This article defines the origin of sadomasochism, as well as its prevention and cure.
Sadomasochism is the giving and receiving of pleasure from acts involving the receiving and giving of pain or humiliation. The two words "sadism" and "masochism," were originally derived in the 19th Century from the names of two authors. The term "sadism" has its origin in the name of the Marquis de Sade, the French writer who practiced giving pain and wrote novels about it. "Masochism" is named after Leopold von Sacher-Masoch, the Austrian writer who wrote novels expressing his fantasies in receiving pain.
The "sadism" and "masochism" were introduced to the medical terminology as illnesses in 1890, by the German psychiatrist Richard von Krafft-Ebing in his book "New research in the area of Psychopathology of Sex." In the 20th Century many psychologists, psychiatrists, and philosophers wrote about sadism and masochism. Among them were Sigmund Freud, Havelock Ellis, Gilles Deleuze, Jean-Paul Sartre, and Rene' Girard. According to these scientists, there are many reasons why sadists and masochists find their practice enjoyable and they all depend on individuals. This might not be true enough.
Jean-Paul Sartre argued that masochism is an attempt to reduce oneself to nothing while sadism is the effort to conquer the subjectivity of the victim. Sigmund Freud described sadism and masochism as abnormal psychological development from early childhood. He noted that both were often found in the same individuals, and combined the two into a single dichotomous entity known as "sadomasochism." Scientists gave different interpretations of sadism and masochism, but they agreed that sadists and masochists joined together encounter a pleasure in giving and receiving pain as a form of sexual satisfaction. However, they failed to define the origin of sadomasochism and then, of course, they were not able to find the prevention, neither the cure for it.
The recent researchers have found an easy way out from the problem by suggesting that sadomasochism is merely a sexual interest, and not a pathological symptom or a sexual problem and that people with sadomasochistic sexual interest are in general neither damaged nor dangerous. The current version of the American Psychiatric Association's manual DSM-5, excludes consensual sadomasochism from diagnosis of illnesses when the sexual interests cause no harm or distress. On June 18, 2018, the World Health Organization removed sadomasochism from psychiatric diagnoses in International Classification of Diseases ICD 11.
The pathology of enjoyment in pain has become a normal state. It has happened nowhere in nature but in human society. So why do we accept abnormal behaviour as normal? Because we live in an abnormal society.
My research on sadomasochism is based on analysis of available data. The result is presented here and defines the origin of sadomasochism, as well as its prevention, and cure. It was not a difficult task for me because the same medicine cures each and every social and psychological problem of society. I've worked on solving it for a long time.
The origin of sadism and masochism are embedded in social relations. They are the results of tension coming from living in an authoritarian society that prevents people from a natural way of living. When children like to play out but cannot because they are forced to spend a long time in schools, this is the starting point of sadomasochism. When adults want to enjoy their lives but cannot because they have to obey to the rules authorities have created, this is the starting point of sadomasochism as well.
A normal, natural reaction to the oppression of authorities is resistance. Those who resist the authorities and manage to release themselves from authoritarian tyranny would most likely have relaxed, productive lives free of tension. They would neither try to oppress anybody nor let themselves be oppressed. This is the best possible way of living and the best choice for society.
However, authorities may have been too strong, feared, or respected so that people were never able to escape from their oppression completely. Therefore, we all possess some tension coming from the oppression of authorities and therefore carry some level of sadomasochism. People who value strength try to suppress the tension by intensifying control of themselves, but it worsens the problem because self-discipline increases the tension. This explains why well raised, strongly disciplined, better-educated, and more successful people, are more prone to become sadists and masochists.
Under influences of authorities, sadists oppress masochists who enjoy being obedient to them. Sadists find enjoyment in domination over masochists and masochists find pleasure in submission to sadists. They build a strong mutual dependency which might look like being in love. However, every relationship based on the control of authority and the servility of subordinate people always represents some level of a sadomasochistic relationship and should be labelled as a perversion of love.
People cannot endure the tension of living in authoritarian society endlessly so that their bodies find an escape from the tension in the perversion of emotions and senses. The perversion of emotions and senses is the origin which actually produces sadism and masochism. The strong tension of sadists perverts their emotions strongly, and then they enjoy giving pain to other people and become strong sadists. Lower level sadists would be satisfied by watching fights in brutal movies for example. Ordinary people do not enjoy any of it.
Masochists enjoy being obedient to sadists. Scientists offer a spectrum of explanations about the masochist's need to submit to the power of controlling authorities. According to them, authorities give masochists safety and protection from the stresses, from helplessness, from fear of life responsibilities, or from guilt. According to me, the permanent tension under stress, discomfort, and fear perverse masochists' emotions, so that they find enjoyment in obedience to sadists. But it explains the origin of the emotional perversion only. It does not explain the pleasure of pain.
Masochist must enjoy the pain they receive from sadists a lot; otherwise, they would not accept it. Masochists enjoy the pain much more intensively than sadists who deliver the pain can. Scientists have problems to understand what causes the enjoyment of pain. They understand the chemical process in the body which creates pleasure in pain, but they do not know why it happens.
My analysis has given a pretty convincing conclusion about the origin of pain enjoyment. Permanent tension in masochists beside emotions perverts their sensations as well. High-level tension perverts the nerves of masochists. The nerves start producing pleasure from the sense of pain. At this moment this is the best explanation available for masochistic attraction to pain.