disrespect for me and the discipline you have asked me to give to you. It is a waste of my efforts.

In another journal, you have said that you were disobedient by being lazy and not doing any chores. Again this was disrespectful to me for failing to accept the discipline that you asked for but mostly it is disrespectful of yourself. You have such little self esteem that you choose to express that outwardly as laziness. What harm is it doing to you inwardly sweetheart? I cannot answer that but I am pretty certain that the short term gratification of “chilling out” is quickly superseded by a more ominous feeling of guilt and a lack of pride. It doesn’t take much imagination for me to guess that you might also wish that you were not in that position. Well you are the author of your own destiny and have most definitely chosen to be in this situation. The alternative to avoiding chores is to be positive, do your chores promptly and move on with a sense of pride in a job well done and the anticipation of my pleasure in seeing you progress. Remember that I care more about you and your wellbeing than I do about the chores themselves. If all I wanted was a tidy house, I would employ a cleaner! We can apply a similar argument to Z and her temporary glitch in her studies.

So now we move onto the big issues. As far as I see it there are two. One is the lack of respect I showed you when I was unfaithful to you. Another is my particularly strong held belief as a pacifist and the fact that you don’t share that belief. How can you respect me with a track record like that?

I was hugely disrespectful to you and myself (as well as others involved) when I had that affair. This is a fact that I cannot change but I can look forward rather than backwards. However, I can be the author of my own destiny and I can help you author yours. Remember the life changes I referred to earlier that helped me find some self esteem? Well I didn’t have any then and I expressed that in a particularly destructive way. Yet I have managed to grow from that position. My faith grew more after my affair than at any other time in my life. Your strength at that time was the guiding light towards that faith. It was as if your actions were instincts that were God given and a direct lesson for me. You were acting to keep us together at a time when I was not. You carried me. I learnt about respect from you and God at that time. I have learnt that lesson now so you need have no fear that I will ever repeat such a stupid thing or that I am weak in character. I was but I am not now. Your strength of character supported me then. Mine can support you now. That is a true marriage!

And now let’s move onto my pacifism. I need to give even more apologies to the non religious reader here. I respect the reader’s right to their own opinions and ask only that the same respect is given to the views I am about to express, which for me are a matter of deeply held religious conscience. There are a few relevant issues here. The one I want to emphasise is that it stems from my belief that God is within us all and all of creation. It is an expression of my belief in God that leads to pacifism. It is impossible to rise up against another person with physical violence any more than it is possible for me to rise up against God. I believe that it is mankind’s ultimate destiny to learn peace not war but it is a slow lesson. So what about your family and my respect for them or your respect for them? Am I being disrespectful to people with military careers? Am I asking you to turn your back on them? Absolutely not! The same argument applies. These people that we both love are part of God’s creation and may well have fought in the name of the same God that I refer to. How can I fail to respect that belief? I am not their superior but part of the same creation. My beliefs lead me in one direction, theirs (and yours) in another. That is beyond my control and I would not want the kind of power that such control over other people’s beliefs implies. That rightly belongs to God alone. Nor am I asking you to become a pacifist. I am asking you to respect my beliefs, however. I understand that this may be difficult and I am willing and able to help you with this. I offer this analogy that happens to be very close to us right now. It is an act of physical violence to administer physical discipline to you. If it was outside of the consenting relationship we have, it would be an illegal act of assault. However, it is a true act of love. That is the only way I could possibly offer you this service and remain true to my pacifism. I searched my soul deeply before I agreed to enter into our LDD relationship in full. In many ways it was harder for me than for you. There are similarities here with the justifications made for so called “just” wars. It may turn out that I was right or wrong to enter into LDD or that the wars were either “just” or not. I cannot answer either question as I do not have any knowledge of absolute truth but I can spend my life seeking such a truth and allowing my decisions to be guided by my experiences. This is what I try to do. Of course, I respect those that do the same and find that their decisions turn out to be different.

Well my darling, I love you and hope that this blog is useful to you.

With all of my heart




At 19.12.05, Blogger Storm Rider said...

Dont mind me , Im just stopping by and saying Hi!

At 19.12.05, Blogger C's Correction said...

Storm, it's always great to hear from you! So hi back :)

At 21.12.05, Blogger Storm Rider said...

I figured I would leave you an answer here as well.
Rack= tits, bodaytious tattas, hooters, jugs, boobs, you get the picture! BREASTS!!lol

At 21.12.05, Blogger C's Correction said...

Sorry Storm, for not knowing what rack meant. You must think me very naive!
Thank you for your very detailed explanation.


At 21.12.05, Blogger C's Correction said...

My darling R,
Please accept my apology for not replying sooner to your very tender and loving blog. I needed time to assimilate my thoughts before rushing in with a reply.

I would like to say how deeply touched I am with such an emotive display of your feelings – I know how hard it is for you to open up to me, so I can appreciate how hard it must have been for you to do this publicly.

I am very pleased that you are going to become ‘tighter’ as HOH in your expectations of me and not allow my smaller misbehaviours to go unpunished. I thank you for this R, from the bottom of my heart!

Darling, perhaps I do suffer from a lack of self respect but recently (for the last month) I’ve been going regularly to the gym and staying for around 5 hrs each time. I’m doing this so that we can run that ½ marathon together. Surely an action such as this proves a great deal of respect for myself and you? Also I haven’t engaged in my destructive behaviour for a very long time, in fact we only just talked about abandoning the label of referring to myself as someone who HAS this condition, but rather of someone who has HAD the condition. You also mentioned stopping my Maintenance for this offence so I’m a little confused why you think I have such little self respect?

My love, moving to the environment which we plan to settle in 2 yrs time fills me with the utmost joy! I thank you for doing this, I know it won’t be easy!
It isn’t my lack of self respect which frightens me, rather it is you suggesting us towards a country where I know I will be extremely unhappy. R it may have infrastructure BUT it simply isn’t politically, morally, ethically or spiritually viable to live there! My conscience won’t allow it. (I’m quite surprised yours will, since it never did in the past!) It may be true that it has the largest contingent of people from your religion, but the reasons not to live there far exceed the reasons to live there. I love that country and I want it to do well with all my heart. We have both followed the politics closely and were ecstatic in its freedom but it now belongs to the natives of that country and it will take MANY generations for peace to exhume.
I have suggested East or West. As you know, I prefer West since all our school friends and current friends come from those countries. But my love it is up to you. Only you can make that final decision.

My darling, pacifism is a wonderful concept and it works well in Western cultures. I do not however agree that pacifism works in all cultures! I think your ideals may be misconstrued as patronising – and this worries me. You are a very loving man R with a very pure and loving heart. The environment we plan to move to may think it insulting if you preach pacifistic values. I do accept you as a pacifist although I don’t share the same values. I am a very peaceful person R, I do not believe in starting war – under no uncertain terms. But I do believe in defence (only if all else fails of course!)

I will strive to be the wife you want. I want you to be proud of me. I do love you very much and I’m very proud of you.

C xxxx

At 23.12.05, Anonymous Frankly My Dear said...

America is rather like Rome: it refuses to see the flawdness of its own justifications for selfishness and aggressive action; no good can come of it, just more damage and suffering.

Power without intelligence and compassion breeds fear, which leads to brute force and dictatorship.

My father was in a Japanese concentration camp, and my mother saw the Nazis march through her town and the Jews pulled out of their houses, so I know what I'm talking about.

At 23.12.05, Anonymous Frankly My Dear said...

My comment refers to the "defence" justification, which I think can in some specific cases justify measured military action, if it serves the interest of defence/safety/peace only, and not that of a small group of powerful people who have the unhealthy inclination to thrive on the ruinous terror that it perpetuates.

At 23.12.05, Blogger C's Correction said...

Dear Frankly My Dear,

Thank you for your comment. I do agree with you, whilst also respecting R’s pacifistic beliefs.

I would like to make a related comment which embraces and links to both 'defence' and 'pacifism' and that is 'suffering.'

With regards to suffering, there have been times when I have seriously questioned in the existence of an 'all-loving' God. There have been times when I’ve seriously questioned whether God exists at all. However, in my opinion, I’ve found that oppression leads to community and solidarity amongst people. The more ‘freedom’ and materialism the more isolated and alone a person is – the less community. Community in oppressed countries (or cultures living in non-oppressed countries, but are oppressed themselves because of their beliefs or race) very often stem from the church. It is as if the very essence of suffering finds solace in communion with God. From this God-based communion, people find each other and from this there comes strength, courage and an endurable spirit - but above all it brings unquestioning hope that things are about to change!

I cannot see God’s purpose and it is perhaps wrong of me to question God’s reasoning and get angry. However, I have noticed that people who live under oppression really are stronger, deeper and more compassionate, as opposed to the shallow selfishness of those who are more concerned in the triviality of their Mercedes getting scratched! The question whether God has chosen certain people to suffer because they are somehow on a higher spiritual plain, or whether it is because of suffering which results in their deeper spirituality and strength I cannot answer.


At 23.12.05, Anonymous Frankly My Dear said...

Dear C.,

I very much appreciate your response to my comments.

This complex subject can certainly be confusing, or even painful, as there are many paradoxes wanting to be reconciled through profound thought and feeling, or intuition, which may be the profound humanity and authenticity that the essence of Being, our soul, or God, asks us to personally manifest in this life, so as to create a world in the image of paradise, regained through lifting our spirits to an inner heaven, where wisdom marries peace, and through the sceptre of truth and the crown of empathy supremely reigns.

Oppressed nations hold a treasure of human strenght that only in freedom can fully unfurl; the fate of an oppressed people can be transformed into the fulfillment of its destiny.

That western culture is without oppression is not true, as the total capitalism that it embraces, is also an oppression and a waste of spiritual and human recources, and its irrational dogmas much resemble the oppressive structure of a tyrannous religion.


At 23.12.05, Blogger Storm Rider said...

Not at all, differant part of the world, thats all. I just have a twisted sense of humor thats all!

At 23.12.05, Blogger wind walker said...

wow, among the actual blog posts and the comments, i feel as though i stumbled into something almost private...

thank you both r & c for allowing me a glimpse into your lives...including the non-pretty side....

and thank you frankly for standing up for what you believe in....the discussion was a mature discussion that could have easily become emotionally charged and ended badly.

and of course, my favorite comments were from my me, he's never short on comments or nicknames for the female form....

merry christmas everyone.

At 24.12.05, Anonymous Frankly My Dear said...

Yes, lets have a merry Christmas, families, couples and singles... so, Merry Christmas to you all... and bottoms up, of course, even for those who are A.A.-sober, because the bottoms that's up for them are much nicer to be addicted to (I'm sober for 8 yrs now, without A.A., just through my own survival instincts)... cheers everybody!

At 24.12.05, Blogger C's Correction said...

Dear J.P.S,

Thank you very much for your comments they are most appreciated.

With Christmas so close I'm sorry I cannot give a more comprehensive answer to your comments. Please feel free to email me if you would like to explore these views more deeply ( Trying to keep anonymity in a public forum like this is hard. Speaking privately would enable me to open out countries I feel most patriotic or drawn to.

Dear Wind and Storm,

Thank you so much for coming along and breaking the tension. You both have a GSOH which is greatly appreciated! R is home now so will link you up... sorry he didn't do this last weekend but my behaviour was a nightmare so he needed to up the ante as HOH.

I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year!!


At 1.1.06, Blogger Janeen said...

Just wanted to wish you both a Happy New Year!

At 5.1.06, Blogger Storm Rider said...

Hey you two, time to update or at least let us know your still alive!

At 10.1.06, Blogger ann regel said...

Dear R,

Your blog post and comments here are most profound and philosophic. I have my own beliefs and reading caused me to stop and think about things.

I would like to ask one question, however. It is about respect. I agree that it is an emotion and therefore immeasurable. Your point of measuring the behavior can make sense but only a little. All behavior is a mix of emotions. I understand isolating one to work on it can be helpful and yet, respect is nebulous.

Could it be that respect is a secondary emotion and not a primary one? If that is true, then isolating it wouldn't work.

I don't know if what I write here is true yet I felt compelled to at least share this doubt with you.

When I worked on my own self-esteem issues, it stemmed from not feeling I was worthy. If I were to be punished for not doing a chore, it would not increase my self-esteem or self-respect. In fact, I would feel less worthy and it would hinder my progress.

Ahhh, I wish I able to articulate this better.

I applaud you for thinking this out and writing a detailed account of how you feel. I may be completely off target here and if so, I apologize. If nothing else, perhaps this will help you clarify the whole issue.

Please forgive me if I have over-stepped my boundaries here.

At 10.1.06, Blogger C's Correction said...

Dear smartnnaughty

Thank you for your kind comments. You are not "off" at all - far from it. In fact, you raise a very important question.

I am not sure that it can be generalised either so I will not attempt to. I do believe, however that for C it is a primary emotion. That is why I focus on it for her. What is more, it is working. For example, C was punished yesterday for an act that was deeply disrespectful to herself and her own body. She had enough courage to confess it to me and, although she was frightened about the punishment, the most important thing for her was to improve herself. That she needs my help to do that is no shame. In fact it is an honour to be part of that healing. Today, she has shown more pride in herself than I have seen for quite some time. She has started to do the chores that are important if we are going to manage to move house to be together. Because I love and respect her myself, I feel it is important not to allow her to act badly towards herself. The best means I know of to help her rise out of that low, negative place is to punish her in proportion to the severity of disrespect she shows and to praise her when she succeeds. She tells me by her words and actions that this is working so it is a wonderful experience to be able to help her in this way. I am not certain how many other women could be helped by their HOH focusing on disrespectful behaviour but I do know C can be helped in this way.

You say that being punished for not doing a chore would hinder your progress on self esteem. Perhaps that is because it is, indeed a secondary emotion for you. Why didn't you do the chores in the first place? I suspect it was not because of such a deep rooted emotion because you did not relate it to your self esteem. For C, I observe that ALL of her negative behaviour stems from this one deep rooted problem that has gone un-corrected since we first met as young teenagers and probably since she was an infant. When I first met C, I thought it was fascinating, frustrating and inspiring to be with a girl who showed such strange, unpredictable behaviour. I said that I loved her but didn't understand her. Now, after over 25 years, I can say that I am finally coming to understand her as well.

There is another, very personal reason for focusing on respect. If you have read previous posts in this blog you will already know that I have been unfaithful and this is a big issue for us both that, happily, we are slowly working through. I cannot change what happened in the past, only what small things I can control in the present. One thing that really hurts me about that episode is the damage C causes herself when she gets onto this topic. Of course, I am entirely to blame but that is not the point. The point is, that I also have a small opportunity to help C resolve these issues herself. Through the LDD relationship she has consented to, C has given me a wonderful gift that reaffirms our love for each other each and every time she is punished or praised. I don't deserve it but I have been given it and I will always be grateful for it. Therefore, it is my duty to do as much right by C as I possibly can. C's respect for me, which used to be great, will only re-grow once she learns to respect herself again. Destructive thoughts, words and actions that C can often show when this topic crops hurt her the most. I hate to see that because I love her so much. If C could put half of the energy into positive thoughts and actions that she puts into negative ones, she would blossom again. I intend to help her do that.


At 11.1.06, Blogger ann regel said...


Your genuine love and respect for C comes through so sweetly in what you wrote. I am also impressed by how much thought you put into understanding her and how you take responsibility for hurting her in the past and also your committment to helping her get past treating herself disrespectfully.

You both are lucky to have each other. I wish you great happiness. I am glad to have found your blog and I will be a frequent visitor.



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