Friday, July 10, 2009
Spousechat Archive Excerpt No. 4
(Editor’s Note: This is the fourth in a continuing series of samplings from www.spousechat.com, a message board active between 2001 and 2003. What began as a networking site for husbands wed to high-powered executives rapidly morphed into a provocative forum focusing on “matriarchal” (or, as they are more commonly called now, “wife-led marriages.”)
Now that Lynda is gone for the day, I have read her post and your responses. Have Lisa and you ever been part of a matriarchal clan? Lynda talks about this quite frequently. It would be nice to live in a neighborhood of career women with househusbands who acknowledge the woman's leadership in the outside world and family. Have you ever had any problems proclaiming your matriarchal family structure? We have both heard that feminism and matriarchal families are much more supported in Europe. I understand that there are also strong matriarchal groups in German, Belgium, Spain, and Great Britain. (You would think that Great Britain would be a leader; Prince Philip is the ultimate househusband and he had to take his wife's name in marriage.)
As I begin to do more and more of the shopping by myself, I am having a little problem buying tampons and other feminine products. So far, Lynda has always been with me. How do you cope with everyone looking at you? Sometimes I feel I am the most liberated college male in the world. At other times, I feel like a stooge. I am still willing to work on these things; I want to please Lynda. What happens when you have a disagreement? How do you make it up to her after the "battle" is over? I know you have to have your differences. That is the reality of life. Lynda likes me subordinate and submissive.
Yes, we do have disagreements and differences. While I am subordinate to Lisa, there are times when I do argue with her. However, most of the time (probably 99 percent) she is right. When she's angry with me, I have found that she tends to objectify me, that is, she tends to treat me like her employee and talks to me only to give direction. This is her way of showing her displeasure to me. Fortunately for me, Lisa is quick to forgive me and most of our arguments don’t last long at all.
I have no problem buying most of Lisa's personal products, even pantyhose or hair and skin care products at the salon, but I must confess that the feminine hygiene products I do still find incredibly embarrassing to buy. The way to do it is to just mix them in with a large food order at the grocery store, and stay away from the younger checkout employees. The older ones will never say anything, the younger ones have.
Mr. Lisa: I do not have much time, but Mr. Lynda just had to have me read your last entry. I think I remember you saying in one of your postings that Lisa refused to take Home Ec in high school. She did not have time for such classes. She wanted to take some class that would be more useful. In high school, I had a male teacher whose wife was a judge. He was also a househusband. I know several students made fun of him, but I told him how much I admired him. He is now a full-time househusband because his wife is a state Supreme Court judge and he wants to spend time with her. I have also heard of several female doctors who have househusbands. Several major female CEOs have househusbands. This teacher was one of the first to say that he felt women were superior to men and that women were taking over the workplace.
Like you, I have seen young women and their boy friends out shopping or eating at a restaurant, etc. She is clearly in the power seat and he does the serving. Perhaps we need to approach the woman, ask what she is doing, and encourage her to continue her pursuits, telling the young man to support her in every way he knows. My ideas may sound silly, but these are important times for women. It is also an important time for the men who will support them.
We had an experience several weeks ago which I will treasure for a long time. Mr. Lynda and I had decided to meet at a restaurant for supper. He arrived dressed in a nice pair of shorts and a polo shirt. I was late; I had a presentation to make and I was dressed in a dark blue business suit. I ordered for the both of us, unaware that this older man was watching us. He may have been in his early forties. He came up to us before we left and commented on what he had observed. He talked to Mr. Lynda while I paid the bill. He said, "She has you whipped, boy, but there is no better way to be! Just let her have her way. She is going far." He was on his weekly Boys' Night Out. The other friend he was to meet could not show up at the last minute because one of the children had gotten sick. He has been a househusband for over twenty years. He took Mr. Lynda's number; they are going to get together for a Boys' Night Out until we leave for my job later this summer.
The world is changing. How did you feel being addressed by me as Mr. Lisa? You are still Charles, but, you are also part of the Ms. and Mr. Lisa (Smith) matriarchal clan. How do your parents react to you and your role, and your name change? This is important for us to know because our families support our decision at the present time. I am always worried that his family will buck it at the last minute. Would love to write more, but, I have got to leave for work.
I was typing as Ms. Lynda dictated her post to me for this site. As she got going, I could not believe the fervor in her eyes. She is not being silly with the things she is suggesting. For example, I remember that male teacher very well. He was and is a role model. When they met in college, he realized she had the greater potential for earning more money and that he would have to openly support her career so she could become a judge. (She was one of the youngest judges ever elected.) I may be betraying a confidence, but he did tell me that as she became more assertive in her career, she became more assertive in the bedroom. He told me that if I were ever in that position, I should enjoy catering to a woman's sexual needs her way. I have been to the home of the man we met in the restaurant. It is one of the true "show homes" of the area. Two headless male nude statues guard the foyer. He posed for them. Their 18 year old daughter did not graduate from high school because she is enrolled in a college. Their 13 year old son has his household chores to do, and he always helps serve and clean up at supper. We have been invited to have tea with his wife and him. I cannot wait to meet her.
ANONYMOUS BOSSY WOMAN
I do not think a man who opts for a matriarchal life intends to sit on his behind. As a woman, I will gladly support my husband in return for his active support of my career, including giving dinner parties, creating a beautiful home and serene atmospheres, his deference to me as head of the household, allowing me to get in touch with my assertive side which will make me happy, his love and respect which I will return to him, always aware that I have a certain pre-eminence in the family and relationship. There is no way a man can be a lazy do-nothing with this life. He needs to be as strong as any man to take the back seat in the relationship and be subordinate to his spouse.
You couldn’t be more correct. I am constantly busy because my wife, like most career minded women, is very demanding and particular about how she wants things done. You couldn’t be lazy and please Lisa. I would say I work as much and probably more hours per week than most men who have outside careers.
TAKING HER NAME
I am getting married this fall, and my future Wife does not want to change Her name. We talked about me getting a new last name that is my name, hyphen, and Her name. But reading Rob's, and a couple of other posts on the subject, I will ask Her for permission to adopt Her last name. If I, who believe in the matriarchal marriage and family structure, should not spearhead such a tradition, it will never happen.
Although I took my wife's last name when we got married, I've never been called Mr. Lisa (her last name), but I must admit after seeing the above list (i.e., Mr. Betsy B. English, Mr. Catherine Morecold, Mr. Sarah McCowlick, Mr. Senator Mary Shearman, Mr. Senator Jayne Tocsin, etc.) it does make me wonder. Ms. and Mr. Lisa Smith (not real last name). Lynda's future husband is thinking about going by this new convention. I must admit there does not seem to be a more true act of open devotion and subordination.
Ms. Lynda, the fact that you addressed me as Mr. Lisa, without first asking me, really says a lot about you. You obviously are decisive and have no problem making decisions for men. You made the decision to call me Mr. Lisa, without my input. Even though I do not know you, this little thing made me feel very subordinate to you, in a very positive way. Decisiveness in a woman is very comforting and makes me feel secure.
I really agree with you on the Home Economics class. I too am serious about this. Men need to be exposed to the idea of being a househusband at an early age, and need to be told that it is a serious option for them to consider. I have told Lisa about this website and showed her a few of the posts, her one comment was that Lynda sounds just like me. I'm working on her, trying to get her to find some time to write down some of her thoughts for me to post. Perhaps the next time I'm giving her a pedicure or something where she can’t move, I'll hand her a pad and paper. In the meantime, tonight, she has two agents whom she recently hired coming over for dinner. It's my first time meeting them, and I must admit, as enlightened as I feel I am, the first time is still a bit difficult.
How did last evening go? What did you serve to the agents for dinner? How did you serve? Does Lisa hire men as well as women? Are you more comfortable around women than men? What would happen if the women agents brought the men they were dating or to whom they were married? It is awesome to think about the power exchange when the women go to the living room to discuss business while the men are dismissed to do the dishes and prepare the coffee and tea to serve to the women. I also hope you took one moment to introduce yourself in terms of Ms. Lisa being the head of your family. "Welcome to the home of Ms. and Mr. Lisa Smith."
Ms. Lynda, I regret to say that I do not have the courage to do that yet. What I did do, however, was when I greeted them at the door, I introduced myself only as "Lisa's husband", not saying my first name. The first woman, Cathy, did not pick up on this, and asked me my name. The second woman, Terri, had a little bit of fun with me. She said, "Nice to meet you Lisa's husband, I'm Terri. So do you have a name of your own or shall I call you ‘Lisa's husband’ all evening?" I replied, half jokingly, "Yes, it's Charles, but I answer to ‘Lisa's husband,’ ‘Hey you with the apron,’ or even ‘Mr. Lisa.’” Terri laughed and said "Well, I see this is going to be fun." The three women sat down, I took their drink orders, got their drinks, and then went back to the kitchen to finish dinner. I made Maryland crab cakes with honey mustard sauce, a spinach salad, and herb roasted potatoes.
How did I serve? Like a waiter, with an exceptionally servile attitude. The women absolutely loved it, and when Lisa explained our household arrangement, they loved it even more. They had lots of questions for Lisa and me over dinner which I happily answered. After dinner, I made coffee for them, 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, I could hear them talking, "Wow, he does your ironing too!"
Yes, Lisa hires men as well as women. She has a male receptionist, a male assistant, and 4 or 5 male agents. There are about 20 female agents. Like I said in a previous posting, the real estate industry is completely dominated by women. If any men want to know what it's like to be a subordinate to a woman, get a job as a secretary in a real estate agency. These women are all aggressive, assertive women and have no problems giving orders to men. I must say, it is more comfortable when Lisa's guests don’t bring dates or husbands, but if they do, I'm cool with it. I act the same way, as does Lisa.
Dear Mr. Lisa, Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions. I think you did the right thing in your introduction. As I said before, you are still Charles; I just think it is as important to be Mr. Lisa Smith as shamelessly as possible.
What kind of apron do you wear? My boyfriend got several as graduation presents. I gave him one that says "I belong to Her", his mother gave him one that says, "A Man's Place Is In The Kitchen", and one of our professors gave him, "Househusband". I have a t shirt that this same professor gave me that says, "A Woman's Place Is In The House, and Senate, and Oval Office."
Did you tell the women that you took Lisa's last name in marriage? Since these women enjoyed your service so much, did they say they wanted a man at home like you? Are you jealous or supportive of the men Lisa hires, especially in traditional female roles like receptionist and secretary-assistant? When you go out, does Lisa order for you and pay for everything? When you go on vacation, do you make the hotel reservations in Lisa's name? What do your neighbors think? Do you know any other househusbands? Since some of the men who post here suggest that their women are not as aggressive and assertive as Lisa or I, could they find happiness as a subordinate spouse who is active in real estate? Are you ever introduced as woman and husband? This would be a reversal of man and wife. It makes it sound like you belong to Lisa.
Enough questions for today. I cannot wait until Mr. Lynda is in the same boat of entertaining. One more question that just came to me. If Lisa were to throw such a big party that you needed help, would you hire a boy before a woman to assist you or to serve the party while you and Lisa mingled? At public parties, with whom do you mingle?
Ms. Lynda, I hope I can adequately address all of your questions, I will try my best. My apron is just a basic dark green apron, nothing fancy, although I love the one you gave to your boyfriend. Yes, the topic of the name change came up, and both women praised me for taking Lisa's surname, and yes, they were continually asking where they could find a man like me (both are single and not dating currently). As Terri put it, it was very "refreshing to see a man take a back seat to a woman for a change". I think it's great that Lisa hires men for the traditional female jobs like receptionist and secretary. As I said earlier, I worked first as a receptionist, then a secretary, and then a personal assistant at a real estate agency, so I have had these subordinate roles with women for quite a while. At restaurants Lisa lets me order for myself but she pays. On vacations, I have to make the reservations in Lisa's name because she is the one with the credit cards (I have one with a small limit for emergencies and such). I don't know any other househusbands, but I'd love to meet some.
My neighbors think I'm a great husband, they all know Lisa is in charge, two of the neighborhood women have been over to our house numerous times and have seen what our relationship is like first hand. As a matter of fact, Lisa has them over sometimes and I'll do their nails or give them facials. A man looking for a woman like you or Lisa could start by taking a job as a receptionist at a real estate agency or at a female-run law firm. This will expose him to powerful, assertive women and he can possibly build a relationship that way. I've never needed to hire any help for a party, but if I did, I'm absolutely certain Lisa would want male help. At public parties, I stay by Lisa's side, at her beck and call, so to speak. May I ask you, Ms. Lynda, regarding the subject of finances, how do you intend to handle your household’s finances when you get married?
We are going to be married in the Episcopal Church with a woman priest. She has been giving us a lot of pre-Cana encounters and we have had to discuss our financial situation. In a fantasy world, all the accounts would be in my name and Mr. Lynda would have to beg for his allowance. That is not right. I have a savings account and a trust fund that will stay in my name only. I have a second savings account that will be a joint account. Our checking account will be a joint account. We have done something like you and Lisa have done. We both have credit cards. However, mine is for a much larger amount. He can use his for emergencies.
It may seem funny, but as a woman who wants to have the power in the relationship, I must learn which things are important. At this point, I feel the need to have control over the finances. However, they may prove to be an item that the man should handle so I do not have to be bothered on a day to day basis. We could go over the accountings on a weekly basis and he could keep me informed. Do you think this is a reason some relationships do not work?
We have already discussed the fears that some people might have because a female centered relationship might look like an S and M relationship. I want slavish devotion. I am not sure I want a mindless slave. And I do not want to whip and hurt Mr. Lynda even though I tease him about being my property and my chattel.
For graduation, someone gave him a dog collar and they gave me a leash. I have used it, but, only in fun. Money concerns hurt so many relationships. Mr. Lynda knows I love him and trust him. Why would I choose a fool? He can hold up a conversation and can be one of the most charming people in the world. On top of that, he is a great love, being attentive to my needs. Maybe because it is so new to us, I love to take him to a fancy restaurant, order for him, and treat him. As I said, men must be encouraged to be subordinate and women must gain the confidence to be assertive.
I am having the time of my life at this very moment that I write to you. While I am at the computer, my boyfriend is underneath the desk. He is giving me a foot massage and some oral sex. If I do not make sense at some moment in the email, you will understand why.
This has been a great day for women. A woman has been named President of one of the country's leading universities. I long for the day when it is just accepted and the woman does her job because she was the best for the position.
There are a couple of things I have to offer this evening. I am a Woman of Enlightenment. I know what I want and i know I will get what I want. I do have my moments of doubt however. As women, we have been raised to ask the questions: Am I being too bossy? Am I hurting his feelings? Am I thinking only of myself? The matriarchal world that is coming will be different from the patriarchal world in many ways. Our leadership skills are different. In many ways, I feel they are superior to the skills men have. We need to gain confidence. So much for me.
Now, Mr. Lisa, you say that you are enlightened, and I am confident you are. I have decided to always ask a man if he enjoys being called Mr. Lisa Smith. Men have expected women to give up their names so easily and for so long. Even if a couple will take the man's name, a man should have the feeling of being called by his wife's first and last name as the family name. I would hope that this would create even more respect for his wife. I think junior and senior high school aged boys should be required to write the name of their girlfriends like Ms. and Mr. Lauren Tyler.
What an honor you have to be Mr. Lisa Smith in a very formal way. Give the honor and prestige to Lisa by also being Mr. Lisa Smith. After you have done it, ask yourself: How do I feel giving up my identity? What honor do I give Lisa by proclaiming her leadership in our family? Even if you cannot be Mr. Lisa for whatever reasons you and she may have, the experiment can only do positive things for you and your relationship.
I was at lunch today with five other women who will be getting married within the next year and a half. Three are keeping their names in marriage. Two are taking the name of their husband. I asked each to ask their boyfriend how he would feel taking her name in marriage. My point is that he may have a greater respect for her and her role in the family if he realizes what she is giving up. I think I am going to make it a mission of mine to encourage young women to ask that questions of their future spouses. I am for freedom for everyone. I just want the matriarchal to stand shamelessly with the patriarchal. I like the idea that young man had about having a matriarchal street where children could be raised to appreciate woman's leadership.
What was the response of your mother and father when you told them you were taking Lisa's last name? What was the response of Lisa's parents? How would they react to you being Mr. Lisa Smith in formal documents? This may sound like a silly or no big issue, but it is a big issue. Men need our guidance and direction. They need some sensitivity training.
Thank you all you men out there who are attempting to understand my vision. I do not hate men, I just want every option open to them. That includes being cared for by the wife in such a way that they support her openly and outwardly. I would encourage women to tell men that the women find him handsome, adorable, and a turn on. This would do much to boost the ego of the man. He needs to think of himself as a sex object for women. If you do not know it yet, women talk a lot about men. We should not be afraid to share the information with our friends.
In the family living classes at high schools, there should always be one couple where the woman is the breadwinner and the man is the househusband who took her name. What examples this could bring to any classroom discussion. At the present time, I am not sure that men are not scared of their shadows. I am a Woman on a Mission with a very well trained boyfriend. I am addressing this to all you couples, men and women out there. You can help me with the training of my boyfriend and I can help you get even deeper into your respectful support of Women.
I have been enjoying the discussion we have been having, but, I must ask a couple of questions. When a woman asks a question of you, why do you avoid giving a complete answer? I can understand your need for discretion, and, I could accept that you are unable to give a complete answer for numerous reasons. What I cannot accept is that you are ignoring a woman. Have the courtesy to say you are unable to give a complete answer. How difficult is it to give up the power males once had? I feel like we are playing a game at times. You surrender only what you are able to surrender. To please me, you must attempt to give a complete surrender. I am still learning how to be the head and boss. Give me encouragement. I will do the same for you in allowing you to relish in your subordinate status. And I truly believe that means always supplying for you so you can be subordinate and submissive. Does this make any sense to you men? While I like the competition with men, I also like the power that comes from besting them and not having to always compete.
I apologize, Ms. Lynda, if at times I don't give a complete answer. I too am still learning, even after all these years. And I really am trying my best to completely answer all of your questions. If I have fallen short in some respects, remember, I am a man, and like all men, I need guidance from a woman. I will try to do better in the future.
Yes, everything you say makes sense. You are the future of womankind--strong, powerful, authoritative, assertive, and sensitive to the needs of the subordinate man under you. I am going to try to do better, and surrender more completely to both Lisa at home, and to you here. It is difficult for men to give up our former power because men are afraid. We have to be taught that women are not looking to eliminate the male sex, but rather to take care of the men, provide for them, and protect them, in exchange for, essentially, a total transfer of power to the woman, and total obedience to the woman, to insure that all of her needs and wants, no matter how small, are met. In return, she will earn a living and take care of the man. Fear is the reason men are definitely afraid. Once again, please forgive me if I have not given you a complete answer, but I have tried. Have a great day, Ms. Lynda.
MS. LYNDA AND MR. LYNDA
I, Mr. Lynda, am typing this for Ms. Lynda and will also be commenting. It is good to hear from Ms. and Mr. Lisa Smith because you have probably hit the happy point where people can respect your life together and you can further the cause of matriarchy. Of course, we want to go even further. Lynda has her doubts that she will be taken as seriously as she needs to be taken so that she can be a success. Secondly, she fears getting the reputation of being a "Bitch". It is horrible that an aggressive man is thought in the best of terms while a woman is a "bitch." How can we make this stop?
For me, I am happiest when I am in a supporting position. I do not have the drive that Lynda has. I am happy to sit back and do everything I can to support her drive. There are times when I wonder about myself. I do not know too many men like myself. So, Mr. Lisa (Charles), it is good to hear from you. I am so lucky to have found what I need. I hope Lynda will be as happy.
While Lynda and I do not have a typical "sex life", we are not heavily into BDSM. That is not really a part of our life. We do play. She has tied me to the bed and has led me around on a leash. She also demands a lot of oral attention from me. We really feel that everyone needs to express themselves as they see fit. However, is it possible that men want BDSM and women want our devotion and obedient submission? While I do not want this to become a porn letter, it might help if you outlined some of the things you and Lisa do as sexual beings. I am lucky that Lynda is so demanding. I like being bossed around by her, including in a sexual way. I feel we are "normal" for what we want.
Is the matriachy concept so new to us that we are only living in a fantasy world? Perhaps some of you other couples will respond and tell us about your life. After the posting the other day from Anonymous, Lynda has been excited about the concept of a Matriarchal Village. Is this just a dream, or is it a possibility? What more can we do to make it easier for women? Or is it right to make it hard for them so they become stronger and stronger? "If we earn the right to lead, it cannot be taken from us. If men are bested by us, they will just have to learn to cope with it. It is the way of the new world."
One of the great things to happen to women was the establishment of women's studies in colleges. It is important to have a sense of herstory. Do we need to do the same thing for matriarchal couples? It is amazing to read stories about men in the 19th century who took their wife's last name. In this Jubilee year for Queen Elizabeth II, it might be important to hear the stories of how she dealt with Prince Philip, a man who is the ultimate househusband who took his wife's last name. In public, he must always defer to her and from some readings, she demands it. We know they have had their problems, but they are still together. He is still walking six paces behind and he is still required to call her Ma'am. We know who our heroines and heroes are for Black studies, for gay studies, and for feminist studies. Who are they for our matriarchal studies?
I am taking over. Throughout my college experience, we have talked about human beings’ need for ritual. Do we need to have some new rituals for a woman centered relationship? I am glad that you are not jealous of the men Lisa employs in the clerical end of her business. How do they dress? I do not know if it would suggest a lack of professional attitude, but, I would love to go into Lisa's business and see all the agents (men and women) in corporate business suits and the clerical men in more casual clothes that said, "I am of a lower status here and I am male." I would like to see more women driving the cars and more men riding alongside her. (This is something that I do not do often enough. I allow myself to be driven.) I would like to see a new language. I am a feminist, and I still use some traditional forms that use masculine terms.
The duality that many of us face with regards to our inner desires to submit and allowing the woman to assert her dominance over us is very troubling as well as painful. All the talk of Female Supremacy is not going to change the way a man feel's conflicted over the loss of his power and sense of maleness, while at the same time finding a true inner peace, through that submission. The human soul is very complex and the integration of our male and female attributes and energies is I believe needed if we are to be whole. If I may, I would suggest that you back off from your actions and give your self a chance to adapt. Exchanging Power with your mate is tricky and complicated. You should know there is a phenomenon known as "Sub Drop", feelings of guilt and depression after an act of submission. Again, this can be overcome with discussion and often acts as a bonding experience between you and your spouse (lover). Your Spouse needs to help you to see that your submission allows for her dominance to exist. Also the recurrent feelings you have to submit is a real event that occurs in submissive persons. I hope this helps and remember our need to submit is and can be a great connection to other areas of our selves that would other wise remain under developed.
(End of 4th Spousechat installment. To be continued.)