Let me take this question by question...
I'm a little confused. Are you saying people who enjoy intense sensation (call it B&D, S&M, impact play, spanking, clamping, wax play or whatever) desires always stem from "unhealthy origins?"
No, not at all. I was trying to indicate that I was talking about extreme forms of play, though looking at many of the responses I may have inadvertently given the impression that I think all BDSM is a form of slow, painful death, which is not what I think all.
You are basing this on what research? Or just the fact that you, personally, wouldn't want to do it? Or do you know people in The Lifestyle and all of them are "unhealthy?"
None of the above. I know little about it and hoped to learn more from this thread. I find some of it hot. I once had a friend who was really into BDSM, and if I'm being honest, I think I'm being fair when I say she was emotionally unstable. But I never thought it stemmed from her BDSM involvement. Now, whether it contributed to her BDSM desires, I don't know.
Not understanding something is one thing, I understand. But I think making the jump that something you, personally, don't enjoy is "unhealthy" is a bit of a limited, and rather judgmental opinion.
And this was what I was trying to avoid. My whole point is I don't want to be judgmental — or I think a better word is 'alarmed' — even if I don't like the play. For example, if someone is into golden showers, to me that is gross, I wouldn't do it for a million bucks. However, it doesn't alarm me. I don't want to call the cops or a crisis counselor, I just want nothing to do with it. However, if someone is being beaten to the point of bruising or bleeding, something in my head says, intervene, help that person. Even if I know they want/asked for it, it just seems too damaging.
Same thing for the person who wishes to inflict the pain. When someone's desires to hurt go way past the average, I begin to wonder what's going on in their brain. If I'm being honest, it automatically makes them creepy. Societal conditioning tells me sadism is most often present in rapists, murderers, drug gangs, brutal dictators and worse, and the dictionary tells me sadists are 'perverse' and 'corrupt' individuals. I'm trying to keep an open mind, but understand, there is a lot of societal pressure to reject it outright.
You said However viewing some of the hard play May I ask, where did you view, what you refer to as "Hard Play?" Did you participate yourself? Was it a DVD or online and you were a passive observer? Was it in a Play Club? Just wondering where you were exposed to something that would cause you to assume something many healthy people enjoy is "from unhealthy origins."
My exposure is mostly second-hand (from friends who go to clubs), or things I read or see on the internet/forums. I know enough about myself to say I would be extremely uncomfortable in a play club, even if the play was vanilla.
I'm asking because I'm truly interested. I don't get (understand) a lot of "do it the same way every time vanilla play" (and I'm probably wrong about that) but I don't judge the "origins" of the desires of those who are less sexually adventurous than I.
A complete lack of imagination doesn't make sense to me either. You may not judge the origins, but I think that's because a lack of creativity doesn't alarm you, yes? You simply want nothing to do with it.
I simply understand they have less need for sensation, and they don't need or want to or lack the fire to explore as much as I do. If they did, they'd have a different opinion and a different kind of sex life. But, I don't think they are inherently "unhealthy" just because their sex lives very greatly from mine.
You understand 'vanillas' have a need for less sensation. I could reverse that and say BDSM players have a need for more sensation — which I do understand. But what about extremes? If someone confided to you that she thought sex was for procreation only and she never enjoyed it, would you consider that as healthy
as do-it-the-same-way-eve ry-time-vanilla play?
I'm not challenging anyone's desires, nor do I mean to imply they are in any way wrong. I'm not asking, nor do I expect, anyone to justify their choices to me. My goal is to understand the drive behind the choices better, so that I have a less-alarmed (ideally, neutral) reaction to some of the play which, for now, brings on an admittedly knee-jerk reaction of that's wrong / dangerous / unhealthy / negative adjective of your choice
(That was a lot of words, I wish EF's forum had a 'preview' feature for posts.