Real time pain memory tracking

So, it’s a thing I know about myself that I have a very bad memory for the reality of pain. Like I noted all the way back here, I cannot remember pain I have felt when I am not feeling it. Among other things, this means that being hit with any sort of severity tends to produce an ‘ow, this hurts way more than I could hold in my mind!’ effect. In a pretty interesting experience in a scene I had yesterday with Spiral, I got to observe this effect in real time.

One of the implements I own to get hit with, and pretty much the most severe one I have, is a glowstick. I also have a rubber paddle, which is about second in severity.

In this scene, I’d asked to start by getting straight out hit very hard maybe 10 times with something, and requested these two implements, paddle first, as the somethings. It took only a fraction of the paddle part (which very much produced the above mentioned effect) for me to decide that the glowstick part would be way too much for me and we shouldn’t do it after all.

Then, at nine and with one left to go, we had to take a break for external reasons. And it took literally minutes of the break before I was right back to thinking I did totally want to do the glowstick afterwards.

Then the break finished and number 10 promptly swung me the other way again.

(In the end, I did decide to get hit with the glowstick, but not in the ‘very hard 10 times’ way. It was still entirely sufficient for me to feel incredibly bad for all the characters in any story I’ve read or written who had a switch used on them (which I imagine is similar). This ends up being further demonstration of the memory effect, because it’s now a day later, and while I remember having that feeling/thought thread, I absolutely can’t recapture it. I’m also trying to figure out if there’s a way in which I can obtain a switch, because as it turns out the glowstick, being curved and therefore hard to aim, can’t actually be swung that hard, and I imagine something straight would fix that problem, so that I could try out the 10 thing more properly. Which I will clearly stop thinking is a good idea as soon as I actually try it, but knowing that doesn’t change things for my brain right now.

I don’t know if this is masochism, the bodily mechanism that’ll later help me with childbirth meanwhile working on this, something that’s actually pretty common and I just haven’t read about it, or something else.

But brains are weird).

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2 thoughts on “Real time pain memory tracking

  1. I have this problem just… in the opposite way. I used to be incredibly scared at the prospect of pain, having panic attacks when thinking about something painful I’d have to do, and then endure the pain and be totally fine with it. I’d consciously understand that I had a high tolerance, but couldn’t remember being OK, so for a while I sought out pain as a way to continuously “test” myself and “remember” that I was stronger than I understood myself to be.

    Oh, masochism. Sometimes you make no sense.

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