Pain and BDSM

This is something I posted a while on BDSMLR. I just ran across it and decided I should post it on my blog.

A boy recently asked me in a private chat

“Does BDSM have to involve pain SIR? Are there scenes without pain? Pain as pleasure has always baffled me SIR. “

Bdsm does not automatically involve pain. Many people just do bondage. There are those who just want a man to totally take charge sexually, without anything hardcore. Some guys enjoy humiliation or piss or pup play, but don’t want pain. Some guys like some light pain (such as tit play) but can’t stand CBT or flogging. Not everyone is wired to enjoy pain.

Some boys like pain because there’s something in their wiring that just loves it. A lot of guys will say that their nipples are “hardwired” to their dicks. Tit play is an instant hard-on for them. In my experience, guys with hardwired nips will often enjoy pain play (but that’s not a solid rule, just a common indicator). Other boys like pain not for itself but because letting a dom torture them is a form of service that they can enjoy. So it’s not the pain as such that they enjoy; it’s knowing that their suffering is pleasing to their dom. Other boys are not hardwired for pain but can be taken somewhere intense by a dom who understands how to manipulate the body’s pleasure and pain systems. For some, the pain becomes an emotional catharsis, a way to let go of bad feelings, a way to suffer for whatever they think they’ve done wrong so they can let go of those negative feelings.

Some boys who take pain experience a phenomenon variously called subspace or ‘flying’. This is a state where pain and the endorphins released enable a boy to dissociate from his body and experience a blissful state where he feels like he’s flying or floating or falling. In this state, he stops feeling the pain and just enjoys the dissocation. Not all boys get into subspace, and not all who get into subspace get there through pain. I know one boy who can get there through fucking, and another that I could just talk into subspace. For some boys subspace happens easily, for others it’s a rare, elusive experience, the unicorn of BDSM play.

And let me clear up a very common misperception about masochists. Even the most hard-core pain slut hates to stub his toe. Kinksters often distinguish between ‘good pain’ and ‘bad pain’. Good pain is erotically charged and either feels good sexually or feels meaningful in some other fashion (such as for service or as a gateway to subspace). Bad pain is just unpleasant. It doesn’t bring any positive experience along with it. Good pain is hurt, a temporary discomfort, while bad pain is often harm, a sign of actual injury to the body. We sadists seek to inflict good pain; we want to hurt our boys. We don’t want to inflict bad pain; we do not want to harm our boys. (Sometimes good pain produces bruises, welts, and even bleeding. But things like open bleeding cuts, broken bones, dislocated joints or torn ligaments are anathema to good sadists. We don’t want to have to take our boys to the hospital or the urgent care clinic, although accidents do sometimes happen.) So all those kinksters you see in action movies who get horny when someone punches them? They don’t exist in real life.

So don’t assume that just because you don’t like stubbing your toe, you won’t enjoy pain play. Good pain play starts gently and ramps up slowly. It feels sensual at first and then gets more intense. A skilled sadist can make a boy’s body sing with pleasure, assuming that boy has the potential to enjoy pain in the first place.

A good sadist never intentionally inflicts pain on someone who hasn’t consented to it. That’s not BDSM. That’s assault, and it’s a crime. Part of what turns me on about hurting boys is that I like feeling that I can turn them on by knowing what button to push (or what tit to squeeze). To me, that feels like control, and it gets my dick hard. If a boy tells me that pain doesn’t arouse him, I won’t intentionally inflict it on him (although I might ask permission to do a little exploring to see if he just hasn’t realized that he likes pain). 

So if you are fairly sure you don’t enjoy pain, you are not obligated to accept it from a dom. That’s what negotiation is for–to make sure that what the dom wants to do to you is what you want him to do. If a dom tells you that he will be torturing you and you are certain you don’t want that, say so. You’re allowed to set pain as a hard limit. Of course, the dom is also allowed to say that he won’t play with you in that case. That means you and he are not well-matched as kinksters. And if the dom tells you he doesn’t care that you don’t want pain, that’s a sign that he’s not a good dom. Don’t play with doms who don’t care what you do and don’t want.

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