Monday, April 9, 2012

The Humiliating Complexities of Humility

Humiliation is one of those murky areas where the waters get a bit darker isn't it? Because we aren't really talking about the physical things that can induce a psychological state, but the results of those actions--what happens in a person's mind.
And it is an extremely subjective experience--some people are unfazed by it, others are damaged, and a few get off on it.
My trauma might be a cake walk for someone else. My good night might be trauma for another.

I think that it is a lot easier to avoid damaging someones body than it is to avoid damaging their mind.
I don't really have a perspective on humiliation from the inflicting side. I know that the first time, we had a really serious talk afterwards.
He was...Pleased and concerned. And we both believe it was something that could be pushed too far. For both of us. For me to the point of damage, and him to the point where it didn't heighten his feelings for me, but created negative ones.
And humiliation is one of those things where you kind of keep uping the ante. So you have to know your cards and stop before you end up in the hole.

My all time favorite blog post about the positive feelings humiliation can evoke is at A Slave among Drivers. I think she did an absolutely brilliant job expressing how incredible it can be.

Humiliation is about humility--the absence of pride, being in a place where there is no ego or pretension...Only who and what you really are. Humility is about accepting and just...Being.
It's about having all the unnecessary trappings of daily life and who we are stripped away until there is nothing left between us.

Though it is not to be confused with degradation (yes, I'm picky and I like to make these distinctions). Degradation is about tearing someone down and making them less than what they are.

Positive humiliation is about being seen at your absolute lowest, and respected the more for it. It's about what happens after the tears, facing the fears, and crawling out the other side.

There's clearly a huge difference between positive and negative humiliation, and I think that most of us immediately think of the negative connotations when we hear the word. Because, lets face it, humiliation can be an extremely negative thing right? It's those experiences we hated, and that left us feeling like shit, the ones we try not to think about as we look through our memories or face the mirror.

But sometimes, it is a beautiful thing that happens in that place where boundaries fade and we can be closer to another human being than space itself allows.

The way he picks me up and kisses my head, the way he washes my hair and runs his fingers down my back, the words he whispers in my ear as he guides me to bed--it's these things that make the experience what it is. More so perhaps than the humiliation itself. But these things would not be what they are without the events that led to them.

And the way he grins at me on the following day and calls me his twisted little kitty? Well, it is rather endearing.

How does one get off on humiliating another person? I dunno. Perhaps because there is something powerful about seeing the extent to which another person is willing to go for you, in being able to do obscene things to someone that they would likely never admit to let alone do....I think it takes a sadistic streak. So often we think of sadism and masochism being about physical pain. But really? There are many toys in that particular sandbox.

Like most of the incredible experiences in life, humiliation at it's worst can be a terrible thing. At it's best...It can be absolutely amazing.


  1. Another thought provoking post lil. What happens in a persons mind...yeah, been struggling with that one just a bit myself.

    1. faerie, thought provoking...I'm sorry!

    2. It's all good, it keeps me from getting stuck :)

  2. Thanks lil- your posts really speak to me.


    1. faithful, you are quite welcome. Glad you find something to identify with here.

  3. I like the differentiation between humiliation and degradation, I would imagine for some the line between the two is rather fine. Sometimes I feel like I am being pushed a bit too far but we do benefit from it in the end.

    1. dancingbarez, I think that humiliation is very much about being pushed that little teensy bit too far. And yes, the line can be quite fine can't it.

  4. Nice post

    Humiliation really fascinates me because its so complex and personal to the individual, what some may find humiliating others wont. Its something that my Master and i do a lot of we both enjoy it very much.

    I thrive on being humiliated which i know seems an odd thing to say, but its when i can completley let go and those times are amazing. I do enjoy being degraded as well and for me quite often the two go hand in hand together and its not had any negative impact on me as far as im aware lol

    I think the key to humiliation is the dominant knowing his sub very well, having the ability to get in their head and push buttons but also knowing when to stop to not let it get into potential damaging areas.

    I have lain on the bathroom floor covered in his piss and cum whilst he has stood over me telling me what a dirty stinking filthy bitch i am and i escape into my head...i float...and he has walked away leaving me like that for a period of time.

    For some that would be too much and i get that but i love it and at some point he will come back place me in the bath and wash me all the while talking to me...bringing me back to the now.

    He has said that what he gets from it is the sense of power, the control he has of taking me to those places, the pleasure he gets from seeing me let go and embracing how im being 'used' which is something i can only seen to achieve through the sex during or afterwards is fantastic lol

    Degredation hmm well i can understand your distinction between the two and i agree but i do enjoy being torn down because i know he will put me back together again.

    It sounds like your enjoying exploring humiliation and i think it can be beneficial personally.

    tori xx

    1. tori,
      thank you.
      I agree, there's no substitute for knowing someone really well. Because those lines are so fine.
      It is a complex thing that I could ramble on for ages about and barely scratch the surface of possibility.

  5. Yes, humiliation can be amazing but I think it varies from couple to couple. What works for tori might not work for other couples. But it is an interesting topic to explore.


    1. FD, I agree. It's one of those things that is not for everyone. Just as individuals and their relationships are unique, so are what we need and enjoy.

  6. Lil,

    Most people don't understand this, but the reason mouse speaks and writes in the third person was, in the beginning not about objectification, but about humiliation and humility. It changes the thought process, where you really must consider what you wish to convey and how to say it.


    1. mouse, I could see how that really affects the way you express yourself and the thought you have to put into words before speaking.
      I think it's a skill to write in third person, and your blog is one of the only ones where I have found it is well written and comes across clearly.

  7. Very interesting post Lil, thanks.

    I like your new format better btw, it's much easier to read.


    1. sin, thank you and you're welcome.
      I change my blog more often than I would change my hair if I could. I have been called unreadable. Mostly for font, but I'm not sure the font was the only issue lol. Though if you want people to read what you write, taking those things into consideration is probably a good idea...

  8. One should remember that what is humiliating to one person may not be so to another, and in time one's attitude can change so that less and less becomes humiliating.

    I think you're right in assuming that people get off on humiliating others (or trying to, see above, it's quite possible to make your sub do things you think is humiliating to them when the sub doesn't feel humiliated) because of the power over the other it displays.

    Humiliation of course doesn't have to be dirty, filthy, stuff like piss and scat play, verbal abuse.
    It can be as subtle as displaying the sub in public in barely legal clothing, openly portraying their submissiveness to the dom(me). Especially to a new(ish) sub this is a big step in growing their submission.

    1. Its this for me that sums up how humiliation is so personal to the individual, i would not and could not handle going out in public wearing barely legal clothing and he would not expect me wouldnt be subtle to would be mortifying lol im not a fan of wearing scantily clad clothing in public.

      But the piss and verbal abuse....bring it on lol

      tori x

    2. jwenting,
      Yes, as I said somewhere up top, it is a subjective experience that offers much temptation to keep upping the ante. And humiliation does come in many forms and fashions--once again an individual experience.

    3. tori, lol, apparently, the term subtle is also quite subjective.

  9. You are right, lil--biddable's post that you linked to is outstanding. Thanks for sharing both it and your thoughts!

    1. Jake, you are quite welcome. And her post really is lovely isn't it.


Play nice.