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Usage Of Pain In BDSM

By Maître Pierre



Many years ago, I was giving a BDSM workshop and I told this little story which comes, alas, from a true story:

    It is late. This female submissive is begging her Dom to have an S&M scene. That night, she had been very good and her Dom felt that she did disserve a good scene. But here is the problem; it is late, the Dom is tired and to create a good S&M scene it takes time and energy. Suddenly, the Dom has an idea and he quickly orders his sub to stripe naked. He ties her up and after a long loving kiss….. He stomps on her little toe and then order her to dress, the scene being finished.

    This submissive has quit her Dom just a few days later.

There are many aspects of this little story that explain a lot about the belief that some have about pain in BDSM.

In BDSM, many don't understand the pain and its context. There are even some BDSM'ers that are very dangerous in their action and they don't even know it!

I am a Dom and I have very little need to submit. Yet, I have great experience in pain for the simple reason that, I have a medical situation where pain is part of my life all the time. From this experience, I can tell you some of the great truth about pain:

There are many type of pain and they are NOT interchangeable.

    - It is very important to know what type of pain you are inflicting to your submissive and how much of it you are giving them. Yes, it is a question of safety but it is a question of pure logic too

    In the little story I told you in the beginning, it is clear that this Dominant doesn't know the different type of pain, making his submissive leave and preferring to found another Dominant with enough experience (knowledge) of this.

    If we look into type of pain, obviously, the most popular is spanking with hands or using a toy, but there are other type like; pain from bondage, pain from part of the body that can be aroused and of course, sexual pain. We can mention the non physical pain, like shame or shyness

The surrounding of the pain is as important as the pain.

    I have been witness of this: In a public fetish night given into a swinger club, a female submissive is tie on the cross. Her Dom, a very gifted Dom, is giving her a good deal of pain with a flogger and she seems to be appreciating this good scene. Somebody from the crowd, with obviously no good manners that was watching their play, without any warning, went and gave her a huge slap on her ass. The submissive that was enjoying her scene with her Master, "awaken" by this unexpected slap, gets out of her "subspace" and start to freak out! Her Dom who really was not impress by this dummy and wanting to "clearly explain" to him good manners, now, have to stop everything and take care of his freaking submissive. It was a beautiful S&M scene that just ended into a huge mess.

    The Dom who is in control and who is giving the pain must control all the aspects of the BDSM scene but he must control the surrounding of the scene too. In this example, this witness without proper BDSM manners became an uncontrolled element of the scene. Yes, in the real world, the crowd is something that must be controlled, but in things to be controlled we can include lighting, how loud is the music, noisy discussions, the toy you are using...

We get use to pain.

    - If you do the same type of play with the same submissive many time, you will notice that to get the same effect on her (him) you will need to be more intense (hit harder) to get the same result. It is apparent that submissive get use to pain.

    Here is a little trick: To keep your submissive on "her (his) toes" alternate the type of play you do on her (him) (type of pain) to avoid your submissive to get use to the same type of pain, unless this is exactly the result you were looking for (training).


Why the pain?

BDSM'ers give and received pain for all kind of reasons. For this article, let's look at the players that like to be on the receiving end.

We call "masochist" a person who gets sexual pleasure when they received pain. It is easy to say that submissive in BDSM are generally masochist because they are the receiver of the pain, but, my example from the beginning of this article demonstrate the opposite.

Sometimes, when we are in public events, we will meet someone who claims and wants to convince us that they are "real" masochist. Yet, in my many years of BDSM, I don't think that I have met many "real" masochists. The ones who were successful to convince me that they were true masochist all have this in common…….They hate BDSM!!!!!! For them, the exchange of power, the submission, the sexual plays are all a waste of time. The only important thing is the pain itself and they don't care what type of pain it is or who is giving them the pain….if it is somebody else!

The BDSM'er that received the pain, they want a very precise type of pain, and they want it in a very precise context. Actually, the context is a lot more important we may think it is. A submissive receiving a spanking in the bedroom will be having a nice time. But the same submissive getting her spanking in a dungeon while wearing sexy clothing and tied on the cross will have an amazing time because the same experience now has a completely different dimension.

All the senses are important during the scene. While the body deals with the sense of touch (pain), the others senses will improve the experience from what the submissive is seeing (or not seeing), the sound of the play (or lack of sound) coming form the toys or even the other players around them, the sensation of the clothing, the bondage, the gag in her (his) mouth. The context is very important for BDSM'ers and the "real masochist" doesn't give a hoot about these.

For the scope of this article, let's agree to describe the BDSM'er who received the pain as a "BDSM masochist" (a masochist within' the context of BDSM). This type of masochist wants pain but he (she) wants a precise pain in a precise context and usually prefer to get it from somebody else (the exchange of power in a BDSM relationship).

Within' "BDSM masochists" there are different types of them and we could write a very thick book describing their differences in style but we can easily describe the most "popular" ones in this article. Warning, this is NOT a classification because, many BDSM adepts will recognize themselves in many type of "BDSM masochist" describe here. This article is just a tool to help understand and figure out how to deal with these BDSM masochists.

    - The context BDSM masochist:

      For them, pain is not important. Actually, many of them have no pain tolerance whatsoever. For them, the excitement comes from the surrounding, the context of the scene, the toys, the dungeon. A well equipped dungeon is the top pleasure for them. To satisfy them, the key word is "diversity". They get tired quickly of the same thing. They want more toys, more sensations. The trick with them is to "keep an ace in your sleeve", don't reveal everything to them. Often, these types of players, when they get bored, they simply look for another Dominant to find something new, so these players are not faithful to their Dominants.

    - The endorphin BDSM masochist:

      The key word here: "Endorphin"! This type of BDSM masochist is into pain just to get the euphoric effect of endorphins. They will accept a Master/sub relationship at the condition that they get their "fix" of endorphin from a partner who can give it to them. Most of these BDSM masochists can be very though and can get a huge amount of pain, toughness they got from lots of S&M plays. If their Dom(me) can give them the pain they want and need, they will be very faithful to their Dom(me).

    - The exhibitionist BDSM masochist:

      Appearances are everything! To be seen, the most beautiful equipment, the one that takes the most pain, the most beautiful clothing. Being the center of attention is what is important. For this type of BDSM masochist, there is no interest to have a private scene, for them, being in a public BDSM setting being so important.

    - The sexual BDSM masochist:

      The BDSM scene is the context to get sexual pain. For women; fisting, all kind of insertions, rape simulations, for men; fisting, sodomy, rape simulations. Strangely enough, sexual orgasm control is part of their liking too from its physical effects! This type of BDSM masochist is not very faithful to their Master (Mistress), new sexual sensation being the scope of their quest and they don't have any problems to get the new sensation from somebody others than their usual partner.

    There are more types of BDSM masochist, but, we are falling into the exceptions cases.

Many BDSM players may find themselves in more than one type of style of BDSM masochist. Being able to figure out where a submissive stand in this little classification will help a Dom(me)s to know how to create a good BDSM scene adapted to the submissive style.

Even if we do not cover the kind of "BDSM sadists" in this article, it is easy to figure out the kind of "BDSM sadist" that one may be!


This is NOT a classification of any sort. There are no "hierarchy" of BDSM players. None of these types of BDSM masochist are better then the others. For the example; between the color bleu and yellow, which color is the best? You are right, it is impossible to answer this because people's choice of colors is a personal thing and no color is better than the other. BDSM is exactly like this and the choice of the type of BDSM masochist that you are comes from personal choices, liking, taste and needs.

This article is just a beginning to comprehend the need of the different type of BDSM masochist and will never replace a good negotiation between partners. We know from experience that many BDSM adepts have difficulties to express their need in BDSM and we do hope that it will be, at least, a good start for their negotiation.

We wish you all beautiful S&M scene with the right type of pain for the right type of BDSM masochist.


Maître Pierre



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