The paraphiliac focus in Fetishism involves the use of nonliving objects (the “fetish”). Among the more common fetish objects are women’s underpants, bras, stockings, shoes, boots, or other wearing apparel.
The person with Fetishism frequently masturbates while holding, rubbing, or smelling the fetish object or may ask the sexual partner to wear the object during their sexual encounters. Usually the fetish is required or strongly preferred for sexual excitement, and in its absence there may be erectile dysfunction in males.
Specific Symptoms of Fetishism
- Over a period of at least 6 months, recurrent, intense sexually arousing fantasies, sexual urges, or behaviors involving the use of nonliving objects (e.g., female undergarments).
- The fantasies, sexual urges, or behaviors cause clinically significant distress or impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning.
- The fetish objects are not limited to articles of female clothing used in cross-dressing (as in Transvestic Fetishism) or devices designed for the purpose of tactile genital stimulation (e.g., a vibrator).
Psych Central. (2013). Fetishism Symptoms. Psych Central. Retrieved on April 21, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/disorders/fetishism-symptoms/
Symptom criteria summarized from:
American Psychiatric Association. (2013). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders, fifth edition. Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Association.
American Psychiatric Association. (1994). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders, fourth edition. Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Association.
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 26 May 2013
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