@Erznana : I totally understand your POV. I'm 34 and started MT just 2 months ago. Until last week, I had only done "soft" sparring for new moves (well, new to me anyway) and last week, I "sparred" with someone who apprently wanted me to know that he knew much more than I did and caught me with a high kick he followed by a left hook he wasn't supposed to throw ... so yes, I have the same hurdle as you have : getting hit for real.
It was the very first time (I've never been involved in a fight)and I must admit, quite surprising.
To answer your questions :
1) What made you get into Muay Thai or MMA?
There is a class 5 mns from my place, and I wanted to practice a contact sport. also the strict work ethic if you want to succeed which can be applie din your everyday life.
2) How long have you been training in Muay Thai / MMA?
3) What did you do mentally and physically to condition yourself to take a hit?
Since this was my first real hit, I wasn't prepared but I think the mental preparation is the most important.
4) How long did it take for you where you were comfortable enough with your skills to compete?
Not ready yet, and I don't reaaly intend to jump in the ring, I'm just doing it for "fun", not for competition
Muay Thaď rules but it f*****g hurts