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  #661  
Old 09-19-2013, 01:38 PM
opalescent opalescent is offline
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Originally Posted by Magdlyn View Post
I thought that was one of the main points of BDSM... therapy. Have you read http://www.amazon.com/The-Bottoming-...pr_product_top
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Originally Posted by LovingRadiance View Post
I have found it therapeutic. Not for cutting-I don't do knife play.
But addressing emotional residual issues due to a prior violent encounter & also my phobia of water/suffocation.
I have problems with the idea of BDSM as therapy. It can have that effect for many people. But generally, if you [generic you] need therapy, then go to a therapist. (I know this is not easy or readily available.) I think the risks for BDSM as therapy can be high. For example, I can see the scenario CattivaGattina of having Seven using knife play and cutting to address her urges to cut as possibly going really badly and causing more damage. It could also go just fine or have little effect. There is no way to know. And that is a problem. Yes, therapy can be hit or miss too. But it is unlikely to re-traumatize someone the way an intense BDSM scene gone badly wrong can.

I adore knife play. It is one of my favorite things. BDSM for me is not about therapy or self-improvement or similar goals. It's fun and sexy. People do use it for therapy. But, IMHO, they are playing with fire.

Last edited by opalescent; 09-19-2013 at 01:49 PM.
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  #662  
Old 09-19-2013, 02:28 PM
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Magdlyn Magdlyn is offline
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Originally Posted by opalescent View Post
BDSM for me is not about therapy or self-improvement or similar goals. It's fun and sexy. People do use it for therapy. But, IMHO, they are playing with fire.
I'd say many many people would disagree with you, opal. BDSM is so challenging sometimes. It can force you to trust more, be more open, be more decisive, or more submissive than you've ever been before. There is force and power play in vanilla life, but BDSM, for many, brings it to the surface, instead of it being subtly buried and denied the way it can be in vanilla situations. When you confront all this directly in a consensual D/s scene, it can be very stress relieving, cathartic, life growth inducing.

I believe it was in the Bottoming book where an author talks specifically about a woman who was raped, and how when she chose to do "rape play" in a consensual gangbang situation, after years of ordinary therapy, it finally helped her to overcome the original trauma and make her feel empowered once again.

Some people do not respond well to traditional talk therapy. Many people can't open up and talk about their deepest secrets and fears to a therapist. I've chatted with some good friends who never talk about their sex lives with their therapist, even though that is where they need the most help! They feel a stigma and shame about talking about sex. This is just one example. So, careful caring BDSM with a trusted experienced partner is an option for many, to maybe enhance talk therapy, and help to clear things, receive catharsis and move on.

My gf has anxiety issues. She's been in talk therapy for 5 years. But sometimes when she's feeling particularly fraught, nothing makes her feel better, safer, stronger, more relaxed, than to be bound, or put in a cage, or flogged. Fun and games? Sexy time? No, very serious shit.
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  #663  
Old 09-19-2013, 03:14 PM
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MsChristy MsChristy is offline
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Originally Posted by opalescent View Post
I have problems with the idea of BDSM as therapy. It can have that effect for many people. But generally, if you [generic you] need therapy, then go to a therapist. (I know this is not easy or readily available.) I think the risks for BDSM as therapy can be high. For example, I can see the scenario CattivaGattina of having Seven using knife play and cutting to address her urges to cut as possibly going really badly and causing more damage. It could also go just fine or have little effect. There is no way to know. And that is a problem. Yes, therapy can be hit or miss too. But it is unlikely to re-traumatize someone the way an intense BDSM scene gone badly wrong can.

I adore knife play. It is one of my favorite things. BDSM for me is not about therapy or self-improvement or similar goals. It's fun and sexy. People do use it for therapy. But, IMHO, they are playing with fire.
I have also used BDSM as a type of therapy on occasion. While I agree, having a cutting issue you are trying to get past and then being into knife play does seem like playing with fire, not all people that use bdsm for therapy are taking quite those levels of risk. I occasionally get very stressed and feel like it is all just pent up inside, and that I need some sort of a release. When I feel this way I go to one of my two trusted partners, and will ask for a stress relief spanking. This is different than other scenes in that typically there is no warm up, they will spank as hard as possible, and the end goal will be to get to to cry. Once I cry, something comes over me and it is as if all the stress that has been building just falls away.

http://bottomsmarts.blogspot.com/200...ss-relief.html

I will say that if I was a top I would never play for my own therapy purposes or would I play in such a stressed emotional state. It would be too easy to accidentally get caught up in the scene and take it too levels that neither I or the bottom meant to go to.
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  #664  
Old 09-19-2013, 10:44 PM
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LovingRadiance LovingRadiance is offline
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Originally Posted by opalescent View Post

I adore knife play. It is one of my favorite things. BDSM for me is not about therapy or self-improvement or similar goals. It's fun and sexy. People do use it for therapy. But, IMHO, they are playing with fire.
I don't see it as being about therapy for me.
Only that it circumstantially has ended up being therapeutic-unexpectedly.

That may actually be a key too. For the issues it has helped with, I have already done therapy. I was already on track for healthy patterns. The dynamic allowed for a bit deeper intensity on a more personal level, but it wasn't a replacement for therapy.
Does that even make sense? Sometimes I can't find the words to describe the idea or picture in my head to save my life!
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  #665  
Old 09-19-2013, 11:11 PM
CattivaGattina CattivaGattina is offline
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I think that's why we had talked about it. I've tackled most of my stuff that I don't fall into really dark holes of depression. I had a fear of not being able to separate the thoughts of scratching/cutting from what I had done when I was depressed. That was more of the therapy idea with it, getting some positive thoughts in my head regarding it so I didn't just think that (and then have the hopes then when I may get upset not want to do it).
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  #666  
Old 09-20-2013, 03:02 AM
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ColorsWolf ColorsWolf is offline
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Can I just say that I think it's beautiful how interesting unique things like BDSM can help people in a therapeutic way?~

I also apologize for not looking deeper into your question CattivaGattina.~

I also apologize for not mentioning that I've had horrible experiences with Facebook when responding to your suggestion Magdlyn.~

I will research more on subjects before bringing them up here, in order to stay on topic.~

*bows*

I meant no offense and wish only to learn, share, and spread love amongst all.~

Love all of you,

ColorsWolf
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  #667  
Old 09-20-2013, 03:02 PM
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Marcus Marcus is offline
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I knew a girl, years ago, who talked about the healing power of BDSM. I always raised an eyebrow. My concern was always that, I recognize that BDSM can break down a person so that they can feel truly vulnerable... but I had doubts that the dom knew what to do with the person at that point. It's a similar process in conventional therapy - work past the defense mechanisms to find out what is underneath (break down), and then teach new thought processes and habits so the patient can live a healthier life (begin healing). My question was always, "does the dom know how to bring them to a place of healing after they've broken them down?"

[I am assuming that "breaking down barriers" is one of the primary functions of BDSM, if I am wrong about this let me know]


I've been asking myself this same question since this topic started up. I've basically come to the answer of... most therapists I have worked with were profoundly incompetent. Most therapists I've heard of other people working with are profoundly incompetent. I have actually only encountered ONE therapist who I thought was actually good at his job and was doing more good than harm.

Keeping that in mind, I suppose it doesn't matter who is at the wheel when it comes to working through defense mechanisms and developing a more healthy worldview. I don't see why a dom who has been working with people for years is any less qualified than most therapists out there lol

Quote:
Originally Posted by Magdlyn View Post
I believe it was in the Bottoming book where an author talks specifically about a woman who was raped, and how when she chose to do "rape play" in a consensual gangbang situation, after years of ordinary therapy, it finally helped her to overcome the original trauma and make her feel empowered once again
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Originally Posted by LovingRadiance View Post
For the issues it has helped with, I have already done therapy. I was already on track for healthy patterns. The dynamic allowed for a bit deeper intensity on a more personal level, but it wasn't a replacement for therapy.
I wonder if these two are kind of related? The "rape play" example sounds like she was already in intensive therapy for some time and probably learned quite a bit about the nature of feeling safe and feeling in control. Then it sounds like she found a safe way to actually test and explore these concepts which helped all of the information come together.

It's also possible that we are talking about two kinds of therapy, both of which are very important. Going to the spa for a few hours, I come home feeling truly relaxed, as if a huge weight has been lifted from my life. If anything qualifies as therapy, I'd say that would be it. However, while I feel much better this hasn't taught me to deal with my childhood issues with my father and the stress that comes from those experiences. That is another, and separate, kind of therapy needed.
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  #668  
Old 09-20-2013, 05:07 PM
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LovingRadiance LovingRadiance is offline
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Sometimes Marcus-
I read your posts and it's like getting a little extra oxygen into my system or something.

Very nice start to a morning.
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  #669  
Old 09-20-2013, 06:23 PM
willowstar willowstar is offline
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I think as far as therapeutic value goes, that would be pretty subjective. There are all kinds of things that have therapeutic value to an individual, running, meditation, yoga, crafting, etc. For someone who participates in BDSM, there are certainly psychological reasons for doing so, but they may or may not be therapeutic.

My understanding of the dynamic of cutting or scratching (and this IS something I did as a teen), is that it can provide an emotional release through a physical medium. When you cant get the emotion out, or cant access the mental or emotional pain for some reason, a physical sensation like pain can bring relief. I also believe this is one of the reasons why people get body modifications (not always, but true for some), like tattoos. The pain provides a release. I am not familiar with knife play, so I wont address that or how it might or might not help in a situation like that, but thought I would share my own experience of what that was like for me. I have a partner whose child does this also, and we have had several conversations about it.

While I do participate in BDSM with both of my partners, and am a mostly subby switch, I dont do it for therapy, like LR said. I do it for myself, because its enjoyable, and hot and sexy, and I get to submit and do the things my partner asks me to do. I get off on it, being told what to do, for him. Letting him do what he wants to do to me. I am a bit of a pillow princess, so that works for me...

Any personal growth that results is purely a side effect...

Willow
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  #670  
Old 09-20-2013, 10:00 PM
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LovingRadiance LovingRadiance is offline
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What does pillow princess mean?
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