How We Live a Successful Female-Led Relationship
And why you should consider it too
I live a female-led relationship (FLR) with my husband. This means we have a marriage where we have agreed that I have the authority; I am the head of the household. The final decisions are mine and my leadership extends to every aspect of our marriage. Note, I say we have agreed. I may be the boss, but this was a joint decision.
A FORMAL FEMALE LED RELATIONSHIP
Our FLR has a certain formality. We have agreed that I am the head of the home and I set the rules. My husband remains at home and is responsible for the housework, cooking and all household tasks. This doesn't necessarily mean that he does every chore, I often decide to help out or do the cooking. It's just the default position.
Our relationship is a reversal of so-called traditional roles. That shouldn't be so unusual these days, however, we go much further than this. My husband recognises me as the leader. His leader. Our relationship has a clear hierarchy.
Although our relationship appears to go against the social norms, it works very well for us, even though on the face of it, it seems one-sided. How then do we make it work?
THE BENEFITS OF AN FEMALE LEADERSHIP
We have discovered that the benefits of this type of arrangement are immense for both parties in terms of relationship harmony, well-being and increased affection. These are some of the benefits we have uncovered:
- The man is released from the social pressures of being what a man is expected to be. Society expects males to show leadership, decision making and responsibility. My husband is more than happy for me to lead.
- Disagreements are reduced. There is no power struggle as control is in the female's hands.
- There is increased attention to each other's needs. The woman receives a level of attention and focus on her needs that is often missing in traditional marriages and relationships. Men are looked after and cared for by their female leader in a way they never experience in other relationships.
- The man is able to drop the mask of masculinity and be free to show their more tender and caring side, a side they often bottle up. They can ask for help and guidance from their female partner and leader.
- The asymmetric nature of the female-led relationship allows the partners to express their thoughts and feelings more openly. There are fewer secrets or hidden desires.
- Women who like to lead, such as me, are free to do so without restrictions or power struggles with their partner.
What I get, as the woman, is love, adoration and worship. My needs are considered and put first by my husband. That doesn't mean it's just about me, but that my husband puts my happiness first in his thoughts and actions. And that works for him too. At the same time, my husband's happiness is vital to me. He is free in ways that males performing the traditional expectations of a male role are not.
When the female leader returns home after a day in the office, she gets a clean and tidy home, a meal and a pretty husband waiting expectantly for her. What's not to like?
THE INHERENT DANGERS OF AN FLR
It's fair to say that there is an undercurrent of fetish to a female-led relationship. That said, day to day we live by our code: I am in charge and my husband is not.
A real-life FLR should never be just a male fantasy game. That is the first danger of an FLR, that it is really all about the male. All too often I receive emails from a husband asking me how he can persuade his wife to agree to his fantasy. What's in it for her, I always ask? They have rarely thought about that.That's not an FLR then, but a male fetish game.
Secondly, it's not about a woman treating the husband as her personal slave. An overbearing woman could take advantage of a weaker partner leading to abuse.
A husband in an FLR is not a slave but a partner. Not an equal partner of course, but a partner nonetheless. One who has accepted his submissive role and actively desires it. The woman should ensure she doesn't try to change her husband's interests too much either. It's not a prison sentence, in fact, quite the opposite.
Thirdly, the pressures of the woman always being in charge can be stressful. We have overcome this by agreeing the rules of our FLR and letting it run that way.
Fourth, we have to be careful around the social stigma of our FLR. We don't show the extent of our lifestyle to our friends and family. We disguise it to some extent. I don't openly order my husband or use his female first name or pet names. For instance, I use dear or darling instead.
An FLR relationship should be enjoyable for both, even one where one of us is the boss. It is a lifestyle choice for both parties who must always remain aware of the dangers in this type of relationship.
HOW TO KEEP THE FLR ALIVE
It can be easy to slip back into traditional type unless you set rules and have visible markers. We have therefore agreed on various ways to cement the relationship differential and relative positions in our marriage. And we have fun with it.
We use naming and adjectives as one way to reinforce our relationship hierarchy. My husband usually addresses me as Mistress or Madam, although my first name is acceptable in some situations too or Mistress Alexa. On the other hand, I have assigned him a cute female first name, Alice, which is one way I address him. I will also use pet names such as Princess, Girly, and Sissy with feminine adjectives such as pretty and cute. I refer to him as a she.
This appears odd at first, but we have found that it works because it helps to cement the relationship type we have chosen to follow. We found that the level of FLR we live is difficult if my husband uses my first name or a cute pet name for me. Equally, using his given strong male first name would break the ambience of our relationship type.
I have taken his feminisation aspect much further. I insist that, at home, my husband be either feminised or naked. That is to say, when dressed, she wears skirts or dresses, make-up and female jewellery. I insist on her body hair being removed and for her to undergo what would be considered female beauty regimes: nail care, hair products, creams and female perfumes.
Once the male takes on the traditional 'housewife' role in a successful female led relationship, the previous male/female norms have to change. Now it's the man who has to look pretty, attractive and sexy for his woman. The traditional housewife role remains, but it is now the man who performs it.
Feminisation is not necessarily part of an FLR. In the more standard versions a man will just ensure he looks attractive for his lady as a male. At the other end of the scale, where my husband and I are, I believe that feminisation and/or exposure are fundamental. Men can't be macho while wearing a pleated mini skirt and being called Pretty Princess. This approach works very well.
It all adds to the leader/submissive dynamic. And it's damn good fun. It adds a spark to things.
ITS NOT ALWAYS PERFECT, BE PREPARED FOR BUMPS IN THE ROAD
Transferring power to the woman has an amazing effect in reducing tensions and arguments in a relationship. Note, I said reduce not eliminate. Expect some disagreements and some bumps in the road as in any relationship. It's just that there will be far fewer. The agreements and level of female leadership need to be agreed and clearly understood before embarking on such an endeavour.
If you're a man reading this with excitement, be careful what you wish for. In a real FLR, you will be the one who primarily cooks, cleans, irons, washes and does the housework. You'll get fed up with that. It's not always fun but a chore.
Maybe the male will staying home with the kids, if they're still young. He may even still work on top of all this. Welcome to the old world for women. It's the man's lifestyle now in an FLR. It comes with the territory.
As a couple in a relationship, you must always respect each other's boundaries or the FLR won't function and resentment occurs. For example, I'm a much more open and accepting person regarding all manner of things, including different ways of living and types of relationship. But, my husband is not so we only go as far as she is comfortable with.
A woman in an FLR shouldn't have to make all the decisions 24 hours a day. So within the loose set of rules we live by (the one that says I'm in ultimately in charge and she is feminised), my husband has freedom. She can choose what food to buy or cook unless I ask for something particular. She lives withing our pre-agreed boundaries.
She can choose what clothes to wear, as long as it is within the confines of my house rules that she wears a skirt or a dress at home and female undergarments at all times. I don't want to be choosing her clothes every morning. She can, for example, watch what TV she wants or listen to what music she wants without needing to ask for my permission.
The lower levels of an FLR are probably acceptable to the outside world. How many times have you heard the expression "she wears the trousers in that marriage." It's when you go the the other extreme, as we have done, that an FLR can maybe become a problem to others. Especially when you link your FLR with my husband's feminisation as I have done. So this is another boundary, but this time with the outside world.
None of our friends who live this lifestyle have come out to the wider world. All, including us, disguise it in public to some extent. This can be extremely frustrating, but how you present to the world needs to be addressed if you are to live in a successful FLR.
As a couple in a relationship, you need to respect the boundaries of each other and with others or it wont work. I'm a much more open and accepting person for different sexualities and types of relationships, clearly. But, my husband and most others are not quite so ready, so we only go as far as she is comfortable with. To be honest, regarding others, I would not worry if my husband wasn't worried about presenting as a feminised submissive to the outside world. But she is, so we don't do it.
A FEMALE-LED RELATIONSHIP IS A BALANCE
Men in an FLR need to remember that their wife is not there to play out their fantasies. They have to respect her desires and needs too. She will probably not want to be the leather-bound dominatrix of fantasies, but just someone who enjoys making the choices and being respected. This is a real-life FLR, respect the rules you've both agreed to.
For women, you need to ensure you don't get too bossy and demanding. It's difficult, I know. I'm naturally bossy so I have to curb my instincts. A little. Despite being in an FLR, you'll still need to make sure your husband buys into any new ideas you want to introduce. Try to spot the difference between his initial reluctance where it's fine to push further, and his red lines.
And finally, both parties in the FLR should remember one thing. An FLR is enormous fun too. Yes there is that fetish zing to it all. It's great to play that out too. It's a great lifestyle. Maybe you should consider it too.
Alexa Martinez lives an FLR with her husband in London. She is an author and blogger on female-led relationships. She writes under the pen name of Lady Alexa. Check out her blog at www.ladyalexauk.com or her novels on Amazon.