Lucky in Love… or just stubborn?

red symbols of love

With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, I am in the mood to talk about love and how Master Jason and I view it. I am often told that I am lucky to have found someone like Master Jason. I am asked how I managed to find such a great guy and what advice can I give to others so they can find their own great guys. The truth isn’t pretty though and I don’t have any simply answers to give.

To be fair, you only get to see half of what goes on behind closed doors. We aren’t perfect. We fight more than we want to admit, we say horrible things to each other sometimes, and we lose our tempers. I’d love to say we both put each other first more than anything else and that’s what makes us work, but that’s not always true. Sometimes I’m selfish and lots of times he’s selfish. It’s hard work, tons of compromise and a truck load of forgiveness, even if we feel let down and betrayed. Hell there are times where I wonder why the fuck I’m with him and I’m sure he feels the same. What honestly keeps us together though is our belief that all of this work we’ve poured into the relationship will pay off… and somehow it does.

I’ve been sick recently (food poisoning) and as a result I’ve been watching nothing but sappy romance movies and getting annoyed with them. Love is weird. It’s fun and loopy and butterflies in your stomach for about half a year…. and then it transforms into the kind of love that picks up socks without saying anything to the sock-dropper. It turns into understanding that sometimes espresso is better than an apology. It becomes the tiny moments of breathing deep and counting to twenty before continuing a conversation. Love is knowing that you’ve gone too far but it’s too early to say you’re sorry because the other person needs half an hour to cool off. Love is realizing that you’re too tired to start over and that it’s actually easier to keep working at the garden you’ve already planted, even if you’re sick of the sun and tired of dirt under your nails.

I still have moments where I look at Master Jason and feel like my heart is so full of love that it’s going to burst, but to be perfectly honest, I rarely feel butterflies with him anymore. I’m not lucky in love. I work hard to keep us going, he works just as hard to remind me why we’re together in the first place. Sometimes it’s easy, and some days it’s the hardest thing we’ve had to do in a long time… we’re partners, through and through. We give, we take, we talk things through, especially after a fight.  If we want those sappy moments romance movies have, we have to discuss it ahead of time and then work to make them happen. I’m the hopeless romantic in the relationship and he’s the realist. I have grand plans of what could happen and when it doesn’t turn out the way I imagined it would, he’s there to catch me and lower me slowly to the solid ground of reality. In turn, I help him to see the world through the eyes of a dreamer. It’s not Hollywood movie love and it’s not always perfect all the time. For those of you watching us, remember that you’re watching from a distance. I choose what you will or won’t see. I write it up and decide what words to use where. I try not to hide much from you all, but at the same time, I choose not to share every little detail either. True love isn’t something that just happens, it’s something that you have to work at, a lot.  In my opinion, true love isn’t really love so much as it’s stubborn determination not to give up and an almost insane obsession with hard work that might not pay off the way you wanted it to.

I think it’s important to keep that in mind as you read through my blog posts. We’re not lucky in love. We’re hard workers who are determined to make this relationship work just as hard as we do. We may not have Hollywood’s version of love, but we don’t want that version either. It’s overrated and far too fake for my tastes. I want reality. I actually like the dirt and hard work part of our version of love. I enjoy watching something I work on grow and change and blow my expectations out of the water. I don’t like giving up and I hate feeling like a failure so when that temptation knocks on my door, I change courses and think about what I need to do to keep us going. I’m sure Master Jason does the same. We make sacrifices for each other, for our children and for the relationship. We choose to stay together through thick and thin (and over the holidays there was a lot of thin)!

To us, love isn’t just a romantic dinner or great sex or how easily we “click” with each other. For Master Jason and I, love is deeper than that. It’s choosing to make dinner every night, even when you are sick of cooking. It’s not complaining about the socks on the floor two feet from the laundry basket. Love is staying within the budget, even when those shoes you’ve been eyeing for months go on sale. It’s admitting that I’m wrong and then apologizing for it. (And I hate being wrong almost as much as I hate apologizing for it). For Master Jason, love is turning off a video game so that we can talk about something that’s important to me. It’s giving me back massages even though he doesn’t really enjoy doing that. It’s learning how to word criticism in a way that doesn’t sound like an insult (like when dinner isn’t that great or my writing needs a little work).

When he’s agitated or frustrated by something, I know that a latte will help improve his mood. When I’m upset, he knows a shoulder rub will improve mine. I like where we are now. I enjoy watching our love mature and grow with us, even if it does seem to take more work now than it did in the beginning. We have our ups and our downs. Some may say we have periods of falling back in love and then out of love with each other, but honestly I think that’s just healthy. It’s not fun 100% of the time and it’s not always easy, but that’s okay. Working through those times is what makes us so great together. It’s not that we’re lucky in love, it’s that we are willing to stubbornly work through the bad times and then gracefully enjoy the good times we have together.

We’re not just lucky, we’re stubborn too, and I think it’s important that my readers realize it too. What you see on my blog is not the product of a couple who hit the love jackpot. It’s the product of hard work and effort from a couple who fell in love and is choosing to remain in love, even when it takes work.

–Autumn Lokerson

Being on the Other Side of Our Open-Relationship (Master Jason has a date)

Young couple in love walking in the autumn park holding hands lo

Every few months Master Jason and I sit down and discuss our relationship as a whole. We talk about the BDSM side of things, the open-relationship, parenting and anything else that comes to mind. It is important to both of us that we set aside time to really discuss the details and discuss ways we can improve, rules we can get rid of and how we’re doing emotionally with all the different aspects of our marriage. As a result of our talks, I have decided to go back to school. This is something I’ve been wanting to do for a while, but wasn’t sure I could balance a full time school schedule along with everything else going on in our lives.

I have had three partners outside of our marriage, but until recently, Master Jason has not had even one. Another thing that came out during our most recent discussion was my concern over our open-marriage. We’ve been in an open relationship for about three years now, but due to his hours at work, there hasn’t been a whole lot of room for Master Jason to establish, build and create a relationship of any kind. I told him that he should just join one of the many dating websites in the area. At first he declined because he really isn’t as social as I am and he was just so tired at the end of his workdays that all he wanted to do was come home to me and the kids and hang out with us.

I told Master Jason that if he wants to close up the relationship and be monogamous again, I’m fine with it. I explained that I was concerned merely because I feel like it’s not exactly fair for me to have plenty of time to explore the open side of our marriage while he has no extra time at all. He said that he likes us being open and he hates that he doesn’t have time to meet people. He and I are not the kind of people to just randomly pick someone up at a bar or club. Hell, we rarely go to bars and clubs. I suggested that he allow me to create a profile for him on OK Cupid because I have heard that they are fairly well known for poly and open relationships like ours. He gave me permission to set up his profile. We share an office, so if any questions about the profile I was making for him came up, all I had to do was ask. This allowed us to have the entire profile and over 100 questions finished in less than an hour. By the end of the day, he already had seven messages from seven different women. I had made sure to make it clear that he is married and that he is not scoping out women purely for sex or a threesome with his wife, but an actual friendship/relationship of some kind. Not that there’s anything wrong with casual sex, but we are both extremely picky when it comes to people we’re willing to sleep with.

I still have access to his profile, which helps him out because I play the role of his secretary at times and will let him know that he has a message waiting in his inbox. We try very hard to keep our communication as open and honest as we can. If he wants to have a more private conversation with someone, he uses his email address or various messaging services, and I do the same. If either of us asked to see those messages though, we wouldn’t have a problem sharing them because, again, we’re working hard to keep our communication as open and honest as it possibly can be, too.

Last weekend he had a date with one of the women he has been talking with for a while now. This was not their first date so Master Jason and I discussed everything we could think of before this particular date. I knew, from things he had shared with me, that the chance of sex that night was a high possibility. I made sure he had condoms, he made sure to let me know exactly where they would be and promised to text me if he thought it was going well enough that he would be out for the night. I think I was more nervous than he was, which makes sense because I wouldn’t be on the date and I had not been talking to this woman for as long as he had been. In fact, I hadn’t talked to her at all yet. I was comfortable with him going on dates with her purely because of how open Master Jason has been with what they talk about, and with sharing their messages with me.

I was not prepared for the random bout of jealousy I got when he texted me that he was most definitely spending the night out. A lot of emotions ran through me. I kept telling myself that I had set this whole thing into motion. I reminded myself that it was me who suggested the open-relationship to start with, and it was my idea to create a dating profile for him. I know that jealousy is a symptom of a bigger issue, but I couldn’t put my finger on what exactly that issue was. We had discussed everything and I was completely comfortable with this, so why was I feeling jealous and angry? Needless to say, I did not sleep very well that night.

When Master Jason called me the next morning, I was still in a grumpy mood. I was polite on the phone with him and eager to see him, but I was also trying to keep down the new rush of negative emotions that I felt bubbling up inside of me. He suggested we go to breakfast and then hang out for a little bit to talk. The last thing I wanted to hear was “we should talk” from him. My worst fears started creating images in my head. The voice of doubt tried to convince me he was leaving me for this new person and I struggled to shut it up. By the time I arrived at the restaurant we had chosen for breakfast, I was a hot mess. I didn’t say anything and I am sure the smile I gave him was fairly wobbly. He could instantly tell that I was struggling with my emotions so he did most of the talking. He said he loved me and that last night had not changed that, in fact it had confirmed just how much he loves me. He told me (in detail) about what happened and how it had gone. He sounded so relieved when he told me just how much he enjoys sex with me that I couldn’t help but laugh.

“Why do you say that?” I asked, feeling a little better.

“Well, you never fake it. Ever. And I know exactly what to do to make you orgasm as often as I want. With this girl, it was clear she was trying to fake a few orgasms and it got to the point where I just gave up and let her. I told her later that I don’t appreciate it when the woman I am with fakes an orgasm. I get off on her getting off, and when I am denied that, it’s hard for me to enjoy it too.”

I take a serious amount of pride in knowing that he didn’t have quite as much fun as he thought he would. I even started to feel kind of bad for the woman he was with that night. I suggested that maybe she was just really nervous and it was causing her to second guess everything, but she wanted him to know she was having fun and the only way she could do that was to pretend to orgasm, or try and make it sound like she was having as much fun as someone in that situation normally has. I asked how many partners she had been with previously. I asked what techniques he tried and suggested other things that I particularly enjoy that she might enjoy. As we talked, I realized I was trying to help him get her to reach a genuine orgasm instead of feeling the slightest bit of jealousy. This made me laugh again, with relief.

I made a point to let him know how loved I felt because he had asked me to breakfast, not her. I let him know that it was extremely insightful of him to know that I would need time to adjust and that I would need a reminder that I was still his Alpha-mate. He said “When you answered the phone and sounded polite but standoffish, I knew that you were struggling with this. When you showed up and looked like you might burst into tears at the drop of a hat, I knew I needed to reassure you of my love for you.” It’s the small things he observes and reacts to that remind me why I fell in love with him in the first place.

It has been a week since he went out with her, and he does plan on going out with her again, but not before I get to meet her. Tomorrow we are going to brunch together, all three of us. I’m nervous again, and I’m dealing with little bouts of fear and jealousy, but now I know that I really am okay with this side of the open-relationship. I know that I want this, even though it kind of scares me. I know that monogamy is just not my cup of tea, and that if I’m going to be non-monogamous, then I need to let go of my religious up-bringing and ignore the voice in my head that tries to lie to me. I know that Master Jason loves me and I know that we are a power-couple many people are intimidated by. I know that our relationship is sturdy and that I am secure in this relationship. It’s just going to take some time to adjust to the idea of him dating and sleeping with other women. I’m still anxious, but it’s more like being anxious for a big test. I’ve known about this test for a while now, and I’ve studied for it as much as I possibly can, all I have to do is take the test. I’m certain I will pass. If going back to school has taught me anything at all, it’s that I am a very good student and that I bend over backwards to make sure I am getting the absolute best grade I can get. I do the same thing in my relationship with Master Jason. I research, I think, I write down my emotions and I dig through them to make sure I’m being honest with myself so that I can be honest with him. I know what to expect and I know what doubts will pop in my head. I know that he demands a recent copy of STD test results before he does anything with someone else, just as I do when I am dating someone. It’s just safe. I know that he uses condoms every time, just as I do. I know what to expect, and we are as prepared as we’ll ever be for the “what if’s” that will come up.

Overall this entire experience has confirmed what I already knew: Open-relationships are NOT for everyone. They take more work and a hell of a lot more communication than any other relationship I’ve ever been in. They require absolute honesty and open communication or they simply won’t work. I feel better prepared to advise others in their relationships now, too. (Which is great, because I get asked relationship advice fairly often). I know that this is the right relationship for Master Jason and I and even though it’s a little scary from time to time, I can honestly say that just this one night he had out has already brought us so much closer. I’m constantly telling him how much closer I feel to him now and how weird that feels because so many other people told me I would feel differently. I look forward to whatever life brings us around the next river bend (yes, that’s a Pocahontas reference).

I still have some issues I need to work through, but I’m honest with myself about what those are and realistic enough to know they won’t go away completely. With each new girl Master Jason dates, I’ll probably feel a bit of nerves, but ultimately I rest in the knowledge that I want this and am extremely happy with how things are going.

A quick update before I end this post: I do plan on writing another blog post over the weekend, and since one of my classes has already ended, I will have more time to write (or so the hope goes) and I apologize for being away from my blog for so very long. I am enrolled in college part time and it tends to take up a lot more time than I thought it would, but hopefully, now that things are starting to feel normal, I can schedule in some actual writing time. My book is on hold again though, mostly because I’m learning so many awesome things about writing styles that I am timid at trying to finish it right now. My plan is to continue being a part time student for a few years and then finally graduate with my AA and go to a four year college for my BA. I want to take my time because the four year colleges I am eyeing are out of our current city and I don’t want to move the kids to a new city and new schools in the middle of their high school lives. (They’re currently both in middle school). All in all, I think I feel so happy lately because not only am I working on bettering myself (in so many ways) but I have a plan, a backup plan and even a backup plan for my backup plan. Lol. Life is pretty good right now. I almost feel bad for saying that because it’s always been good, but I had no idea how much better it could be. I think I am secretly waiting for the other shoe to drop and the world to flip on its head and freak me out. I’m sure I’ll have bad days, we all do, but right now I believe that I am going to be just fine. I’m loved, I’m in love and I’m succeeding with all of my responsibilities. For that, I will always have something to be proud of and something to look forward to.

As always, you all are welcome to comment, ask questions or make requests. You can either do that below, or you can email me. I’ll respond when I have the time and can give your questions/comments the attention they deserve. You can also find me on Facebook (though I recently uninstalled the mobile app) here:

–Autumn Lokerson

The Honorable Thing To Do

Wedding Contract

I was all prepared to write a vent blog post. I even had a title picked out “Don’t Interrupt Me When I’m Gaming…” a blog dedicated to how many ways Master has made me feel inadequate and worthless this past week. A blog based on sleep exhaustion, over sensitivity and something that I am to blame for (at least 50% of the blame is on my own shoulders.)

I even did a web search about how “alone and worthless” I’ve felt in the past few weeks as a stay at home wife and mother. I read random blogs, quotes, articles about how many women feel like they aren’t respected and loved and how their husbands make them feel worthless. Most of these stories centered around women with young children who were pregnant and willing to admit they were also hormonal.

I even dragged out my favorite “show me more love” song by Kenny Rogers (Buy me a rose). I sat in my bed, crying about how worthless I feel and listening to the song on repeat… and as I sat there feeling sorry for myself, I noticed the state of the bedroom. I noticed the dirty clothes on the floor. I remembered how I had to jump out of bed this morning, throw on a robe and go find Master a fresh, clean towel. I remembered that he asked me three days ago to make sure he had clean socks (and I remember tasking my daughter to do the laundry because I didn’t feel like doing anything extra for Master.)

I forced myself to think of the song from his point of view. The lyrics start out with “He works hard to give her all he thinks she wants…” and continues with a short list of all the things he’s bought her, provided for her, done for her. And yet, all the woman in the song wants is more time with him. A call from him while he’s at work, flowers for the hell of it and not because he’s wronged her somehow, and for him to open doors for her. It’s a good song, but the message I found myself hearing this time was not “Buy me a rose because I need to be reminded that you love me”. The message I heard today (again while trying to feel sorry for myself and wallow in my misery) was “Look at all the things Master does for you. He is trying to show you he loves you, even if it’s not in the way you want him to.”

I started looking for a parody version of the song, or the male equivalent for it where the man puts it back on the woman. (Maybe something like “Make me a sandwich” lol). But there wasn’t one (at least not one that I found in the short three minutes I dedicated to looking for a parody). I changed search topics and started looking for “Ways to show my husband I respect him”.

That’s when I came across this blog post titled Your Husband Doesn’t Have to Earn Your Respect. Talk about an eye opener. Two things Matt says in this post almost jumped off the page at me:

“You don’t marry someone to give them what they deserve. In marriage, you give them what you’ve promised them, even when they aren’t holding up their end of the bargain.” (Emphasis added)

“If a wife parcels out her respect on some sort of reward system basis, the husband has nothing to strive for. As her respect for him diminishes, so too does his motivation to behave respectably. If respect is wielded like a ransom against him, he will grow more isolated and distant.” (Emphasis again added by me)

Matt makes an excellent point. Here I am, wallowing in tears and (at this point) self-hate, pointing out my own flaws and trying to blame Master for them (not doing laundry, passing off simple chores I can do to children when I know the girls won’t do them properly or efficiently, waiting for Master to come in and ask what’s wrong so I can berate him about how crappy of a job he’s doing in showing me he loves me, etc. and yet I can’t ignore the small voice in my head saying “And what have you done lately to show him how much you respect him? How appreciative you are for the 100+ hours he puts into his job to make sure ends meet? When is the last time I went out of my way for him even when I thought he didn’t deserve it?

Oh don’t get me wrong, I’ve gone out of my way for him… but usually it’s because I want something in return, and I want it instantly. I will happily make Master a cup of espresso…. if he gives me a back massage first. I’ll offer to do something nice for him… if he does something nice for me first. I wasn’t giving him what I promised him simply because I made a promise. I was trading favors with him. “I’ll scratch your back if you scratch mine, but only if you scratch mine first.”

I bitch at him because I don’t feel appreciated. I make him feel like crap for stupid little things I think he did wrong, or said incorrectly. I am 100% guilty of twisting his words (even compliments) and making them seem like he was insulting me, hurting me, or trying to make me feel small. When I really get going, I can easily ignore all the things he does for me, for our children, for this house and I have hawk-like eyesight when it comes to anything that he does that might possibly be bad.

The beginning of Matt’s blog goes like this:

“I can’t tell you where I was or who was there or when it happened. I don’t want to add to this guy’s humiliation, so I am keeping this vague and generic. I can simply tell you that, some time ago, I found myself in the same vicinity as another married couple.

I certainly can’t read their minds, and I don’t know what goes on behind the scenes, all I know is that the husband couldn’t seem to utter a single phrase that wouldn’t provoke exaggerated eye-rolling from his wife.

She disagreed with everything he said.

She contradicted nearly every statement.

She even nagged him.

She brought up a “funny” story that made him out to be incompetent and foolish. He laughed, but he was embarrassed.

She was gutting him right in front of us. Emasculating him. Neutering him. Damaging him.
It was excruciating.

It was tragic.”

And here I am, doing exactly that to my husband.

I found myself crying again, but this time it wasn’t in self-pity, it was in self-disgust. I like to think that I am better than some people, that I treat my husband, my Master better than “those vanilla wives” would ever treat their men. I like to think I am above certain attitudes and issues… but here I am, just as guilty as the woman in Matt’s post.

And what makes it worse (in my opinion anyway) is that I am not only his wife, I am his submissive. I want to think of myself as an example to other submissives, and hopefully a good one. I like to believe that I am the person other women look to for lessons on how to be a better submissive, a better wife, a better person. Maybe I’m fooling myself, maybe not, but I do not like being reminded that I am just as flawed as everyone else. I don’t like pointing the finger inward and realizing that I am making mistakes. What I hate even more is having to admit when I am wrong. (I don’t mind being wrong, but having to admit that I am wrong… that’s painful.)

How will I handle this reminder? By trying to remember that I make mistakes too, and that’s okay… but it’s really only okay if I work to correct those mistakes. It’s not enough to admit that I am in the wrong here. (And yes, Master has done some things and said some things that hurt my feelings too, but there’s two of us in this relationship and I cannot, should not, allow him to take all of the blame here.) If I am serious about changing, if I want to be this person I think I am to my fans, I absolutely must make a point to change my behavior, my actions and my words. Even if (and especially when) I don’t think Master deserves my respect, I want to give it to him. Not because he earned it, but because I promised it to him.

When I made my marriage vows, when I wrote up our D/s contract and submitted to him, I made promises. I wrote out rules that I promised I would live by. I write blog posts, fan pages and tweets about what an awesome submissive I am and how much I do for Master… but these are things I choose to do for myself as much as for him. And if I really look hard in the mirror, I can see the facade I’ve created and started to buy into.

I am not perfect. I make mistakes. I have made fun of Master in front of his friends at his expense. I have gone out of my way to say things I know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that are intended to leave emotional scars. If Master is isolating himself from me by playing video games, if I feel that he is growing distant and uninterested, I can’t help but wonder how much of that is partly my fault.

I have a lot more emotional growing to do than I thought I would at this age. (31, in case you’re wondering)

So what’s my plan now? To end this blog post, go to Master, get on my knees and apologize and then to do some laundry.

I’m sure I will fail him again, I am equally sure he will fail me at times too, but maybe, just maybe, I can learn from this mistake and work to make sure I keep up my end of the bargain more often, even when he drops the ball. It’s the honorable thing to do.


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