How do you get rid of a sexual fetish? I've got an incest fetish, and while I don't plan on acting on it, it's still very annoying. I was raped by a sibling as a child. Repeatedly. And while at first I was upset by this, I eventually began to enjoy the sex. So I hate myself. Is this common? I'm seeing a therapist, but due to my guilt and shame I'm unable to ask her these questions. --Sick in Boston
I'm sorry, SIB, but there's no way to get rid of a sexual fetish. Someone with a fetish can only make an informed, ethical choice about whether or not to indulge. That's an easy call for most fetishists--they go for it, guilt free, because their fetishes are relatively tame and not so clearly tied to a traumatic childhood experience. When a person has a fetish that involves a large taboo and an even larger trauma, she can't just go for it. She has to proceed with extreme caution whether or not she decides to indulge.
And you can indulge, SIB. I suspect the same hang-up that prevents you from being totally honest with your therapist (more on that in a moment) is preventing you from being totally honest with me. I suspect you're only telling me you don't plan on acting on it because you're afraid I'll think you're a scumbag if you tell me how you really feel. And I suspect you really feel something like this: "Fantasizing about incest turns me on like crazy, and I wish there was an ethical way for me to act on these fantasies."
While it may make a lot of folks uncomfortable to read this--heck, it makes me uncomfortable to write it--there is an ethical way to act on incest fantasies. Consider for a moment the perfectly ethical erotic lives of sex slaves and their masters and mistresses. While it's unethical to own an actual slave, it's not in the least bit unethical to pretend you own one if that's what turns on your boyfriend/girlfriend/husband/wife/client/archbishop. Similarly, while it's highly unethical to rape someone, it's not at all unethical to pretend to rape someone who has a rape fantasy--provided, of course, that the pretend rape is controlled and safe and can be aborted with a word from the "victim." In the spirit of pretend slaves and pretend rapes, SIB, you can indulge your incest fantasies without actually committing incest. Incest is wrong, just as owning slaves and raping people is wrong. But a hot guy who'll pretend he's your brother if that's what turns you on? That could be very right.
Only could be, mind you. Pseudoincest isn't something you should even contemplate until you open your fool mouth and tell your therapist what's going on in your head. Is it common for people who were raped by family members as children to struggle with feelings of guilt, self-hatred, and shame? Yes, yes, and yes, SIB. It's so common it's a cliche. If your therapist has been practicing for longer than three weeks--and here's hoping that's the case--she'll be able to help you. But not until you stop trying to impress her with just how gosh-darned healthy and together you are. Good luck, kiddo.
I was hoping you could provide some insight as to whether my behavior is, for lack of a better word, normal. At work I can clearly see who is going in and out of the restroom. When I go into the restroom and no one is around, I wipe the hairs off the urinal. If my "distraction stud" enters and leaves the restroom after I wipe down the urinal, I go in, lock the door, and sometimes find two or three of his pubic hairs. I collect his pubic hairs and take them home and sterilize them. I store them in a plastic sandwich bag, which I bring out when I masturbate. Imagining that I have just orally serviced him, I place his pubic hairs in my mouth and let them rest on my tongue. Then I climax. Is this healthy? Should I stop behaving this way?
--Sick in Nashville
Is this healthy? In the medical sense, yes. Since you're careful to sterilize the pubes before you put them in your mouth, you're certainly not going to make yourself sick. You are, however, going to make other people sick if you run around telling them about your strange behavior. So file your fetish under "No one needs to know." Start no clubs, put up no Web sites, send no more letters to advice columnists.
Otherwise, SIN, if you can still have orgasms without Mr. Distraction Stud's pubic hairs resting on your tongue, and if you're not turning down dates with other good-looking guys with pubes of their own, then I wouldn't describe your obsession as necessarily unhealthy. You go right on enjoying yourself, you hear? While you may be grossing people out this week, SIN, you're not hurting anyone--not even Mr. Distraction Stud. It's not as if he's going to miss his pubes, after all. In fact, his pubes, once they've been abandoned on the urinal, are no longer his personal property--they're subject to the very same laws that allow the police to go through your trash once you put it on the curb. If he ever finds out what you've been up to, he may be able to argue that you're creating a hostile work environment, and he may get your pervert ass fired. But so long as you're as discreet as you are hygienic, I don't see a problem. I also don't want to see any more mail from you.
Even though I am on birth control and have been with my boyfriend for over two years, he still won't come inside of me. He insists on coming on my stomach. What is this all about? Why do men like coming all over your body instead of the natural way? Is this some primal instinct of marking his territory? What is the deal with this behavior?
Perhaps he's "marking his territory"--some guys do get off on that--but it's more likely that your boyfriend, like lots of guys, judges his sexual performance based on how much and how far he shoots. Or, like lots of guys, he gets off on the sight of his own dick shooting a load--and no, SM, there's nothing necessarily gay about that. If you would rather he came inside you, tell him so. But instead of telling him your way is the "natural way," thereby implying he's some sort of freak, why don't you make a deal that's respectful of both his turn-ons and yours? Something like, "In me Monday, Wednesday, and Friday; on me Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday." And on Sunday, of course, you rest.