I've been pondering something today...for the second time, by a second person, it was suggested to me that I am possibly dictating how I expect to be led. In the BDSM world, it's called "topping from the bottom." In any world, it sounds terribly unfeminine to me and so I'm analysing whether it is...I don't want to be unfeminine!
In my description of what I hope to find, I talk about things like wanting to stay home to raise my future children, about wanting to step back and let my future husband support our family. I intended those words to be merely that - what I want, my thoughts and values. I wanted to create a picture of how the traditional relationship I wanted was different than BDSM and different from a modern relationship. I didn't intend my words to be demands, I didn't intend to dictate to my future husband how I should be led.
But, I've been told that the specific picture I've created is intimidating, that it takes away the man's opportunity to decide how to mould our future...because I've already "told" him what my future should be...I've "told" him how he should lead me. That, in stating my wants, I'm indirectly stating my needs and outlining my own future.
The first time this was suggested to me, more than a year ago, I thought about it...and I tried to be less specific in describing who I am and what I want. But I wasn't convinced that my friend was right...no one had ever suggested such a thing to me and conversely, I'm often told by dominant men that the picture I've painted is exactly what they hoped to find and exactly what seems so rare today.
However, having been recently told again nearly exactly the same thing, that I am dictating what I want, I'm back to pondering the validity of those opinions.
As I've said, countless times, I'm incredibly opinionated, very passionate about my beliefs and values and very aware of who I am. Most of the time, I think that's a good thing...self-awareness is healthy. But, there is such a thing as too much of a good thing. Perhaps my self-awareness is taking away my future husband's chance to lead me, perhaps it's taking away my own ability to relax and someday let him lead. Perhaps I'm deterring that very man, because he feels there is nothing left to decide, that he won't have the opportunity to truly lead me through his own judgment.
So, it brings the question to mind...all women, even submissive women, should be thoughtful and introspective. But at the same time, submissive women should be just that - submissive. They should submit to the will and the direction of their husbands. So, where is the line between thinking through and knowing what *I* want and letting my future husband mould our future, letting him decide where our life will go?
As a 32 year old woman who has been making decisions for herself for at least 14 of those 32 years, I can't turn my brain off, I can't undo the hopes and dreams I've realised throughout my life. I can't undo my beliefs and my values, nor would I want to.
I do dream of the day when I find a man who I trust so much, I trust his judgment more than I trust my own. But for now, I don't trust anyone more than I trust myself. I know me, inside and out, and I know where I want my future to go.
In large part, I think that the right man for me will love my passionate nature, he'll love that I am a deep thinker. He'll treasure the fact that I don't submit to him because I'm incapable of thinking for myself, I submit to him because I trust his thinking even more than I trust my own solid thinking...and it is entirely possible that, as I fall into his trust, as I fall in love with him, as I come to respect him so much that I'm willing to entrust him with my future, I'll be happy with whatever he decides...even if it's different than what I thought I wanted.
But...will I? I've been thinking and dreaming for so long of this future I've created in my head, could I be happy with a man who wanted something different? Do I want to map out my exact future, without allowing my future husband to do it himself? Am I guilty of dictating my future?
I love the idea of being with a man who had no idea what I wanted when we met, but who had come to know me so well, to cherish me so much, that by the time I had given myself to him, he planned out exactly the future I myself planned - but did so all on his own. It feels incredibly romantic, I know I would trust him even more for it. But it feels like such a huge risk...what if I fall for a man who plans a different future? And further, since much of what makes me fall for a man is learning about his value system, how can I ever fall for a man without knowing what he wants his future to be?
It feels like a fine line...in theory, I love the idea of handing my future over to my future husband, of completely trusting him to do what is best for us, trusting him to know what I want and need without me telling him. But at the same time, I balk at men who don't share my values...I find myself wanting and needing to know where he wants his own future to go. I find myself needing to know, in order to trust him, if we want the same things.
So, in a sense, the two people who've said I'm being too specific are right - I suppose I am telling my future husband what I want. I've thought about what makes me happy, about what will make my life complete, and I want to find a man who feels the same way so that when I eventually entrust myself to him, I know that he understands what makes me happy.
And isn't that what everyone does when dating? We ask questions, we look for signs...we want to know that our potential mate is similar to us in some ways.
But, of course, the traditional relationship I want isn't the same as most relationships...the way I date isn't at all the same. So...perhaps the question isn't "should I think about where I want my life to go?" It should be "how specifically should I think about where I want my life to go?"
I think, after this big long ramble, that it's good and even necessary for me to say that I want to find a man who wants the same big picture things that I do, that I need to know - before I entrust him with my life - that we share the same main values. Because I will trust him, in large part, because he shares my values.
But as I get older, I am learning to enjoy the journey, to enjoy the beautiful ride of meeting a wonderful man who will take me on an incredible path. I'll learn to enjoy feeling a man learn about and cherish me so much that he takes me exactly where I need to go, without me dictating it to him.
I'm learning to be happy with who a man is, to be happy with what he wants out of life and with what he enjoys. Through my life, I've become more relaxed, less specific about the man I'm hoping to find...more interested in who each man is, rather than looking for a man who fits my imaginary mould. And it's those little differences, those little things that make him him that I'll love to leave to chance...whilst I think I do need to know that my partner shares my general value system, I want to feel the as-yet-unknown journey of his path...I want to go where ever he's going to take me, trusting that he'll do so with my well-being and happiness as his highest priorities.
Someday, I'll get to enjoy true submission...and where ever that takes me, I know it will be amazing.