Thursday, April 25, 2013

NANCY & DENNIS: TOWARD A LIFELONG FEMALE-LED MARRIAGE: PHONE CALLS, EMAIL & TEXTING – TAKING CONTROL


At an impromptu discussion on female-led relationships, a number of women mentioned that phones and other digital devices have become a major distraction; so much so that men were falling behind in their domestic duties. Men as well as women brought up this issue! A number of couples have rules in place around phones and phone use that work well; we certainly do! In dennis' case, phone interruptions have been eliminated! Here's something to think about:

Monitor his phone use – Put him on notice that his phone use, whether cell or landline, will be monitored. He's more likely to use it correctly if he knows he knows he's being watched.

Take away his cell phone – Take his cell phone when he comes home; he won't be needing it, and if it rings with calls or beeps with text messages, it will be a distraction. Dennis gives his cell phone to Mother or me when he gets home. We lock it away until he goes to work or goes out to do grocery shopping or run errands.

See who's calling, texting, emailing – Once he gives you his phone, why not see who he's been communicating with and what's being said? Mother reviews dennis' text messages, emails, recent call list, and voice messages; don't forget voice messages! Many of the messages he was getting were pure rubbish – guys texting and emailing jokes and comments, many of them sexist and obviously not business-related at all. These aren't the types of outside influences I want my man dealing with. Dennis was just deleting these things, but we went a step further to eliminate them. Since he was getting such non-business messages on his company phone, I made sure he took the issue up at work:

I had dennis take up inappropriate emails and texts from employees and coworkers with his boss, Carol. Together they investigated and put together new rules and policies at his company, particularly around sexist jokes and comments. An intern was assigned to monitor communications for violations. The intern did her job well, and a number of men were warned, suspended or dismissed for violations. The intern also pointed out that many of the men she monitored made very few business calls, so Carol took away their company-paid phones altogether, saving a lot of money. Women managers should consider doing this at their companies; I did, same result.

On a personal level Mother and I started responding to text messages and emails Dennis received. The sender thought that they were receiving a response from Dennis so our reply was particularly effective; a sharp rebuke often did the trick. At other times we'd say, “Dennis is busy cleaning the kitchen, please don't bother him” or “Dennis isn't allowed to text message until his work is done.” Such a response sends a strong message about who wears the pants in our family. A progressive gentleman would think nothing of Dennis cleaning the kitchen (isn’t that what a dutiful husband should be doing?); while a macho guy would consider it being henpecked and likely quit his bothersome texting.

We also forward emails and text messages to women in our network or to the sender's wife. Often we do this “accidentally” by simply including her name on the message; at other times we're more direct, perhaps commenting, “Jane, what do you think of this?” And then including Jane on the copy list. There are a number of men who have faced the wrath of their wives for an inappropriate message they sent. In most cases the emails and texts stop when a female authority figure steps in.

Blind copy – Under certain circumstances I have dennis blind copy Mother or me on messages; this keeps us in the loop as the conversation develops.

Have him give you his cell phone password – Make sure you have his phone password so you can monitor, review and, if needed, respond to or forward messages. And don't forget the password for voicemail, which may be different.

His work phone – If he has a cell phone at work, make sure you monitor his use of it. Many
men use their cell phones to get around house rules about phone use. Don't let your man do this. He probably gets a monthly statement for his work cell phone; review it and ask questions! He needs to know you're watching. If he doesn't get a statement – or says he doesn't – get in touch with a woman you know where he works; she may be able to help.

Limit his sharing his phone number – If he has only a company cell phone, this is hard to do, but to the extent possible, limit who he gives his cell phone number to. Dennis is not allowed to give out his cell or, especially, my home number unless Mother and I approve, and we usually don't. The more people who have his number, the more likely we are to be bothered.

And don't forget the landline phone! It presents special problems because Mother and I as well as Dennis use that number. From our FLR workshops we have found that some women practice call screening and monitoring as a way of managing their man's calls.

We manage our land line through a few rules:

Prohibit him from answering the phone – Dennis is not allowed to answer our home phone; only Mother or I can do so. In this way we can screen all incoming calls and determine how they are handled:
  • We can tell the caller that Dennis is busy with housework and can't be bothered.
  • After a pause we can tell the caller that Dennis doesn't want to speak with them; this is particularly effective with male callers looking to chat. The pause suggests to the caller that we are asking dennis whether he wants to take the call and that he is saying “no.” In reality, of course, he's never being asked; we're making that decision, but it does have the desired impact on the caller.
  • We can let Dennis take the call, something he understands is limited to five minutes.
  • We can let Dennis take the call and we can stay on the line to monitor the conversation.
  • An exception to his not being allowed to answer the phone at home is if Mother or I are out and he sees that we are calling; then, of course, he has to answer.

One woman requires her husband take all calls on the speakerphone in the kitchen. This allows her to conveniently monitor if she wants to. Calls tend to be shorter too, since the caller is aware that he is on a speakerphone.

Mother screens calls and, if she approves of a caller or is just curious, she directs Dennis to another phone so she can stay on the line. Although she usually doesn't speak, she makes no secret of being on the line, something that leads to shorter calls. Mother has commented when men have said things she felt were derogatory to women, and she's passed on tips to women of things that came up in monitored conversations.

One man we know asks his wife to monitor calls, especially if he knows that he’ll later be asking her advice or approval. In such cases it’s beneficial for her to hear the conversation firsthand. Dennis agrees and routinely asks Mother or me to be on the line when he takes or makes a call.

We don't allow Dennis to accept calls from men of whom we don't approve. They are told rather tersely not to call back. Those who do eventually call back get the message when they are always turned down; and they learn who wears the pants in our family!

Screen and monitor outgoing calls, too. Women should know who is being called and why. If she wouldn’t want her man to receive a call from an individual, she certainly shouldn’t let him make a call to that person.

Dennis has to ask permission to make calls. If we approve of the call, we can monitor if we want.

Carefully review your phone bill each month. Have your man explain questionable charges. If he knows he’s going to have to justify calls made, he won't make them.

Put a limit on your man’s use of the phone. Many women feel that a 5-10 minute limit for their man's calls – incoming or outgoing – is adequate. You may also want to limit the number of calls he makes and receives. Dennis is allowed no more that 10 calls a month at home.

Calls from men we approve of and from female authority figures are always allowed and there are no time limits. One of Dennis' male friends – also in an FLR – called recently. His wife was monitoring as was Mother. It turned into a four-way discussion!
And remember, it's not the calls or texting that's the problem; it's the wasted time and outside influence that are of paramount importance.

N

15 comments:

Anonymous said...

Interesting post. My husband is also prohibited from answering the home phone. It was hard for him in the beginning while our daughter just picks it up any time, but he is not allowed. It is just a waste of time, as he makes no meaningful decisions, so what would be important enough to pick up the phone?

Every year or two, I buy a new phone. The most high end smartphone. No need for him to have any smartphone whatsoever. He now has the old, dumbphone I think it is called, from our daughter (who got a smartphone). Just call and text, for work and emergency. Pre-Paid from his allowance. No need to spend money on new stuff for him.

- J

Mark Remond said...

Dear Anonymous (signed 'J' just above):

I am taking the liberty of stepping in here briefly because your comment, Ms. J., and many similar since Ms. Nancy began guest-blogging here, make me think that real progress is being made toward a female-led future.

I confess that Ms. Nancy's strong assertive messages, and the authority behind them, lead me to this hopeful view.

Let me take this opportunity, Ms. Nancy, to thank you for letting me be a small part of that progress.

Nancy and Dennis said...

N comments:

The real measure of progress is what we see happening in the workplace. Increasingly women have important educational credentials and experience while men do not. This is moving women into professional and managerial positions that give them superior earnings potential - money is power! Men, lacking the same credentials, go into lower-paying clerical positions or into stay-at-home domestic roles.

At both my and my husband's employers we are recruiting, hiring, and promoting women. Why? Because we want to economically empower more women by hiring them AND because the needed talent is with women. Women earn more of the degrees and qualifications we seek.

dennis' company recently completed their spring hiring withe following results:

75% of the recent hiring class is female and all were hired into higher-paying professional positions

25% of the hiring class is male, all but two went into secretarial, clerical and administrative positions

Dennis' employer is able to attract so many talented women because of the pay and perks that go with their skilled positions. Similarly, they are able to bring men into clerical and administrative positions because the salaries for these traditionally female-staffed positions are higher than average. Let me clarify that the salaries are not higher in order to recruit men, but to help the women who have traditionally held these positions. In other words, men have directly benefited from a program intended to raise women's salaries. Feminists assert that men benefit from the women's movement - here's an example. As more and more of the clerical and administrative women avail themselves of opportunities to move into other areas of the company, their vacated positions are being filled by men. Despite many of these secretarial and administrative positions being considered 'woman's work,' we have no shortage of male applicants. Men find these positions attractive compared to the other options they have.

We credit Feminism with the progress women are making and Feminists aren't stopping now. Equality? No way! Women want it all, and we're going to have it. Men would do well to shut up, adopt a progressive attitude and follow women into the future.

N

Kathy said...

Hi, thank you for a nice non porn blog. There are very few of those on the internet.

You know, I loved my mother very much when she was alive. However, even if she were alive today she would not be a part of my marriage. A femdom relationship is about two people. My guy takes his marching orders from only one person.

Love, Kathy

Nancy and Dennis said...

Kathy -

In my view a Female-led marriage takes on whatever form women want it to take. I have always had a close relationship with my mother and I never saw a reason for that to change because I married. Make no mistake, I am in charge of my home and marriage. As for my husband, he is very happy serving and deferring to two women; he gets no conflicting messages. Dennis has a great relationship with my mother, obedient and respectful to be sure, but a great relationship no less.

N

zoe domme said...

I love the level of control that you have over your man!

Great blog, thanks!

Anonymous said...

Dear Nancy and Kathy,
You both have turned our marriage upside down! We were in a patriarchal relationship for 38 years, and we discovered upon retirement that my wife had opinions and a strong leadership personality! I decided one day to just obey her every command rather than try to continue on an eagaltarian shared leadership style in our retirement.
My wife took to my submissiveness and her being the boss like a racehorse that finally been allowed to run at her pace and style! We both loved the result of her taking complete control but did not understand the dynamics , until I searched thei Internet and we found your two blogs. We now realize what we have and are thrilled to discover how great the Femdommarriage can be! We couldn't be happier in our new roles
I regret one major thing in our life and that is when my mother in law was alive and lived us that didnt know the joy of serving and having the opportunity to take orders from her !

Sam said...

I live with my girlfriend her sister and mother and the land line has always been Women only, this was made clear from the outset and i have never made or received a single call on it. I have a cell phone for work and Nicola, my girlfriend thoroughly checks the monthly itemized bill against the call and text history on the phone. When she is satisfied i have not gone over the sixty minute call allowance or sent any texts I am allowed to delete.

I am so glad to hear Ms Nancy promoting Feminism far beyond equality, Female authority across the board is ideal.

Sam

Anonymous said...

Mark,

Progress is certainly made. We live in Holland and I see the progress all around us in family, friends and society as a whole. Not all to the same degree, but not all men are the same either.

I do have a question for Nancy. Your blogpost "Obedience" and the comments helped us a lot with setting even better, much needed, rules and hierarchy in our family. I would love to see one of the next blog posts to be about the family subject. It would be very interesting.

- J

Mark Remond said...

Dear "J" -

I hope Ms. Nancy will want to respond to your request for more guidelines on matriarchal values in female-led families.

In the meantime, this comment and your earlier one about your strict household rules regarding your husband's phone answering and usage prompt me to encourage you to comment here as often as you might wish and at any length.

Obedient husband said...

Were that women could rule in all things that matter
To be a proud, leading man
Or a sweet, submissive boy
I choose the latter

Girls Rule !

She wears a ring on her finger with big shiny rock
I wear a ring around my package with a lock on my cock

Girls Rule !

She wears the pants, black panties, makes things happen...... Wham ! Bam!
I clean the house, wear cute panties, and always call her "Ma'am"

Girls Rule !

Sorry Mark, don't be jealous.... I know you fancy yourself a writer. With hard work, study, and focused dedication, you too can craft such exquisite prose :)
I'm kidding, of course..... Always great to hear from you when you chime in.
Thanks to Nancy and Dennis to carrying the torch.

Mark Remond said...

Couple of quick comments from me:

To "J" again: Ms. Nancy has many issues she wants to write about, but the one you rasied--guidelines for female-led families--is not among them.

However... you may have seen a couple of recent posts from Siobhan on this topic, and a couple years back from Becky Sue.

Also, because I have dealt, and am still dealing with this sensitive issue in regard to my own natural submissiveness and my teenage daughter's delightful "bossiness" toward boys and men (which I think needs to be encouraged), I have collected a great deal of material from all over the Internet on various matriarchal family guidelines. If you would care to email me - markremond@yahoo.com - I would be happy to send these along to you.

And as for Obedient Husband, it could be verse! Thanks!

Nancy and Dennis said...

Zoedomme -

And he loves being controlled! Thanks for your response.

N

Anonymous said...

I too almost never pick up the landline. She will have to be upstairs and unavailable for me to pick it up. There are no rules only conventions. It is the convention that she picks up the phone.

Femsup

Anonymous said...

I find this BLOG very informative, and fun to read. I have always dreamed about meeting a very nice lady who wants to live in a FLR with me.

None of the issues that most women worry about does not apply to me. I'm not the type of man who finds "boys night out" nor do I receive sexist texts or anything like that.

However, I don admit that I don't know if I would allow myself to be micro-managed to the extreme that Dennis is. I know he seems to be happy in his relationship with Nancy so God bless them both. Just saying.