Do I need the humiliation? Do I crave degradation? Will I ever need more pain than the Archer is willing to give?
I think the answer lies in his reasons for being gentle the first time we had sex after my treachery was exposed.
He told me he would not be "rough," would not engage in anything resembling BDSM. He would hold me, caress me, love me. And he did. Because he did not want me to use pain to excuse myself from my bad behavior.
He was right, mostly.
In his analysis of my masochism, he was absolutely right. I have used pain to excuse my promiscuity, my lies, and probably many other activities I can't think of right now.
Right then, in that moment before we had sex, I didn't want pain. I didn't want punishment, though I believed I deserved it - legitimately, I think. But I didn't want it. I wanted comfort.
I know why he thought I wanted pain. I have a history of wanting it, for one thing. More immediate, though, was the look on my face when I walked in the room and saw a tawse on the bed as if prepped for play. I'm sure I looked relieved. I was, but not because I wanted pain. I took that instrument as a sign that he wanted to play with me, that he would touch me again. I didn't want the pain, but I would take it, if taking it meant having his skin against mine.
Looking back, the mentality that would have allowed me to accept that punishment in trade for feeling his caress, his loving touch, is not far removed from a direct desire for pain as punishment.
I can't do it anymore.
I look back at the times I sought pain or degradation, and I see how pitiful that small spark of pleasure gained was. I see how that spark was overshadowed and twisted by the pestilence of the means of seeking it, and I shy away. I feel ill, and tired. I feel aged.
I don't want to hurt anymore.
Not inside, not outside.