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What's mild? What's severe?

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JessicaK
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Canada
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#11 | Posted: 16 Nov 2016 16:32
Pain is objective, suffering is subjective, to paraphrase, and severity is really about suffering.

As someone with vastly less empirical knowledge of Our Interest than I'd like, this is something I've wondered about. I've had towering strong men give me an "attagirl" slap on the back through clothes that actually hurt - not an injury, but I felt it, and the feeling persisted for some time - who were absolutely not trying to be rough, which has made me wonder: if ONE slap, on a level that they'd consider trivial between each other, over a sweatshirt, could sting, an actual bare hand on bare bum spanking would kill me, no need for anything harsher.

On the other hand, I've gotten through totally non-erotic, non-spanking experiences with much less anesthetic (or none) than is apparently 'normal' without being too bothered by it (for instance, anesthetic wearing off during a filling, and my hatred of needles leading me to opt for the dentist simply carrying on. Wasn't fun, but not ghastly and not traumatic at all.)

I've also read blogs from people who straight up practice domestic discipline (or fake it well on the screen) who say that fairly mild disciplinary spankings seem far worse than objectively harsher erotic spankings. So I'm gonna go with severity being extremely subjective for both the 'victim' and the reader.

TheEnglishMaster
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England
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#12 | Posted: 16 Nov 2016 21:35
What a dull thread this is! Everyone just keeps agreeing! ). So let me nit-pick...

The overwhelming consensus is that the degree of severity is in the eye of the beholder i.e in the emotions and the bottom of the recipient. But...it's not entirely true that it's always thus.

I once saw an elderly gent caned ferociously from left and right by two very experienced dommes for at least five minutes (literally, hundreds of hard strokes) with scarcely a grunt. To him, it was fun; or at least what he wanted at the time. I was a little concerned. But I needn't have been: he undoubtedly had 'rhino bottom' syndrome (see Flopsy's frightening article in WellRed Weekly Volume 1 - click on 'Sites').

I'm just saying that, whatever the recipient's response, there is perhaps an objective degree of severity that most of us would agree on: you look away.

Burgundy
Female Author

Canada
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#13 | Posted: 16 Nov 2016 22:00
TEM, okay, your post gave me cancer. That was an image I did *not* need in my head. I was so much happier before I read that.

But, I suppose *siiiggghhh* we all have to admit that you're right: "look away" is a pretty objective measure of severity.

I'm kinda frightened now of where this thread might go...

lvancisic1
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USA
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#14 | Posted: 17 Nov 2016 17:51
I'm with Leslie. Effective fictional discipline involves inflicting both emotional and physical pain. The emotional aspect is achieved by verbal reprimands, forced exposure of private areas, inflicting the punishment in front of witnesses. Such non physical punishment can induce tears well before the actual hitting begins. Also, a spanking that is delivered slowly and with pauses for lecturing and questions to the recipient, prolongs the punishment without making it physically too severe.

Goodgulf
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#15 | Posted: 28 Nov 2016 03:50
Sometimes you can leave things vague. Lines like:
She got the spanking of her life!
He dished out a mild spanking for such a minor offense.
Her bottom hurt, but Mary would have to admit that the spanking had been am average one.
Unable to sit, Kevin couldn't believe that anyone would ever spank that hard.

That way the reader makes up his mind over how bad a spanking was. One man's hard spanking might be solid redness while another thinks in terms of bruises.

It can be interesting to mix different character views. For example, a novice spankee thinking she's getting a very hard spanking while her spanker is giving her a mild one.

mj2001
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#16 | Posted: 29 Nov 2016 02:57
I agree it's a mixed bag; what some people think is excessive is what others think the miscreant deserved. As a theoretical exercise it would be interesting to see how much of a correlation there is between a reader's personal spanking history and how they view the "excessiveness" of a story. In other words, how do the perceptions correlate or vary on a story between: a) those who weren't spanked as kids vs. b) hand spanked over jeans vs. c) beaten raw with a belt on their bare butt? Hypothetically, based on their personal experiences group c) should have the highest tolerance for a good butt-whipping before deciding it's gone too far. But would that hold up under scrutiny?

Burgundy
Female Author

Canada
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#17 | Posted: 30 Nov 2016 16:13
I'm not sure you're right about your hypothesis; among people who were spanked severely as children, about half do the same with their children, and the other half are very strongly against any spanking of children, and there isn't much middle ground. (That's what the European and Canadian studies pretty much agree on; American studies are more varied in their conclusions, depending on which research body sponsored the study...)

And doing a poll of people on this site would present its own problems of a totally biased sample, since everyone on here is presumably turned on by spanking - it's hard to get people to tell you what they think about something objectively, when the thing you are polling them about is actually their kink. Like asking a foot fetishist for their opinion of legally mandated socks and sandals ("no, no!")

mj2001
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#18 | Posted: 2 Dec 2016 14:41
@ Burgundy:

I fully agree with what you're saying about what studies have found about spanking your own kids. But in this case I was talking about the closed sample group of LSF members (all spanking enthusiasts) and seeing if there was a correlation between childhood experience and what they adjudged to be "too severe" in the stories on this site.

It would be simplistic and not statistically meaningful unless you parsed the data into tiny nuances (note: absurd example follows). You could wind up with something like:

44% of the men who were spanked exclusively by their fathers with a belt on their bare bottoms in the privacy of their bedrooms thought that the whipping in Story #12345 was fine, whereas 67% of the women spanked by their mothers with a hairbrush on their panties in front of the whole family thought it went too far.

An actual survey is logistically impossible, but as a theoretical exercise, how much would someone's personal history influence their determination of the severity of a particular story? Would those who were more severely beaten as kids have a greater or lesser tolerance in a story or is there zero association between the two? The world will never know...

Burgundy
Female Author

Canada
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#19 | Posted: 2 Dec 2016 16:55
Your example made me laugh, and I agree that an actual survey would be very difficult to carry out (difficult, not impossible - any PhDs in stats around here who would like to volunteer to design a survey??)

I'm gonna go ahead and guess that there is a correlation, though, between severity of spankings in childhood and higher tolerance for severity in stories. This guess is based on other research, nothing to do with spanking, that shows that jury members in trials tend to judge defendants more harshly if they themselves can personally relate to the defendant. For instance, men judge other men accused of rape more harshly than women ("If I can restrain myself from raping a woman, this other guy could have too."), and women judge other women accused of harming their children more harshly than men ("If I can keep from stabbing my child, this woman could have too.").

So based on that - totally unscientific conclusion coming right up! - my guess is that people who were spanked harshly will be more likely to poo-poo milder spankings in stories ("If I could put up with worse, this character could too.") Right?

CrimsonKidCK
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#20 | Posted: 2 Dec 2016 18:26
Burgundy:
So based on that - totally unscientific conclusion coming right up! - my guess is that people who were spanked harshly will be more likely to poo-poo milder spankings in stories ("If I could put up with worse, this character could too.") Right?

Well, plenty of Library members, whether or not they were spanked punitively as children, engage in adult spanking activity, I'd guess mostly as erotic/fun play but in some cases as genuine domestic discipline.

So wouldn't the intensity level of the chastisements they administer and/or endure as adults also likely affect the severity of the spankings they prefer to read and/or write about?

"If I recently took one hundred pretty hard paddywhacks to my bare behind while just playing, how much paddling should my poorly-behaved protagonist receive as true punishment...??"

--C.K.

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