After living like this for four years the biggest challenge to our way of life is when I am pregnant. Unless absolutely necessary my husband tries to not spank me when I am pregnant, or at least not very hard. But I know he struggles with this, just as other couples we know.

I have always thought that a man can lead without spanking his wife. The problem comes of course when he is used to using this as the last resort, or as a symbol to remind the couple of who is ultimately in charge. Then when you take away that element the man can often feel powerless, like Samson without his hair.

So what can a man do in this situation. In such times my husband has lost all confidence in leading me. Normally I am used to falling back on a leading figure in my marriage but without this strength holding me up, I end up feeling exposed and vulnerable. 

What ends up happening is i end up leading myself, I subconsciously fill in the gaps that I feel are there and when my husband does step up I end up resenting it and pushing at those boundaries, just as I did in the early days.

This in turn leaves him feeling low and down trodden. It is a vicious cycle. I can't submit without him leading and he can't lead without me submitting. Our usual strong, concrete foundations of marriage seem to crumble into disarray.

So do you think a man needs to spank in order to lead his household?