This is a guest post by Jim’s {Beth}.

Alternative lifestyles make some people nervous. Others believe that anyone who lives such a lifestyle must be sick, crazy, unbalanced, twisted, perverted, or even masochistic. Living a lifestyle choice such as Dominance/submission (D/s), Master/slave (M/s)—both can be considered as All or Total Power Exchange relationships (APE/TPE)— is not that different from marriage, yet society looks at them very differently. D/s or M/s are perversions. Marriage is a sacred institution. I am reminded of a quote from Larry Townsend: “ Perversion, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder.”

Everyone knows the ‘rules’ of Marriage. An M/s relationship is similar though the ‘rules’ are much stricter. When a slave meets the man she feels is her Master, she submits to him. She submits completely, she has no will of her own. She lives at her Master’s whim. Everything she does, from the basics of eating and sleeping to schooling, work or a career is at his discretion. A slave lives, for one thing, to please her Master, which is her first priority. All other needs come secondary to that.

There are fundamental differences between a wife and a slave. As a wife, a woman enjoys certain rights. Some of those rights are her ability to make decisions without obligatory concern of what her husband might think or feel. She does not necessarily worry about how her decision might reflect upon his desires or the effect her actions may have upon the relationship. Slaves only make decisions when permitted. However, the difference is the slave always thinks of the repercussions of any decision. Wives, on the other hand, do not have to think ahead to what the repercussions may be; they just deal with it when or if it occurs.

Many M/s relationships mirror the marriages of the eras before 1960, and those that are often the strongest in today’s society are the 'throw-backs' to that way of life. In those marriages, the wife did and does think first, about what the consequences will be. Even the Bible states a wife should be subservient to her husband, that her husband is “Her Lord and Master”. If the roles in today’s relationships were as clearly defined as they were in marriages before the sexual revolution of the 60’s and the value systems in M/s relationships that carry through to today, there could possibly be less divorce in this country. Marriages would have a strong foundation and value structure ensuring, commitment, trust, and longevity.

A slave always thinks first about what the consequences of her actions will be. A slave is her Master's property, with that submits to him, and surrenders to her Master's will and rule, absolute and unconditional. Everything she says or does is a reflection upon him. The slave has no rights. The Master has the rule and responsibility. A slave's only purpose is to serve and please her Master. The Master may do with his slave and property as he wishes.

In today’s atmosphere, having an overtly submissive wife is not considered ‘politically correct’. It is thought of by many as abuse to encourage submission in a partner. However, in many societies outside of this country, it is still very much the 'norm' to have such a marriage. In this country, before the 60's and 70's, wives behaved much as a slave does in our world today. The husband was 'King of the castle', and to flout that authority was so looked down upon, that the community as a whole tended to promote submission in women. I mean that women tended to help each other learn to submit, teaching to new wives what their 'duties' were during the day as their husbands worked. Many wives learned at the feet of their mothers, aunts, and grandmothers what submitting to the head of the house meant, and accepted that as how things 'should be'.

After the sexual revolution of the 60's and 70's, wives came to believe that to behave that way somehow made them 'less' in the eyes of society and changed the way they acted.

So, what happened? Society, through advertising, literature, and the rise of the women's movement seemed to tell women that it was wrong to

be submissive, or that to be submissive was weak. That it is somehow abusive to give over that authority willingly, that they should fight to be in control.

The slave, like the wife, enters into the relationship consensually, but cannot leave it as easily as a wife can leave should abuse occur. Abuse happens more and more often in marriages today, still, society looks at it differently. Most consider anyone living an M/s lifestyle a victim, or an abuser. Abuse can occur in M/s relationships, as with anywhere, there are people who take advantage of others they see as weak. Many slaves can tell horror stories of meeting numerous predators before being able to establish an acceptable healthy M/s relationship.

The slave must choose her Master wisely. She must inspect the man and his traits and Mores and or value system in depth. Then she will contemplate if she can indeed give her total submission and unconditional surrender to this Man, and serve him to the best of her ability within the perimeters set by the Master. It is the Master’s character, and value system that is most important, not the detailed service requirements, as they might change at the Masters will, at any time. Very few wives have such strict perimeters in their relationship with their husbands and do not have to contemplate these issues in such detail before marriage if at all. Could this perhaps be another reason domestic abuse is so prevalent in marriages, and divorce rates are so high?

The only recourse that a slave has once she has committed herself to her Master as his slave and property is to ask or beg her Master for release.

“There are, of course, exceptions to the rule. If a Master continually does "harm" to his slaves in a way, such as with substance abuse, or mental illness, this might indeed constitute "abuse", even within an M/s relationship. The emphasis here must lie on the Master’s intention, or "non-intention" for that matter. The slave can and should of course leave should abuse occur.”

Slavery in today’s society is consensual, and slaves living in established M/s relationships are rarely abused. They choose carefully. Perhaps, wives, today should take a few lessons from their sisters in bondage, rather than look down upon them. Long ago, they were the same. Many wives today seem to have forgotten that.

(Quotes from Slavery by slave David)

Beth met her Master online over 8 years ago, and after moving across the country to live with him in 2003 has worn his collar ever since. Her Master requires living a D/s relationship with the focus on personal development and service. She sees her submission to him as a continual journey of growth and adaptation to his needs. Email any comments to her at: hadespeka@jprdesign.com