Control in Relationships

Last night was D&D night, so The Keeper and I journeyed over to the home of our friend, Dungeon Master. When we arrived we discovered that Dungeon Master had a friend visiting from out of town. Nothing terribly strange there. Well, while we were waiting for everyone else in the D&D group to show up we got to talking and eventually I decided to give Dungeon Master’s roommate/tenant/friend Tony (he doesn’t get a fun name because he has voluntarily shared his identity with the interwebs) a little shit for having not made a post on his blog in almost a month now. I said that in the week since I talked to Tony last I had made three blog posts, but Tony hasn’t written anything since the beginning of the month. Mentioning my blog shifted the focus of the conversation and Dungeon Master and Tony started commenting on how the Friend From Out of Town (FFOT) would probably meet with an early demise if he were to read my blog. This confused me, as I have not cast Explosive Runes on this blog anywhere. After some inquiry I determined that they were mostly joking, but they were referring to the likelihood of FFOT’s wife disapproving of the content of this blog and then punishing him for reading it.

Now, while I’m aware that this was probably just very much exaggerated joking, it still kind of bothered me.

First, I see absolutely no reason why anyone would want to control what their partner reads/watches/looks at to that degree. I cannot imagine it doing anything but causing distrust and resentment, so it makes no sense for someone to intentionally do this to their partner.

Second, I feel it’s just plain wrong do to that to someone and I can’t see why anyone would want to continue the relationship with someone who does this. It’s similar in my mind to abuse. In this example both parties are adults and they have children together. So, I can understand limiting what either person can look at or watch around the kids. Obviously watching hardcore porn with your kid in the room is just kind of weird. I watched porn as a kid, but it was something I discovered on my own not something which was *ahem* thrust upon me. There is definitely something wrong with the idea of an adult voluntarily and intentionally showing children porn. So, like I said, limiting the content of what is watched or looked at while children are present doesn’t bother me. Limiting the content of what someone can read silently to themselves while children are present? This makes no sense to me. Even if the kid can read, it’s not likely that they’ll end up reading over your shoulder without you knowing about it, and if you know about it obviously you could close the window/laptop/book and wait until the children went to do something else before starting to read again. Not difficult. Therefore, reading a blog with possibly questionable content while the kids are around seems like it should be no problem.

But that’s not the impression I got from FFOT, Tony and Dungeon Master. They didn’t seem to be limiting things to "if the kids are around". It sounded more like a situation where FFOT’s wife was controlling the content he was allowed to consume under any circumstances. He joked a little that he was "safe here" with her not around to know what websites he was looking at. I very sincerely hope that they were all joking like I think they were because this kind of thing bothers me a great deal. I’m a submissive and it still makes me angry. Maybe it’s just the stereotype of the controlling wife/girlfriend who emasculates her man, or maybe it’s just a basic visceral hatred of the idea of someone imposing their will on someone else in this completely senseless sort of way. Because that’s what it is, senseless. There is some sense to the condition of "when the children are around", but to tell your significant other that you don’t like something so they can’t read it or do it or watch it even though it doesn’t really cause any harm to anyone? THAT is completely unacceptable. Telling them that you’d prefer they didn’t watch/do/read whatever it is because it makes you worried or uncomfortable? Ok, that’s not bad really. That’s actually probably pretty good communication for a couple to have. But just altogether banning something just because you don’t like it and then making your significant other fear punishment if they go against your ban? No. If The Keeper ever did something like this it would cause a very deep rift and would require a great deal of communication to repair, if it could be repaired at all.

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8 thoughts on “Control in Relationships

  1. Don’t worry, I’m not emasculated. I wear the pants and all that. πŸ˜›

  2. Heh, like I said I was pretty sure you guys were mostly joking… it just bothered me a little, that’s all.

    Also- Holy Crap! Someone I’ve met in real life is commenting in my blog!!

  3. Yes, its all over now…I know where you “live.” πŸ™‚ j/k Did Andy tell you what I do for a living? ;P

    But seriously, if she does control me, and she does to some extent, it’s because I allow myself to be controlled. For instance, I respect her point of view and she often knows what is good for me or not, so I listen to her _advice_because I respect her.

    Anyway, I didn’t see anything here that would get me in trouble or anything….much. ;P

  4. PS

    You were right about the scallops. Heartburn something fierce last night. Ouch.

  5. FFOT- No, actually I don’t think he did ever tell me what you do…I assume it has something to do with computers, but that’s mostly because he and Janna both work with computers.

    And yea, if the situation is that you’re “controlled” by her making reasonable and rational arguments then that’s fine. I do that a lot of the time with The Keeper. What I have a problem with is relationships where one person is making blanket rules based on their own preferences with little to no regard for the feelings of the other person and enforcing those rules through fear.

    *waves at Tony* ^_^

  6. Well, I’m tickled at the name. I assume its for the obvious reason of title for the game, not the state of my basement rooms, and I know it’s not from the weight rated hooks set into the joists as you’d have to move the hanging ceiling to see those, but you did borrow my fur lined leather restraints. I thought someone should get some use out of them, but my wife didn’t like the thought of sharing quite so much. Is that controlling?

    Now I think I need to clarify my objection, and I can’t speak for Tony, but it was FFOT that made the comment about his wife, and his friends that did not argue with him. To be totally honest, I can’t think of two friends with more drastically opposite personalities. I really just could not think of a way to say this is a bad idea without thinking I’d offend someone. I really didn’t want to offend by good liberal, pagan, bi-sexual, submissive friend that her blog wasn’t quite right for my conservative, catholic, father of three, obsessive compulsive friend from out of town who be offended that he wasn’t open minded enough to read and politely comment. Remind me to give you his blog so you can compare yours to his sometime. I took the cowards way out of the dilemma and shut my trap.

    Besides, he’s no pure sheep, I was a pure sheep till we started hanging out together. He’s just gone full circle for his kids and the resolution of his doubts at the uncertainty of life for his children that religion grants to his soul, with the conviction of an obsessive compulsive. LOL, but like I said he wasn’t always so, and his roots still show. As for his wife, they are two strong personalities made for each other and she doesn’t tell him to do anything he doesn’t want her to. He likes that she has a jealous streak, he finds feisty sexy.

    While I’m telling on my friend, cause it’s too much fun, he did have a girlfriend in collage (not his wife) who was a total sub, would do anything. Thank goodness for collage experimentation to help give all people a shared understanding.

  7. Aaahhh, ok. I understand now, though I do think that you probably didn’t need to be too worried about either of us being offended.

    And yes, the name is mostly a reference to your position in the game we play. If you’d prefer I use your actual first name or some other nickname, I would be happy to do so.

    I had forgotten about the cuffs though. You may want to show those to The Keeper. I think he might get a kick out of them. As for J not wanting to share, no I wouldn’t say that’s controlling. I think that when actual sex or real life sexual situations are involved the lines I’ve sort of drawn in this post are a little different because of the whole consent thing and the different ways that relationships work in that regard. In my mind, limiting something for your significant other based on the fact that it would make you feel hurt or uncomfortable is alright as long as the other person is willing to submit and/or compromise, it’s when there’s really no better reason behind it than “you can’t do this because I don’t want you to” that I take issue. If J didn’t want to share you just because she wanted to control you and it didn’t have anything to do with her being hurt by the idea then yea, I would think that was kind of bitchy. But I get the impression from her that she’s the type who’s uncomfortable with things like that on the basis that it would hurt her, so I don’t think it’s controlling or bitchy at all.

    And I really, really wasn’t trying to pass judgment on anyone with my post… the situation just got me thinking and so I wrote about it. Perhaps I didn’t explain myself very well.

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