Gender/Gender Roles and TTWD

Whether we call it "domestic discipline" or "rules" or "structure" or just "getting our needs met." This is a spot for those meta discussions about what it is that we do.

Gender/Gender Roles and TTWD

Postby Meg » Sun Mar 06, 2011 11:25 pm

It's such an interesting thing. Half of my mind is always occupied on arguing that disciplinary relationships between two women are valid despite the lack of a MALE head of household, and fighting the belief that ttwd stems from the natural role of the man, blah blah blah.

Then you throw the butch/femme dynamic in and it REALLY gets interesting.

In our home, we are what I like to call "butch of center and femme of center". Neither of us is a hardcore representation of the butch/femme roles, but in many ways we do operate on them.

On the other hand, we also enjoy the ways that we screw around with those roles. I am more femme, but I am the person that goes to a job every day. When I get home, I like dinner to be ready. If I drank, I imagine J handing me a martini when I walked in the door.

J sews. She's really good at domestic stuff. On the other hand, she's also good at mechanical stuff- she is the Fix-It person in the family.

How does all this relate to discipline? I am having a hard time putting all these thoughts into words. I find it interesting to compare who is the top and who is the bottom in the couples (and other) on this board. Some of our folks in female only relationships (boy,wording this is proving difficult!!!) do not appear to identify as butch/femme, which of course is fine!!!

I've talked my mind into knots. What are your thoughts on this? J is outwardly bossy and toppish, though I do not think this is connected to her butchness, or is it? My being a disciplinarian is meant to even out the power balance in our relationship. Are femmes naturally submissive? I don't know. I'm just thinking it out.


I moved this to a new thread...because this seems to be a topic all its own. I hope Obsidian chimes it to this, because I strongly suspect that her answers would be rather different from mine.

I was raised with the notion that gender roles were bad, and that they were part of a system that oppressed women. My teenage and early adult role models were lesbian separatists, and gender roles were part of the patriarchal system :blahblah:

From an early age, I fantasized about being spanked, and have had major crushes on authority figures. I thought that these urges were really bad, not just because of the obvious reasons, but because I was taught that any intimate relationship that was unequal was unhealthy and oppressive. I also had to come out as a femme, because I though I was internally rather girly, I felt that it was wrong to express that. It wasn't until Obsidian and I were together that I got my first dress as an adult.

So here is my order determining my personal/sexual/relational identity....1) lesbian; 2) into erotic spanking (with my first live-in girlfriend, though after we broke up, I suppressed that again...until Obsidian and I got together...and I convinced her to try it with me) 3) femme; 4) sexually submissive; 5) into dd/ttwd.

I do not know how and whether being a femme and being submissive relate, other than they are both a part of me. Now, I say I am a femme, because well...I am kind of girly, and it makes me feel good and myself to be so. In terms of practical matters...well, I actually am pretty bad at both masculine and feminine skills. Actually, I am kind of flighty...and have few practical skills at all...lol. And no, I am not showing false modesty...or putting myself down. I really don't. Luckily, I a pretty good at my profession, and have good professional skills. Obsidian, on the other hand, has a lot of practical skills. She can and has baked cookies and changed a car battery in the same day. She came out as butch during our relationship....although her personal presentation is more of a "soft butch". The only disadvantage to that was before she "came out" as butch, she would buy more feminine clothing, and would never wear them, and I would then co-opt her clothes, which I thought looked really good on me :). Now, she mostly gets fleece and plaid, which I don't "borrow"...except, the flannel, plaid shirt she likes me in, saying I look like I am wearing my boyfriend's shirt...lol.

I do not necessarily see gender role tasks and Top/bottom dynamics to have any relationship to each other. For me, household tasks and making a living are just a part of the division of labor necessary to survive, and are not really related to gender presentation or household power dynamics. I know that it is different for Obsidian though. When she was doing most of the housework, and I was more of the bread winner, she had a hard time being Dominant, and became pretty cranky, but she could talk more about that than me. I had a hard time understanding where she was coming from, because, for me, household division of labor, gender, and power dynamics are completely unrelated to each other, but I had a much different upbringing.

I think that Top/bottom is a separate orientation from the masculine/feminine orientation. I also do not think that being Dominant/submissive relationally have anything to do with how people present in other situations. I tend to be much more assertive, sometimes aggressive in public...while Obsidian is more passive and nurturing. On the other hand, it *really* does not work in our relationship if I take charge....for either of us. It turns into horrible fighting, and is miserable. It's been and is a long road for us. We are both happier when she is in charge, and I am submissive...that is pretty clear.

I don't know if this has cleared anything up...but, well, it just is how things are for Obsidian and I.
User avatar
Meg
rank 5
rank 5
 
Posts: 574
Joined: Tue Feb 08, 2011 1:59 pm
spam_b: I am a real person, not a spammer
How did you find the board?: Through a google search

Re: Gender/Gender Roles and TTWD

Postby W-Jigsaw'sBoss » Sat Mar 12, 2011 6:00 pm

It sure is interesting how ttwd rebalances power dynamics in so many relationships.
W-Jigsaw's Boss

"I am loving, firm and flexible. Kind of like Lexan."
:cheesy:
User avatar
W-Jigsaw'sBoss
Cheesy Goodness
Cheesy Goodness
 
Posts: 994
Joined: Sun Oct 14, 2007 11:22 am
Location: New Yawk!
spam_b: Still haven't tried spam musubi.
How did you find the board?: I married a(n equally) smart lady who made it.

Re: Gender/Gender Roles and TTWD

Postby Ladyinredbottom » Sun Mar 13, 2011 10:47 am

I'm going to throw a twist in here. My husband and I have a Male/Female relationship but our roles are completely opposite as you would think. My husband does the cooking,dishes,and generally cleans the house. I generally do the male oriented roles in our house. I work on our cars, take care of the yard,fix things around the house, and generally do everything that requires a lot of physical exertion.

This works for us but it attracts a lot of unwanted attention from our neighbors and friends. It's hard to tell your neighbor as your on a creeper under you car that your husband is inside doing the dishes.

The reason I'm putting this out there is that it kinda shows that it's not necessarily gender that makes one more submissive or dominant but more the personality. My husband naturally has a more submissive personality so TTWD just evens things out. :fencing:
User avatar
Ladyinredbottom
Rank 2
Rank 2
 
Posts: 54
Joined: Sun Feb 20, 2011 6:01 pm
Location: Ohio
spam_b: I am not a spammer. I am a human. As a human I do make errors. When I do my backside pays the price.
How did you find the board?: I have been looking for a site like this for awhile. I am new to domestic discipline and feel that I may need some guidance in the new lifestyle my husband and I have chosen for us

Re: Gender/Gender Roles and TTWD

Postby W-Jigsaw'sBoss » Sun Mar 13, 2011 6:25 pm

I totally agree. Gender roles are bullshit and we should each do what works for us.

OK, that's not actually what you said, but... there ya go.
W-Jigsaw's Boss

"I am loving, firm and flexible. Kind of like Lexan."
:cheesy:
User avatar
W-Jigsaw'sBoss
Cheesy Goodness
Cheesy Goodness
 
Posts: 994
Joined: Sun Oct 14, 2007 11:22 am
Location: New Yawk!
spam_b: Still haven't tried spam musubi.
How did you find the board?: I married a(n equally) smart lady who made it.

Re: Gender/Gender Roles and TTWD

Postby Meg » Sun Mar 13, 2011 7:35 pm

W

I totally agree. Gender roles are bullshit and we should each do what works for us.


I agree with your sentiment :)...but, I think that gender itself is real...and more than just biological or a patriarchal construct (Sorry, I know that you weren't really saying that...but it triggered my baggage). It's just that gender has nothing to do with what tasks people are good at.

When reading LIRB's post, I thought of my grandparents. No one could ever accuse my grandfather of being feminine in any way, or my grandmother being masculine. My grandfather was a big tough man. My favorite story about him was as follows: He owned a tavern, and a young man came with a gun, trying to rob his tavern. He took the gun out of the man's hand, saying: "What is this?!!! A gun?!!!! Get out of here!!!" and the robber left. My grandmother was and is still very cute and feminine in her mannerisms.

Anyways, my grandfather was a *far* better cook than my grandmother was and was happy to help around the house. He had absolutely no aptitude for fixing anything. My grandmother did all the handiwork in the house. My grandmother handled the money, because as she put it, "if I didn't, we would be in the poorhouse." For family dinners, my grandfather cooked, and my grandmother decorated the table (very beautifully and meticulously, I might add). They would probably have been happier if my grandfather could have been Mr. Mom, and my grandmother could have been the breadwinner...but, in that day and age, they couldn't have done that.

As far as power dynamics, I am not really sure what they did. I think that they tried to act like my grandfather was in charge, and I think that he would *try* to order her about, but she had and still has an amazing ability to sweetly agree, and do whatever she feels like anyways. I think that they mostly operated in separate spheres and stayed out of each other's way, at least by the time that I was around. According to my mom and my aunt, their relationship was stormy when they were young. I know they loved each other though, or at least, they became accustomed to each other.

I am not sure where I am going with this, or what this has to do with ttwd...but, I thought about it...so, what the heck.
User avatar
Meg
rank 5
rank 5
 
Posts: 574
Joined: Tue Feb 08, 2011 1:59 pm
spam_b: I am a real person, not a spammer
How did you find the board?: Through a google search

Re: Gender/Gender Roles and TTWD

Postby LadyShriver1 » Thu Sep 22, 2011 2:41 pm

Although I'm heterosexual, (and female), and I am submissive, I can relate to what you are all saying here. I do not for one solitary minute believe that being a woman is why I "need" discipline, nor that E is equipped to give it to me because he is a man. It happens to be the dynamic of our relationship, and honestly, being "traditional" in our dom/sub roles is what made it harder for me to embark on this journey.

Like several of the posters, I grew up believing that gender roles were BAD. I think that message was actually a very valuable part of my development into the independent person I am now. I never believed there was anything that I couldn't do because I wasn't male. The part of the message that I missed was that, it was OK to do things that are considered feminine if I did them because I wanted to, and not because I was supposed to. Therefore, I bucked a lot of my own desires because they were "feminine" and "opressed roles". Finally, I have gotten more comfortable with the idea that not having to be having feminine all the time is part of ignoring gender roles, being able to be whatever I am, even when its feminine is not contrary to my belief in equality.

Honestly, I don't even know how you would define our gender roles if you tried. I am definitely the more vocal, powerful, uh...negotiator, hehe...I rarely wear makeup and don't give a crap about my hair, I work with horses as a hobby, and I have the higher powered career. I also love to dress pretty to go out, enjoy laying my head on E's chest and being cuddled, like bubble baths, puppies, and working on my feelings. I also cook dinner, and do the dishes and laundry. But that's because I like doing all those things. And while most of those things can be classified as either "feminine" or "masculine", my life experience indicates that that's complete BS because I don't know too many modern couples who fit perfectly into any roles.

That being said: I get spanked because I asked for it and I need it, not cuz I'm "feminine" or because I'm a girl.
User avatar
LadyShriver1
Rank 3
Rank 3
 
Posts: 209
Joined: Tue Jul 19, 2011 5:59 pm
spam_b: I'm definitiely not a spammer...at least I like to think not.
How did you find the board?: google searchs

Re: Gender/Gender Roles and TTWD

Postby JigsawAnalogy » Fri Sep 23, 2011 12:11 am

LadyShriver1 wrote:That being said: I get spanked because I asked for it and I need it, not cuz I'm "feminine" or because I'm a girl.


This is it, exactly.

I wasn't raised with the notion that gender roles were bad. I mostly grew up with the expectation that the only thing men could do that women couldn't was pee standing up, and given my brothers' lack of skill with aiming, that didn't seem like much of an advantage.
User avatar
JigsawAnalogy
rank 6
rank 6
 
Posts: 2875
Joined: Sun Oct 14, 2007 9:44 am
Location: New York
spam_b: I am not a spammer, I *delete* spammers!
How did you find the board?: Hm. Well, I was poking around in my imagination, and there it was.

Re: Gender/Gender Roles and TTWD

Postby artlover » Sat Sep 24, 2011 3:02 pm

When I was in graduate school, I used to like to read some interesting takes on gender roles and feminism and the so called "feminist sex wars." I don't recall reading much about dd, though S&M was a bit of a hot topic (and probably subsumed a lot of what is not viewed as other things, like dd).

I think that Mf hetero dd would be highly objectionable to a certain strain of "radical feminist" thinker of the MacKinnon Dworkin strain of feminsim. The existence of consent would not go far to appease them, since the validity of consent to even plain old vanilla hetero relations was deemed highly problematic "under the conditions of late patriarchy" (a wonderful phrase, a satirist could not do better). Remember all that stuff about "false consciousness"? A hetero woman may think she finds her relationship fulfilling, but she would not if she really understood how it perpetuated . . . . well, whatever it was that it perpetuated (I was never clear on that point).

To this kind of thinker, the fact that lesbians might choose to be in dominant submissive relationships created theoretical issues, as some viewed these relationships as mimicking highly objectionable traditional hetero sex roles. My recollection is that some feminists viewed this as kind of a "double false consciousness" (my word this time).

My impression now is that, except perhaps in the law schools, feminist thought has largely moved on, and this kind of think now looks quaint.

In my own marriage, my wife is a highly educated, highly competent professional, and makes a little more money than I do. She is quite adept at getting her way in most matters. But I have no trouble admitting to liking the politically incorrect gender role aspect to dd.
artlover
Rank 3
Rank 3
 
Posts: 205
Joined: Sat Aug 06, 2011 3:31 pm
Location: Connecticut
spam_b: I am most certainly not a spammer
How did you find the board?: I was googling around and there you were!

Re: Gender/Gender Roles and TTWD

Postby altbob » Sun Sep 25, 2011 3:39 am

JigsawAnalogy wrote:the only thing men could do that women couldn't was pee standing up, and given my brothers' lack of skill with aiming, that didn't seem like much of an advantage.



NICE. Just, yeah. But in their defense, as girls you didn't have to have sword fights at the toilet :doh:
User avatar
altbob
Rank 4
Rank 4
 
Posts: 414
Joined: Mon Jun 20, 2011 1:51 pm
spam_b: Not to spam, or relegate one's self to the lowest dregs of net life, that is the question.
How did you find the board?: Looking up BDSM, came across DD, then TTWD, and Google lit the way.

Re: Gender/Gender Roles and TTWD

Postby LadyShriver1 » Mon Sep 26, 2011 5:27 pm

Boys, you may be able to write your name in the snow better, but according to a Nurses research article I recently read, women are 400% more likely to expereince multiple orgasm. Take that! Hehe.
User avatar
LadyShriver1
Rank 3
Rank 3
 
Posts: 209
Joined: Tue Jul 19, 2011 5:59 pm
spam_b: I'm definitiely not a spammer...at least I like to think not.
How did you find the board?: google searchs

Re: Gender/Gender Roles and TTWD

Postby altbob » Mon Sep 26, 2011 11:21 pm

Well LadyShriver, perhaps it's time we bury the hatchet and try to come to a compromise. Boys have better equipment for writing the in the snow. Girls have better penmanship (usually) . So a collaboration is necessary :lovey:


Ok, I'm in my bunker, I have my flame retardant suit, and a food and water taster. Do your worst.
:melo:
User avatar
altbob
Rank 4
Rank 4
 
Posts: 414
Joined: Mon Jun 20, 2011 1:51 pm
spam_b: Not to spam, or relegate one's self to the lowest dregs of net life, that is the question.
How did you find the board?: Looking up BDSM, came across DD, then TTWD, and Google lit the way.

Re: Gender/Gender Roles and TTWD

Postby JigsawAnalogy » Mon Sep 26, 2011 11:34 pm

That one made me laugh out loud.

Just to make up for it, and to restore my credibility, I will tell the lesbian feminist lightbulb joke, to prove I don't actually have a sense of humor.

So:

Q: How many lesbian feminists does it take to change a lightbulb?
A: That isn't funny.
User avatar
JigsawAnalogy
rank 6
rank 6
 
Posts: 2875
Joined: Sun Oct 14, 2007 9:44 am
Location: New York
spam_b: I am not a spammer, I *delete* spammers!
How did you find the board?: Hm. Well, I was poking around in my imagination, and there it was.

Re: Gender/Gender Roles and TTWD

Postby altbob » Mon Sep 26, 2011 11:37 pm

@JA - That was good! I have never heard that before. I will have to (VERY carefully) tell that to some friends of mine. Still chuckling.
User avatar
altbob
Rank 4
Rank 4
 
Posts: 414
Joined: Mon Jun 20, 2011 1:51 pm
spam_b: Not to spam, or relegate one's self to the lowest dregs of net life, that is the question.
How did you find the board?: Looking up BDSM, came across DD, then TTWD, and Google lit the way.

Re: Gender/Gender Roles and TTWD

Postby altbob » Mon Sep 26, 2011 11:59 pm

I do actually have some thoughts on this I would like to get some comments from diverse openminded people on (IE, you guys).
Please let me say these are just some ideas I am wondering about, I believe everyone has a right to do what they want as long as they leave others alone (gee, I'm a libertarian, what are the chances?).
But I tend to think of gender stereo types as a gaussian curve. Say you have a graph like this

Probability on the y axis, and stereo typical gender traits from male (0) to female (1) on the x.
I think it would look like a gaussian curve, men centered closer to male side, and women centered closer to the right. However, there would be a VAST about of overlap. And the extremes are anybodies guess. So the most male traited person may be female, and vice versa. And of course it doesn't mean everyone has to have every trait. It's more of your chances of having them. I think the Top / bottom thing applies there too. Additionally, with that, there is an aspect of relationship give and take. Even if you would naturally be neither, if your partner is one you may try out the other to see if it's ok for you.
I have a lot of stereo typical female traits. I like to crossstich. I'm very sentimental. I like story over action. Of course, seeing a lot of things blow up and bad people die can also be fun. So I certainly apply the lack of stereo type to myself as well.
As far as society versus nature, I'm actually not sure. I can see how society would influence people into certain niches. But it's also possible that society evolved that way because there were some people that fit those niches . I am IN NO WAY saying anyones place is here or there. I just mean maybe there were a lot of people of the different genders who tended to usually share traits, and people took the short cut of saying "woman equals weak, man equals being a dick" rather than trying to make a more nuanced approach.

I actually have 3 girls, and it drives me nuts when the oldest wants pink stuff. But I'm trying to let her pick stuff out. ARGH. But I'm ok. At least she seems to like video games and playing outside.

But anyway, I really hope I haven't stepped on toes, I would love to here peoples opinions on this.
User avatar
altbob
Rank 4
Rank 4
 
Posts: 414
Joined: Mon Jun 20, 2011 1:51 pm
spam_b: Not to spam, or relegate one's self to the lowest dregs of net life, that is the question.
How did you find the board?: Looking up BDSM, came across DD, then TTWD, and Google lit the way.

Re: Gender/Gender Roles and TTWD

Postby PrttyinPnk » Tue Sep 27, 2011 3:19 pm

Hey, Altbob....whats wrong with the color pink??
:insert:

I think that people are naturally good at certain roles that have, over time, become stereotypically gender specific. I'm very femme. Very very femme. But I'm also very good at some stereotypical male traits. My spouse also has masculine as well as feminine traits. I think that gender specific roles evolved as a way of being interdependent in hetero relationships. Each person in the relationship assumed a certain role...the man took over the role of provider and the woman took over the role of household supervision. It made sense, because if a woman had a child, the one with milk had to take care of it.

Things have changed, obviously. Baby care is easier, because things like formula and disposable diapers means anyone can take care of the baby. The cost of living today makes it necessary for both adults in a relationship to have a job (usually). Homosexuality is finally gaining acceptance, allowing for homosexual marriages. The old gender roles don't work for most relationships anymore, and they don't always make sense. I have a very traditional marriage (weird, huh? Don't know how that happened) My husband works and I stay home and supervise the house. But that will change ASAP (hopefully not too long.....) because its a struggle financially.

I think expectations for gender roles still exist because we all have a tendency to categorize things. One way of categorization happens to be based on gender. Its the same reason why people tend to think of boats, the moon, and cats as feminine. They don't have any distinctive female traits, they're simply categorized that way. Once we became accustomed to thinking of certain jobs or roles as male or female, they tend to stick in those categories.

Thats my 2 cents anyway
User avatar
PrttyinPnk
Rank 3
Rank 3
 
Posts: 136
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2011 11:29 pm
spam_b: I have never been asked if I was a spam bot before
How did you find the board?: Lurking on el tercer ojo (annie/mija) blog.

Next

Return to What it is that we do

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest