Since I began masturbating around eight years old or so, I have had sexual fantasies about incontinence. When I was younger, I fantasized about indulging in this fetish with others but nowadays I only think about being incontinent on my own in a cabin far up in the hills in some woods where noone can find me with an incinerator! So basically, it has to be far away from real life and very hidden for me to find pleasure in it and to escape the shame. I do also have completely normal fantasies and nowadays have to force myself to think about this fantasy in order to orgasm, but it doesn’t naturally come into my mind and, until properly aroused, I still find it genuinely disgusting.
The fetish itself isn’t a massive problem as I know that thinking about something doesn’t necessarily mean I’m going to do it or enjoy it in real life. In fact, I know I wouldn’t enjoy it in real life, as I am terrified of incontinence!
The fear is not only about me being incontinent, it is also that others will be. In fact, I think I would be more afraid if others were.
Again, this wasn’t much of a problem, since it isn’t a circumstance that really comes up in real life, until recently. I now suffer from overactive bladder and, although this is getting better, the feeling of constantly needing the toilet urgently has brought my disgust about the fetish and my fear of incontinence to the fore.
Also, I have orgasm incontinence. It is only a little dribble, no more than a tablespoon, and I thought it was female ejaculation at first because it didn’t feel like peeing and it didn’t smell or stain or have any colour. But I have since discovered that it is urinary incontinence and my urologist is helping me with this.
The thing is that the day I suddenly thought it might be pee, I panicked and jumped out of the bed. I was on my own and had been masturbating. I was so afraid I couldn’t go back in the room for a while and I was shaking for a while afterwards. Since then, I have not been able to orgasm (this was three years ago). I am not embarrassed as I have told my boyfriend about the orgasm incontinence and he doesn’t think I should hold back as it isn’t very much wee, but I’m so squeamish about it I can’t.
My questions are:
Is it likely my fetish caused my phobia or the other way round?
If I get rid of one will the other also go?
What causes this kind of fetish and is it common?
I’m terrified someone will find out about my fantasies and think I’m a pervert. I think its quite clear to people I have a fascination with incontinence as if it comes up in conversation I react oddly and people give me weird looks. This isn’t a sexual pleasure thing for me though, I don’t get aroused hearing about it, I just feel weirdly fascinated.
The only things I remember that could have initially triggered my issues are seeing my great grandma wet herself when I was very young and finding this terrifying and the fact I was still at an age where I (as many kids are) was a bit obsessed about wee and poo etc when I started masturbating. I didn’t have any wetting problems as a child, including bed wetting. I have been continent throughout my living memory, except for during orgasm. It’s probably also worth saying I have very big fears around losing control (had eating disorders for 6 years and have a phobia of seeing people I love on drugs or very drunk, because I don’t like the idea of them not being in control). I had always assumed my control issues were somehow connected, as the fantasy is essentially about losing control. Oh yeah, and sometimes the fantasy has an infantilising nature – on the rare occasions the fantasy includes someone else, we talk to each other as if we are children “having accidents” – where the hell did this come from? why do I find that sexually pleasing?!
A. There are many sexual fetishes that involve urine or urination. It is also very possible to feel guilt or anxiety about a sexual fetish. Behaviorists would have one explanation for this phenomenon but other branches of psychology would have different explanations. Psychoanalysts would also have varying explanations.
The same area of the body that provides sexual pleasure also is used for urination and defecation. You can see how easily these two processes could be associated within the mind of a child. Parents often make a strong point of telling a child that these areas of the body are dirty and when you touch yourself there you must wash their hands immediately. Many of these children grow up to feel that sexual activity is also dirty. Any pleasure that comes from a “dirty thing” is something that they feel is wrong and as such should produce guilt, they should feel guilty about wanting and liking something that is so dirty.
Sexual fetishes could also be easily explained by early association. Behaviorists believe that phobias are the result of unintended pairings of unconditioned stimuli with conditioned stimuli. For example: the child cuts his finger, he is bleeding, the child has no reaction to the blood. The blood is a neutral stimulus to the child, meaning he has no reaction to the blood. However, the mother screams. The scream of fear of the mother is the unconditioned stimulus, which produces the unconditioned response which is fear and crying, within the child’s mind. The child sees the blood and associates blood with the unconditioned stimulus which is the mother’s scream. Through this one accidental pairing, blood or the sight of blood now has the power to produce the same unconditioned response as does the mother’s scream. This associative learning can endure for a lifetime. As a result the child and in the future the adult, will feel terror at the sight of or thought of blood. In a similar fashion, if a child accidentally feels sexual stimulation while perceiving urine he could later associate urine or urination with feelings of sexuality.
Many therapists who do dream interpretation, would interpret a dream about a bathroom or going to a bathroom in a public place, as a sexual dream.
Many women report female ejaculation and have for many years. Many researchers deny the possibility of female ejaculation but new research has shown that it may be real. Some researchers believe that female ejaculation is really urination but others believe it is not. Recent studies suggest that it is not urine at all but rather a substance that contains many of the same chemicals found in ejaculate. Scientists believe that female ejaculation occurs most frequently with G-spot stimulated orgasms. You are presently seeing a urologist. If there is any anatomical irregularity, I am sure that your urologist will discover this. There may not be any irregularity anatomically or otherwise.
In my mind the biggest problem is the guilt that you feel and also the anxiety. You mention in your letter, that you have not had an orgasm in three years and the event that has prevented you from orgasming in three years, was a small amount of urination at the time of your last orgasm. In my ideal world, I would want you to feel no unwarranted guilt, to have no anxiety, and to have a healthy, normal, pleasurable sex life. Notice, that I had no concern for the small amount of urine that is present at the time of your orgasm. The only concern I have about this is the fact that it produces for you anxiety and guilt.
I would highly recommend that you see a competent therapist, perhaps sex therapist, counselor etc. They could quite easily help you with the issues that we’ve been discussing. I’d like to close this answer by telling you a story that I well remember from one of my early psychology classes. The professor told us about something that Freud had written. He said that Freud had received many letters from the mother of a homosexual man and that the mother had promised Freud a large amount of money, if he Freud would help her child to no longer be homosexual. The mother told Freud how grateful she would be if he helped her son. She told him how worried she was, how she could not sleep at night and the great anxiety that she felt in her every waking moments. My professor went on to say that Freud wrote back to the woman and told her that he could very well understand the problem. He told the woman that he would be happy to schedule her for regular appointments because she was the one who had the problem and the problem was her anxiety and not the homosexual activity of her son. Freud told her he did not believe that the son had the problem but that she did.
I hope that you will take my advice and make an appointment with a competent therapist. You should not be living in fear or anxiety. You should be having an anxiety free sex life, with all the pleasure it can provide. If you have any questions please write back. I wish you the very best.
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 18 Mar 2011
Randle, K. (2011). Fetish and Phobia Are One In The Same. Psych Central. Retrieved on December 7, 2013, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2011/03/18/fetish-and-phobia-are-one-in-the-same/