Angie’s lupus requires that she take quite a number of meds at the beginning of the day. This task ends up being a lot more elusive than I thought. When the chaos of the day descends, and the fifty tasks are upon her, it’s amazingly easy for that little chore to slip her mind. I was a bit skeptical at first of that, until it happened to me, and reinforced when angie and I discussed her ADD and it really dawned on me how that affects her.
We’ve tried several things – notes, having the meds in obvious places, requirements. My biggest concern is to keep this on the level of an adult, and to keep this positive. You see, the last thing I want to do is to make the meds become something “bad” or negative – and to someone with a chronic illness, this is a real possibility. There’s a whole psychological dance that goes on with the meds for someone with that sort of illness.
I’ve seen, and been a part of, the situations of “ordering” someone to “do something.” Can I tell you about the epic failures of ordering slaves to quit smoking? I know it can work, I know that sometimes it will work, and I’ve also had the experience of where those commands lead to frustration, lead to failure, lead to lies and the slave smoking behind my back. That was before slave angie. When she decided to quit smoking, I struggled with finding ways to help her quit. Eventually, she ended up wanting to quit badly enough that she did it – something I’m very proud of her for doing. It was that episode that really opened my eyes to how motivation and internalization of motivation was huge.
So, back to the meds. I could remind her myself, but then, I’m not the most reliable of reminders. IT management has a certain amount of unpredictability itself, and I never know if I’m going to be thrown into a day long pursuit of a Production issue, or dealing with the various management responsibilities that come up. That frustrated me.
The Internets to the rescue! The service provided by http://followupthen.com provided the answer. It will send reminders to specific emails at specific times on specified days. All I had to do was set up the reminder to daily, at a specific time, a reminder for her to take her meds. Viola! Problem solved. I was quite proud of myself and after a couple of days, asked slave angie what she thought and if it was helping. I expected an enthusiastic yes and thank yous.
I was pretty surprised when I get a “meh” response. After some discussion, I found out that while the message reminder was doing its job, I had forgotten that important part… the thing that motivates slaves and submissives alike… what did I want, how was this connected to us? A small addition of a personal message from me seems to have done the trick.
Now this is a simple example, but it reminds me that there is a world of difference between issuing commands from on-high and leading from the heart to really encourage the slave and submissive to follow and exceed your expectations. When she learned that I want to be told when she’s taken her meds, she goes out of her way now to let me know exactly that.
This wouldn’t be true for all slaves – some like the commands from on-high and thrive in that sort of impersonal environment. Others need that encouragement and positive reinforcement and internalization. It’s learning what makes your slave tick that you’ll find the way to lead them.