Intro to Fetishes and Sexual Paraphilia
What is sexual paraphilia/fetish?
“Paraphilia” is a big medical word to describe people who get aroused by abnormal things, people, and situations. A fetish is a sexual obsession with a nonhuman object or a nonsexual body part. Our mainstream society is responsible for determining what’s normal vs. what’s abnormal in terms of sexual arousal. However, due to various psychological experiences throughout the lifespan, people develop these “odd” obsessions that cause sexual excitement. Look on any porn website and you will see numerous categories, many of which you probably didn’t know are considered paraphilia.
With the help of Fifty Shades of Grey, the secret world of BDSM has come to light. BDSM which stands for bondage, discipline, sadomasochism, or dominance and submission, has become a much more acceptable form of sexual expression. So let’s learn about some fetishes, so next time you’re talking to someone about it, you don’t feel like an idiot. Perhaps, you will even find out how many fetishes you are drawn to. I score 7/18, I bet you can’t guess which are my favs!
Most common acceptable types of fetishes:
- Asphyxiophilia– this is when people get aroused by being gagged or choked during sex. The decrease in oxygen is believed to increase orgasm intensity.
- Autoerotic asphyxiation– when individuals with asphyxiophilia engage in self-strangulation during masturbation. However, this paraphilia can become deadly as individuals may accidentally choke themselves to death.
- Crossdressing– people who get turned on by wearing clothing of the opposite sex.
- Cuckolding– this is when husbands get turned on by watching their wives get f*cked by other dudes. This is associated with the cheating wife fantasy. It’s actually common in swinging.
- Hotwifing– when wives enjoy being f*cked by dudes other than their husbands aka “slut-wife”.
- Domination and submission– aka power play. The dominant person has the power and control, while the submissive gives up all power. Sometimes a submissive will wear a collar to display status. The dominant person is called a “dom” or a “top”, while the submissive is a “sub” or “bottom”.
- Exhibitionism– exposing one’s private parts to others (usually non-consenting).
- Voyeurism– getting turned on by watching others who are naked or having sex. Like watching porn.
- Erotic spanking– self-explanatory. Spanker and spank-ee both typically get aroused.
- Foot fetish– getting aroused by people’s feet. People with foot fetishes may especially enjoy “foot jobs” and engage in foot worship by licking, kissing, and sucking on toes.
- Leather/latex fetish– pretty obvious. People get turned on by leather and latex, so they enjoy dressing in such materials or seeing someone dressed in leather/latex.
- Underwear fetish– panty obsession. Individuals with this fetish masturbate to other people’s panties.
- Stocking fetish– this is a common one, especially in porn. Sexy stockings with garter belts.
- Masochism– this is when people get aroused from pain or humiliation. They enjoy the pain, both physical (spank, bound, beaten, spit on) and emotional (called a slut or degraded and humiliated in other emotional ways).
- Sadism– these are the people who enjoy inflicting pain (the soul mates of masochists).
- Stigmatophilia– this one is becoming more and more common. These individuals are aroused by body piercings and tattoos.
- Swinging– basically the swapping of partners for sexual purposes aka “lifestyle” or “alternative lifestyle”.
- Urophilia– people who enjoy urinating on their partners aka “golden showers”.
How common are fetishes?
Well, according to research there are 549 different paraphilias. According to a recent study by the Journal of Sex Research, 1 in 6 people has a sex fetish and 1 in 3 people in the U.S. has taken part in at least one fetish. According to this research, 9% of men have an urophilia fetish.
BDSM, as taboo as it may be, is actually a lot more common that we think. An Australian study in 2001-2002 questioned 19,307 participants aged 16-59 about their sexual behaviors. When asked whether or not these individuals had participated in any BDSM in the past year, 1.8% of men and 1.2% of women answered yes.
However, there were differences in the percentages based on various BDSM behaviors. For example, in a Finnish Study, more than 80% of the participating sample revealed that they had been involved in bondage and flagging.
In terms of voyeurism and exhibitionism researchers at the Karolinska Institute surveyed a random sample of 2,450 Swedes age 18 to 60 regarding their behaviors. They found that 3.1 percent reported at least one incident of feeling sexually aroused by exposing their genitals to a stranger (exhibitionism) and 7.7 percent reported at least one incident of being sexually aroused by spying on others having sex (voyeurism). In both cases, men’s percentages were higher.
I recently found a really interesting website that will score your fetish percentages based on a number of questions. Check it out here.
What’s your score? Comment below! You don’t have to share specifics if you don’t want.