Wednesday, September 1, 2010

On Domestic Discipline

Perhaps I've been living under a rock or something, but I have never heard of this until about a week ago.  A friend of mine came across a blog about a couple who practices what is referred to as Christian Domestic Discipline and passed the link on to me.  What I then discovered was a whole network of blogs, forums, publications and websites dedicated to living a life involving Domestic Discipline. 

From what I have gleaned from several different resources, having a "DD", as they call it, marriage is rooted in recognizing the male as head of household and submitting to that authority.  It is the male's duty as the head of household to establish rules and lead his family as only he knows how as well as dole out punishments and discipline to his uncontrollable wife. 

Observers of DD are quick to explain that Domestic Discipline is not a form of abuse, mental or physical, because the wife is a willing participant and the husband must dole out discipline out of love for his family.  However grown women go on to explain about punishments involving among other things time out (i.e. being sent to their bedrooms, standing in a corner), groundings (when their privileges are taken away like T.V., internet access, or being sent to bed early), spankings (either routine maintance or in the form of a punishment, may be doled out with bare hands or tools such as paddles or wooden spoons), or having to compose apology letters or essays. 

The wives, who are curiously enough typically the authors of these blogs, undoubtedly under the watchful eye of their opressors... errr, loving husbands... like to explain that they WANT this for themselves to help them become more loving and submissive in their marriages. 

Discovering that there exists a whole network of people out there living a lifestyle that I've never heard of is suprising.  I consider myself a fairly open minded person when it comes to alternate lifestyles.  I'm typically of the opinion that people should do what makes them happy, and who am I to judge, but this...? 

A few of my reactions:

First, this is a form of abuse.  I will go as far to say that even though there is some physical harm involved, it's more about mental abuse and control than physical abuse.  Regardless of the fact that the women are "willing" participants. 

Second, it's seemingly ridiculous that observers label this lifestyle as "Christian" Domestic Discipline.  Admittedly I may not know a lot about the Christian religion, but I while I believe that traditionally males are viewed to be head of household I feel like this kind of control and actions have nothing to do with Christian beliefs and behavior.  It seems like a fairly twisted interpretation. 

And third, if a women feels she needs her husband to act not as a partner, but as a parent to her then she's lacking respect for herself.  She can't view herself as an adult because she isn't treated as one.  She isn't accountable to herself as a responsible adult, but needs her husband to keep her in line.  That has to be a troubling situation not just for the wife, but for the husband too.  Why would a man want to spend his adult life raising his children as well as his wife?  Single parent much? 

I have so many other thoughts on this, but it's hard to compose them all to be honest.  I'm not going to link to anything specific, but a quick Google search of "Domestic Discipline" or "Christian Domestic Discipline" yields plenty of results. 

Have you ever heard of this lifestyle before?  What are your thoughts? 


  1. 1. I would be willing to accept punishment in the form of being sent to my room. Especially considering there is a t.v. and a secret stash of chocolate there. I may lock the door and never come out.

    2. I have heard that when kids are spanked, they can develop hormone surges sometimes during spankings deeming them to a life of spanking fetish. Considering how frequently spanking is used as discipline in Christian circles, I'm not surprised this "movement" has occurred.

  2. I am a Christian, and I do believe in the wife being submissive to her husband. Now, that being said... if my husband ever tried to spank me, I think i'd hit him back. That's crazy. (My hubby also believes in his role as the head of the house, and me being his help mate, but he would NEVER discipline me.) We are partners, we just both have different roles. We are equals, but each with different abilities, likes, and desires.
    I think that by having the husband discipline the wife and having the husband be the only one to discipline the child, that this would undermine any of the mom's authority with her children. Why should they listen? Dad's the only one who matters.
    This stuff is bunk... crazy... We do (Rarely) spank our children, but this paints it in such a horrible light, no wonder people think Christians are crazy!

  3. It's not always being done in a Christian home, just to be clear. The blog I was reading last week that related to this topic was written by a husband and wife (mostly the wife) team who insisted that their decision to live by the DD code had nothing to do with religion. It was basically because the wife was a grown child who needed her husband to act like a parent to her.

    It's all very weird to me. No other way to put it. It seems like a sexual fetish, but they insist that it isn't sexual in anyway, either...which I don't believe for one second.

  4. Stultz Family said:

    "I am a Christian, and I do believe in the wife being submissive to her husband... We are partners, we just both have different roles. We are equals, but each with different abilities, likes, and desires."

    And see this, is totally different. I feel like the idea of DD took an idea that started with male as head of household with the wife as his partner and support and twisted it to be something totally different, but they're still trying to suggest it's the same thing. It's not. At least not in my eyes!

    Faith said:

    "It's not always being done in a Christian home, just to be clear."

    I stand corrected. I figured that not all of the households practicing this lifestyle were rooted in religion, but I keep reading references to Christian Domestic Discipline.

    "It was basically because the wife was a grown child who needed her husband to act like a parent to her."

    This is what really gets me, it's like... an excuse for you NOT to control yourself or behave like a responsible adult because someone else is there to keep you in line. Not that I'm implying that all the women in these situations are just running around doing whatever their heart desires, but part of being an adult is being accountable to yourself, not necessarily to other people.

    If I put off doing the dishes when I know that they need done then I have to deal with a messy kitchen while cooking dinner. Or dishes in the sink. Or my husband complaining that there are no clean drinking glasses. That's "punishment" enough. I don't need a spanking or to be grounded to remind me that it wasn't a good idea to put off that chore.

  5. Lol.... just thought about a couple of reality stars who could have used a good spanking from their husbands... lol. Maybe they should follow DD, cause they FOR SURE are just large children.
    Also, ha about the sexual fetish. I almost wrote in my post that the only time it's okay for a husband to spank is during foreplay or the act, lol.

  6. ...Interesting. I kind of feel like I punish myself enough, being upset I can't get the housework done with the kids around or being annoyed at our messy kitchen...I don't really need to be spanked or degraded for it. I guess to each his/her own...but I have to say I don't understand how a woman could accept that kind of life for herself (and appear to prefer it). Kind of makes me think she's been brainwashed or something. Nobody likes abuse...and I DO consider that lifestyle to be an abusive one.

    Stultz Family said:

    "I am a Christian, and I do believe in the wife being submissive to her husband... We are partners, we just both have different roles. We are equals, but each with different abilities, likes, and desires."

    How can you be equals if you think you should be submissive to him?

  7. Being someone who participates in a DD marriage, I would like to make some corrections and add my own thoughts.

    FIRST and foremost, DD is not abuse. In many of these relationships, mine included, the woman is the one to initiate this type of relationship. My husband was actually extremely hesitant to spank me because he was afraid of hurting me. He is always careful to make sure he doesn't take it too far and we have experimented and played enough (it isn't all about discipline for us) for him to be able to read my body language and be able to tell when I've had enough. He is not emotionally or mentally abusive at all. He is gentle, soft spoken and very caring. I have never met a more compassionate man. He does not use degrading or abusive language, and he's never even been angry at me. We don't have rules, and I hardly get in "trouble". The most recent thing I was spanked for was not filling my gas tank before a snow storm (my gas light was on!) and this is something he's reminded me to do a million times.

    We are not religious and our decision to practice DD has nothing to do with Christianity. I also do not agree with the people that claim there is nothing sexual about spankings. Even "punishment" spankings have an element of sexuality to them and it is silly for anyone to claim they don't.

    My husband and I are partners in our marriage. When we have issues, we discuss them together and figure them out TOGETHER. The only difference in our relationship from many others is that when we cant come to an agreement about something, we have agreed that he has the final say. That is not to say that he does not take my feelings and thoughts into consideration when making that final decision. I in no way see him as a parental figure nor does he see me as a child. I do not use DD as an excuse to waive personal responsibility or self control. I respect myself and my husband respects me as well. I feel that this is something that I NEED in my life, not something that I just want or think is fun. When I was in previous relationships where DD did not exist (my marriage is the first relatinoship it has existed in) I always felt something was missing. Even before I opened up to my husband about this need, it was something I often thought about and wished I had. My husband doesn't micro-manage my life. I am responsible for myself and make my own choices. As I stated before, I'm often the one to ASK for a spanking when I feel I've come short in something or guilty about something. Many times, my husband doesnt feel that these things I asked to be spanked for warrant spanking, but he does it to make me feel better.

    Understandably, this lifestyle is not for everyone. A lot of women such as yourself would be apalled at the idea of it, and many men dont posess the ability to take the position that the men in DD relationships take. I also don't expect people outside of the "DD community" to understand why we want or need these things. However I find it extremely presumptuous for someone to read a few blogs and deem a lifestyle choice as "abusive" when both parties are happy and have chosen to partake in the relationship as it is. Whether or not you agree with the lifestyle or would like to participate in it yourself, why judge those who find it beneficial to THEIR relationships and themselves to do so.


    First, I have to say, I appreciate your commenting. Obviously you have a unique perspective.

    I read your comment and I hopped over to you blog to read about you a little bit more and although I don't feel that I'm misguided, my opinion hasn't changed.

    To say I don't judge you would be a lie. While I do admittedly judge your lifestyle, it's just my opinion. I recognize that you're a consenting adult and therefore aren't hurting anyone else. I feel that it's more than reasonable for you to expect to be able to conduct yourself in the way which you see fit within your own household. I surely feel that you're entitled to that.

    I can't really express myself much further as I've already stated my opinion in my original post, but I can say this: I find it odd that a grown adult needs to look outside themselves to find discipline. I feel that as a (mentally) fully developed person you posess the ability to understand reason, and cause and effect and therefore should be able to look within yourself to find self-discipline. I don't see how asking your husband to punish you for mistakes or poor choices teaches you anything you don't already know. I actually think it's unfair to ask your husband, someone who should be your partner, to parent you and I can't relate to voluntarily giving up control in order to create an inbalance of power in a relationship.

    Ultimately, I think your life is yours to do with what you will and my opinion shouldn't hold any weight on your lifestyle choices, nor do I expect it to. Originally, I blogged on DD because it was something of a surprise to me. I certainly don't consider myself an authority on anything DD-related. I was unaware that a lifestyle such as this existed.

    Again, I thank you for sharing your perspective and I invite you to stick around!

  9. I was in a DD relationship with my husband. Originally it was my idea. I felt out of control and I know my husband felt I was childish. He did agree to spank me and he took it seriously. I think he was fed up with my attitude. For six months, I often found myself getting a good hard spanking twice a week by him. It hurt and was embarrassing. On one hand, it helped me to stop my childish outbursts of temper, that I aimed at him. I suddenly had respect for him, realizing he could bust my backside, but good, for being a witch to him. I learned respect. He made the spankings so dreadful, that I straightened out. He no longer spanks me, as I felt we were entering into a daddy/daughter relationship, since he's ten years older than I am. I felt totally ashamed of myself that I would need to be spanked by my husband as an adult to behave. I dreaded the pain and the embarrassment. He made it as painful and embarrassing as possible, without doing any lasting damage to me physically. I started to learn self control. Could I have learned it by myself? Probably, but I put that burden on my husband, which was not fair to him. He only did it, because I asked him to and convinced him that I needed it. I think he set out to teach me a lesson... be careful what you wish for. He succeeded. He didn't want to spank me and made me realize that if this was what I wanted, he would make me realize that a full grown man, could inflict serious pain on a woman. The whole thing fell apart. I am responsible as an adult and should be able to self discipline myself without resorting to having my husband spank me. He's glad it's over and I'm glad it's over. Eventually having my husband spank me was degrading in my mind. We lost the romance in our marriage. My husband is an atheist and I am agnostic, so this wasn't a religious thing. It's a fad and it usually falls apart. You can't keep it up for years at a time. The physical pain becomes dreaded if your husband truly is doing a good job of disciplining you. Otherwise, it's just a bedroom game. I can self discipline myself and if I need help, I can talk it out with him and he's very good at listening. I have to admit, I became resentful that my husband did give into my request to be spanked. I think he sees it as something I needed to learn wasn't in my best interest. He's a wonderful guy and would never abuse me either, but he did teach me a lesson. In the end, it was unfair of me to ask my husband to discipline me. He felt horrible about it, but he stepped up to the plate and took it seriously. It wasn't a sexual game at all. There was no sexual component to it. If there is, then you aren't getting a serious discipline spanking imho. True discipline is to be dreaded and avoided. I do think for many it is a sexual fetish and that tells me that true discipline isn't happening. There is a danger of ruining your marriage if you make your husband you daddy and that is exactly what happens, whether someone wants to admit it or not. Yes, a full grown adult should be able to have self discipline. The whole DD scene is a fad and it doesn't work in the long run. It keeps a wife childish. We call a spade a spade now. If there is any spanking, it's sexual foreplay that is light and fun and not serious discipline. I truly question those that think it's something they really need. There is an endorphin rush you can get hooked on, but hey, take up running for the same rush.

  10. The current round of domestic discipline most certainly, it is not exclusively Christian. Rather the concept emanates from those holding more conservative and traditional values as a reaction to the excesses of feminism. Proponents include women as well as men. Their ranks include those with advanced degrees, professional credentials, and successful careers. Often, there opponents are equally competent to justify their beliefs. As with many other issues, including abortion, immigration, unionization, and the like, polarized attitudes toward domestic discipline divide the culture.

  11. Hello, Sweden here.

    IMHO you´re semi-right; /C)DD surely can be abuse, the risk is obvious. I´m + 60 yrs and have never spanked and absolutely not grounded(grounding is by nature socially disabling!) my children who are adults now and we have very good communication. But about the marital relationship....My late wife - we loved each other, no doupt of that - was a difficult person in some respects and was, in various situations, impossible to talk to. She practically "stole" all responsabilities and most of the leader role from me but, on rare occasions, if I spoke up and asked her if she wanted to be spanked, she eventually focused and tried to be a nicer person. In a retrospective view I am convinced that our marriage had been a better one if I ,these times, had "followed through" and really spanked her. From some signals of hers I can tell that she wouldn´t protest much - in fact she was aroused by more playful spankings in bed...It was all like she, by herself, didn´t have the ability and will power to stop behaving bad and I surely regret(90%) that I didn´t have the nerve to help her in that direction. I sincerely hope that this make some sense and for some (quite a few)women out there I seriously mean that domestic discipline can be of help provided their husbands haven´t got a disturbed personality or are violent power neards.

  12. I don't think it is abuse necessarily, I think it is a fetish both partners have and don't want to consider themselves abnormal so they throw it off on religion. My opinion, of course.

  13. My husband and I just started this in our marriage. We had terrible fights for the first year, mostly caused by me. Nothing violent or in that nature but never ending and never resolved so the issues were always right under the surface, waiting to spring up at the next fight. I have always struggled with control. As much as I didn't want to admit it, I needed it to feel safe but on the other end I wanted to let it go too. I just couldn't find the right man to feel "safe enough" to turn over the reins. I always craved someone to just take the reins from me because I couldn't let go of them myself. I am the one who brought up DD. I showed him some websites and comments from other couples who swear by it. We do not connect it to being Christians. No where in the bible does God command men to spank their wives or even punish them. It says that men are to love their wives as they love themselves and women are to submit to their husbands in all they do. Nothing in the DD relationship exists if it isn't coming from both parties agreeing it is something they want to do. You can't make anyone do anything they do not want to unless you are talking about physical abuse which we are not. We take it serious and we have sat down and discussed the rules and both have agreed to them. If I am getting a spanking it is because I acted outside of the agreement we established. It is done in a very loving way where we talk about the issue that let up to the punishment. There is no struggle to be punished. There isn't any name calling or degrading comments. My husbands loves me and wants to help me see what a better life I could live if I can just let go of some of the things that are holding me back. I asked for this. I have so much respect for him for taking this on. I have never felt so much love from this man and to people who do not practice DD, I can understand why that might seem contradicting. We also don't view this as a lifelong process. Spanking isn't the only consequence I might have. It is done privately. It isn't discussed with anyone else. It has turned my life around in a very positive way. I am more driven than I have ever been. I am making changes I wasn't able to before. I want to please my husband more than I ever have. My husband is very smart and see's this thing from every angle. He knows I am earning the respect he deserves and he has always believed in my potential as a wife and mother. I just needed to get out of my own way. It is way more than just the act of spanking. When done properly, it is a very powerful tool to use. It isn't for everyone and the couples who try to connect it to sex are going to be very disappointed after a while. We don't fight anymore. I trust my husband more than I ever have. I seek his guidance and he is always building me up and paving a way for me to be the best wife and partner and friend that he knows I can be. He doesn't rule with an iron fist and I am less needy and willful. We are becoming something that I didn't think existed. Our sex life is amazing as well. There is no lie that having to bend over your husbands lap in the most vulnerable position you can be in can be arousing for both of us. I think that is a natural response and we sure don't view it as a bad side affect. We also don't abuse the process either. He doesn't set unrealistic rules that I can't keep just so he can spank me and I don't break the rules on purpose just to get spanked. His words to me before hand and during are sobering and wise and they really make me think "why did I do that?" I believe it has saved our marriage. I love our agreement. I love how much he appreciates the things I do for him and I love trying to find new ways to surprise and please him.

  14. being made to feel like you are the center of anthers persons world does not have to come from them spanking you. Having a direct relationship with Jesus Christ is a better solution He is more capable of handling you properly than "you wonderful husband"

  15. I live a Domestic Discipline lifestyle and I can assure you it is certainly not abuse! I run a Domestic Discipline website and blog and I live a very happy life, take a look at my website and my blog and you will see that those of us in DD relationships are very happy and in no way abused.

    Princess x


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