I am a Moral Masochist

I am a moral masochist.

According to the “Economic Problem of Masochism” (1942c), Freud describes moral masochism as the third form of masochism, next to feminine masochism and erotogenic masochism.  In moral masochism, the connection to an external object comes undone: “The suffering itself is what matters; whether it is decreed by someone who is loved or by someone who is indifferent is of no importance. It may even be caused by impersonal powers or circumstances; the true masochist always turns his cheek whenever he has a chance of receiving a blow” (p. 165).

Really, what I think Freud is getting at here is that I love the pain of my own moral imperatives. I love sleeping in the sheets of my own personal self-distractions and indifference for humanity. My core identity is self-embued in my own personal searching and longing to understand and know myself more. As Freud would say himself, “I’ve got one twisted super-ego.” That’s where the self-punishment comes into play. I am constantly evaluating my environment through the lens of a moral and intellectual stratosphere. I find deep pleasure from discovering insights about humanity and then sitting beneath my books and refraining from actually interacting with anyone.

Really, I think the motivation behind my elusive nature and inability to deeply and emotionally connect with anyone intimately is I want to do that with myself.

I am getting to the point in my life where I just want to be who I am. I want to read books about scientists and deep intellectual thinkers like Kafka, Tolstoy, Marx and Rachel Carson. I also really want to find art on a colossal level. I want to create giant pieces of art, and I am selfish and reluctant to share that experience with anyone else.

My super-ego has inflicted a weird form of isolated self-pleasure and self-exploration that I cannot say I’ve experienced in my life before. My experiences are distinct mechanisms to a response that I am not sure I am ready to understand quite yet.

I want to live underwater. I want to feel and express and be in the moment of my life with the plunging distractions of human expectations. Can I just get back to this experience? To this existential material of freedom.

paige swanson

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