SEXUAL DEVIATIONS (GENERAL)

Sexual Deviations (General): An Overview

Abstract

This article provides a comprehensive overview of sexual deviations, also known as paraphilias. It discusses the definition of sexual deviation, its classification, prevalence, etiology, and treatment. In addition, the article addresses specific sexual deviations, such as exhibitionism, voyeurism, and sexual sadism and masochism. Lastly, the article describes the implications of sexual deviations in terms of legal, social, and psychological aspects.

Keywords: Sexual deviation, paraphilia, exhibitionism, voyeurism, sexual sadism, masochism

Introduction

Sexual deviations are sexual behaviors or interests that are considered to be outside of what is considered normal or socially acceptable. This type of behavior is also known as paraphilias, a term derived from the Greek words ‘para’ (meaning beyond) and ‘philia’ (meaning love). In this article, we provide a comprehensive overview of sexual deviations, including their definition, classification, prevalence, etiology, and treatment. We also discuss specific sexual deviations, such as exhibitionism, voyeurism, and sexual sadism and masochism, as well as the implications of sexual deviations in terms of legal, social, and psychological aspects.

Definition and Classification

Sexual deviations refer to any sexual behavior that is considered to be outside of what is considered normal or socially acceptable. This type of behavior is also known as paraphilias, which is a psychiatric term that is used to describe any unusual sexual behavior or interest. According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), in order for a behavior to be considered a paraphilia, it must meet the following criteria: (1) the behavior or interest must be recurrent and intense; (2) the person must experience distress or impairment; and (3) the behavior or interest must involve non-human objects, the suffering or humiliation of oneself or another person, or children or other nonconsenting persons (American Psychiatric Association, 2013).

The DSM-5 classifies paraphilias into two categories: (1) paraphilias with mild distress or impairment; and (2) paraphilias with marked distress or impairment (American Psychiatric Association, 2013). The first category includes behaviors such as exhibitionism, voyeurism, frotteurism, and fetishism. The second category includes behaviors such as sexual masochism, sexual sadism, pedophilia, and frotteurism.

Prevalence

The prevalence of sexual deviations is difficult to determine due to the fact that people are often reluctant to report these behaviors or interests. However, some studies have estimated the prevalence of paraphilias in the general population to be around 3% (Lalumière, Harris, Quinsey, & Rice, 2001).

Etiology

The exact cause of sexual deviations is not known. However, there are several theories that have been proposed. These include biological theories, such as genetic predisposition and hormonal imbalances; psychological theories, such as psychodynamic theories and learning theories; and social theories, such as cultural norms and expectations (Mazur, 2017).

Treatment

The treatment of sexual deviations typically involves psychotherapy and/or medications. Psychotherapy can help the individual identify and address underlying issues that may be contributing to the behavior. Medications, such as antidepressants and antipsychotics, can help reduce the intensity of the behavior and help the individual control their urges.

Specific Sexual Deviations

Exhibitionism

Exhibitionism is a sexual deviation characterized by the recurrent and intense urge to expose one’s genitals to an unsuspecting stranger. This behavior is considered to be a crime in many jurisdictions and can lead to legal consequences.

Voyeurism

Voyeurism is a sexual deviation characterized by the recurrent and intense urge to observe unsuspecting people in private situations, such as when they are undressing or engaging in sexual activity. This behavior is also considered a crime in many jurisdictions and can lead to legal consequences.

Sexual Sadism and Masochism

Sexual sadism and masochism are sexual deviations characterized by the recurrent and intense urge to inflict or receive pain during sexual activities. This type of behavior can result in physical and psychological harm to both the individual engaging in the behavior and the victim.

Implications

Sexual deviations can have a number of legal, social, and psychological implications. Legally, engaging in certain types of sexual deviations can result in criminal charges. Socially, people with sexual deviations may face stigma and discrimination. Psychologically, people with sexual deviations may experience guilt, shame, and low self-esteem.

Conclusion

This article has provided a comprehensive overview of sexual deviations, also known as paraphilias. It discussed the definition of sexual deviation, its classification, prevalence, etiology, and treatment. In addition, the article addressed specific sexual deviations, such as exhibitionism, voyeurism, and sexual sadism and masochism. Lastly, the article described the implications of sexual deviations in terms of legal, social, and psychological aspects.

References

American Psychiatric Association. (2013). Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (5th ed.). Washington, DC: Author.

Lalumière, M. L., Harris, G. T., Quinsey, V. L., & Rice, M. E. (2001). The causes of rape: Understanding individual differences in male propensity for sexual aggression. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

Mazur, T. (2017). Paraphilias: Overview and treatment.Psychology Today. Retrieved from https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/basics/paraphilias

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