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Sexual fetishes and what I learned about them as a treating psychotherapist

The first thing that is worth pointing out – fetishes are clearly not psychological, they are neurological in origin. I’ll explain more about this further down.

Some years ago I logged into my email to find the inbox had been filled with emails about sexual fetishes.  There were literally hundreds of them, sent from all over the world.  Initially, I was baffled as to why this had happened. On later investigation, I learned that Google had indexed one of my pages at number 1. for the search term “sexual fetish treatment.”

If you are reading this webpage, then the chances are very high that you too have a sexual fetish and are seeking treatment for it.  So, I figured I’d write out what I learned during the 18 months of consulting with clients who “suffered from” fetish and paraphilia, talking to experts from the fetish community, and generally researching the topic of unwanted sexual fetish and paraphilia.

My first observation was that all the emails that came through during that time were from men.  These were men of all ages and from all parts of the world. There was no distinction between social class, educational level, culture, race, religion or any other socio-cultural factors.

What these socio-cultural factors do affect is the experience of the fetish.  For example, a man with a foot fetish in New York is much more likely to find social acceptance than a foot fetishist in Karachi. Plus, the “kink scene” is much more open in northern America than in the Islamic East.  It did seem to me that the social backdrop of the culture in which the fetishist lives does play a significant part in how difficult it is to cope with it.

Sexual orientation 

The other thing that stood out was that with only one exception, all these men were heterosexual.  In corresponding with the gay man whose fetish was causing him some concern, one thing became very apparent very quickly; finding an expert to whom to refer him was really easy. The gay community has produced a lot of dedicated experts in the area of relationships, sexuality and sexual kinks, fetishes and paraphilias.

This low number of ‘gay-fetishists with a problem` was explained to me by some of the experts I talked to. To paraphrase: coming out as a gay man is a hell of a thing to do, and offers a whole load of emotional and psychological challenges. It’s probably easier today than years before, but it is still quite a thing to do. When entering the “gay scene” these men find levels of acceptance and understanding that often takes them by surprise.  When one has “come out of the closet” as a gay man themselves, to then hear another man has a foot fetish, or some strange kink, well, that is barely noticeable by comparison and so the “gay scene” (for want of a better term) is more open-minded and accepting of deviation from the perceived normal range of sexual behaviours.

What I learned is that gay men are no less likely to have fetishes and kinks. It’s just that they are much less likely to be negatively bothered by them.

Childhood themes

I’d guess around 90% of all correspondents fetishes reflected childhood themes. Diapers, spanking, toileting were all very common. Two other common themes were that of smoking and feet.  What caught my attention here was the exact nature of these fetishes.  For most people, the smoking fetish involved a young woman smoking, typically in the 18-24 age bracket. “Like the baby sitter, you used to have?” I’d ask.  It wasn’t always the smoking baby sitter, of course, it might have been the older girl next door, a friend’s big sister or some other influence during that critical imprinting period of childhood.

So, things that small children are commonly exposed to are most likely to occur as fetishistic imprints that manifest later on.  As one man wrote to me, “Evidently God has a sense of humour.  My Fetish? Soiled diapers.

Here we have what is most likely an imprint taking place for this little girl:

Imprinting is largely down to chance, and one thing I learned is that people can be sexually imprinted on pretty much anything.  Name an object and you can be sure that someone somewhere has a fetish for it. For example, here’s one of the more unusual fetishes (warning: not family-friendly, not safe for work, or suitable for anyone who doesn’t like bugs):

YouTube has been a gift for so many fetishists, one video you might enjoy is the guy who has a thing for balloons. Whilst so many viewers enjoy the modern-day freak show, the effect for the fetishist is the “thank God, I’m not the only one” effect.

And another feature of fetishes is revealed here. Quite a few of the fetishists that contacted me were like the worm and balloon guys and as a therapist, I recognised the “phobia or fetish” response. These fetishistic objects of desire are also the same category of phobia stimulus for many clients I have seen over the years.  I wasn’t the only one to notice this, it was around this time I was asked to consult with a television production company on this exact title, a show called “Fetish or Phobia.”  I decline further involvement after meeting the team at the studio and learning just how exploitative these people were. I was sat drinking tea hidden by a very large potted plant and I overheard the TV execs talking derogatorily about their volunteer fetishists. It was pretty unpleasant stuff.

A feature of phobia treatment I have seen over the years is how sometimes the phobic object becomes like an obsession. More than one arachnophobe has been successfully cured only to go on to begin a sizable tarantula collection, and so on. What was once a thing of which to be afraid, this can quickly become an obsession.  There does seem to be a relationship between fetishes and phobias.

So, to summarise what we have so far:

  • all fetishists contacting me were men
  • all but one were heterosexual
  • they were of all ages
  • most fetishes followed common childhood themes
  • most fetishistic stimuli for this group were also common negative stimulus amongst my phobic clients

Relative prevalence of different fetishes

Three macroareas were devised: body, objects and behaviors. These were further subdivided to describe, in broad terms preferences for (the examples in parentheses come from our data):

    1. A part or feature of the body (e.g., feet or overweight individuals), including body modifications (e.g., tattoos).
    2. An object usually experienced in association with the body (e.g., shoes or headphones).
    3. An object not usually associated with the body (e.g., dirty dishes, candles).
    4. An event involving only inanimate objects (we found no examples).
    5. A person’s own behavior (e.g., biting fingernails).
    6. A behavior of other persons (e.g., smoking or fighting).
    7. A behavior or situation requiring an interaction with others (e.g., domination or humiliation role play).

More here:

The Specific Nature of a Fetish 

One thing that began to emerge was the precision of the experience. For a foot fetishist, there was a perfect foot. There would be specific criteria which would exist within a range of acceptability, but there was a peak perfection in terms of what these criteria might be. One man had a foot fetish. He was black and married to an [very] attractive black lady. The problem was, that his fetish was for white men’s feet.

This is where it can get confusing for the lay-person.  He wasn’t gay, nor was he interested in the man who owned the feet, it was just the feet he was interested in.

His wife asked me, “Is he gay? Does he not love me?”  I explained that he did indeed love her and that she was very much perfect except for one small flaw. She had the wrong feet.

Of course, the perfect white male foot was of a specific size, specific skin tone, and so on. Unable to readily explore his fetish, he had to accept the next best thing, and that was to be found in the classified ads on Craigslist.

This got me thinking about my own fetishes, of which I had none. But I did realise I had bit of a thing for brown hair.  It’s a very specific shade of brown, one shade off either way and this didn’t light up that relevant part of my brain. It had to be a very specific shade.  After realising this, I noticed that my favorite furniture was all of this shade of brown, but I’d never noticed this before consciously. I also hadn’t really noticed before that there was such a thing in my life as “favorite furniture.”

More normal sexual attractions work this way, we all have our preferences of what lights us up. But this isn’t always the deciding factor of with whom, or how, we have sex. It’s just a preference or an idealised notion of our perfect partner.

Fetishes of objects such as balloons that do not require a sexual partner are much easier to control and turn into the perfect fetish experience. The problem with people is that they come as a complete package.  Many people have had a sexual partner who was just incredible, everything connected and worked so well, it was just a shame that the relationship with, or the personality of, that person didn’t really work out so well. Many people marry their perfect person to whom they relate really well, but the sexual side of things is always just a bit vanilla, and some people have a dreadful relationship but yet appear to be really into each other sexually, it’s what keeps them together.

Men with fetishes are driven by a much more powerful urge and need than would be considered “normal” or average. To try to deny the fetishistic need and live “normally” is just too difficult for them.  As someone explained to me [paraphrased], “imagine you have a preference for slim blonde ‘girly’ women, but you are only ever able to date and sleep with overweight masculine women to whom you have no attraction. You can have sex, you can even have kinky, but you can’t have the fulfillment that you so desperately need.”

Listen to the specificity by which this man describes the perfect balloon “necking” and burst:

It Isn’t Psychological. Imprinting and Neurology

Our brains undergo various imprinting stages through childhood. Experimental imprinting has been well documented since the days of Konrad Lorenz imprinting newly hatched geese on objects and including himself. Imprinting has been demonstrated to be standard across the animal kingdom, and humans are no different.  We imprint early on what is “mother”, we imprint on our baseline of “normal behaviour” of the species and at different stages, throughout childhood, we imprint sexually. This is where we develop our “type” or preferences (i.e. big breasts, long legs, musculature, etc) and there may be many factors that need to combine to create the imprint.

Most fetishists I asked about this knew exactly where their fetish came from. It might be that they fancied the attractive young baby sitter, who made them feel special, and sat them on their knee, and smoked a cigarette. It’s not surprising that so many people used to have a spanking fetish developed when spanking was more fashionable (and legal) for children. It often involves the arousing components of exposure of the buttocks and genital area as trousers are pulled down, an element of humiliation, and of course, the spanking itself may not actually hurt as the parent may be conscious to only deliver a token spank so as not to actually injure the child. Whilst some children may have had their play interrupted and thus rage at the humiliation and punishment, other children may know what is coming and actually giggle and remain in a playful mindset through the entire spanking episode.

As awareness has increased in adult sexual exploitation of children, “grooming”, and the problem of the sexualisation of children through cultural events such as toddler beauty pageants and suchlike, the discussion of the sexual nature of children has become muddied, problematic, and turned into a blanketed taboo.  Yet many of us remember only too well our own innocent sexual acting out, strange urges, “kiss chase”, “doctors and nurses” and other games that provided opportunities for getting touchy-feely with each other.

A child who has limited access to other children and playmates may be forced to direct his attentions elsewhere, these attentions may be towards adult company or objects. And with this redirected attention, sexual imprinting a greater probability of occurring outside of the normal range of types.

Fetishistic Supply

During this time of being indexed at number 1 by Google, I had an interesting experience on a train on my way back from London.  A well dressed and charming man sat opposite me asked to have a look at my watch. Actually what he said was, “That is a very fine watch, sir, may I take a look.”  From the little I had experienced this guy, I intuited that he had good social skills and was undoubtedly a “charmer” who was able to get people to comply with his requirements. What he wasn’t able to hide was his shallow breathing, something of which as a hypnotherapist I am very observant.  Breathing patterns are an excellent indicator of stress, arousal, trance levels, and so forth.

Fetish for watches?” I asked, and he dropped his outreached arm.

Straps actually” he replied, and for the next 20 minutes, we discussed his curious fetish. It was during this conversion that I learned about “fetishistic supply.”  To cut a long story very short, this man had an obsession with how the watch strap sat on the wrist and his “high” would come from testing the snugness of the fit by inserting his finger between the strap and the wrist.

It would have been really difficult for him to get people to comply with this if he were a weird man in a flasher-mac, so he learned from a very early age to be able to charm people. He ran an antique business, was very successful, and attended a lot of social functions. He operated well in the world of social politics.

Now contrast this with the lonely child who developed a fixation for sniffing his big sister’s panties. This is a behaviour that risks significant condemnation if he were to be caught, and in order to procure his fetishistic supply, he needs to be more devious as so to avoid negative consequences. However, were he to have been less lonely as a child and in possession of greater social skills, then it would have been much easier for him to acquire co-operation for his fetishistic supply. Sadly for such individuals, they may resort to theft from washing lines, sneaking entry into people’s bedrooms or property (especially when a university, changing rooms, or at halls of residence), and rapidly alienate themselves from normal society.

This is where a fetish can turn paraphilia. A strong urge to procure fetishistic supply combined with a deteriorating state of mental, emotional, psychological, and social well-being, then we can arrive at a desperate individual whose entire life revolves around procuring fetishistic supply and maintaining the desperate secrecy.

Now, when seeing it from this angle, it is easy to write almost sympathetically.  But if it is my 16-year-old daughter who has had her room invaded and underwear stolen by the neighbourhood pervert, then I may indeed take a very different and somewhat more hostile perspective.

But anyway, here’s the point I am getting to. Fetishists with good social skills and able to procure fetishistic supply will mix as a normal member of society, some may even wear their fetish shamelessly as a badge of pride. The “we will not be shamed” motif raised by so many civil rights groups is an excellent attitude, as most noticeably demonstrated by Gay Pride and the early “gender benders” of the 1980’s (cue: Boy George, Marilyn, Divine, etc).  Other fetishists are not so lucky, they may not have developed the confidence or social skills necessary, they may be very sensitive and/or shy. Now for most people with these personality deficits, as they grow older and develop mature relationships they develop and they adapt.  But the shy fetishist is driven by a secret of which he is ashamed and he may increasingly withdraw and be marginalised by society.

Freeing him from this shame is key to his liberation.

So, from a therapeutic position we need to consider:

  • the background psychology that pre-existed, or existed independently from the fetish
  • the consequences of the fetish upon psychology, the primary, secondary and tertiary adaptations that take place.
  • the legal and social acceptability of the fetish.

How Sexual Fetishes Come into Existence

Fetishes are an integral part of sexuality for many people. Some are into BDSM, others are into “scat” or “watersports.” Some like to wear dog masks. But where do these fetishes come from? With the help of some classical and modern theories from sociology, Gender Studies, Human-Animal-Studies and Queer Theory I try to understand how sexual fetishes come into existence. The main theory: Fetishes are an unintentional “byproduct” of socialization, of the social construction of reality. They form an “anti-habitus” and offer relieve from biopower. They are formed where society constructs something as taboo, as danger, as forbidden.

Full text can be found here:

Social Acceptability of a Fetish

Many people are familiar with the weird Japanese porn that often gets shared on the internet. Vomiting and octopuses are the most common things that tend to get shared mostly for their shock value. Meanwhile, I remember from the early days of the internet it was the more extreme “German porn” that got shared which seemed to involve a lot of horses and an awful lot of poop.

But whilst people enjoy the shock value of this material, the reality is that someone somewhere will have a genuine fetish for it.

Discussion of this in a family context would be problematic, but cousin John’s fixation on women with big breasts will be well known, especially when the latest big breasted girlfriend is invited over for Christmas dinner. It doesn’t take much for people to spot the pattern.

A gentleman’s fetish for spanking, stockings and bunny girls has a social place, or niche, within the greater society. But weird uncle Eric’s fixation for puking Japanese girls and horses cock is much more difficult to place and is also much more difficult to understand.

“Curing” the Fetish 

I tried everything.  I failed. I genuinely do not know if it is possible to get rid of a fetish, I am doubtful that it is.

This work opened up a number of variables with regard to the intended outcomes of treatment.

Outcome #1. Removing the fetish.
Outcome #2. Removing the shame and distress associated with the fetish and facilitating adaption and incorporation of the fetish into mainstream life.

The clients were all requesting option #1.  The “fetish community” clearly advocated option #2 and this does seem sensible and possibly the best way forward.  See: Fetish Treatment: There seems to be a problem. (link opens in new window)

Of course, this is all well and good when the fetish doesn’t involve poop or women sitting on your face. In these scenarios, then the lifestyle of the individual might need to change. Fetish clubs might be great for the leather queens, but what about our middle-class businessman with a soiled diaper fetish? He’s not the sort of guy who can say to his wife, “Bye Luv, I’m just popping over to the Torture Garden for a poop session.”  It’s easy for a convert to say, “well, he should try it, he’ll be happier that way” but we don’t get to make the lifestyle choices for other people, not everything is so easy in real life.

Most people just want to be “normal.”
Please don’t comment, “well what is normal anyway, you fascist?” This is just stupidity talking.

This opens up option #3.

Outcome #3. Abstinence.

This one sucks, but for some people will be the only thing to do.  I was going to write that Catholic priests manage sexual abstinence but then I thought about the sheer extent of the paedophilic and sexual abuse that is so prevalent in the Catholic church.  So that one clearly didn’t work out so well.

I don’t know how well abstinence will work.  Many of the fetishists that contacted me had never actually engaged in the fetish, mostly owing to the shame and/or lack of suitable opportunity, so I’m not sure how well this would work.  Perhaps people can offer their thoughts in the comments section below.

Comments Section:

All feedback (good bad and otherwise) gratefully received.  Please offer any tips and hints about how to handle fetishes, success stories etc.

Are you an expert in treating fetishes and paraphilias? If so then do please post your details below.
Safe spaces such as fetish clubs and events, also please post your detail below.


  • This is a good write-up on fetishes. One thing to consider as an additional aspect of treatment would be risk reduction such as helping them enhance their ability to fantasize rather than live out the fetish, replacement behaviors, or teaching them social skills. You can train someone to make an association with a new fetish for something that may not be as extreme. For example, if a man is into a particular ‘type’ sexually but they aren’t married to that type, they could masturbate for a few weeks to women who look like the type they are married to.

  • I think neurology vs psychological needs clarification here, neurology is a cause to psychology, all things that happen psychologically happen neurologically too. I think instead you should use higher reasoning vs instinctual or sense of choice vs lack of a sense of choice. As a philosophical thinker I personally feel the idea of applying free will in a global way is one of the worst things we do in modern society because it isn’t rational, things have to be random or they have to have a cause, there’s no middle ground and the cause of your thoughts is your neurology.

    Anyway that out of the way, I believe what your trying to say in this is that things that get imprinted later feel like they are instinctual for the person rather than something that feels like higher reasoning or a “choice”. I personally have a fetish and I am transgender as well, much like how we have found out that evolution in nature is not a liner process or even like an evolutionary tree, evolution in nature rather flows like a river breaking off and merging together, evolution of someones sexuality or gender or identity in general is the same way.

    For example a person may have a biological impulse for something, for example I have a fat fetish, it may make sense in nature that some people have this because of the fact that having fat signals a very primal sense of abundance and so on. Other things like large feet, or big breasts may represent aspects good for pregnancy and the baby as well and are common objects of attraction. However biological things can get imprinted in certain ways. Perhaps you have a biological impulse for large feet but the first time you notice it is while looking at a white mans feet and then after that point you associate white men’s feet with that good feeling and thus the fetish refines itself, this is the kind of thing that happens in nature and people are part of nature, its not a simple direct cause.

    So if you look at another example like a balloon fetish, perhaps someone has a biological attraction to big round things like breasts or fat or pregnant bellies and perhaps they had the potential to get attracted to those things but instead got imprinted to balloons, the popping may symbolize like orgasm or different things. There have been studies about how babies perceive colors differently and in a more pure way but how adults learn perceive color through language more. We have these natural feelings but as we learn language and symbols we tend to start to symbolize things. Fetishes likely have a very broad beginning an unformed trait that leads most people to have sex in a fertile way but then gets changed as it gets symbolized more and more.

    This happens with gender as well, there is a certain number of trans people who know they are the wrong gender early and have a very strong biological feeling of what gender they are and their brain is and realize when they’re real young. I however and many others are not like that. I feel like I have a very vague sense of gender pre-transition, I did what I was supposed to do gender wise and felt no discomfort in that, but I have some feelings sprinkled here and there like having a general disliking of facial hair, wanting long nails, ect, that existed.

    With my fetish the first memories I noticed were oddly having an attraction to diapers at a an age I was weaning off pullups diapers, and the attraction of being a baby and being taken care of and this memory of wishing I could be a baby and stay that way I still remember, however, that never developed later on into a fetish although I wonder sometimes if I tried to if I could redevelop it.

    As a child I had grew up being around my neighbor a lot, he was a little bit heavier than I was, a lot of his family was overweight and he was always stronger than me this may have been the first time I associated being bigger with something positive, I also remember some sexual attractions for his weight

    Around 10 or so I remember having a more than usual obsession with the Spongebob character Patrick Star and having a desire of being fat like he was in the show and liking the idea of gaining weight and thats when I first started trying unsucessfully to gain weight, gaining weight became and obsession a bit, I remember asking my mom after learning about what being anorexic is if there was an opposite and she said no, I didnt say anything back but I realized I was somewhat strange, I started getting feelings around others who were fat and I started padding with pillows and clothes to make me feel fat, all this happening before I knew it was sexual. I only knew it was sexual when I eventually had an orgasm while padding. Then I started realizing I had an attraction to fat. Romantic desires happened later.

    My sexuality in terms of whether I was attracted to male or female was masked by my fetish but I was supposed to be attracted to women by society and I was slightly more into the female body and fat distribution but growing up I was basically fat sexual. Later in my mid teens I got an unrequited romantic obsession with a woman who was thin. My sexual desires were high and my obsessiveness over certain women seemed abnormal compared to most men, I also noticed I was very attracted to androgyny in women. Later I started to explore sexually with the types of things I looked at and realized that some androgynous men I was attracted to even thin men which made me confused about my sexuality

    Having grew up in a small town I did not know much about the idea of being transgender, at first I thought it was weird people would want to be anything except what they are because I had a sense of apathy about what gender I was. Later as I explored my sexuality I learned more about people who are trans and made a friend on 4chan who is trans and read a web comic called venus envy about a trans teen.

    In high school I had a sort of mental attraction to the show Mighty B which featured a girl who was the equivalent of a girl scout and her dog who was her best friend, I got very obsessed with that show and felt so bad when I watched them all and it wasn’t renewed for a new season. I felt a need almost to be that character it was a strong need that couldnt be fulfilled. Cartoons played a lot with my desires and I started getting into anime. I felt a connection to this character crona from soul eater which was an androgenous character and I went with my friend to an anime convention and cosplayed as that.

    During that convention I met someone who was male who I cuddled with for the first time and we started dating in a way. The first time we had sex I had felt really really off about topping him and questioned my sexuality. When I bottomed I liked it however. I started at this time experimenting with crossdressing which started off as a kink, which I was attracted too but then there was a certain point when I was crossdressing where it all clicked and I thought about the idea of being able to be female and I realized I was trans. I asked my then boyfriend if he would be ok with me wearing panties which he seemed distraught about and he didnt talk to me for a while.

    We didnt talk for like a month to much except we hung out once at a gathering with friends but he seemed to be more distant. He ended up breaking up with me. He didnt like the fact that I was feminine. I accepted it kinda knowing that it would be an issue down the line and told him I felt I was trans.

    After all this transitioning became extremely important to me. I transitioned very quickly. i knew what I wanted and I knew I wanted to get on hormones fast so my body would accept them better at a young age because I was still like 21. I transitioned and was happier than before the idea of being a woman kinda brought color in my life however, I dont know if I would have even have felt dysphoria had I been in a more restrictive setting and my past feels verry androgenous, being trans felt like a development that happened but a development that was destined not only by my biology but also my environment, yet something I felt not control over, its like having water held in by a dam, when the dam is opened the water flows down. If I grew up 300 years ago in a society that had little concept of transgender, I probably would have been male and I wouldnt have questioned it so much but the right circumstances pushed me in a direction and I had no feeling of choice, after certain things happened I felt the need to be female, but before that I was ok with being male, yet certain triggers seemed to indicate I had the potential to desire that.

    With my sexuality I have grown to realize I am bisexual in a limited way but prefer women sexually. I have not stopped wanting to be fat, I have a strong need for that too beyond just wanting it sexually. Hormones can diminish my sexuality and sometimes it fades a bit the desire to be overweight but its still there as a beauty standard. I find fat beautiful and fat people beautiful, there had been times I said that I was a fat girl in a skinny boys body. I have only recently been able to start to realize that however and have struggled to get fat all my life the opposite of most people. I enjoy fat on others and myself.

    My fetish and parts of my trans self however seems to almost have blossomed and from a seed of a strong desire of a sexual and mental attraction to abundance and being cared for that I first expressed when I was a child and wanting to be a baby. That could have taken many different paths and perhaps it did in different alternate realities who knows. But in the reality Im in it flowed the way it did.

    I tell you all this to explain how complicated all this is. Its not right for example to say my fetish or being trans is nature or nurture or caused by one thing. Its many many things combined. Its a process that feels like ones fate rather than being a direct relationship with one thing. The nature causes you to feel things in connection with your environment that in turn makes you feel more things and it evolves like that.

    Its very important for psychologists and neurologists to recognize that this is complex so it is not oversimplified. Oversimplifying these things leads to people feeling alone and misunderstood. I wrote this so people will understand that their desires are a full dynamic expression of who they are and that the process is complicated and its ok that it cant be described in a simple way. I could go back and look and say hmm well I remember feeling this sense of seeing my neighbor act a certain way and feeling certain things about that but that always seemed like it was missing a whole lot as an explanation and that this is not super simple. A lot of things are shaped this way in who we are as people but people tend to only care about the things that shape us that make us different than others, because people are afraid of people who are different.

    We are like clay, formless, except the potter is like our dna it shapes us in a way that it expects will lead to our reproduction but once we’re put in the oven which represents our environment, the way we end up may be different than what the potter (dna) expects. Sometimes its because the clay (nature) was not consistent (mutations or traits derived from them), sometimes its because the way the potter shaped it with the clay and how that turned out in the oven (How nature and nurture interact to make the final organism the way it is), but the reason it doesnt matter is all the creations are beautiful, sometimes the potter even changes its mind about what it feels is good (natural selection). If you accept the art as beautiful every time and you get creative and find ways to use it for a positive good it doesnt matter what nature intended sometimes it is better if its not whats intended, what matters is how we can use these creations, ourselves, in a positive way, if we can find ways to fulfill our needs that should always be the treatment.

    Therefore first and foremost it is a therapists job to determine how to make a person flow well with the rest of society with the least amount of invasiveness. Dont change whats not broken,and dont have surgery for a broken foot unless you cant set it or mend it in a less invasive way. Same with therapy. I appreciate the fact that you said how complicated the treatment is, because its true its like computer programming or a rubix cube, fix one thing and you might disrupt other aspects in it and you have to go back and change those things and so if at all possible you want a solution that affects the least number of things in their life, each person is different and what the best solution and what can be sacrificed and what cant is different from person to person and you have to be curious and the patient needs to be open with what affects them in what way and what is best for them to do about it. Self acceptance is important, knowing that your not broken because of the way you are is the most important thing and therapists should start by telling their patients this, even if its supper taboo, like being attracted to children. Its important for them to realize that while certain behaviors are destructive they themselves are not broken, you have to work with them to find out how they can express their needs positively

    Anyway I know that this is a long comment and I apologize but to fully understand sometimes it takes a lot of explaining because these things are so complex, I may publish these thoughts somewhere at some point but I did want you and the others reading to know all this since its important especially if you are going to treat people

    Here is the one article on the studies about how infants see color

    • I tried to create a second one because it did not paragraph I tried double spacing which did not work, that’s why there’s two, sometimes double spacing works to force it to space. Delete one if you want.

  • I’m not a therapist and so have never treated anyone. However I have spoken at length to many in the fetish world and have noticed it is often possible to change their fetishes, if I understand how their existing fetish works and use it to ‘hook’ onto another fetish. I suspect some form of self hypnosis, on their part, is also involved. I wonder if it is possible to use this technique to transition them gradually from an ‘unacceptable’ fetish to one which they can live with. It’s a fascinating process and one I’d really like to understand.

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