My legs, with scratches.

Scratching is not a kink I’ve explored, though it is a kink I would like to play with… I think. I’m not sure I’m doing Kink of the Week right, because I’m actually linking kink to mental health, meaning that today I’m going to talk about non-sexy sex-ness. First, however, I’d like to add a content warning for quite explicit description of mental health and self-harm.

According to my NHS medical record, I have only ever superficially self-harmed. This is a fair assessment – for the most part. I’ve never self-harmed to an extend where I could seriously hurt myself. Scissors making tiny twisty cuts or running down my inner arm, elbow to wrist; scratching at scabs and picking at blisters and dry skin; digging my nails into my arm or hand hard, hard, hard…

So no, they’re not life-threatening moments of self-harm. They’re also not, I should add, over. Even last night I was fighting the urge to rip my skin off as anxiety overwhelmed me and everything in my body felt wrong. There are also times in the last week when I’ve dug my nails into my wrist, fighting off tears as I tried to control my emotions. I’m living with a mental illness, and while therapy and anti-depressants help, they don’t suddenly magic everything away and make me better.

This makes scratching as a kink really complicated. It’s a kink that I think I would like to explore: it definitely ticks boxes of things I want to try. I want marks left on my skin: bruises from beatings, bite marks from punishing kisses, and scratches left by a partner to mark their territory. Marks left on my body are hot to me for a whole host of reasons – and possibly partly because it still remains something that hasn’t happened yet – and scratching is definitely one of these.

There’s a slight cross over here, but scratches are definitely an indicator of rough sex. Struggle fucking, as I believe I’ve mentioned before, is a big component of my fantasies right now, and this – in said fantasies – should lead to visible reminders of the struggle. In the context of consensual non-consent, I am very much into this. Bruises on my arse from where he thrashed me for not spreading my legs, maybe, or scratches down my back from where I tried to squirm away.

Looking at the header photo for this week’s kink of the week topic (of the fabulous MollysDailyKiss, though I can’t find the exact page), I definitely feel some things. I would love to explore knife play: the idea of such control and power are incredibly hot. But would it come too close to those evenings when I pressed the point of a kitchen knife into my skin, shaking with tears streaming down my face? Or would it be completely different, and a way to wash away the memories of self-harm by reclaiming acts that were once harmful and scary with something deeply sexy?

I want to see scratches on my skin as evidence for your lust for me… but I don’t know if I can separate scratching from self-harm.

My legs, with scratches.

February Photofest

Kiss the lips to see who else is being kinky, and who else is photographing it! 

5 thoughts on “Scratches”

  1. Kink, broadly, is a “what works for you is what works for YOU” thing, and how kink intertwines with mental health is much the same.

    I’ve had partners with bad past experiences with ‘hitting’ (for example)who have found impact play powerfully cathartic; for others with similar trauma, it is a hard limit and we just don’t go there.

    For anything that’s a known potential “red alert” type activity, like scratching clearly would be for you, it’s a bit of a double-edged sword. Keeping it off the table out of fear could potentially skew its impact as The Big Bad through anxiety or avoidance. Jumping into it without full disclosure/awareness could lead to negative consequences.

    There is no one/right answer, of course. Perhaps it’s one of those things that would be worth examining in multiple contexts (partner dynamics, desired outcomes, planned activity versus triggered emotional response, etc) before deciding whether/how-to proceed. And if/when the time is right, it may require baby steps. 🙂

  2. I can’t answer your question about would it be different but in my gut I want to say it would, with the right partner and the right dynamic it would become about that and them but that is only my gut.

    I think Mrs Fever is spot on in that baby steps is absolutely the right way to go

    Oh and there is no right to do Kink of the Week, as long as it relates to the topic you are done it right.


  3. Incredibly relatable post. I’m shaking while I answer. Thank you for sharing it.
    I love the other wise comments.
    Anxiety and triggers can come totally out of the blue. For example, at Eroticon last year, I was super excited for the branding workshop. I signed up to get a small design singed into my skin. As I watched others taking part, my excitement went to fever pitch. But then it suddenly crossed into something else when I realised that I was craving marks that were slightly damaging but totally legit. Ie, easily explained and guilt free.
    I had to leave and had a panic attack in the loos. It felt totally out of the blue as I hadn’t thought it through or made a connection to my MH.
    You seem to be exploring this carefully and thoughtfully. So I’m sure you will be able to cope with what comes up for you, let’s hope it’s euphoria! X x x

  4. I think the biggest component, which has been mentioned by others, is the right partner. Someone who is good with clear communication and very aware of your cues, who can help you walk that line. I believe too that it can be something you enjoy safely.

  5. Brilliant post and I understand what you’re saying. There have been times I’ve danced so close to that line I’ve accidentally stepped over it. It really is a subjective thing, what works for you works for you and having a partner that understands is really important too. Keep talking and keep communicating and don’t be afraid to stop if you need to.

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