Saturday, July 13, 2013

MBS Spanko Brunch #391

Welcome again, my friends, to our weekly gathering. Our question this time was inspired by my husband and spanker extraordinaire, Randy.

Those of us who are fortunate or unfortunate enough to receive frequent spankings are familiar with the phenomenon of tolerance. When one is spanked regularly, spankings seem to hurt less and mark less. Harder and more prolonged sessions can be more easily accepted. In contrast, after a break from spankings, even a very experienced bottom can become sensitive again.

Why do we experience tolerance to spankings? Is this a protective physiological response, a psychological adjustment, or a combination? Or are there other factors at work? Is the difference in pain level real or perceived?

I will be interested to hear your thoughts and theories because I genuinely don't know. Please enter your response as a comment below. At the conclusion of the weekend, I will post an edited summary.

12 comments :

Reece Seever said...

While I'm sure there are psychological components, I think most of the adjustment must be physiological. When we first began experimenting with disciplinary spankings, the bruising could be very substantial. That rarely happens today, unless there has been a substantial amount of time in between spankings.

MrBBSpanker said...

Of course, tolerance levels are very individual and can change due to several factors.
The most common one discussed is frequency.
As a physical defense mechanism, the nerve endings will be less responsive with repeated or frequent spanking. Warm-Up Spanking can also alert the body's Nervous System.

There is a worse case scenario also. Repeated and frequent use of a heavier or "thuddy" implement can cause a dead zone for nerve endings in a specific area. There are different nicknames given to this phenom through the years.

The body is highly responsive and it's also very resilient. When the spankings stop or become infrequent the body reverses it's response and the nerve ending become more responsive again. In the worse case scenario mentioned above, it takes abstinence over a longer period of time for the body to repair full feeling to normal in a specific region.

There is also other factors for tolerance like a certain time of month or heightened or lessened emotional state.
While it is vital for TiHs, submissives etc to communicate fully, it's also the responsibility of HoHs, Doms, Tops etc need to communicate fully with their partner and always be aware of the physical and emotional factors of tolerance.
Great topic Bonnie!
# MrBBSpanker

kimskinkykorner.com said...

I believe it lies in the mind! The mindset of a woman is a mysterious animal. Our ability to handle pain from childbirth to spankings is amazing. My personal experience is the more humiliation that I feel the easier to let go and flow thru the pain. Women need that light at the end of journey example childbirth - child. Same with Punishment if the offender feels that the offense was truly a choice they made and truly wants redemption then the pain process will flow to the Light!

bobbsroom said...

This is certainly an interesting topic and i was going to comment but i do not think anyone could put it better than MrBB Spanker above, great response.

BOB B

Anonymous said...

I am by no means an expert, but I would presume it is similar to other muscle areas. When we first exercise our muscles ache and hurt, then after a few days our workouts are less painful. If we take a break the cycle repeats. I would presume spanking is the same. We have the same phenomenon with our hands and gardening. Excellent question Randy.

C

Anonymous said...

My bottom gets spanked regularly and soundly by D. but the sensation is more exciting than traumatic. On occasions he goes away on business trips for a week or two; when he gets back, I am soon bared and bent over; the effect is very different, and I am soon yelping and wriggling as he ignites a fire in my rear. S.

Hermione said...

I think that it's physical. The bottom gets toughened up by regular spankings and it gradually adjusts. Over time it can take harder and longer spankings and show less marking or bruising.

There is probably also a psychological reason for being able to take more pain. You simply get used to it, and know what to expect. It isn't the unknown that it once was, but a familiar routine. It still hurts, but you are better able to handle the pain.

morningstar said...

Over the last few years I have gone from regular (very very regular spankings) to few and very very far between. For example when I finally arrived here with W it had been months and months of no spankings - the first one was very uncomfortable - to the point it didn't last long at all!!

The next one a few days later was much more fun and exciting ....

I do believe some of the more ouchy moments (after an absence) is due to physical as well as mental adjustments. The skin and muscle tone are softer (again) and need more tender treatment to build up to the once upon levels... also the mind needs to be reminded (in my case anyway) that this is indeed fun! not pain per say but a wonderful release ............ once the two parts are in alignment - it all flows rather nicely again

Our Bottoms Burn said...

I don't subscribe to the common belief that frequent spankings toughen up the skin in ALL humans. Some will mark with frequent attention. Others will not mark no matter how infrequent.

Jenny said...

Certainly the small blood vessels can either improve their "tone" and produce less bruising over time, in the same way that calluses develop on feet after minor irritation or scar tissue develops temporariily. The damage to the skin is more of an irritation than true damage to the supporting structures of the skin, which would produce long-lasting scar tissue. Does this affect the pain level transmitted to nerves, too? I don't know much about how individual nerves adapt to repeated, intense physical stimulation. So less bruising or swelling perhaps, but less nerve cell stimulation or transmission of impulses - I don't know.

Psychological. People do become more psychologically adapted to different stimuli after repeated exposure. Think of how people adapt to getting repeated allergy injections, which are more upsetting in the first weeks than in later weeks. So certainly there is some psychological tolerance to the pain of a set of spanks. I once took a graduate course in perception, more because it fit my schedule than an interest in the subject. The course certainly changed my thinking about our experiences. There is a stimulus, and there is our perception of that stimulus. Many things can affect our perception of the same stimuli in different circumstances.

I know from my own experience that the same implement, delivered in what is meant to be a routine manner, can feel quite different on different days. Who knows what causes that - previous spankings or lack thereof, hormone levels, fatigue levels, even hunger levels.

So I expect that its possible that the difference in pain level can be BOTH real and "imagined" (if by that you mean a lessened psychological perception of the stimuli), but from what I know about physiology, I currently lean a bit more towards changes in perception. I am hoping to read these comments and learn about the physical changes in the peripheral nerve cells from the other commenters.

I suppose the key is that, to the recipient, no two spankings are exactly alike.

Marie Pinkerton said...

I'm a spankee, and also suffer from chronic pain. I'm sure I'm not the only one.

Chronic pain changes how you think about pain. You get "used" to having low-level pain all day, every day.

I think spanking is the same. You get spanked enough, and it's going to take more spanking before you start to feel the effects.

Laurel Grasso said...

I have often wondered about this same thing. I have experienced this over the years. I think that maybe it is a combination of both physical and psychological elements, however this is just my best guess!

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