Sex: Is Kink the New Normal?
It’s getting more and more difficult to tell what is “abnormal” sexual behavior these days.
If you need proof, you need only refer to a study published in The Journal of Sex Research. Investigators at the University of Montreal found sexual preferences classified as “anomalous” in psychiatry are actually very common, suggesting there is no such thing as “normal” when it comes to sex.
Perhaps starting with those “50 Shades …” books, kinky sex has gone mainstream, romanticizing the use of whips, chains, and handcuffs. Couples worldwide are buying BDSM (Bondage, Discipline, Dominance, Submission, Sadism and Masochism) sex toys – sales were up 400% in 2012.
Sexual fantasies of being spanked or whipped, tied up, or forced to have sex have become commonplace – especially in women – but are these interests and behaviors to be judged abnormal?
The study team surveyed over 1,000 Quebec residents on the phone and online about their sexual tastes and interests. The respondents were asked if they enjoyed sex acts that were considered anomalous by the latest Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5).
Sex acts and behaviors listed as “paraphilic,” or atypical, include but are not limited to, voyeurism (joy of watching others have sex), fetishism (sexual arousal toward inanimate objects or body parts), frotteurism (dry-humping), and masochism.
Almost half of the respondents were interested in at least one type of sexual behavior considered an anomalous paraphilia, whereas one third had experienced the behavior at least once.
Out of the eight types of paraphilic behaviors listed in the DSM-5, four (voyeurism – 35%, fetishism – 26%, frotteurism – 26%, and masochism – 19%) were found to be common when it came to experiences or desires reported by men and women.