I Threw Away My Script for Our FLR
We’ve been married for seventeen years. When we met, in addition to her looks, I was attracted to her personality, intellect and strong moral compass. While she wasn’t overtly dominant, she was always strong willed and unbending about certain things, including our relationship. She expected and demanded certain behaviors from me. While I often reacted negatively to this, I found myself wanting to make her happy, giving in to her requests, changing my behavior to please her. I remember telling her early in our relationship that she made me want to be a better man. I know this is a cliche’, but it was the first time in my life that I felt that way.
In many ways, we’ve had a Female Led Relationship from the beginning. She usually made the decisions about matters both large and small. The pattern to our decision making process often looked like this:
She’d ask me, “What do you want?”
I’d tell her, “I want X.”
She’d ask, “What do you think about Y?”
I’d say, “Well, I prefer X, but I’m okay with Y.”
The conversation inevitably continued until she was convinced that I really wanted Y.
I found this process exhausting. Usually, I was perfectly fine with Y, but why play this game, when we both knew what the outcome would be? I assumed that she was conditioned from childhood to suppress her strong will, because it got her in trouble as a child at home and school. Also, as a married adult, she didn’t want the entire burden of responsibility for decision making as if in a parent-child relationship. But she wanted what she wanted, and wasn’t satisfied with less.
For me the idea of FLR is linked to my sexuality. I have never felt comfortable with how our culture expects me to behave as a man (man pursues and conquers woman – woman demurs, then submits to man). My kink is an important part of my self-identity, and has always been a factor in my relationships. I’ve felt most comfortable in the sexually submissive role.
She knew from the beginning that I had unusual tastes in the bedroom. I told her that it was important to me to include some D/s dynamic in bed. She was fine with my submissive side, but we never discussed FLR. We played some games, and she seemed like a natural. Eventually,she said she didn’t like that side of herself, and it didn’t turn her on to always be dominant. As time went on, we still occasionally played D/s games, but she wasn’t an enthusiastic participant, so it didn’t happen very often. Our sex life developed roughly the same pattern I explained above. We were playing her game, but I often felt something was missing.
Daily household operation was determined by our jobs and our complex family structure. I did more of the household maintenance than most married men I know, but the division of labor was fairly gender typical. She did most of the cooking, house cleaning, and laundry, and I did the repairs, paid the bills, and kept the kitchen clean.
Fast forward to about two years ago. We’d succeeded in raising our kids, and found we had some breathing room to actually think about our relationship again. I had been feeling dissatisfied. Her sex drive wasn’t what it had been in the past. Mine was still as strong as ever. The disparity in our libidos made the pattern of our sex life less than satisfactory for both of us. We were both still fully committed to each other, but I felt that something had to change to sustain our marriage.
At the same time, having ended the “crisis mode” lifestyle we had been in for so long with four children at home, we began to rethink how we had structured our household with regard to chores. Her job took much more out of her, and she was struggling to maintain the work load at home as well as the job.
I started looking into FLR more seriously. I had read about it before, but most material available was mostly male fantasy with very little regarding a realistic approach. I wasn’t even sure that I wanted a FLR. I really just liked the kink – the D/s. Yet I didn’t want to make her play a part that she didn’t enjoy.
Then I read Ms Rika’s book, “Uniquely Rika”, and something shifted in my brain. I realized that what I had been asking her to do was to play an elaborate sex game with me, according to my rules, under the pretense of me “serving” her. What if I actually tried to serve her in ways that she found meaningful? What would that even look like? I had no idea, but I was willing to try.
I explained the FLR dynamic to her and asked if she would like to try it as an experiment. She was guarded about it, having already heard all the fantasy stuff before, but she was willing to try it, if only to make me happy. Thus began a manic phase of me taking on most of the housework, developing elaborate chore charts, asking her what could I do to make her life easier…bombarding her with offers of service and sacrifice. I could write a book on how not to initiate a FLR!
Of course, she found the sudden shift in my behavior disturbing. She thought I must be having an affair, or going through a mid-life crisis. She felt threatened by my intrusion into her territory with regard to the household. She felt guilty for not doing as much around the house as she had been used to. She felt like there wasn’t enough for her to do. She felt like I was hovering too much.
Yet from the beginning, she repeatedly told me that she liked the new arrangement. I felt like we might be on to something. I dialed down the intensity and tried to focus on the aspects of our new relationship that she really enjoyed. I stopped pressuring her to give me a list of demands, which by the way is a fine example of topping from the bottom! I began to learn a new language: her language of wants.
As an example, I refer to the pattern I discussed earlier.
Her: What do you want for dinner?
Me: I feel like either pizza or Mexican.
Her: How about Thai?
Me: Thai sounds good. Do you want the Pho or curry?
Her: Either one is fine. You decide.
Me: Mmmm. Curry.
Her: Well, maybe the pho would be better, since I had a big lunch.
Me: I love the pho! I’ll call it in.
In the past, this exchange would annoy me, since I wondered why she couldn’t just ask for the pho in the first place? Then I asked myself, “what does she really want?” and “how can I give that to her?” She doesn’t want me to make the decision. She doesn’t want to be bossy and tell me what to do. What she wants is to have her options presented to her, then she can make her choice. Once I consciously got that dynamic, I understood that I make her happiest and most comfortable by performing what amounts to an elaborate ritual. Ironic, isn’t it?
The real irony is that once I learned what that ritual meant to her, and I was able to happily instead of grudgingly perform it for her, she became more at ease just telling me what she wanted, both in and out of the bedroom. The context of the flr gave her permission to behave that way, and it fulfills my needs as well. It is a sort of affirmation for me, because I had often wondered if my perception of her was distorted by my own feelings. She isn’t a sadist. She isn’t very kinky. She isn’t a control freak. She isn’t any of the things your stereotypical fantasy dominatrix is. I never thought she was. What she is is a strong, independent, intelligent woman who expects to get what she wants – which is why I fell in love with her in the first place. The difference now is that she feels more comfortable telling me what she wants and I know that she isn’t just playing a game that I scripted.