Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Wife-Led Shopping – The Ultimate Test, Part 2

In chapter 5 (“Pampering and Pitching In”) of my book, I quote an ecstatic wife describing a few of the many benefits of wife worship: “Gone are the days when my husband just plops in front of the TV after work. Now he actually looks for opportunities to do household chores, volunteers to go shopping with me and helps me with carrying the purchases…”

But these husbands do more than accompany their wives to the nearest fashion marketplace and dutifully carry her accumulating parcels. Here is a sampling of devoted hubbies ready, willing or simply required to go the extra mall-mile:

“Take her shopping whenever and wherever she wants to go, carrying her bags for her, open doors for her, and pay the bills!”

“He should be taken shopping with you and allowed to hold your purse while you try on any number of items or test cosmetics for a perfect color or gloss. I have done both any number of times and it really demonstrates to her and everyone else for that matter your complete devotion to her. I have stood in front of a cosmetic counter for at least 30 minutes, holding her purse the whole while.”

“When I'm with her, she relegates me to the dutiful husband, who is expected to carry her bags and quite frankly, just do as I'm told. If she's trying something on in a change room, she'll have me holding her purse, her bags, and I'm not to move from the spot she puts me in. Often she wants me at arms length, in case she needs my opinion, or perhaps to fetch another size. The saleswomen probably figures I'm just henpecked, but the reality is this is all an expression of my utter devotion to my wife.”

In fact, shopping with the wife seems to be a standard component of “dutiful” hubby-ness. To rank husbands on a devoted-and- dutiful scale of 1 through 10, one survey asked: “Would you go shopping with your wife whenever she wished, since she enjoyed it, and stand around while she looked at clothes or shoes for whatever, to please her, despite the fact that you find it boring, and would rather do something else?”

Most wife-led husbands writing about this topic have learned to love these outings. Like these guys:

“I always feel ecstatic when my wife invites me to go shopping with her, Especially when she tries on new clothes. It gives me a chance to be the ‘mirror on the wall’ and tell her she is the best-looking woman in the mall in that new outfit. This is not untruthful because she never picks out ugly clothes and she is a very good looking woman. I’m never be too tired to appreciate her beauty in a new outfit and to tell here so, no matter how late in the evening it might be. I also carry the packages for her, of course.”

“She was shopping for clothes one afternoon while on the trip. Of course I was right there helping holding packages and helping her. She had picked out several blouses to try on. The sales clerk warned her they had to be hand-washed. My wife laughed and said, ‘I don't worry about washing instructions, that is my husband's job.’ The clerk said she wished she had a husband like that. They stood there and talked a few minutes with my wife telling a complete stranger in my presence how I did all the cooking, cleaning, laundry and etc. I have to admit I was proud of myself.”

“Next to me another guy was commenting to me about both of us had some nice-looking ladies to attend to and noted that we both were blessed with ladies who liked to show off when shopping.”

But occasionally you come across a reluctant escort who boasts about going along against all his macho inclinations, and maybe thinks he should get combat pay for his efforts: “Over the next few weeks, I found myself being attentive to my wife almost every night. I even went mall shopping with her on a regular basis; something I really hate.”

Some women are tolerant of guys who walk into stores and park themselves on the first available chair: “My husband especially loves shoe shopping because he knows there will always be a place for him to sit. Why don't more women's fashion stores have boyfriend chairs for the guys?”

For many other women, however, hanging back, looking bored, toe-tapping, watch-checking, heaving weary sighs, all constitute unacceptable behavior, not only in shopping but in any wife-led activity. The ideal would seem to be enthusiastic and helpful participation by hubby in all facets of the shopping experience.

The following quotes illustrate how acceptable or admirable male participation is encouraged by some wives (and how anything less is discouraged and even penalized).

“Jane called out to me, ‘We have forgotten this and that, do you want to go back to the shop?’ When I replied, ‘Not really’ in a less than enthusiastic voice, Jane was quick to add, ‘But you’re going, aren’t you.’ Realising my mistake, I said, ‘Yes, of course,’ and so it was that I had to go back, because Jane had insisted. (From the blog, At All Times)

“If we are out alone shopping and I am less than attentive, she has been known to send me to the car to wait for her and it has been hours that I've waited.”

“The past weekend we were in my wife's hometown. We were out shopping. She kept running into old acquaintances. I was not part of the conversations, not even introduced. I simply stood back, held the bags, and smiled.”

“I follow her around shopping malls carrying her bags, and coffee and coat, while trying to keep up to her and open doors for her while she waits for me while tapping her toes.”

“When we are together at the mall, I give her my undivided attention and I am usually always at her side and prepared to do her bidding. She prefers it this way.”

“Once we were in a shoe store for quite some time, and she finally picked out what she wanted and as we approached the register she said, ‘Pay for these, I'll be in the next store.’ One of my favorites was when we were shopping for a blouse. She was about 20 feet away and I held one up and said, ‘How about this one?’ She responded, ‘No, it's just like the one I own, and if you'd keep up with ironing, we wouldn't need it.’ There must have been about 5 women who heard that!” (From the Whatevershesays blog.)

“In one store I was handed a pair of stockings and several new pairs of panties that Jane wanted to buy. I had to carry these around the shop for sometime as Jane browsed for other items. In one part of the shop, there were three young, smartly dressed and particularly attractive girls all out shopping together. I think that they noticed me following Jane around, carrying her new underwear. Although they didn’t say anything I could see that they thought this was highly amusing.” (From the At All Times blog.)

“My wife went to the underwear dept. and picked out three pair. A clerk was there helping her and said she didn't know if it made any difference or not but those needed to be hand-washed. My wife handed them to me and said ‘All mine have to be hand-washed.’ There was no doubt what she meant.”

“My wife yelled out for me to get a different size while she was in a dressing room. When handed a shoe by a saleslady and asked if she liked it, my wife responded by silently handing me the shoe to put on her foot. I was carrying 6 shopping bags while she was empty handed. And I was then told to find her size in a particular outfit in a matching color.”

“Today, once my nail polish is dry and the kitchen is clean, my husband will bathe me in a milk bath and then he will accompany me and a friend of mine shopping at the mall. Not only will he follow behind us carrying our bags, but his allowance will buy our lunch, though he doesn't know that yet.”

“In a store once, I saw a young college-age woman and her boyfriend shopping for shoes. This young woman was having a conversation on her cell phone and she was discussing, not that I was eavesdropping, some kind of a complicated engineering research project, sounded like something to do with biomedical engineering. As she was heavily involved in her conversation, she'd point to various shoes she wanted to try on and her boyfriend would get them for her in her size, and try them on her feet.” [From the Spousechat archives]

“When we are in public together, such as on a shopping trip, her authority is obvious. I hold the door open for her getting in and out of the car. If we are in a store I follow behind her and push the shopping cart and I carry the packages. She carries the money and always handles the purchase transaction. I dress and groom well for these occasions and am always polite and friendly. This kind of behavior can sometimes have the effect of making other women jealous of my wife. Of course, she loves it when that happens, and I am likely to be rewarded later.”

For one extremely dutiful househusband, just being taken out a shopping expedition with his wife-leader qualifies as a special treat:

“My husband has been a home-bound house-husband for more than a year now, doing the housework, the yard and pool work, while I work 40 hours a week, bringing home the bacon. He gets to go with me to town for shopping on weekends, and sometimes on a weeknight after I get home from work. But the rest of the time he's my sweet little ‘Peter, Peter, Pumpkin-eater.’ I keep him in our ‘pumpkin shell’ and there he stays, very well.”

I’ll close with another quote from Au876 (again posting on Lady Misato’s original Yahoo! husbands’ forum). He describes what just might be the ultimate wife-directed shopping trip:

“Friday night my wife was reading the paper. A local department store was having a big sale on women's clothing (what else is new?). Anyway, she saw several dresses advertised that she liked. She already had plans for Saturday and didn't want to change them. So she said she wanted me to go to the sale, buy each one of the dresses in several different sizes and bring them home for her to try on. I could take back the ones that she didn't like. She also suggested I pick out some scarves and maybe a purse or two that I thought would go with them.
“So I spent most of Saturday afternoon shopping for her clothes. I got the clerk to help me pick out some extra things to go with the dresses. She tried them on Sunday and is keeping two dresses plus several of the other items. I am taking the unwanted items back this afternoon. My wife said this was a great way to shop and she didn't know why she hadn't thought of it sooner.
“I had to agree. She loves to shop but she often does not have the time. She was able to take advantage of the sale and still do what she had planned Saturday. I felt like I had been a real help to her and it was a step forward for me in our relationship.”


Vijay said...

Nice article Mark. Currently I am single and would be a wife worshipper. This article gave me a nice guidance about going for shopping with wife. I would love to carry bags including her purse, pulling trolleys for my wife and follow her while she is doing her shopping. I would never ever complain about the time she would take for shopping. Apart from enjoying her shopping, she should not worry about washing or maintaining instructions. I am willing to wash her all clothes including underwear with my hands...after returning from shopping, she would relax on a sofa, watching her favourite program while I would be cooking her favourite meal. Everything for her...absolutely everything...

BOB said...

Great post as usual MR Remond [ Im sorry that I have been adressing you as MR REDMOND].

I like your posts that deal with public displays of female dominance that are not considered "kinky" and are acceptable to society.The fact that so much female dominance is considered acceptable nowdays is quite immpressive.

bob said...

I would love to see more posts along the lines of this one and i am sure that i am not alone in that.

There are many scenarios for public display of Wife Worship.

The husband can host a pool party or dinner party and subtly encourage his male friends to help him prepare and serve dinner while the women relax and talk amongst themselves.

Another great idea would be for him to take her and her friends to an outdoor concert and fetch them drinks and food while they relax.

The Lilith Fair concert is coming back again next year and is sure to be full of talented female musicians who sing songs of female empowerment.

It would be a very appropriate place for a husband to be submissive to his wife.And it would defintly be a place where a man ordering his wife around would be considered strange and anti-social.But the sight of a wife gently and sweetly ordering her husband around would be appreciated by not just the wife and her girlfriends .But nearby women as well.

The sight of a husband [ or husbands plural] being told by his wife that he is no longer needed at the concert and that he can go home and do the housework and fix dinner for her and her girlfriends to eat when they feel like coming home would be the ultimate in female empowerment.

If it was a group of husbands being told this I am sure that there would be a lot of wide grins on the faces of any nearby women who overheard the wives ordering their husbands home.

I am not talking about S&m of course.Or a guy dressing in a french maids outfit or anything like that.As long as he doesn't "smother " the women with too much attention or be too dramatic with his obedience it would seem very natrual not just to the wives but the other husbands as well.

He could even rent out a house out near one of the Lilith Fair concerts and make sure that they did not have to do any housework or laundry while they enjoyed a few days of music.He could even suggest to their husbands to join him in treating the ladies to a few days of pampring.

I would think that the kind of woman who liked that sort of music and was slightly "bohemian" would be more likly to be dominant than a woman that dressed in leather.

Most of the women that I know who dress in long peasant skirts and wear sandals and are somewhat inntellectual tend to be fairly feministic. So do the nerdy type ironically enough.The ones who wear short skirts and spiked heels and talk tough tend to be fairly subbmissive to guys .

The above scenarios are not as farfetched as they seem .I have visited friends houses and walked in when the wife was talking with a girlfriend and the husband was doing dishes.I simply helped the husband do the dishes and chatted with him while the women talked and hung out with each other.

There was nothing unnatural or kinky about it .After we were done in fact the wife thanked me for helping out.

I should add that the wife was a nurse and the husband was a carpenter.He was defintly not a wimp or effiminate. He simply loved his wife and waited on her hand and foot.When I used to visit him it was silly for me to talk to him while he did the housework.It was the most natural thing in the world to help him out while we talked.

I should add that this is not some fantasy or anything.It happened many times before they sadly had to move. And it has happened other times with other couples .If a guy stops by another guys house and sees him putting up a deck he will automaticly help out.Nowdays he will sometimes find his friend cleaning the house and will react in the same way by helping out

I am sorry for the length of my comment .But I do like the posts you do about men serving their wives publicly.And I do like the posts about couples who practise FLR subtly showing other "vanilla " couples that Wife Worship is an ordinary and natrual thing.

Thank you MR REMOND for doing a blog about Female Led Relationships as a way of life instead of just a kinky game.

Mark Remond said...

Thank you, Vijay, and Bob, for your comments and imaginative scenes of wife-led domesticity. I especially enjoyed the well-imagined day at Lillith Faire, or however it's spelled, surrounded by a world of women. I have had such days and treasured them at the time and for long after.

bob said...

MR Remond
Thank you for your reply.
I have enjoyed your posts about wife worship.I especially like the ones about public display of the wife being in charge.Especialy where it involves more than one married couple.

The spousechat excerpts about husbands fixing food in the kitchen while their wives discused bussiness in the living room were great.

It would be great to read some more posts about how men can serve their wives publicly and perhaps subtly help patriarchal couples become more wife led as well.

It would be interesting to read any ideas you would have about wife led couples setting an example to other couples.Especialy realistic scenarios in a mainstream setting.

I wonder how you would envision the future as well

Maybe in the future housework and the serving of food and drinks at dinner and pool parties will not be considered "woman's work" .But instead be called "boy's work" And business talk and political conversations will be called "woman's talk". And men will be told not to worry their cute little selves with the conversation and to just go back in the kitchen where they belong.

I am going away for a few weeks so I will thank you in advance for any of the spousechat archives that you post.
Thank you for running this blog MR Remond and i hope that you are able to keep up the great posts

Vijay said...

Mr. Mark's posts are really nice and read them over and over.

Nice comments Bob, I would love to hear from my wife that "Vijay, housework is a way of life for you and you belong to kitchen go and cook nice meal for us". I would be much happier if my wife says this sentence in front of her girl-friends.

Imagine a situation, where my wife orders me in front of her 'feminist' girl friends, "Vijay, we are going for shopping and afterwards we will go for a movie, till we return, I want you to indulge yourself in cleaning the entire house, mopping/scrubbing floors, cooking meals for all of us, and if time remains do the laundry and iron my two dresses, ok.” …if she says like this, believe me, I would be the happiest person in this universe.

After women finish their dinner, I know my duties very well, in front of her ‘feminist’ girl friends; without being told, I would go to the kitchen where I really belong to, do all dishes, clean entire kitchen while all women sitting in hall or guest room enjoy chit-chatting. Entire day, all women would be in nice dresses, pants and high heels while I would be in an apron… THATS MY DREAM...

LadyDiandI said...

Loved the post. I'm new here, but quite experienced. I love it when Lady Di lets me accompany her shopping. It is a delightful feeling to hold her purse while she's in the fitting room.

We've also done shoe shopping as well. The feeling of kneeling in front of her and dressing her feet to try on shoes is indescribable. It's even sweeter when other shoppers notice.

LadyDiandI said...

Loved the post. I'm new here, but quite experienced. I love it when Lady Di lets me accompany her shopping. It is a delightful feeling to hold her purse while she's in the fitting room.

We've also done shoe shopping as well. The feeling of kneeling in front of her and dressing her feet to try on shoes is indescribable. It's even sweeter when other shoppers notice.

Mark Remond said...

LadyDiandI - I enjoyed your comments, David, and of course I remember you from Lady Misato's original husbands' forum (I used another cyber-name then). You might enjoy my most recent posting on "Married to the Boss," in which I excavate some of Au876's old contributions that I had squirreled away.

Anonymous said...

My girlfriend and I had gone shopping a couple times early in our relationship. This was before it even started developing into what it is now. Those trips were the typical co-ed shopping trip; she would spend forever looking at stuff while I would wander off and either sit and wait somewhere or find a more interesting store to shop in (think video games).

It ended up being equally miserable for each of us, so we both sort of came up with an unwritten rule that shopping would be something that we'd each do on our own. Neither of us had reason to reconsider this unwritten rule.

That is until we worked our way back to your set of blog entries. She decided a trip to the mall (or 'mauling' as I normally referred to it) would be a good way to evaluate my progress. She called her best friend and made arrangements for the following Saturday.

Prior to our departure on Saturday, she went over the rules. From the time we get there until we leave, I don't get to sit down. I carry all the bags and I'm not allowed to set them down. When they want me to, I also carry their purses. I am not allowed to fidget or appear to be bored. I have to stay three paces behind, yet still keep up with them.

Even though there was reasonably close parking, I dropped them off curbside in front of one of the big department stores, parked the car, and then caught up with them inside. They were sampling some of the perfumes. Without a word, they hand me their purses and go back to exploring the merchandise. I began my day as an obedient valet.

The first hour or so was actually easy and I would have to admit kind of fun. It's weird how it feels to be a good servant; it kind of gives a sense of pride. I diligently followed them around carrying their bags for them, carrying their purses when they wanted me to (which was actually most of the time), doing the holding all of the garments they wanted to try on, retrieving other sizes, and returning stuff they weren't interested in.

There was one incident where she gave me a dress to put back on the rack. The saleslady that was helping them tried to grab it saying that she could take care of it. My girlfriend chimed in and told her not to worry about it because I love doing stuff like that. The saleslady gave me a quizzical look. I just smiled and said, “I live for this” as I put the dress back on the hanger and headed to the rack to put it back up. My girlfriend's friend watched the exchange and got a good kick out of it. I didn't hear the comment the saleslady made after I walked away, but I bet it would have been interesting.

After they picked out the stuff they wanted, they'd retrieve their purses, and my girlfriend would give me the debit card and tell me where they were headed for next, leaving me to take the stuff to the register and pay for it.

Anonymous said...


After they picked out the stuff they wanted, they'd retrieve their purses, and my girlfriend would give me the debit card and tell me where they were headed for next, leaving me to take the stuff to the register and pay for it.

For the most part, this wasn't a problem. However, one store we visited sold accessory type stuff and was fairly busy. One of my standing rules is that if I am in line and a woman gets in line behind me, I have to let her go in front of me. I was the only guy in the store. I ended up letting about 10 women go in front of me. The only exception to the rule is I don't have to let them go in front of me if they are displaying insignia from a sorority different from my girlfriend's. Luckily, I spotted Greek lettering on one lady's necklace that allowed me to secure my position in line.

Needless to say, my girlfriend was not pleased that it took me so long to catch back up with them. She accepted my excuse when I explained why I was delayed, but said that I would still have to make up for being late.

After what was probably about two hours, they decided it was time for lunch. We headed to the food-court. Before getting there, she reminded me that the rules about carrying the bags and not being able to sit down still apply in the dining area. Then she queried about how much cash I had left over from my allowance. We got to the food-court and they picked out what they wanted. My girlfriend relayed the order to me, added what I was to get for myself, and sent me off. She likes having me eat minimal sized meals when we're with her friends.

She noticeably didn't give me the debit card, so I bought the food with the remains of my weekly allowance, which was barely enough to cover the cost. This was obviously intentional since she had made sure how much money I had to begin with.

Anonymous said...

Carrying the food along with all the bags was a tricky juggling act, but I managed to complete it without spilling anything. Fortunately, the ladies picked a tall table so it wouldn't look too awkward for me to be standing there while eating.

While walking through the mall, there were other couples attempting to shop together. All of them were where my girlfriend and I were at the start. The guys were moping around looking disinterested, attempting to spot where the nearest seat was, and wishing they could take a detour to one of the electronic stores or something of more interest. My girlfriend would spot such couples and make sure to parade me right in front of them. She would also ask something as we passed such as, “are you able to keep up with us?” I would diligently respond with a smile, “Yes, dear.” She loves showing off and making other women jealous. I will admit it makes me feel good to help her do so.

As time went by, the number of bags grew and grew. While the weight of each bag wasn't a whole lot, the compound effect of multiple bags began to get taxing. While her girl friend was in the fitting room, I requested to consolidate some of the bags together so that I wouldn't have to juggle so many of them. She merely responded by pressing her finger down on my upper lip, her way of telling me she didn't want me talking.

All that constant walking and standing was starting to really make my legs tired. I had to more and more make a conscious effort to remain well behaved. Even though it's where they would spend the most time just trying stuff on, I came to really like it when they went to the shoe stores. Helping her try on different shoes allowed me to kneel down and rest the bags on the ground.

I could also sense that they were starting to get tired as well (as if women could actually get tired of shopping). They would start doing a tag team at some of the fitting rooms, where one would sit and relax while the other was trying stuff on. Of course, that was not an option for me as I was either running garments back and forth or playing my role as a coat rack near the entrance to the fitting room.

Anonymous said...

Other women shopping or trying stuff on would seem to always make some comment, either directly to my girlfriend or her friend or open to everyone. The most common one was 'I need to get one of those.' Each time they'd say something, I could see my girlfriend beam a smile, reminding me again what this was all about. She would just tell them that the best thing about it was that I actually enjoyed shopping with her. I think she enjoyed the attention and comments as much as anything else.

The drive back to the house was a relief. It was the first opportunity to sit down that I had since driving to the mall in the morning. When we got back to the house she said that since it took me so long at that accessory store that I owed each of them a half hour of leg and foot massage. This probably would have been expected even if I didn’t have that blemish on my performance. I would give one of the ladies a massage while the other would be trying on all the different outfits and stuff they had bought, then they’d tag team swap. It probably ended up being about two hours.

After they were done, her girl friend wrote her a check for her portion of the purchases and left. My girlfriend gave me her review of the day. She said I was much better behaved than way back when we first attempted shopping together. However, she added that she thought I was having to consciously work at enjoying it and that our goal should be that we get to the point where I don’t have to work at behaving and that it’s more natural. She summed it up saying, “On the whole, I had a good time. All of us had fun. I got a bunch of new stuff for my wardrobe, and I even made some money at it.” She folded up the check her friend gave her and stuck it in her purse. I do not expect she put it back in my account.

This all happened about six weeks ago and she’s decided that it’s time to make a return trip to the mall. She’s called another one of her friends (she says she has more fun when shopping with friends) and we’re about to head out.

Sorry about this being so long. I sometimes tend to ramble on.