Over the years, I've developed images of who I am. Some I have discarded, realising they bore little resemblance to the truth. Some I have kept, as they still seem to fit. Some I have tried to discard, only to find that they sneak back without me noticing. My upbringing has meant I'm by-and-large self-reliant and self-contained, and any suggestions that I may actually need (rather than just want or like) other people in my life used to often be met with a sharp retort. Submission did not seem to make up any part of my nature – I was intelligent, strong willed and stubborn.
Then along came my husband. I continued being ‘myself’, and for a time he let me get my own way. After a while, though, we started experimenting with dominance and submission games as part of sex, and it opened my eyes. I have always had fantasies about being taken by some-one who was that much stronger than I – so no matter what I said or did I wasn't going to ‘win’. But I've always ignored them – they've seemed wrong, shameful somehow. But I discovered it really did something for me, and after a while that scared me. My husband backed off, but we had awoken something that wasn't about to go back to sleep again.
In fact your article is very clear to me. My journey to submission was slightly different from yours, in that it came from my husband originally and didn't start with sex. However, it did, like yours, involve a slow realisation that this was what I wanted and that it was okay. Like you, I am now very comfortable with it. It is absolutely, as you say, a 'test of strength and commitment' because at times you have to submit even when you feel strongly about an issue and want to argue.
Also I totally agree about the work thing. I am so much happier with my relationships at work these days. I'm currently being trained for a new role within my existing post. Two people I previously considered equals are my trainers and mentors for this, and I'm having to defer to them. Having known them for years, I think they worried how I would cope with this. The three of us are getting on briliantly. It is real team work and I honestly don't think it would have worked so well if I had not learn to listen respectfully and defer to the boss at home!
This mirrors my own experience and I'd guess others' too.
I buried my need to submit deep until I met my husband. Even then it stayed buried for awhile longer.
It was scary to face the fact that I wanted to be mastered by my husband, I wanted him to be the boss. Like, what's with that? I felt such a failure as a strong, independent woman and a feminist when it hit me. It was such a reversal. I fought it all the way, but my husband was patient and gradually I ceded control and submitted.
The happiness this has brought is such a great blessing.
It was a while before we really looked at that side of things again, and when we did, it started creeping back into our sex lives. Again, I started to feel scared about losing control, but there was something else too. This time, it felt like something was missing. Nervous, I explored the web, and gradually came to terms with the fact I wanted my husband to be head of household, and to take me in hand properly. It took a while for me to get the courage to tell him – I was partly afraid he'd react badly, partly scared he'd agree immediately, and also partly afraid I was becoming weak.
Since doing that I've discovered that submitting to him could be a real test of strength and commitment on my part. I realised that it was easier to fight to get my way than to swallow my pride and accept what he wanted. I also discovered that being brought to submission was, well, decidedly hot.
Far more recently, I've realised that submitting more to husband has taught me how to channel my own strength to better effect than previously. At work, as well as being known as someone who is not scared of anyone, I'm now also seen as a calm centre when everything else goes pear shaped. I've discovered I can present myself well at interviews. And I've discovered that it's actually OK to show weaknesses occasionally.