I'm re-running the stories that serve as deep background for EXPLORATIONS. The story continues from this post.
To be sure, even for two 25 year olds as erotically compatible as we were, the course of true love never did run smooth. If I'm going to get to the bottom (heh) of this thing I call love, I can't leave the fights out of it.
Ten years later, it's impossible to remember what our actual first fight was about, but I'll pretend that it was the one about the trust-fund, since that's the one that's stuck in my memory as the first moment (and, of course, there have been many — we wouldn't be a real couple if there hadn't) I thought I might have made a mistake in pursuing my erotic satisfaction at practically all cost.
Like I've said, Charles' family is wealthier than mine. They're not crazy-rich by Greenwich or New York standards, but they're crazy-rich by practically any other standard. That is, no helicopters, but a couple boats, one of them reasonably big. No house in Palm Beach, but houses on the Vineyard and in Vermont.
So their money is "tied up" as the phrase goes, in various places. Now that Charles was getting married, in a practically medieval fashion it was time for some of that money to be settled (no, they didn't use that Victorian word, but that was what it was) on me and our children. The easiest way to do such things is always through transfer of stock. It was unfortunately going to be oil stock, and when I saw that, I went ballistic.
I shouldn't have, obviously. This was one hundred percent about me and zero percent about Charles' parents. More on that shortly.
Charles, through no fault of his own, fell into a trap I had unconsciously set for him, and refused to trouble his parents with my ethical difficulty with owning oil stock. "We can talk about this later, can't we?" was all I could get out of him, which wasn't, from my perspective, even "We'll sell it after the wedding, and put it somewhere else" but rather "Shut up, you hysterical tree-hugger."
So. The real story was that I started off ashamed — medievally, atavistically, an occupational hazard of people in whom the humanistic love of the past has been inculcated — that my own family wasn't rich enough that I didn't need any money settled on me and my children by my bridegroom's parents. Then I had an overly strong reaction to the oil stock because (I think) I had just read a story about drilling in the Arctic (note that even after all this time I refuse to call it an "over-reaction," which is a key term from the screaming match Charles and I quickly devolved into: Charles: "Sweetheart, I think you're over-reacting"; Emily: "You're a fucking asshole!" Okay, I was the one screaming.).
But the above doesn't even get at what I finally realized long, long hours later, after I had nearly destroyed the best thing I have ever had in my life or, I think, will ever have, was the real root cause of the fight: my worry — no, my terror — that my anal-submissive orientation had overwhelmed my ethics; that if I actually let Charles and his parents take care of me that way the D/s wouldn't be play, any longer, and I would be trapped in a traditional marriage, through my own fault, with a guy whose understanding of marriage really did involve the husband being the head of the wife.
(Probably worth noting that I can't even type that phrase, which I absolutely refuse to believe Paul of Tarsus wrote, without feeling sick to my stomach. Also worth noting that when I read it in one of those Christian Domestic-Discipline stories that are kicking around the 'net these days in blogs and ebooks, in the context of some wife getting a spanking from her pastor husband, it never fails to get me hot, nevertheless. Humankind, fucked by fiction, I sometimes think. Also, I would never judge a DD (Domestic-Discipline) couple who have made the choice for the husband to be the "Head of Household" and the wife to be the "Taken-in-Hand" partner, for religious or erotic or psychological reasons, so long as it wasn't because they thought the Bible were telling them to do it that way. As you know if you've been reading, I'm very religious, but I'm definitely not fundamentalist, and I don't do anything, or believe anything, just because the Bible tells me so. I honor DD couples who have made the free, reasoned choice of DD more highly than I can express, for their courage in living their true selves in the face of a world that on the one (fundamentalist) hand sends what seem to me false messages of support and on the other (secular) hand finds their choice baffling.)
BDSM is full of paradoxes that I think affect all its practitioners, from the little kid playing spanking games with her friends to the silver-haired Dom with the riding-crop: how can being bound make me feel free? how can being spanked make me feel grown-up? above all, how can being hurt make me feel so fucking good? I have my own paradox, too, though, that I'm not sure afflicts anyone else: how can a woman who believes so strongly in equality long, with an existential longing, to be subjected in the private sphere to a man's will? To be humiliated, to be pissed on, to have her ass made to undergo such shocking trials as befit the disobedient chattel that a man, frustrated, must bring under his righteous domination?
Naught to do but keep exploring. More on the fight in my next post.