Is 'Tiger Mom' a Dominatrix in Bed?

Jennifer Cullen

Tiger playAmy Chua, now known to the rest of the world as Tiger Mom, has certainly made an impression, good and bad, on parents over the last few weeks.

I don’t agree with all of her parenting tactics, as detailed in Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother, but I am curious about her long-term marriage to fellow Yale Law School professor and author Jed Rubenfeld.

What is it like to be married to a Tiger Mom? Does Mr. Tiger Mom have the same foibles that a lot of husbands have? Or has Chua tamed her husband in to submission as well?

Here are four things I can assume about their marital relationship:

1. What does Chua do if Rubenfeld doesn’t put his dirty clothes in the hamper or leaves the toilet seat up? Based on how she handled her daughters' sub-par behaviors, maybe she takes away his sports car or grounds him on a weekend when he has a happening golf game.

2. Does the Tiger Mom persona exist in the bedroom too? What happens if he doesn’t perform in the bedroom or at least perform up to her standards? Saying "You’re garbage" to your husband if he doesn't take you to the Big O and back could be pretty emasculating. Is it any wonder he didn't want to play too big of a role in the book?

3. And also in the bedroom, is Chua in charge? Maybe she's a dominatrix, dressing in leather and brandishing a whip. Or maybe the reason their marriage has lasted this long is because their roles are reversed in the bedroom. Rubenfeld is the author of a few mystery novels. The Interpretation of Murder, is about Sigmund Freud and includes graphic sex scenes. Hmmm.

4. Maybe the Chua-Rubenfelds marriage has lasted this long because they employ the economic principle of division of labor in their marriage as explained in the book Spousonomics. Perhaps their division of labor is that Chua raises, or abuses, their two girls and Rubenfeld gets to play Fun Dad hoping to give them good memories of childhood by taking them to amusement parks and giving them cotton candy.

What do you think it's like to be married to a Tiger Mom?


Image via Hillary Kladke/Flickr

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