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Response to Someone’s Question of Why We Do BDSM…

A few thoughts:

* I would encourage you to keep an open-mind and refrain from judgments until you’ve had a year or so under your belt. From experience, it takes many years to understand the whys and hows… and you realize quickly that these reasons are different for everyone. The more you play and see, the more you’ll develop a sense of your own understanding and judgment. You might be surprised at what you discover and where the path takes you. (Case in point: I’ve tried many things since I started 12 years ago and found that I enjoy a lot more than I ever expected to… in fact, many of my original limits are my biggest turn-ons.)

* There is a fair number of previous self-injurers that find BDSM as a healthy alternative to their previous behaviors, i.e. cutting; however, I’d venture a guess that there are still just as many who bottom in BDSM and who never practiced those behaviors. (As a matter of fact, my friend Lee Harrington (@PassionandSoul) is conducting research to present at the upcoming AASECT conference. I am really looking forward to what his uniquely-angled “inside” research reveals.)

* Indeed, excessive tissue damage can be dangerous and unhealthy… but, the real danger here is in determining the definition of “excessive.” After all, to some “excessive” could mean a “slight crimson” bruise, while to another it could mean “deep purple” contusions and hematomas that take weeks to heal. Even still, “excessive” could mean permanent bodily harm only. See my point? WHO is judging and WHAT their definition is dictates a lot… and well, you wouldn’t expect a Utah Mormon to have the same views as me or anyone else in the scene.

* The science behind stuffs…

There is far more going on in the body and brain than just endorphins when you play. In fact, there is a whole host of neurotransmitters and chemicals that are released in the brain that make quite a cocktail. In addition, every time you snuggle, cuddle, or caress someone, you release oxytocin… the very same chemical that is released before childbirth and afterwards to assist with birth and bonding with the newborn. (As you would imagine, women are especially sensitive to oxytocin; however, men also experience a lessened but still present response to the hormone from touching.

To say that we only do this for the chemical cocktail is, in my opinion, too narrow an explanation. I also think it is far more than social acceptance and recognition. I, for one, find it meditative, fun, and enjoy the excitement of both topping and bottoming. I enjoy various aspects of BDSM, some of which do not even include pain; therefore, it is clear that we can not merely explain it as one of only these two things.

As with all things, I think it is important to examine our personal motivations and intentions and  be self-aware. Only then can we approach life from a place of authenticity and choice. :)

Mina

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