But What’s In It For Them?

Prompted by an overheard phone conversation at Shadow Lane's fall 2006 party.

Okay, so part of what's triggering this entry my classic anxiety about what Pablo could possibly get out of the disciplinary end of our relationship.  I mean, it seems to me like work he's having to do keeping me from drifting off onto circular or self-destructive paths.  When we've talked about it before he's generally made a bit of a joke in his dry English way, answering that what he gets out of it is "a quiet life." 

It's a cute comment but didn't really tell me much.  Not what this bit of eavesdropping and subsequent conversation (with me, not eavesdropping) did.

Anyway, so Pablo and I were sitting in the lobby of the Stardust drinking coffee (okay, only I was having it, but it's important enough to my ability to function that it's a priority for Paul as well), chatting with Ian (AKA The London Tanner) when his phone rang.  He took the call and the two of us continued chatting.  I didn't even think I was listening until I heard something along the lines of "you'd better be, because you don't want to know what will happen if you're not."

Wow.  I sure heard that part.

Um, that high pitched ping was something of a collective ear perking.  Ian, being a charming and perceptive man, must have noticed this and understood.  So when the conversation was over, he started talking about what he'd accomplished in this disciplinary relationship — how he'd helped provide the structure and discipline for her to turn her life around.  I wish I didn't have a brain like swiss cheese and could remember more of his exact words, but it was very cool to listen to.

And it stayed in my mind for the rest of the day and through our drive home.  Because this young woman (who isn't the first he's helped in this fashion) isn't his partner/wife or lover (at least as far as I know).  That didn't seem to be the point or what he was getting out of it.   He was proud of her accomplishments and pleased (I think) with himself for helping her make good changes in her life. 

And besides that, I suspect Ian liked spanking her too.  But maybe that wasn't entirely the point either.

Of course, it did give me something new to feel anxious about.  After all, I tend to repeatedly do things I've already been punished for.  That probably keeps Pab from feeling quite so much job satisfaction.  :(  Then again, maybe the tawse he bought from Ian will help (!!!).

13 thoughts on “But What’s In It For Them?

  1. sparkle

    I heard that conversation too. I told Chris about it and described Ian as sounding like a very proud father.
    I particularly remember Ian describing someone he disciplined as ‘one of those girls who just needs simple things like a bedtime enforced,’ because I immediately wanted to crawl under the table – recognozing bedtime as one of my greatest difficulties. Mija didn’t seem entirely oblivious either, come to think of it.
    I stand by that description of Ian as a proud papa. And maybe that’s what he and others do get out of it – a satisfaction akin to philanthropic pride, a sense of having helped someone to be a better person, to have a better shot at being happy and successful, and a more positive outlook.
    Still, I’d love to hear from the tops – particularly the disciplinarians.

  2. Haron

    I must be a particularly selfish individual, because it has never for a minute occurred to me to wonder what Abel gets out of punishing me. I’ve always thought that as he liked spanking me, this must be the reward.
    Oh, and having some tasks that need finishing actually accomplished (like DEGREES and such) – that must be a really nice feeling.

  3. Michelle

    Wow, i feel very proud. I dont know any of you yet, but I am the person Ian was talking to on the phone. Sparkle you nailed it on the head with the Papa comment. Thats exactly what he is to me. Ian is the papa i never had. And i think he likes the job too. He is very proud of me for what ive accomplished in the last few months and i am too. Because i know that without his help then i would not have made them.

  4. Mija

    sparkle: the first version I wrote about this had you in it but I didn’t want you to feel like you had to comment on it (so much to write, so little time) nor to accuse you of joining me in eavesdropping, so I went back and took you out. But yes, love those sorts of “only at Shadow Lane” moments.
    As to the Papa comment, well, yes, I can see it. But given how we tend to feel about having children of our own (P and I don’t see ourselves as potential parents) that wouldn’t be too comforting… and it’s all about me, of course!
    Haron: yes, I can see that. But my insecurity does come from the fact that while I know Paul likes spanking me, I know he doesn’t generally enjoy the punishment side of it. I mean, we met on ASS/SSS — he’d get to spank me even if we never had another disciplinary moment. And also it means that sometimes discipline / punishment has to happen even when he would rather we do something else.
    Michelle: Thanks so much for coming on and commenting. I had rather a bad moment after I posted this when it occurred to me you (though I didn’t know your name) or Ian might not appreciate being discussed on an open blog like this. Normally I would have remembered to ask in advance, but I think I was so excited it didn’t enter my brain until after this entry had already gone up.
    Ian did seem very very proud of you. And when he listed your accomplishments and how much progress you’d made in how little time, it was clear that both you and he had a lot to be proud of. Bravo to both of you. It isn’t easy to ask someone to help you like this nor to take that help when things get hard and it isn’t just a sexy little fantasy anymore.

  5. Michelle

    It was totally ok with me. Ian was the one who sent me the link to your site anyways. He seemed proud that you would take the time to write about it in the first place.
    And no its not easy to ask for help. It was one of the hardest choices i have had to make in my life. But i am grateful for it now. Even if i wont sit for a week when hes done with me on sunday. I tend to get a smart mouth when i dont have a session for more than a week. But that is a totally different story! (lol)
    I have heard nothing but great things about you and everyone else, and i cant wait to meet you all next year at the next SL party.
    Take care

  6. Bessie Granger

    I know in my own life my Dominant does not enjoy punishment for it’s own sake, but he does appreciate what it brings to our dynamic. I do not want to be in trouble for real things and go to great lengths to avoid it. However I really think that we would both feel that something was missing if it was never there.
    My Dominant rejects the “daddy” persona. I used to think he had no interest in anything parental, but he recently told me that he does see a parental component to our dynamic. I like to think he is proud of me when I am a good girl, and that he can see that he had a big hand in making me *want* to be good.
    I think Mija got it right in many ways. He likes to show off his handywork. Describing a girl that he has tried to help with less success he said, “I don’t have a problem taking her to do something fun, but the way she behaves in public makes me not want to be associated with her.” That is probably harsh, but I guess it is the other side of the coin.
    So that’s my take, hope it made some sense!

  7. North Gare

    A Coke and some string cheese

    [In reply to Mija’s post at the Punishment Book, because my stats need a little love from time to time.] I think it’s generally a mistake to approach the concept of someone being disciplinarian for someone else assuming it’s really

  8. Megs

    There’s also the idea (just throwing it out there) that if the top (Dom, whatever) doesn’t enjoy punishment it’s all the more effective. At least, I know I feel even more guilty when I’m going to be punished… because I know he has to do it. (Even though he doesn’t have to). I’m not saying he doesn’t get anything out of it, I know he does, but he’s really doing it because he loves me… and he wants to help me. But can someone please explain to me why ALL of the comments on this thread are from the bottoms… none from the tops? They should all be spanked, immediately. (The tops, duh!)

  9. Haron

    Megs, well, see – if I knew that Abel didn’t enjoy the punishment _on_any_level_, I would fold the discipline part of the relationship. Discipline is too much hard work for somebody to do if they don’t get any sort of enjoyment out of it.
    I mean, it’s hard enough to admit to “misbehaviour” as it is… without having to worry about him hating the punishment in every way.
    That said, if he showed utter glee at having an occassion to spank me for the sort of behaviour that upsets me (*cough* procrastination *cough*), I probably wouldn’t be too keen to continue, either.
    It’s a fine line for a top to walk, this “I like it in a way, but not really, but honestly I do” thing. Poor them. *g*

  10. Megs

    Oh I know exactly what you mean… about both… and I wasn’t so much trying to say that it could be the only thing going in a punishment relationship… I’m just saying that knowing he doesn’t enjoy the actual process any more than I do (well that might be a little overstated) makes me squirm a little more when I don’t meet my deadlines… because I’m letting HIM down as well as myself… and making him do something he doesn’t (entirely) want to do just because I was lazy.

  11. Mija

    Megs wrote: “But can someone please explain to me why ALL of the comments on this thread are from the bottoms… none from the tops? They should all be spanked, immediately. (The tops, duh!)”
    Not that I don’t agree that they deserve to be spanked, but for honesty sake I have to point to the trackbacks. Paul wrote his own blog entry on this very topic. Check it out here: http://northgare.blogs.com/paul/2006/08/a_coke_and_some.html in an entry called “a coke and some string cheese.”

  12. Fireman Chris

    Well, since Megs asked so nicely… (ponders the appropriate punishment for threatening tops).
    I’ve often said that I don’t enjoy punishing Sparkle, and that is mostly true. I always enjoy spanking her on some level, of course, but when its a punishment, it is less enjoyable because the purpose of the spanking isn’t for enjoyment (especially hers, but mine either). I am, in essence, doing it because “I have to” based on “the rules of our relationship”.
    I do, however, very much enjoy both the fact that she trusts me enough to punish her (both at her request and when I decide she needs to be punished) and the caregiving feeling that it gives me. As I’ve said before, it is something I’ve struggled with for awhile (being a disciplinarian), but I’m finding it easier and more natural as time goes on, and this past weekend at Shadow Lane seems to have awakened it even more (see my most recent blog post for more details).
    At the end of the day, it is comforting to know that if I did have to punish her for something, it was done for the right reasons. I’m always going to feel the need to take care of her, and she wants me to. She’s fully capable of taking care of herself, of course, and did quite well before we met, but I know she wants to release some of that to me, and I’m happy to take it on. Punishment is just part of that overall dynamic, same as me managing the finances even though she’s (IMO) much more qualified to do so.

  13. Megs

    And I would like to point out that the statement “They should all be spanked” is not actually a threat, but an observation… a moral judgement if you will. O:-)


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