Choosing Pain

July 28, 2012 at 00:12 (BDSM) (, , , , , , , , , , , )

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I was recently asked to give my two cents for an article about chronic conditions, physical limitations, disabilities etc and kink, the main question being Why would one who is in chronic pain choose to be in more pain?  As some of you may know, I am have Type 1 Diabetes and Fibromyalgia, and because of both I can be anywhere from mildly irritated to severely debilitated on any given day.   This has created a few extra considerations in how I lead a BDSM lifestyle, and at times has been a slight inconvenience.  It  has also not only helped in some ways, but the benefit seems to be mutual, meaning my kink and my chronic pain have found ways to improve each other.  Who knew?

A friend of mine who is a tattoo artist mentioned to be during my last session  that she has noticed a higher tolerance from people with chronic pain when it comes to tattoos.  The theory there is that we have grown so accustomed to dealing with deep aches and pains on a daily basis that the superficial irritation caused by tattooing is not registered as intensely by our nerves.  I have noticed the same can be said for flogging, spanking, scratching, and most other surface sensation pain during a scene.  Unless it’s a particularly bad day for me, as long as Angelflare doesn’t bite into me right away, I have more endurance than I used to.

Having a day-to-day condition has pushed Angelflare to get to know my body language more intimately than he might have to otherwise.  I never have to tell my Master I’m having a bad day or what tasks I may be incapable of performing.  He already knows.  This has strengthened the trust I have that he will always protect me as his slave, and I am more ready to be blindly obedient knowing he has that kind of consideration and ability to read my pain and energy levels.

In what ways has kink helped my chronic pain?  For one thing, fire play and percussion play are an excellent way to massage and loosen muscles, not to mention the endorphin release our bodies naturally experience at times of intense pleasure or pain, but it goes even beyond that.  Being in service has done wonders to fill the hole my illness tore in my self esteem.

When I started to get sick I felt useless as both a wife and a lover.  I couldn’t take care of my family or our house.  We couldn’t have sex at all let alone engage in any kind of kink activities.  I was sure Angelflare hated me and regretted marrying me.  I felt sick, ugly, old, fat, weak, and broken.  It took me a long time to heal those wounds to my confidence, and being in service has helped with that.  I feel wanted, I feel capable, and I know that I will be pushed to go until I need to stop not just until I want to stop.  Being a slave has also given me a constant awareness of my body, which has helped me identify bad days from just feeling down or every day aches and pains, and has given me no wiggle room to make excused.  Angelflare will tell me when to rest.  Until then, I have to believe I still have the strength.

The biggest benefit I have gotten out of kink has been community.  Whenever I have been sick or had a particularly bad stretch our friends in the community have been the first to offer support in any way possible.  It’s always been one of the best unexpected side-effects of our lifestyle, and I would never trade it for anything.

To answer the original question, why would I choose pain?  It’s the same reason anyone in the lifestyle would still be mad at an unrequested punch in the face.  When the pain comes from something I’ve chosen, something that brings me pleasure, or at least brings Angelflare pleasure, the pain is acceptable.  Chronic pain or not, I can’t think of anyone who would get pleasure out of breaking a leg in a skiing accident.  The concept here is the same.

The pain I choose is pain I can harness and transform into something powerful, something positive, something that cannot be replicated.  The pain I choose is mine, and it is bliss.  The pain I choose makes the pain I do not seem a million miles away.  The pain I choose makes me feel desired, and beautiful, and strong, even when I do not feel like it.  The pain I choose makes me feel human again, and that’s something I never want to lose sight of again.


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November 1, 2011 at 14:15 (BDSM) (, , )

The human body is an amazing thing.  It can take intense pleasure, pain, stress, and strain, often simultaneously.  It is incredibly resilient and strong, and in many cases we will push it as far as it can go and then some.  It is extremely important, especially in a BDSM sense, to be aware of our limits and how far they can be pushed.  It’s also important that we not let these limits interfere with what we can do and experience. Let’s talk about limits.

As a Domme it is important to know the limits of any sub I take on.  This includes physical, emotional, and psychological limits.  Without this information I could cause serious and sometimes irreparable damage.  I owe it to my sub to protect him if he is going to surrender completely and trust me with his body and mind.  I owe it to him to know his ins and outs as much as I expect him to know mine.  Morals aside, why would I want to break something I’ve taken the time to posses and properly shape to my specifications?  I also need to know when and how a sub starts showing those limits, whether or not she ever uses a safeword, and how much farther I can push her.  Does she give in easily or is she stubborn enough to push herself?  Does she fully understand her limits?  This is why I very rarely casually Domme someone.  I’m not advanced or experienced enough to notice these things in anyone just off the cuff.  It takes knowledge of my sub’s body language and reactions, to notice a behavioral change, to know when I’ve reached a limit.  That’s not something I’m willing to guess at with someone I’ve just met.  Maybe someday, but not yet.

As a sub it is imperative that I am not just aware of my own limits but not too proud to admit them to myself or my Dom.  This was a really hard thing for me to do in the beginning, especially when I first started feeling the effects of Fibromyalgia.  Suddenly I was extremely sensitive to touch and force.  There were days I would wear out quickly.  Even vanilla sex was excruciating.  I felt like I was letting him down, as a Dom and as a husband.  I felt like I was giving up and copping out.  I felt like he was angry with me, disappointed in me, and unhappy with our sex life.  At first I tried to ignore it, then I pulled out completely.  If I couldn’t give him the same effort and level of service I once could I wouldn’t do it at all.  No matter how much he assured me I was still satisfying his needs I didn’t believe it.  How could it when it was so diminished?  Surely his other partners could pick up the slack, fill in the void, and give him what he really wanted.

This is where that last point comes in.  Yes, I have limits.  Yes, some days they are lower than others.  No, that does not mean I can’t have a successful scene or participate in a lifestyle I really enjoy.  It merely means being realistic and honest about my limits and knowing my body well enough to know when I’m having a bad day.  It means my Dom understanding days when I just can’t do it and being supportive and appreciative of the effort I can put in.  It means using a lower percentage isopropyl alcohol for fireplay.  It may not last as long, but I’m not being seriously burned either.  It means flogging slightly lighter and getting the same mental and emotional reaction.  It means knowing when to say when, and him knowing my limits can not be stretched far some days.  It also means being up front with any new Dom(me) who comes my way.  It makes casual play extremely rare, and it makes some dungeon nights a lonely experience sitting in a chair while my Dom finds other subs to play with because I get there and don’t last long.

All in all, I can’t let those things discourage me.  I won’t let them keep me from that I enjoy, and I won’t let them spoil a good time worrying or pouting about it before I reach that limit.  I simply enjoy myself when and while I can.  It’s made me more responsive on good days as a sub, because I am more eager to please when I am able.  it’s also made me more aware and considerate as a Domme, because I would want the same treatment if I were on the other end of my leash.

Before you play, know the limits of everyone involved.  Know them and respect them.  Don’t let yourself be broken, and for the love of gods don’t break your toys!

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