I don't remember when I started craving it. It must have been maybe five years ago. One night I couldn't stop crying no matter how tenderly I was held and caressed. My current lover couldn't understand why I wanted it, but he cared enough to cater to my whims. There was something so real about being held there, stretched to my limits and yet knowing I was safe. Nothing is more memorable than pain, except love.

When he left me I wasn't sure where to take my secret. Who would understand that I craved pain for pleasure? That I needed that searing memory to survive. My wrists ached when not tied to a post and my skin yearned to be bruised. Those memories of that joyous mix of pain and pleasure were more real to me than my job, my apartment, my family, and even my closest friends. The few hours I was permitted to indulge myself were my only life and the rest was just a slightly unpleasant dream. I wandered through my day to day life like a ghost without a goal or any ambition. Over time I met others like me who had taken their addiction to this extreme and sometimes we'd help each other make it through the day. The week. The year. It all seemed to fade and I stopped counting my life by meals and paychecks and lovers and instead by the short sessions of life I endured and craved.

They say I need this because I have problems with trust. Doesn't everyone have problems with trust? It's always such a leap, but so satisfying to take. For a while you're bitter and then trust no one and over time you have to jump till you almost trust everyone even though you don't want to. It's part of the game. It's part of your addiction. I have to trust that I will come out of this unscathed and fulfilled. I know I will going into it. This isn't about trust. Don't pervert the issue for me, I know I will be fine.

I will live in these memories of pain, waiting for another love to fill my life and stay by my side.

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