Vancouver
2 min

Endorphin rush

Is piercing a home-style acupuncture?

Credit: Xtra West files

I was sliding the needle through my lover’s skin when I was smacked with an epiphany.



At the sensation of each slim, sterile point going in, slicing a short path just under her skin and then making a second tiny exit hole, my lover grunted in unintelligible strings of consonants, took a deep breath, and smiled. Round about the sixth needle, she started to get loose and relaxed on the endorphin rush-or “runner’s high”-that almost every human on the planet gets from temporary piercings. I knew from happy experience that by the time we’d poked a couple dozen holes, played around a while, then slid them back out of her skin and popped them neatly in the sharps container, she’d be flying high, laughing giddily and talking a mile a minute.



Here’s the epiphany: Maybe this temp-piercing thing parallels what acupuncturists are doing. Poke. Zing! Whew, I feel strangely better! Where’s my chequebook?



And that can’t be the only healthcare/BDSM parallel.



I recall a fag friend of mine extolling the virtues of Rolfing, an advanced massage technique. “Oh god, he just picks up my skin and rolls it around, grabs the muscles underneath, it’s so painful! Sometimes it brings up old memories, and sometimes I cry. But I trust my Rolfer to be supportive, so I just let go and I feel good afterwards, so in tune and connected and exhilarated.”



Uh-huh.



And where have I heard a similar story before? From glowing bottoms, in the aftercare area of the public dungeon. From glowing bottoms in my bedroom.



I’ve heard many SM players tell me that when they feel tense, that they’d feel so much better if they played. So long as we’re honest with the other player about the therapeutic benefits we’re (also) seeking from our next SM scene, it generally works out well for everyone concerned.



Ah, the healing power of human touch-especially when applied with great force and speed!



One day soon, I’m sure I’ll hear about doctors all over Canada dropping Prozac-pushing in favour of prescribing a nice thumping for what ails ya.



“What did you say, Doctor?”



“You heard me correctly. A long, slow warm-up and then a good sound spanking, to the rosy pink stage. Back or bottom, your preference. Repeat once a week, or after the welts cool down.”



But what about if we’re caught playing without a prescription? If our government, so often guilty of recto-cranial inversion, has anything to say, our own natural endorphins will be the illegal drug du jour. And I, Vancouver’s most enthusiastic spanker, will be in danger of being arrested on Drug Paddling charges.



* Elaine Miller is pro-healthcare.