On July 5, 2014, I wrote about my initial thoughts before our monthly MAsT Metro NY meeting on the topic of “What Do You Want from Your Relationship”, but until now I haven’t completed my follow up. I’ve decided to stop waiting for all my thoughts to be “perfect” and to dig into what are the most important things I need from a relationship and to write it down. I sat here about 10 minutes and told myself focus, stop being distracted by frivolous web pages, “put pen to paper” and instead of being overwhelmed by the list of wants and needs start with three and then work to say what it means to me. From my view, the following three things are a two way street in a relationship. I need trust, respect, and accountability.
1. Trust Trust is number one and it is a boundary that I cannot allow to go without consequences. It is a line in the sand. Upon entering a relationship trust needs to be discussed to the extent that remedies for forgiveness needs to be expressed and agreed to by all persons, the consequences of repeated broken trust need to be verbally expressed and consented by all persons, and there needs to be a plan and support system in case trust in broken. I will not express here specifics, but any person(s) I would seriously consider a hierarchical relationship will get transparency from me is order to create the best environment for all persons. I need to trust that the person I am with is truly going to be making decisions with my best interest not only “at heart”, but in “mind”. This needs to apply to the entire household if it is triad, family, or a pack. Trust needs to include being treated fairly and to be aware of the emotional, physical, and fiscal well-being of the household members.
2. Respect Common courtesy is what I express to people as a matter of good manners, but my respect is something that is earned. Respect is not a matter of a person’s titles, appointments within our “community”, or a resume. I need to feel respect for the person in charge of the household in order for me to freely turn my will over to them and feel surrender. How a person goes from receiving basic common courtesy from me and moves toward respect, is with actions. How a person conducts themselves through the span of a relationship, before, during, and after its end speaks volumes. As does being treated with value and importance. Do your actions match your words? Do mine? The answer needs to be definitively yes, and yes.
3. Accountability. An accountable person answers for and takes responsibility for their actions and the actions of the household members. The dominant should have a vision of how they wish to develop the property and a larger vision of the direction they wish to steer the household. A person who has chosen to be the authority and the leader, is expected to answer and be held responsible for the failures. If you want the power, you will be expected be accountable for caring for the property you have accepted in a household before, during, and yes also after, in the case the relationship ends. Does this mean the property is never accountable? No. The property should be expected to be held accountable to the Head of Household. Also, rule number one, Protect the Property is not only for the dominant, it is also the responsibility of the property to protect oneself.
As stated at the beginning, from my point of view, trust, respect, and accountability are two way streets. I have learned that it is necessary to set boundaries. For me these three topics are so important that they are deal breakers. I need to trust and be trusted, I need to be treated with respect and feel respect for the Head of Household, and I need to know the person has the strength to hold me accountable and to accept accountability for all persons in the household.