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Exhibitionism (Exhibitionistic) Symptoms

Exhibitionism symptoms include: over a period of at least 6 months, recurrent, intense sexually arousing fantasies, sexual urges, or behaviors involving the exposure of one’s genitals to an unsuspecting stranger.

The fantasies, sexual urges, or behaviors cause clinically significant distress or impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning.

Sometimes the person with this disorder will masturbate while exposing themselves, or while fantasizing about exposing themselves. If the person acts on these urges, there generally is no further attempt at sexual activity with the stranger. In some cases, insight is present and the individual is aware of their efforts to surprise or shock the other person. In some cases, the individual will have a fantasy that the stranger will also become sexually aroused.

The onset of this disorder usually begins before age 18.

 

**Note: Now termed “exhibitionistic disorder” in DSM-5**

 

Exhibitionism (Exhibitionistic) Symptoms

Steve Bressert, Ph.D.

Steve Bressert, Ph.D. is an author and retired as a professional in clinical practice. He has been writing about psychology and mental health issues since 1998.

APA Reference
Bressert, S. (2018). Exhibitionism (Exhibitionistic) Symptoms. Psych Central. Retrieved on March 18, 2019, from https://psychcentral.com/disorders/exhibitionism-symptoms/
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 Sep 2018
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 Sep 2018
Published on Psych Central.com. All rights reserved.