All to say that tattoos are pretty common and have been for a long time—as has been attracted to those with them. For example, research has shown that trans women prefer tattooed males. Healthier and more “masculine” A 2017 survey by UK dating app Type found that men with body modifications were more attractive than men without them. Two-thirds of female respondents, Men with tattoos, are stunning.
But for some people, the tattoo or piercing can be sexually satisfying. What is sexual interest, and what does it involve? Here is a look at stigmatophilia and how to deal with this in a relationship.
What is stigmatophilia?
Stigmatophilia is a condition where you become sexually aroused when you have body modifications. According to Kendra Capalbo, LICSWAccording to a licensed sex therapist and couple’s therapist from Esclusiva Couples retreats, stigmatophilia is “sexual paraphilia where sexual pleasure and arousal are heightened.” [are] “Related to a partner with tattoos, scars or piercings.” If you’re unfamiliar with the word, paraphilias are recurring and persistent sexual interests or behaviors. They are considered “atypical” by society’s standards. Paraphilias are not regarded as mental disorders, except in cases where they cause distress to the individual who suffers from them. Requires harming another person. This is not the norm with stigmatophilia.
The presence of tattoos or scars on someone else can trigger stigmatophilia in a person. Gets aroused from getting tattooed themselves. “[Stigmatophilia] Feeling turned on by, say, seeing tattoos in a shop or knowing that you are getting one is a way to display attraction. Lyndsey Murray, Relationship Matters Therapy, has a certified sex counselor who is AASECT-certified.
“[A person with stigmatophilia] maybe someone who only chooses partners that have art—tattoos or piercings—on their body, or they may be someone who has a lot of art on their body because it turns them on if they look that way,” Murray adds.
Stigmatophilia is a term that initially describes people aroused by scarification, which involves cutting the skin to create different patterns or textures. However, the definition has expanded. This definition was developed recently. [of stigmatophilia] “The program is now expanded to cover those who feel sexually aroused when they see tattoos, body piercings, and other modifications on their genitals and lips,” says Rebecca Alvarez Story. Rebecca Alvarez Story is a certified sexologist and CEO of Boomi.
How common is stigmatophilia?
The story, which has done limited research, says that stigmatophilia is more common in men. “Since men have a greater sex desire, this can lead them to be more open-minded and seek out different sexual interests, activities, and partners.” (Unclear how that plays out among trans and genderfluid folks—there isn’t enough data to say.)
Tattoo artists claim to have experienced stigmatophilia at their shops. John Johnson, the owner of New Flower Studio, Long Beach, California, and online education administrator for the Association of Professional Piercers, has seen a few cases where clients have become erect during the piercing process or made sexual remarks. Johnson: “I do not know if they are aroused specifically, or it’s just a natural reaction to the handling, cleaning for the procedure, and being examined.”
“I think it’s human that different people like and enjoy different things sexually.” —John Johnson, owner, New Flower Studio
Johnson says that couples have also kissed and had sexual discussions during piercing appointments. Johnson is OK with couples having a sexually charged environment as long it does not cross his boundaries. “I communicate my boundaries; like all piercers, I control the piercing area.”
Emmanuel Fortunato is a tattooist at Mad Rabbit Tattoo in New York City. He says he’s never had a customer confess that a new tattoo made them sexually aroused. However, he understands that a new tattoo “is very personal; you are trusting it and committing for the rest of your life. It would not be surprising if someone experienced more intense feelings.”
I would think [stigmatophila] Johnson says that this is perfectly normal. “I believe that it is human nature for different people to enjoy and appreciate sexually different things.”
Can stigmatophilia be a concern at any time?
The story says stigmatophilia is not considered a crime [a]. It is not “an uncontrollable sexual desire that must be met by performing an act of lust.”
Capalbo points out that stigmatophilia may “reach a level of disorder” if the person constantly changes their body to feel enthused. [be] a legitimate health concern.”
Capalbo explains that someone with stigmatophilia might need to touch their body repeatedly or undergo several modifications. Capalbo says that this compulsiveness can lead to “risking infections and regretting decisions at a later time.” If the tattooist does not use sterile tools, an increased risk exists of contracting infections such as hepatitis C and HIV.
Murray says it’s OK for someone to cover their body in body art. Just make sure that the needles and materials are clean and legitimate and have not been shared.
Also, if you are experiencing distress or discomfort due to stigmatophilia, you must seek professional help.
I understand stigmatophilia, a sexual and romantic relationship.
Being open with your partner if you suffer from stigmatophilia is essential. This will benefit both your romantic and sexual relationship. Capalbo says it can “add sexual excitement and pleasure both for an individual as well as partners and ‘spice up’ their sex lives, make you feel close to other like-minded people, and allow them to explore your sexuality.” Capalbo says that sharing desires and exploration with your partner (or partners) can help boost confidence.
The story adds, “As in any relationship, it’s important that both partners are honest and open about their sexual needs and wants.”
It can be challenging to talk about your sexual preferences, but you should be honest and open. Capalbo recommends explaining to your partner what caused this situation and what you dislike or like. A mutual understanding and direct and honest communication with your partner can help you navigate incorporating or not including new elements in your relationship and sex lives.
Murray suggests that if your partner (or partners) cannot satisfy your sexual needs, you “explore alternative ways of meeting your needs. Perhaps watching ethical pornography with individuals who have tattoos or piercings together.”
Stigmatophilia, as a part of human sexuality’s vast mosaic, is a reality. Explore it (safely) if getting inked makes you scream.
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