Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Let me tell you about a good friend of mine who married a gorgeous blonde. A Candy Bergen/Catherine Deneuve-class blonde, I kid you not. He was a compulsive late-night person, while she went to bed early. I told him, right after the honeymoon, that he should change his ways, pronto. I mean, a no-brainer, right?
But he never did, and the marriage unraveled. There were plenty of other persuasive reasons cited, but I always wondered what would have happened if my friend had just made it a policy to put down his post-adolescent toys whenever his bride was ready for bed and gone to play with her instead.
Many years later I finally got hitched… and forgot my advice. Not always, but too frequently I would stay up after she retired, playing with the computer or watching sports.
Then I discovered wife worship—just in time, thank God! And there I discovered my old bedtime dictum emblazoned as one of the cardinal rules. In fact, I have yet to come across an example cited by any female-led couple where it is otherwise.
Here is a typical example of the benefits of synchronized bedtimes, from a recent Internet friend who shares the wife-worship lifestyle:
“One of the things I did before with my obsessive hobby was stay up way too late after [my wife] went to bed. Since our reconciliation, I make a point of going to bed at the same time as her. When we go upstairs, while she is in the bathroom, I will turn over the bedcovers and fluff up her pillow. This past week, I have made a point of leaving a small Peppermint Patty on the pillow. When she comes in the room, if she is not already changed for bed, I help her change. I help pull off her jeans and panties, unhook her bra, and fold her clothes neatly over the chair. I help her into her nightie. When we get into bed, I usually offer her a backrub.”
And we fade out…
Bedtime for Bonzo
Why doesn’t every husband follow this recipe for nocturnal togetherness? Granted, it isn’t easy to change longtime biorhythmic patterns. Often, it seems, it takes a resolute wife to takes matters into her own hands and imposes a curfew on a time-philandering husband.
fdhousehusband (who, alas, is on extended vacation from his own FLR blog, Her househusband’s life) is fortunate enough to belong to just such a wife:
“i was always a night person before i became Her househusband, but after a while i began to be in sync with my morning person Wife. She requires that i go to bed before 11:00 pm (‘my curfew,’ She calls it) and that helps me wake up without an alarm clock. i don't drink coffee as She forbids me from having caffeine. (‘You don't need caffeine to motivate you, that is My job,’ She says)."
Here’s another guy taken in hand by his wife: “My wife began dictating that i would no longer stay up watching tv but would go to bed when she went to bed and wake at a specified time, early to get ready for work, deal with the children, and get breakfast started.”
“Every night, I was required to go to bed at the same time as my wife, and stroke her body while she went to sleep. On about half of all nights she would become sexually excited while I stroked her skin and proceed to have orgasms, assisted by vibrators, or my oral or manual ministrations…”
My night-owl friend would certainly have profited from a take-charge wife like those, or this one: “I gave my husband a curfew for coming to bed nightly so that he wasn’t up all night watching sports or God knows what. Bedtime is either 10 or 10:30. He has different duties each night. Some nights it’s a massage, some nights he pleases me with oral sex. Some nights we just cuddle.”
Cuddling and footrubs are pretty much standard features of these romantic bedtime stories. I offer typical excerpts:
“My favorite part of the day is bedtime,” a husband explains, “when i massage her feet with lotion and kiss them and we talk about our day and, if I’m lucky, cuddle. This has become a nightly ritual that we both enjoy.”
“My wife and I go to bed together every night (unless she is out real late, in which case I am already in the bed). I make a point of this. I am never first (well hardly never) to go to bed. When she goes, I go. Then, after I rub her feet with lotion, almost always I cuddle with her and tell her how much I love and adore her. I do this for as long as she will allow.”
“My husband’s nightly routine begins by placing a glass of water beside the bed, turning down the sheets and waiting for me to arrive. Once I am in bed, he gives me a 10-15 minute foot rub to help me relax and get ready to sleep. I feel completely pampered and taken cared of, and my husband feels wonderful that he can serve me and worship me in this manner.”
“I am expected to prepare the Queen's bedroom for Her at bedtime, lighting candles, warming Her pajamas for Her, and choosing music to fit Her mood. I must request entry into Her bed, where I perform nightly massage and can be awakened at any time when She needs attention.”
“In a little while, i will rub Her feet before bedtime. (She alone will decide if I go right to sleep or if She wants sex tonight). i am very happy in our lifestyle.”
“When she's ready to go to bed, I go up with her and rub her back, legs and feet until she's asleep. She now expects me to do this, which makes me VERY happy, and says she can't go to sleep without it! When she falls asleep I go downstairs to do a few minor chores (fold more laundry, clean up the living areas, recharge her cell phone, whatever).”
“We both know that I'll be pampering her when we go to bed. Makes for a pretty nice life—for both of us.”
“When we go to bed at night i kiss Her feet and service Her orally if She wants. my sexual activity is totally under Her control and i am not allowed to touch myself without Her permission.”
“my Wife told me to come to bed. i rested the side of my head in Her left underarm and curled up beside Her. She hugged me with Her right arm and placed Her right leg over my hips. i placed my right hand on Her chest…”
Some take-charge wives assume an uncompromising tone in the matter of imposing curfews for hubby:
“From being a game,” one husband confides on a wife-led message board, “ it's now become the default that I get ready for bed when she chooses to, kneel by her bed to await instructions (sometimes she just wants to go straight to sleep but often she wants me to pleasure her.)”
This wife even utilizes the 24-hour military clock for scheduling her mate’s rising and setting: “Husband’s chores must be completed before curfew. He is required to be up no later that 0900 on the days he works the later shift and his days off.”
“My wife has drastically curtailed my television time,” a man writes, praising her firmness, “and assigns an early bedtime if my chores are done. It is her philosophy that any distractions in a man’s life must be removed in order for him to remain focused on his wife.”
“Gotta hurry,” another husband typed in a hasty bulletin board message, “I have only 3 minutes till bedtime.”
Isn’t it demeaning for a husband to be ordered to bed by his wife? Of course it is. And yet I can’t help thinking that many a failed marriage (like my friend’s) could have been saved by exactly such a no-nonsense maternally imposed regimen. More examples:
"’Time for bedtime, sweetie,’ my Wife said. ‘You have a busy day tomorrow.’"
“’Go to bed now,’ ordered my wife as I was completing my chores. ‘You must get up at 5 a.m. tomorrow morning to serve me breakfast in bed.’ A few minutes later, she joined me in bed.”
“After a bit more relaxing at her feet in front of the TV, my wife made me go to bed early, telling me that tomorrow would probably be a ‘big day for my little boy.’ This time, her words made me feel very little and very embarrassed.”
“My wife took to the female-led relationship big-time, making all the decisions, even telling me when I had to go to bed. Secretly I liked it, and I knew she could tell. I hardly put up any resistance.”
Some wives, in fact, use bedtime to review hubby’s daily performance, rather than wait for the Weekend Update, which was the subject of an earlier two-part posting:
“I keep a private journal. It is closer to a daily love letter to my wife. It is my one uncensored outlet for telling her how I am feeling and what I am thinking. She usually has me read it to her as part of our bedtime ritual. I get in trouble if I have no entry for that day.”
“I spent the next twenty minutes rubbing her feet. It excited the hell out of me. She could tell too. When I finished she said, ‘Well, I guess you have finished most of your chores for the day. Did you clean my tennis shoes?’ ‘Yes.’ ‘Then you can go to bed now.’"
For yet other worshipped wives, sending hubby to bed early constitutes punishment for substandard performance:
“My husband neglected his chores the last two days. I have changed his bedtime to 8:15 pm until Monday.”
A husband who signs himself “Mr. Mary” writes: “For me, being made to go to bed early and not getting to watch a favorite program on TV is a punishment that can really put me in my place.”
Another husband amens: “The mildest form of punishment my wife would employ is something like being sent to bed early, which i don't enjoy because i always prefer to stay up past midnight. If i argue about it, then i am forced to go to bed early and switch the light out, so that i can't read in bed.”
Finally, just to sketch out the wide spectrum of bedtime behaviors in female-led relationships, here are a couple of matriarchal households in which hubby may find himself dismissed to bed in front of guests—demonstrating the wife’s complete authority over him:
The first one was posted under the name of “Charles” on the now-defunct Spousechat message board: “After dinner, I made coffee for [Lisa and her friends], they went into the living room and talked business for a while, while I cleaned up. After cleaning up, I went in and politely asked ‘Will there be anything else, ladies?’ Lisa's guests thanked me and replied no. Lisa said ‘No, that'll be all, but before you go to bed Charles, go through my closet and see if you can find that orange print skirt, you know the flowered one that I bought in St Croix last year? It'll probably need to be ironed but you can do that in the morning, just see if you can find it tonight, I want to wear it tomorrow.’ ‘Yes’ I replied and left the room…”
”Rebecca,” an unapologetic advocate of all-out matriarchy, offered wives this advice on her Yahoo! Group (“Happy Wives, Trained Husbands,” also long defunct):
“Bedtime is an excellent time for husband training. Controlling what time he goes to bed, where and how he sleeps, what he wears, is excellent training because he thinks about his situation all night in his subconscious. If it is done in front of a witness he cannot deny it and cannot pretend it did not happen. For example, you have another couple over for the evening. Say to your husband, ‘Dear, it's bedtime for you, go get ready and get in bed and I'll be in to check you in a few moments.’ He must obey and you have shown your authority.”
Better by far, guys, to just take the hint and go hand in hand with your beloved to dreamland.