Catharsis

One of the things I hadn’t mentioned from the Beginner’s Dungeon class I went to was the discussion of chemicals produced in the body during SM and their effects on both tops and bottoms. At the time, it all sort of went past me in a stream of “yeah yeah, endorphins, I know this.” Angela, one of the presenters, mentioned her first experience with cathartic crying during a scene, and how much it surprised her — she wasn’t unhappy, or upset, but there were the tears, flowing down her face.

For me, I have certainly found catharsis in crying, but only when I am upset, when I feel like I need to cry to release the tension and worries I’ve built up. It’s still linked to a negative emotional state, for me. And so, I’ve always associated crying during or after a scene with either something going wrong or reaching a dark emotional space that needs to be touched, but that isn’t pleasant.

The other day, after the first really long scene we’ve had in a while (and which was pretty much all flogging and spanking), I suddenly started to cry. My partner held me and comforted me, and I tried to tell him that I wasn’t upset, that nothing was wrong, that I didn’t know what the deal was with these tears out of nowhere. Mostly, it just came out as sobs, interspersed with laughter — an incredulous laugh, an “I can’t believe I’m crying, what the hell?”. And a few minutes later, after the crying had subsided, I mentioned to him the workshop I’d just been at, and started talking about how I thought the crying really was just catharsis not from emotional stress, but purely from all those chemicals I’d created while bottoming for a couple of hours. He just smiled. “I know. I knew you were fine, because you were laughing, too.”

The human body is pretty fucking weird.

2 comments so far

  1. LindenTea on

    I get what you mean, and it feels almost funny to disassociate crying from emotions like sadness and anger. Yet, during my first mushroom trip (I know, that’s uhhh kinda different from SM) I started BAWLING and my spouse (then-boyfriend) tried to comfort me but I couldn’t find the words to say, “No, no, I’m not upset or sad I just need this and oh my god it’s beautiful.”

  2. Richard on

    I’ve cried only once in connection with D/s.

    I was in a long distance relationship.

    Once after some time apart I found myself again on my knees. I just burst into tears. But I was crying because I was so very happy.


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