Opinion Sexual fetishism, or erotic fetishism, is the sexual arousal a person receives from a physical object, or from a specific situation. The object or situation of interest is called the fetish, the person a fetishist who has a fetish for that object/situation. Noted psychiatrist Sigmund Freud believed that sexual fetishism in men derived from the unconscious fear of the mother’s genitals, from men’s universal fear of castration, and from a man’s fantasy that his mother had had a penis but that it had been cut off. He did not discuss sexual fetishism in women. Early psychology assumed that fetishism is either being conditioned or imprinted or the result of a strong emotional (e.g., traumatic) or physical experience. Often, these experiences were from early childhood and have stayed part of their lives from that time. Perhaps, if that was true wouldn’t we all still want to be babies and at which point as a child were some people subjected to the feel of leather so much so that they now feel compelled to wear tight leather jeans and jacket? As we know, fetishism can be about anything – from custard covering your arse to metal hooks tying up your cock, from dressing as a furry animal to being restrained in a cell, from loving the touch of satin to cumming at the sight of shiny rubber. There are few things that someone somewhere has not turned into a fetish… then found a friend who shares the obsession. The question that is always asked is… Is It Healthy? Think of it this way: They aren’t selling the country out by causing a global financial meltdown or exporting arms to a country with dubious civil rights. No one is saying you have to take part… or else… and most of it is kept and undertaken in private. I think this perceived moral outrage needs to be put into context – someone strapped into a harness and pretending to be a dog for a few hours a week does neither me or you any harm at all and if they can find others who want to share that experience… so much the better. So, if people are deriving pleasure from it… why not enjoy it?