The Psychology Behind Why People Are So Into Rough Sex

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Sex is a great way to connect and build intimacy with your partner. When you’re both naked, bodies touching, sensually moving together while keeping each other’s gaze, the atmosphere is very romantic and pleasant. 

why we crave rough sex

But sometimes, you just don’t want to do it sweet and soft. Sometimes all you want is to be thrown onto the bed and railed until your name or city are forgotten. 

And that’s where rough sex comes into play. 

Although rough sex is generally considered to be something outlandish and out of the norm in the bedroom, it is becoming more popular. Actually, According to the latest studyAround 80% of people engages in rough sex activities together with their current romantic or sexual partners. 

Many people are more interested in rough sex than ever before. 

What is rough sex and why do we want it?  

What is Rough Sex?

It’s not easy to define what exactly rough sex is, as the definition of what “rough” is, varies from person to person. Rough sex refers to any sexual activities that involve pain, or are aggressive. 

This could include anything from roleplaying, hard kissing, hard-thrusting or any other BDSM and bondage activity. There are many activities that could be considered aggressive, so the definitions of what is aggressive will vary from one person to another. 

While most people believe that rough sex has to inflict at least a certain amount of pain to be considered rough, it’s not necessarily true. You don’t have to participate in sadomasochistic sexual activity if you don’t find pleasure in pain. 

You can count even more aggressive or demanding language as rough sex. 

For example, when you’re talking dirty to your partner, or sexting, or when you’re in the middle of BDSM play and your partner gives you commands. This is part of rough sex. 

What Rough Sex is NOT

Rough sex refers to sexual activity between two individuals who consent to it taking place and enjoy it equally. 

If parties involved in rough sex are not both consenting and enthusiastically enjoying it, or there was a lack of communication for such activity from either side, then it’s not rough sex. It’s a sexual assault and serious crime. 

If you’re interested in exploring rough sex, it should be clear that you communicate with your partner and agree that both of you are interested in trying out something outside vanilla sex before you do anything.

Rough Sex: Why do we enjoy it?

You might argue that rough sex is attributable to our porn viewing habits and the images we see on our screens. According to Pornhub’s statisticsFor the past seven years, rough sex is a very popular category. 

And what’s even more interesting is that the numbers show that women are 63% more likely to view the rough sex category than men are. 

And while it’s true that porn does influence our sexual behavior as many young people and teenagers use it as their only form of sex education, these numbers don’t necessarily mean that porn made us want rough sex. 

It also gives insight into the fact of how many people want rough sex. Therefore, it should be accepted as a norm and not labeled extreme or kinky.

Justin Lehmiller, a social psychologist, discusses the latest findings from the study published in The Evolutionary Psychological Science Why people love rough sex and feel more sexually stimulated by it

He writes, “Men and women alike reported that it tended to be more arousing and that their orgasms were more intense.” This alone is a valid explanation for our need to indulge in rough sex as it has a better payoff in terms of more intense orgasms. 

Men tend to push harder during rough sex. This can have an impact on the sensation of sex for women, particularly as they may move faster and more vigorously. 

Dr. Justin Lehmiller writes, “women reported reaching orgasm faster… faster orgasms might be part of the appeal of this activity to women.”

The pleasure gap This is a real problem and women are the ones who suffer. It is possible for women to be drawn to rough sex because it can enhance their sexual experience and get them closer to the finish line. 

The Relationship Between Pleasure and Pain

Sometimes, rough sex can involve pain from spanking, cutting, or in other cases consensual physical violence, such as punching. 

Pain is usually an emotion we’re trying to avoid as humans, as it indicates to us that it’s a dangerous activity and can result in death. We learn early to avoid touching hot stoves and playing with knives. 

The relationship between pleasure and pain is more complicated than we think. This could be a danger to our health. In a study, Nature Reviews Neuroscience Research shows that the brain is activated by both pleasure and pain sensations. 

The brain region responsible for the reward system, which regulates motivation-driven behavior, is activated whenever we feel pain or pleasure. 

So, whenever you’re engaging in rough sex activities and enjoy them, your brain releases happy hormones, which in turn make you want to engage in the same activity more in the future. 

It’s also important to mention that we don’t feel pain the same way in a positive and negative environment. 

Research shows that the sensation of pain tends to decrease when we’re experiencing pain in a positive environment, for example, when we’re having sex with our partner. 

So, the pain we experience during rough sex play doesn’t feel the same way as if you were attacked on the street. 

The Daily Routine Can Be Escaped with Rough Sex

One reason people engage in rough sex may be looking for ways to spice up their sexual lives. Dr. Justin Lehmiller writes, “among the more common triggers were the need for sexual novelty (in other words, just wanting to try something new and different).”

People can also find relief from pain by engaging in BDSM activities. One study was published in 2015. It has been shown that BDSM is a way for people to escape stress and problems in their lives. 

It’s common for rough sex play and BDSM to include roleplays and even switching roles of who’s the dominant one in real life and who’s submissive between couples, and it is liberating.

The Rough Sex Method: Dealing with Trauma

For the longest time, there has been a misconception that people who are kinky and enjoy sexual experiences outside of vanilla sex are somewhat “damaged” or struggle with mental illnesses.

This is something that psychologists and sex experts have repeatedly denied. One doesn’t have to suffer from mental illness to enjoy kinky or non-traditional sex. 

Samuel Hughes, a psychological researcher at the University of California, Santa Cruz, researches people’s kinks and how they develop and affect their lives. 

He noticed that many people who enjoyed sex with kinks had suffered trauma and hardships throughout their lives. 

He learned that people who have experienced those kinds of experiences can use their kinks to overcome those hardships and traumas. 

Hughes Writes, “For example, a sexual assault survivor might initially feel afraid, weak, and powerless during their actual sexual assault.” However, simulating that assault via consensual roleplaying with a trusted partner can help them feel powerful (because they consensually negotiated and agreed to it, and can use a safeword to stop the scene), strong (because they feel they can get through whatever physical pain or intensity comes their way), and brave, for facing what can often be dark times in their past head-on.”

People might like rough sex as it helps them gain control over their past and help them get through trauma and hardship. 

How to Safely Discover Rough Sex Activities

BDSM plays have clear rules that people tend to use whenever they are planning to engage in the activity. Some go so far as to create contracts to define boundaries. 

While some parts of BDSM are involved in rough sex play, it’s not fully counted as part of BDSM and is regarded as something more casual. This leaves much room for miscommunications and negative experiences. 

For this reason, if you’re interested in engaging in rough sex with your partner, you should be open and honest and don’t just go with it, assuming your partner is on board. 

It is essential to consent for all sexual activities. However, it should be clear when engaging in aggressive sex. This can be dangerous and potentially trigger for some people. 

Communicate your wants and needs clearly

If you’re interested in exploring violent sex with your partner, the first thing you should do is communicate your wants and needs. 

You don’t want to start rough sex by jumping on your partner or choking them during intercourse. Even if you want to seduce them or spice things up, it is impossible to know what might trigger them. 

You don’t need to write up elaborate contracts like some BDSM practitioners like to do. But it’s important to discuss clearly what motivates you, what would be an enjoyable thing to do, and if you have a partner.

Setting Boundaries

Safe and healthy sex play requires that you set boundaries and use safe words. 

When you’re communicating your needs and wants to your partner, it’s important to let them know how far you’re willing to go and what makes you uncomfortable or is your no-go zone. 

If your partner finds something arousing, while you don’t, don’t be pressured into an activity that’s uncomfortable for you. 

It’s also a good idea to stay on the safe side and have a safe word if you intend on engaging in rough sex play, which involves roleplaying. You’ll be able to enjoy the roleplay, but still have a way out if it gets uncomfortable.

Don’t Forget Aftercare

Aftercare is a huge part of BDSM practice when the dominant partner ensures to take care of the submissive’s emotional needs after the play is done. 

Even if you love being humiliated, tortured, or in pain during sex it is possible to still feel low. Aftercare can be as simple as cuddling or cuddling. 

While sex might not be as intense or as raw as BDSM’s, rough sex is possible. Depending on your preferences, you and/or your partner.But, you should only spend five to ten minutes after sex. To The experience can be enhanced by kissing, cuddling, or just being in bed together.

So, don’t dismiss the importance of aftercare and make sure that you and your partner are feeling taken care of and loved after the rough play. 




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