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From the university of perversity (Part 2): An A to Z of non-researched sexual paraphilias and strange sexual behaviours

In a previous blog I did an A-Z of sexual paraphilias about which we know almost nothing. Today’s blog takes a brief A to Z look at another 26 unusual and/or strange sexual behaviours where (as far as I am aware) there is absolutely no empirical or clinical research on the topic. The majority of the paraphilias below can be found in either Dr. Anil Aggrawal’s book Forensic and Medico-legal Aspects of Sexual Crimes and Unusual Sexual Practices and/or Dr. Brenda Love’s Encyclopedia of Unusual Sex Practices (although a few were also taken from such sources as the Write World’s dedicated webpage on ‘philias’ and the online Urban Dictionary).

  • Autodermatophagia: This behaviour involves eating one’s own flesh as a form of erotic auto-masochism. The only place I’ve seen this mentioned is in Dr. Aggrawal’s book and appears to be a sub-variant of autosarcophogy (i.e., self-cannibalism) that I covered in a previous blog.
  • Brontophilia: This behaviour involves people who derive sexual arousal from thunderstorms. It was also the inspiration for the song Brontophilia (Satanic Anal Thunder) by the group Spasm (Google it if you don’t believe me!)
  • Cryptoscopophilia: This is the desire to see behaviour of others in privacy of their home (although some sources claim it is not necessarily sexual). The One Look website lists three different websites that have definitions including the online Urban Dictionary that defines it as “the urge to look through the windows of homes upon walking past them. Usually done for sexual satisfaction/curiosity reasons”. This appears to be a sub-type of voyeurism.
  • Dermaphilia: This is a behaviour in which the sexual stimulus for arousal comes from skin. The Sex Lexis definition website is a little more specific and claims that it is common among leather fetishists who becomes sexually aroused “when coming in direct contact with the skin or leather from animals or humans, from wearing leather clothing”.
  • Ederacinism: This is possibly one of the most unbelievable behaviours on this list and refers to the tearing out of sexual organs by the roots as in a frenzied way to punish oneself for sexual cravings. This would appear to be a sub-variant of genital self-mutilation and/or Klingsor Syndrome (that I covered in previous blogs).
  • Furtling: According to Dr. Aggrawal’s book, this behaviour involves the use of a person’s fingers underneath cut-outs in genital areas of photos as a way of gaining sexual arousal. It is also listed in a Spanish article on sexual paraphilias by Dr. Ruben Serrano in the Revista Venezolana de Urologia.
  • Gynotikolobomassophilia: This apparently refers to sexual pleasure from nibbling on a woman’s earlobe (aural sex?). At least four websites list this as a bona fide sexual activity according to the One Look webpage.
  • Hodophilia: This behaviour refers to individuals that derive sexual arousal from travelling (at least according to Dr. Aggrawal’s book). It is unclear whether this refers to modes of travelling (such as those who derive sexual pleasure from riding in cars or trains) or whether it refers to deriving sexual pleasure from being a tourist.
  • Icolagnia: Again found in Dr. Aggrawal’s book and is defined as those individuals who derive sexual arousal from contemplation of, or contact with, sculptures or pictures. This would seem to overlap with more specific sexual paraphilias such as agalmatophilia (sexual arousal from statues and/or manquins) that I covered in a previous blog.
  • Judeophilia: According to the Write World website, this behaviour involves “abnormal” sexual affection towards Jewish people. I have never come across this in any reputable sexual text.
  • Kokigami: According to the online Urban Dictionary, this involves the wrapping of the penis in a paper costume. The roots of Kokigami apparently lie in the eighth-century Japanese aristocrats who practiced the art of Tsutsumi (i.e., a man wrapped his penis with silk and ribbons in elaborate designs as a gift to lovers. He would then enjoy the physical sensations as his lover carefully unwrapped her prize.
  • Lygerastia: This is mentioned in Dr. Brenda Love’s sex encyclopedia and refers to tendency to being sexually aroused by being in darkness. This would appear to share psychological and behavioural overlaps with amaurophilia (sexual arousal from blindness) that I covered in a previous blog.
  • Melolagnia: This behaviour refers to those individuals who derive sexual arousal from music (and listed as a sexual paraphilia by both Dr. Love and Dr. Aggrawal).
  • Nanophilia: This refers to sexual arousal from having a short or small sexual partner. This is one of the few behaviours on this list that has been mentioned in an empirical research paper (as it was mentioned in the research on fetishes by Dr. C. Scorolli and colleagues in the International Journal of Impotence Research
  • Oenosugia: According to Dr. Aggrawal, this behaviour refers to the pouring wine over female breasts and licking it off. If you type ‘oenosugia’ into Google you get only two hits (one of which is Dr. Aggrawal’s book).
  • Phygephilia: I’m not sure how many people this could possibly refer to but Dr. Aggrawal defines this behaviour as sexual arousal from being a fugitive. The Inovun website defines it as “arousal from flight” (i.e., running away).
  • Queening: According to Dr. Anil Aggrawal, queening is a BDSM practice in where one sexual partner sits on or over another person’s face “typically to allow oral-genital or oral anal contact, or to practice ass worship or body worship”. In the book’s glossary of sexual terms, Dr. Aggrawal simply defines queening as “sitting on the side of a person’s face as a form of bondage”.
  • Rupophilia: According to the online Kinkopedia this behaviour refers to a sexual attraction towards dirt
(and presumably derives from the word ‘rupophobia’ that is a phobia towards dirt). This sexual paraphilia would seem to share similarities with mysophilia (i.e., sexual arousal from filth and unclean items) that I covered in a previous blog.
  • Savantophilia: According to Dr. Aggrawal, this behaviour refers to those who are sexually aroused by mentally challenged individuals. The only case that I am aware of that could potentially fit such a description is Jimmy Saville (see my previous blog for details).
  • Tripsophilia: According to the Sex Lexis website, this behaviour refers to being sexually arousal by being “messaged or otherwise manipulated”. Dr. Aggrawal describes the same behaviour as tripsolagnophilia.
  • Undinism: Dr. Aggrawal simply describes this behaviour as individuals who derive sexual arousal from water. This appears to be another name for aquaphilia (that I covered in a previous blog).
  • Vernalagnia: This is a seasonal behaviour and according to Dr. Aggrawal refers to an increase in sexual desire in the spring. Another online website simply defines it less sexually as a romantic mood brought on by spring”.
  • Wakamezake: This appears to be similar to oenosugia (above), and is a sexual term originating in Japan involving the drinking alcohol (such as sake) from a woman’s body. The Wikipedia entry on ‘food play’ provides a description: The woman closes her legs tight enough that the triangle between the thighs and mons pubis form a cup, and then pours sake down her chest into this triangle. Her partner then drinks the sake from there. The name comes from the idea that the woman’s pubic hair in the sake resembles soft seaweed (wakame) floating in the sea”.
  • Xenoglossophilia: I have yet to find this sexual act in any academic text but a few online websites define this as a sexual affection for foreign languages. I briefly mentioned this behaviour in a previous blog on xenophilia (sexual arousal from strangers) but asserted that such behaviour could hardly be classed as a sexual paraphilia.
  • Yoni worship: This refers to the worship of the female genitals (yoni is the Sanskrit word for the vagina). There are some interesting articles on Yoni worship at both the Basically Blah and Tantric Serenity websites.
  • Zeusophilia: I have yet to come across this behaviour in any reputable academic text, but a number of online websites (such as the Write World website) all claim that this behaviour refers to a sexual love of God or gods.

Dr Mark Griffiths, Professor of Gambling Studies, International Gaming Research Unit, Nottingham Trent University, Nottingham, UK

Further reading

Aggrawal A. (2009). Forensic and Medico-legal Aspects of Sexual Crimes and Unusual Sexual Practices. Boca Raton: CRC Press.

Gates, K. (2000). Deviant Desires: Incredibly Strange Sex. New York: RE/Search Publications.

Love, B. (2001). Encyclopedia of Unusual Sex Practices. London: Greenwich Editions.

Scorolli, C., Ghirlanda, S., Enquist, M., Zattoni, S. & Jannini, E.A. (2007). Relative prevalence of different fetishes. International Journal of Impotence Research, 19, 432-437.

Serrano, R.H. (2004). Parafilias. Revista Venezolana de Urologia, 50, 64-69

Write World (2013). Philias. Located at: http://writeworld.tumblr.com/philiaquirks

Slow train coming: A brief look at siderodromophilia

“[On] February 27th [2012], a man surnamed Cai was taken to court after being arrested by railway police for renting a train lounge car to hold a sex party, with the police preliminarily charging him with violating public decency. [On] February 23rd, Taiwanese [Director of Public Prosecutions] Ye Yijin revealed that someone had booked a [railway] lounge car to hold a “1 woman 18 men” group sex orgy” (China Smack news item, March 1st,2012).

On reading this news item a a year ago, it got me wondering what academic and/or clinical research has been done relating to sexual arousal from and/or in trains. In previous blogs I have examined the relationship between sex and cars (in articles on objectum sexuality, mechanophilia, and symphorophilia), and sex and aeroplanes (in an article on acrophilia), but train sex has not been on my fetishistic radar until I read the Taiwan train orgy story above. Regular readers of my blog probably won’t be surprised to hear that there is a sexual paraphilia relating solely to trains. Both Dr. Anil Aggrawal (in his book Forensic and Medico-legal Aspects of Sexual Crimes and Unusual Sexual Practices) and Dr. Brenda Love (in her Encyclopedia of Unusual Sex Practices) note that the sexual paraphilia where individuals derive sexual arousal and pleasure from trains is called siderodromophilia. Brenda Love claims in her encyclopedia entry on the topic that:

“Couples sometimes reserve a cabin and will have sex standing in front of the window as the train passes through a town or a station. Others squeeze into bathrooms and sneak quickies in corner. Trains provide more privacy and opportunity to socialize than airplanes and buses”.

Neither Dr. Aggrawal nor Dr. Love appear to distinguish between those people that are sexually aroused by (i) the train itself (i.e., individuals who develop deep emotional and/or romantic attachments to [and have sexual relationships with] specific inanimate objects such as a train), (ii) the potentially sexually stimulating vibrations caused by a travelling on a train (akin to those individuals – usually women – who sit on washing machines in their spin cycles as a source of sexual stimulation), or (iii) having sexual encounters and/or engaging in sexual activity on the train. This latter type of sexual activity may not only include masturbatory acts and consensual sexual activity (like the examples described by Brenda Love in her Encyclopedia of Unusual Sex Practices) but may also include non-consensual sexual acts by those individuals who are into frotteurism and often frequent very busy trains to facilitate their paraphilic behaviour (i.e., individuals, typically male, that derive sexual pleasure and arousal from non-consensually rubbing up against other people (typically but not always female strangers) particularly with their erect penis and/or pelvis).

There are certainly objectophiles that claim to have emotional and sexual relationships with trains. The most infamous case is that of the German man (‘Joachim A.’) who claims to have had a longstanding “steady relationship” with a steam locomotive train. In a 2007 article in the German magazine Der Spiegel, Jochaim (who was aged 41 years old at the time of his interview) said:

“We’re by no means just straightforward fetishists. For some people, their car becomes a fetish which they use to put themselves in the limelight. For the objectum-sexual, on the other hand, the car itself – and nothing else – is the desired sexual partner, and all sexual fantasies and emotions are focused on it”

The article claimed Joachim had “been pretty faithful to his steam locomotive recently” and that he had recognized and accepted his objectum sexuality inclination just prior to his teenage years. He fell “head over heels” in love with a Hammond organ and had “an emotionally and physically very complex and deep relationship, which lasted for years”. The article went on to say that:

“Since he is particularly aroused by the inner workings of technical objects, repair jobs have often led to infidelity in the past. “A love affair could very well begin with a broken radiator,” the now monogamous lover says, remembering how his earlier affairs began. Joachim gradually realized that ‘you can reveal yourself to an object partner in an intimate way, in a way that you would never reveal yourself to any other person’. That includes the desire to ‘experience sexuality together’”.

Any Freudians reading this will no doubt be aware that according to Sigmund Freud, a train is analogous to the male penis. (I don’t believe any of this myself, but it would be remiss of me not to mention it given the focus of my blog). In a short online article about railways, Christian Hubert also makes reference to Freud and noted that:

“Both Freud and Karl Abraham indicated the connection between mechanical agitation and sexual arousal in the train. This joy found its repressed counterpart in the fear experienced by neurotics in the face of accelerating or uncontrolled motion as the fear of their own sexuality going out of control”.

After reading this I decided to try and track down the original source (and I think that I found it). Freud, in his book ‘Three Contributions to the Sexual Theory’ had a whole section devoted to what he termed ‘mechanical excitation’.  More specifically he noted that:

“[We must] describe here the production of sexual excitation by means of rhythmic mechanical shaking of the body. There are three kinds of exciting influences: those acting on the sensory apparatus of the vestibular nerves, those acting on the skin, and those acting on the deep parts, such as the muscles and joints…As we know, rocking is regularly used in putting to sleep restless children. The shaking sensation experienced in wagons and railroad trains exerts such a fascinating influence on older children, that all boys, at least at one time in their lives, want to become conductors and drivers. They are wont to ascribe to railroad activities an extraordinary and mysterious interest, and during the age of phantastic activity (shortly before puberty) they utilize these as a nucleus for exquisite sexual symbolisms. The desire to connect railroad travelling with sexuality apparently originates from the pleasurable character of the sensation of motion”.

The (unnamed) editor of the Ventura County Reporterhas his own blog (Fir & Main) and wrote an online article entitled ‘Siderodromophilia and other loves”. In it, he appeared to concur with Freud by noting that:

“Yes, I enjoy trains, and there is a certain sensuality in the rhythmic motions (and let’s not mention stock footage and visual double entendres of trains entering tunnels…Fortunately, Googling the word siderodromophilia wasn’t as disturbing as I’d feared”

After searching all the usual academic databases, I didn’t manage to locate a single paper that has examined siderodromophilia. Maybe this is because the definition is so ill-defined and/or it has little academic or clinical relevance. I’ll leave you with another issue that I’ll throw into the mix. Siderodromophilia would appear to be part of a more wide-ranging paraphilia called ‘hodophilia’. Dr. Aggrawal simply describes it as “sexual arousal from travelling” whereas Dr. Love has a slightly expanded definition and says it is the “sexual arousal people feel while traveling to new or strange places”. Dr. Love goes a little further and concludes that:

“Travel often entails anxiety, pleasure, autonomy, and additional hours for entertainment. People feel more tempted to break out of their normal routine and experience their new environment to the fullest, especially if the country has a legal red light district”.

I have to be honest and say that no evidence was presented to support these assertions but given the lack of empirical evidence in the whole area, speculation is the best we have at the current time.

Dr Mark Griffiths, Professor of Gambling Studies, International Gaming Research Unit, Nottingham Trent University, Nottingham, UK

Further reading

Aggrawal A. (2009). Forensic and Medico-legal Aspects of Sexual Crimes and Unusual Sexual Practices. Boca Raton: CRC Press.

Fauna (2012). Sex party on Taiwan train involved 17-year-old  girl and 18 men. China Smack, March 31. Located at: http://www.chinasmack.com/2012/stories/sex-orgy-on-taiwan-train-involved-17-year-old-girl-and-18-men.html

Fir & Main (2008). Siderodromophilia and other loves, April 24. Located at: http://vcredit.wordpress.com/2008/04/24/siderodromophilia-and-other-loves/

Freud, S. (1930). Civilization and its Discontents. London: Hogarth Press.

Freud, S. (1962). Three Essays on the Theory of Sexuality, trans. James Strachey. New York: Basic Books.

Hubert, C. (undated). Railway. Located at: http://christianhubert.com/writings/railway.html

Love, B. (2001). Encyclopedia of Unusual Sex Practices. London: Greenwich Editions.

Marsh, A. (2010). Love among the objectum sexuals. Electronic Journal of Human Sexuality, 13, March 1. Located at: http://www.ejhs.org/volume13/ObjSexuals.htm

Stopera, M. (2010). The 15 hottest objectum-sexual relationships. Buzz Feed. Located at: http://www.buzzfeed.com/mjs538/the-15-hottest-objectum-sexual-relationships

Thadeusz, F. (2007). Objectophilia, Fetishism and Neo-Sexuality: Falling in Love with Things. Der Spiegel, November 5. Located at: http://www.spiegel.de/international/spiegel/0,1518,482192,00.html