This article is written by me – Kim Debron – it is owned by me. If you copy it, please give the credit to me, otherwise you are committing an act of plagiarism – you are stealing my work.
Pleasure & Pain
There’s a fine line between pleasure and pain, so the saying goes, but for those of us who follow the BDSM Lifestyle, the line is often blurred.
The dictionary gives the main definitions of Pleasure and Pain as follows:
A state/feeling of being pleased or gratified.
A source of enjoyment or delight:
Amusement, diversion, or worldly enjoyment:
Sensual gratification or indulgence.
An unpleasant sensation occurring in varying degrees of severity as a consequence of injury, disease, or emotional disorder.
Suffering or distress.
A source of annoyance; a nuisance.
Pleasure and pain, therefore are basically opposites – in general terms, one feels good and one doesn’t. However, for those of us who engage in BDSM, this is often not the case, the pain we sometimes feel from the activities we pursue, gives us the pleasure we crave so much.
The pain from these activities is controlled pain, it is not something sudden or with no warning, like for example the pain from an accidental injury.
Within the realm of BDSM there is most definitely good pain and bad pain. Mostly, the things we choose to do are things that give us good pain.
For example good pain to me would be a spanking or a flogging, bad pain would be a severe caning or needle play – which i choose not to do.
There are, however, different perspectives on what is good pain and what is bad. You would only have to talk to two submissives to realise that what one may like and perceive as good pain ( give me more, give me more!) the other would express shock and horror at the very same activity (no way, that would hurt like hell!)
From a submissive’s point of view, i can’t say that i love all painful activities, but i certainly love the degree of pain from the things that i like. This pain brings me pleasure - it sends me off into subspace, and then the pain goes away, it changes to euphoria as the endorphins kick in and i float away.
But what i like and perceive as my pain threshold will be different to others.
The needles, the flogger or the paddle all hurt us, but the pain that we feel is what gives us the adrenalin rush that we crave and therefore the pleasure, so from our pain comes our pleasure.
A good example of how pleasure and pain can work is nipple clamps or pegs.
It feels nice but ouchy when they are put on, the submissive may groan in pain, but loves the pleasure as the Dominant flicks or touches them, it increases the sensations in the nipples.
The Dominant loves to hear the submissive groan, – it gives pleasure to see the reactions to the pain.
Then when the clamps are removed, it hurts again but the adrenalin rush is amazing, for the submissive, the rush is painful but releases the endorphins which bring pleasure. For the dominant, it fills the need to give pain, and the associated rush brings the same release of endorphins, which in turn give the pleasure we crave.
Dominants also enjoy the relationship between pleasure and pain. It gives them pleasure to inflict controlled pain to a submissive, knowing that in turn the submissive will also gain pleasure from the interaction between them.
However there is something that adds to the whole picture, and that is the way the mind works. Without the mindset of a submissive, slave or masochist, things like spanking, flogging, caning, piercing, would simply hurt like hell!
As a submissive or slave, you make a conscious choice to engage in these activities, which is where the difference comes in.
There are not many people who would have enjoyed being punished as a child, yet, here as consenting adults, we agree to that same activity, although sometimes in more extreme ways.
There are varying reasons for pursuing the pleasure and pain side of things inBDSM, for many it is sexually gratifying, people get turned on by the activities they take part in – it fills a need.
For others it fills needs of a different kind, it maybe that someone needs to give pain or receive pain, simply for the endorphin rush, not connected to sexual gratification at all – but for the aspects of control, and power exchange.
A good example is that of my Master. My Master is straight and is monogamous, not polyamorous and not at all bisexual, yet has two other submissives besides me and neither relationship includes any form of sexual activity.
One is a bisexual male submissive, who gains pleasure from serving Master, and in turn Master gives him the control and power exchange he needs in his life. Mastermay cane him or flog him, and even if it is painful, it is filling the need in the submissive to serve, to receive the pain and enjoy the pleasure that comes from knowing he is giving pleasure to Master. This releases the endorphins which we all crave.
From my own perspective, i live with Master in a 24/7 D/s relationship and therefore the play which He and i engage in, is often a prelude to sex. I do definitely get turned on by being spanked and flogged, but that is as much because of my connection with Master than anything.
He plays with me in a very different way to the way He plays with others. for U/us the play is sexual, for anyone else it is not. He gives others pleasure and inflicts the pain they may crave, but it is not sexual in any way.
It is a little like a roller coaster, we crave the painful activities that give us the pleasure we need, it can be addictive, but in a controlled environment, with safety, and consensuality paramount, it is a lot safer than drugs.
© Kim Debron 2006