How Common are Kinks, Fetishes, and Paraphilic Disorders?

According to a recent study, paraphilic attractions (kinks and fetishes) are more common than most people might think.[i] The study surveyed 387 adult males about the presence and impact of paraphilic attractions and behaviors in their lives, with the following results:

  • 62.4% of survey participants reported some degree of paraphilic arousal.
  • 58.6% said paraphilic arousal was most frequent while fantasizing.
  • 47.7% used paraphilic arousal during masturbatory fantasies.
  • 44.4% said they’d engaged in some form of real-world paraphilic sexual activity.

The most common paraphilic arousal patterns were:

  • Voyeurism (38.7%)
  • Fetish (35.7%)
  • Sadism (24.8%)
  • Masochism (18.5%)
  • Frotteurism (15.0%)
  • Pedophilic (10.4%)
  • Cross-Dressing (7.4%)
  • Exhibitionism (4.1%)

Notably, paraphilic arousal patterns are not, per se, pathological. Criteria beyond paraphilic attraction must be met for a kink/fetish to qualify as pathology. For a paraphilic attraction or behavior to be diagnosed as a paraphilic disorder (a pathological condition), it must cause significant distress to the individual or harm (or risk of harm) to self or others. Thus, paraphilic arousal patterns are a necessary but not sufficient condition for diagnosing a paraphilic disorder.

Read the full article: 

Lots of People like a little Kink by Robert Weiss PhD, MSW

April 16th, 2019