Monday, June 28, 2004

I got a note from a guy recently who said some very nice things about me and my column, and then said he wanted to…

…ask you for advice. I know it's the classic scenario, but how can I get my vanilla wife to be more interested in the D/s lifestyle? She knows my sexual interests - which aren't even very extreme, just spanking and bondage. We have open and honest communication together - when I openly and honestly communicate what I want to do, she openly and honestly says, "No."

Well, that sucks, and you do have my sympathy. I've had partners who didn't share my sexual interests, and it's a problem. But unfortunately, there isn't a single thing you can do to make someone be turned on by something if they're not. You can't argue or reason or persuade someone into being kinky. If you really whine about it a whole lot, you may be able to nag her into grudgingly tying you up or spanking you. And believe me, that will exactly as exciting as it sounds. Resentful pity-fucks – oooh, that's sexy! Not.

You will not change your wife's sexual makeup. (She may choose to change herself, but you have no control over that process, and it doesn't sound that that's going to happen anytime soon.) So you have three options. You can a) stay with your wife and reconcile yourself to not getting your kinky desires satisfied, b) stay with your wife and get your kinky desires met elsewhere, either with or without her knowledge and permission, or c) you can get divorced and seek a kinky partner.

I'm not telling you what you should do – I'm just laying out your choices. But according to your email, you're rather young, younger than many people when they marry for the first time. Giving up on a chunk of your sexual desires at your age – well, I can't imagine anyone doing that without building up a whole lot of resentment towards their partner for it. That's poison to a relationship. If you think it would be hard to negotiate with your partner about your extra-curricular kink options now, just wait another ten years. It'll be even harder. The same goes for splitting up entirely.

I have a slip of paper from a Chinese fortune cookie taped to my computer monitor. It's been there since I was in the middle of separating from my husband. I was eating dinner with Miss K, and waffling about the relationship, and I opened the cookie and read this fortune: "Make up your mind and do what you want to do."

Not a very complex statement, but somehow it spoke to me. I read it as, "Matisse, stop trying to do what you think you ought to do, and do what you know is the right thing for you." I went ahead with the divorce, which was the best choice for me.

I'm not telling you that you should dump your wife – I don't know. But I think if you examine yourself very closely, at some deep level you know what you need to do. You'll have to examine your own mind and see what's the most important to you, and then talk to your wife about that. I wish you luck…

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