Scratching is not a kink I’ve explored, though it is a kink I would like to play with – I think. I’m not sure I’m doing Kink of the Week right, because I’m actually talking about mental health as much as kink, meaning that today’s post is all non-sexy sex-ness.
Content warning for fairly explicit description of mental health and self-harm.
According to my NHS medical record, I have only ever superficially self-harmed. This is a fair assessment – for the most part. I’ve never self-harmed to an extend where I could seriously hurt myself. Scissors making tiny twisty cuts or running down my inner arm, elbow to wrist; scratching at scabs and picking at blisters and dry skin; digging my nails into my arm or hand hard, hard, hard…
So no, they’re not life-threatening moments of self-harm. They’re also not, I should add, over. Even last night I was fighting the urge to rip my skin off as anxiety overwhelmed me and everything in my body felt wrong. There are also times in the last week when I’ve dug my nails into my wrist, fighting off tears as I tried to control my emotions. I’m living with a mental illness, and while therapy and anti-depressants help, they don’t suddenly magic everything away and make me better.
This makes scratching as a kink really complicated. It’s a kink that I think I would like to explore: it definitely ticks boxes of things I want to try. I want marks left on my skin: bruises from beatings, bite marks from punishing kisses, and scratches left by a partner to mark their territory. Marks left on my body are hot to me for a whole host of reasons – and possibly partly because it still remains something that hasn’t happened yet – and scratching is definitely one of these.
There’s a slight cross over here, but scratches are definitely an indicator of rough sex. Struggle fucking, as I believe I’ve mentioned before, is a big component of my fantasies right now, and this – in said fantasies – should lead to visible reminders of the struggle. In the context of consensual non-consent, I am very much into this. Bruises on my arse from where he thrashed me for not spreading my legs, maybe, or scratches down my back from where I tried to squirm away.
Looking at the header photo for this week’s kink of the week topic (of the fabulous MollysDailyKiss, though I can’t find the exact page), I definitely feel some things. I would love to explore knife play: the idea of such control and power are incredibly hot. But would it come too close to those evenings when I pressed the point of a kitchen knife into my skin, shaking with tears streaming down my face? Or would it be completely different, and a way to wash away the memories of self-harm by reclaiming acts that were once harmful and scary with something deeply sexy?
I want to see scratches on my skin as evidence for your lust for me… but I don’t know if I can separate scratching from self-harm.
Quinn Rhodes (he/him) is a queer, trans, disabled sex writer with vaginismus. He’s a slut and a sex nerd who writes about his adventures in trying to fuck without fucking up. Quinn can usually be found wearing stomp-on-the-patriarchy boots while falling in love every time he fucks.