Ow; stop that. No wait; please don't.
March 31, 2010 2:49 PM   Subscribe

Sexfilter: I'm okay with this, but what does it mean that I love it when Mr. Anon pulls my hair during sex?

Mr. Anon and I have (after about a year) a pretty super-hot sex life. We're both game and giving; liking everything from energetic and adventurous to sleepy and slow sex and everything in between. No kinks (or anything that's generally referred to as a kink...I have no issues with kink; we've tried a lot and they just don't float our boats).

Anyway, I'm wondering: I really get off when Mr. Anon pulls my hair gently but you know; with a little bit of force. Enough that it hurts just a little bit.

I don't enjoy pain in any other area of my life.

Anyone else? Why does this feel so good?
posted by anonymous to Human Relations (22 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite

You said no kink, but is it possible that you like being a LITTLE submissive?
posted by saradarlin at 2:52 PM on March 31, 2010

All it means, really, is that it turns you on. Turn ons aren't generally very logical, and are often counter to the way we live the non-sex part of our lives.
posted by ocherdraco at 2:52 PM on March 31, 2010 [12 favorites]

It's been said that pain is close to pleasure. Thus, when you're having sex, a bit of mild pain can focus and/or intensify the experience. IMHO, it doesn't necessarily mean anything other than that -- it feels good to you, so you like it!
posted by vorfeed at 2:52 PM on March 31, 2010

Because it's kind of primal and hot, is why. ;-) It's very gently transgressive, which is frequently sexy, and it implies that perhaps he's so into you that his respectful and gentlemanly veneer slips, just a tad.
posted by KathrynT at 2:54 PM on March 31, 2010 [8 favorites]

i'm pretty kinky and submissive - but hair pulling is liked by many, many people who are neither of these things. it's a mark of passion and closeness and primalness.
posted by nadawi at 2:57 PM on March 31, 2010 [3 favorites]

You don't have to be kinky (in general) or submissive (in specific) to enjoy having your hair pulled, fingernails scratched down your back, etc. These are ways of surrendering to a kind of primal sexual physicality that (as KathrynT says) is quite hot for just about everyone! In my experience, even totally vanilla people often enjoy being grabbed roughly and thrown about in the sack now and again.
posted by cirripede at 3:01 PM on March 31, 2010

I suppose one could conjure up some evolution-historical psychological hypothesis to the reason for this. For example, in my very very very limited experience this is exclusively a female thing. So maybe since it is a convenient hand held for the male to maintain leverage during copulation, this is sufficently regularly occuring that the feeling of yanked hair is closely related to the activity of fucking on a primal level... or some other rot like that.

I do hope you just asked in order to curiously explore this and not because you are afraid or ashamed of this? There's no reason for any of those feelings is my opinion.
posted by Catfry at 3:05 PM on March 31, 2010

this is not exclusively a female thing and the males who like it aren't always submissive (and can be quite the opposite)
posted by nadawi at 3:07 PM on March 31, 2010 [3 favorites]

Yeah, I don't think this means a whole lot -- I've been with plenty of women who enjoyed it, often to the point of specifically requesting it. I didn't notice anything different about them as people, outside of the bedroom.
posted by modernnomad at 3:08 PM on March 31, 2010

Yes I like it. I think it must be to do with the number of nerves in ones scalp. Somehow for me just the reminder of that body part being alive is electric. Similar feeling to my back being scratch or kneeded.
posted by 92_elements at 3:20 PM on March 31, 2010

Well, you're at a heightened state of arousal, and just about anything is going to get those endorphins pumping around, so uh, maybe that's it?
posted by turgid dahlia at 3:42 PM on March 31, 2010

I think you're looking to rationalize this, so that it's understandable and okay. Given that it's a consensual practice, the latter has already been accomplished.

It feels good because you like it. You like it because it feels good. I'm sure there are all sorts of theoretical explanations, but I'm not so sure that's what people really want... more often it seems they want some sort of permission/validation.

posted by iftheaccidentwill at 3:57 PM on March 31, 2010 [1 favorite]

All we know for sure is that it means you like getting your hair pulled. No one knows why the things that turn us on turn us on though. Good guesses include the idea that we're turned on by doing things that are taboo, we're turned on by generally non-sexual physical sensations when applied in a sexual context, we're turned on by being controlled or by controlling, we're turned on by being surprised in a sexual context.

As an aside, I think it's a little arbitrary to say you like having your hair pulled but you're not into kink. Hair pulling is pretty mellow, but it seems to me that hair puling is a bit kinky. And there are other activities that share certain characteristics of hair pulling, which are generally labeled kinky, and which you also might enjoy exploring. Instead of deciding you aren't into kink, what about forgetting the label "kink" and just looking at each activity on it's own terms? Because if you like hair pulling, you might also like being held down, or spanked, or called names. Or you might enjoy holding your sweetie down, or spanking him, or calling him names. Or none of the above! Who knows? Sex is so wacky and mysterious!
posted by serazin at 4:39 PM on March 31, 2010 [2 favorites]

This is almost unanswerable. Why does it feel good? Well, nerve endings, brain chemistry, blah blah blah. This is unique to everyone; I hate having my hair pulled but I love other kinds of pain.

Why do YOU like it? I don't know, why do I like coffee more than tea? Who cares? What's important is that why you're concerned about this. What do you think it says about you? Your partner? Do you think you're secretly a masochist? Do you think there's something wrong with liking pain? I think these are things to look at. You may find you actually do like other kinds of pain and/or submission. Or you may not. Sexual preferences aren't any more deep and meaningful than food preferences, in my opinion. You just like what you like, and hey, if you like four alarm chili, fine with me as long as I don't have to use the bathroom after you.
posted by desjardins at 5:03 PM on March 31, 2010

For example, in my very very very limited experience this is exclusively a female thing.

With all due respect, your experience is indeed very limited. (said as a hetero-ish female)
posted by desjardins at 5:05 PM on March 31, 2010 [5 favorites]

I agree that it doesn't have to mean anything. It could just be that when your hair is pulled a whole bunch More neurons are now firing and providing sensations that are added atop all of the good sensations happening at the Other end of your spinal column. It adds intensity and provides contrast.
posted by ldthomps at 5:32 PM on March 31, 2010

Are you asking if this makes you a 'weirdo'? 'Cause it doesn't.

Everybody likes something 'odd' now and again. I had a girlfriend who used to like to pull my earlobes during sex. Really; and I've no idea why. I 'dated' another girl who liked to be punched in the kidneys, softly, during sex. No kidding. Another girl I dated liked me to choke her once in a while during sex. That one made me feel a bit icky, but hey, it worked for her. All of these girls were perfectly normal, intelligent people who you'd never guess liked these sorts of kooky little things. All of them were well-adjusted and pleasant people who just happened to have a little sexual quirk, and I always found their quirks endearing.

Anyway, hair-pulling is hot. My girl likes it, too.
posted by Pecinpah at 5:35 PM on March 31, 2010

Why does this feel so good?

because it's fun! there are a lot of things like hair-pulling and the occasional nibbling bite and things like that that would be pretty annoying outside of the context of The Hot Sex that are awesome within that context.

it's also a pretty common thing to like, in my experience.
posted by rmd1023 at 5:53 PM on March 31, 2010

I'm kinky and I do lots of hair-pulling. Never met a submissive woman who didn't get off on it.

However, that doesn't mean that it's always kinky. There is a pain aspect, sure. But there a couple of other things going on there as well.

First, it has this aggressive/surrendering-of-control quality to it. When you think about it, it's physically similar to a dog being led around on a leash or a kitten being picked up by the scruff of its neck. You are moving in this direction, right now, the hair-puller declares, because I have decided that you will. So I guess you could describe it as "dominant" except that I don't think it necessarily goes that far. When you're having regular old sexual intercourse and your partner gets excited and starts thrusting harder and you move or change your muscle tone to accommodate those thrusts, you're certainly following his lead but it would be a stretch to say that he's "dominating" you in the S&M sense. Hair pulling can have this same quality.

Second, the muscles in your head (and neck too) are particularly susceptible to stress. They tense up in response to every-day aggravations and you probably don't even realize it. When I give a head massage - even if it's my sister and especially if it's myself - I frequently include some very gradual but firm hair tugs. When you grab it by the roots and pull upwards, it pulls on the scalp muscles, relieving that tension. It almost always produces a sigh of relief. And I think there are times during sex that a little, sudden increase in relaxation can make a huge difference. Just ask Frankie Goes To Hollywood.
posted by Clay201 at 6:21 PM on March 31, 2010 [4 favorites]

Anyone else? Why does this feel so good?

Yep. Because it feels really good.

Seconding Clay201's note about massage including some firm hair tugs to release scalp tension. Plus, sex and intensified sensations go together like...uh, the food-metaphor of your choice for flavors that each make the other even more moan-inducingly awesome.
posted by desuetude at 6:48 PM on March 31, 2010

Hair tugging is a very possessive thing. Maybe that's what you like.
posted by arimathea at 6:45 AM on April 1, 2010

Because it feels good. In a totally non sexual way. One of my favorite things is when people play with my hair byt putting it up in a pony tail over and over again or braiding it. I also really really really loved someone spending 2 hours to give me an updo when I went to high school dances.
posted by WeekendJen at 11:17 AM on April 1, 2010 [2 favorites]

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