Are the fetishists a bunch of attention whores or… misunderstood?

by Transcend Everything on September 19, 2015

I’d like to speak today about a linguistic dispute in the reddit crossdreamer thread. A dispute which can be described in the following terms…

    – Some members of the community want to refer to crossdreaming as a fetish. We will call them fetishists.
    – Some members are offended by this. We will call them crossdreamers.

How to resolve this issue

First of all I want to make clear that this is solely a linguistic dispute. Crossdreamers have no problem with the idea that crossdreaming is fundamentally sexual.. ie… there are no hidden female identities, no transgender narrative… and that the crossdreamer is primarily motivated by a sexual urge. Crossdreamers do not believe that, but recognise it is a valid argument.

So that’s not the cause of the dispute. What offends the crossdreamers is the use of the words fetish and paraphilia when talking about that sexual urge.

The crossdreamers claim – and this is the heart of the issue – that fetish and paraphilia are stigmatising, loaded terms. They are basically synonyms for perversion and abnormality, and that there are a whole range of neutral terms which can be used to replace them. These neutral terms, such as ‘sexual preference /taste for/ sexuality/ erotic interest in/ orientation/ allow for the same debate – minus the offending language.

The fetishists argue that fetish and paraphilia are harmless, neutral terms – simply labels for a range of sexual tastes which differ from that of the majority.

Okay, so does everybody have the two sides clear? 1) fetish and paraphilia are loaded, stigmatising terms. 2) fetish and paraphilia are harmless labels for alternative sexual desires.

Step 1 – seperating ‘fetish’ from ‘paraphilia’

Fetish has three meanings:

1) Sexological:

‘A sexual focus on a nonliving object or nongenital body part.’ American institute of Psychiatry.

2) Common parlance A:

Any type of sexual taste that is different from classic heterosexual sex. This can be completely benign and harmless: “Tommy has a fetish for latex.”

3) Common parlance B:

Any type of sexual taste that is different from classic heterosexual sex and is considered perverted: “Tommy has a fetish for latex (said contemptuously.)

Initial Conclusion

Firstly, it is blatantly and abundantly clear that crossdreaming is not a fetish in academic, scientific or medical terms. In fact, James Cantor – qualified sexologist and virulent believer that transsexuals are motivated by sexuality – wrote on our very website, three weeks ago…

Finally, autogynephilia is not a fetish. (Fetishes are sexual interests in inanimate objects.)

…(And please… nobody throw transvestic fetishism into the equation because crossdreaming is not the same as crossdressing.)

Secondly, while there are some people for whom fetish is a benign word and a harmless reference to alternative sexual stimuli… it is undeniable that a substantial portion of the population see the word as synonymous with kinky, not normal, perverted.

Therefore, it is patently absurd to claim that the following phrase ‘crossdreaming is a fetish’ is a harmless statement when it is …1) scientifically, medically and sexologically inaccurate… and 2) well known that ‘fetish’ is synonymous with ‘perversion’ and ‘stigma’ in the public imagination.

But not only is it patently absurd… it is patently unacceptable to bring such language to a reddit described as…

a safe place for discussion and support for Crossdreamers…. Our goal is to foster a community that helps people to find what they’re looking for. We promote the exploration of gender, without stigmatizing your sexual interests.

THE WORST THING ABOUT THIS IS THAT THERE ARE PEOPLE WHO COME TO REDDIT LOOKING FOR ADVICE… PEOPLE IN CRISIS… and their whole experience gets hijacked by obsessive fetishists projecting their humiliation fantasies onto the rest of the community.

The final argument of the fetishists: “Sexologists, academics, doctors and the general public are wrong… our meaning is the correct one. The word ‘fetish’ shouldn’t be stigmatised…”

Sorry, but you cant go back in linguistic time. Yes, for some people it’s not stigmatised, but for many it is, it always will be, and therefore the term will never be clean. It’s contaminated… and trying to hold onto it when there are so many alternative words makes no fucking sense. So give it up! Or at least… take it the fuck out of your crossdreamer discourse!

Peeople who try to say the word fetish and paraphilia are harmless just don’t know their history. The words were clearly invented by early sexologists to distinguish certain types of sexual behavior as errant and others as correct. Even now, if you enter paraphilia into google this is what you see… ABNORMAL, EXTREME, DANGEROUS!

Sin título

An olive branch to the fetishists

At the end of the day we’re all just trying to understand our lives. The majority of the fetishists – people like interbeung – are not trolls, they have a sincere belief in their theory, and we shouldn’t attack them.

Let’s also remember that we have no problem with the argument that crossdreaming is just a sexual phenomena and that all that transgender stuff is nonsense… All we ask is that you refrain from using the word fetish and paraphilia when talking about crossdreamer sexuality; maybe you have no problem talking that way, but we do.

Maybe the difference between us comes down to a different experience of crossdreaming. It maybe that the fetishists only fantasize about domination and humiliation and therefore see it through that prism. For many crossdreamers, though, domination is not their turn on; many have classic romantic fantasies, many dream about being in a lesbian relationship, some are genuinely attracted to men and have loved/are in love with men.

Crossdreaming is, therefore, a general term for an enormous swathe of sexual, emotional and psychic behavior that occurs in the context of gender variant psychology. You simply can not come in, guns blazing, saying everyone has a ‘fetish’.

So let’s all chill the fuck out… and let’s not criticise anyone (not even WXLUP – whose Reddit I visited yesterday and found some interesting stuff in). But please… no more use of the word fetish with respect to crossdreaming… it’s factually incorrect and considered by many as offensive.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Joey September 19, 2015 at 12:20 pm

I’m one of those people who identify as more of a “humiliationist”, but I do see how the use of the word fetish could offend some. I’m actually offended myself when being referred to as “trans” or similar names, simply because we make our own identities and if that’s what works for me then who cares? I actually really like the paraphilia and fetish side of things.

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Transcend Everything September 19, 2015 at 1:27 pm

Well… that’s what we call perfect harmony. Cool.

To be honest, you’ve pretty much put your finger on it… those who identity more along transgender lines completely reject the fetish label and those identify as men tend to embrace the fetish label and eschew anything trans related.

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wxhluyp September 19, 2015 at 9:41 pm

Are you for or against propagandist suppression of fetishists, justifiably arguing the rational ground, that they are anything other than repressed transsexuals? The following was deleted on the reddit thread you posted this article on. Do you have the integrity not to delete it from here? Do you even have the integrity to post it on the thread, on your own behalf?

In the very sense that people wrongly thought homosexuality was an illness, the majority of the population wrongly thinks a fetish is something deviant or unnatural.

That you wish to reserve the term “fetishism’s” negative associations, is logically the same reservation for homosexuality itself to maintain it’s social stigmatization.

We are in the position where not only are we not using the term in a negative sense, but decisively for the reason that we do not have an alternative term.

Then in the realm of theory, we have recognised theorists declaring,

*”All sexuality is fetishistic because it focuses on partial objects”* And an appeal to the traditional notion of “fetishism” denoting sexual arousal by “inanimate objects” is disingenuous, as no one who has ever put the slightest thought to what it entails, being anything other than ridiculous.

And Marx’s (commodity) fetishism, and then the meanings of fetish up it’s historical etymology.

>As for your arrogant belief you know better than the public what ‘fetish’ means

Arrogance? That I maintain a position, as do you? My position is determined by rationality.

>demonstrate that from the outset they were intended to stigmatise.

Rather of fetishists referring indifferently to their fetishism, to which there are certain contingents who don’t like the idea of having a fetish, the very fetishism which they share. To the fetishist, referring to one’s fetish as anything other than a “fetish” (since no one seems to be able to find an alternative word), is explicit ideologically motivated suppression of the existence of the fetish.

>I am very interested in the idea that sexuality lies at the heart of transgenderism.

Not transgenderism in all it’s forms, but rather the common transgenderism on part of the “feminization fetishist”.

>not the dysfunctional discourse we inherited from people who say we are abnormal. This is the sad thing about Blanchard and WX and other people.

From autogynephilia *”we are all sick, delusional perverts”*, to crossdreaming *”we are all actually woman, repressed or otherwise”*. And then there are those who simply intellectually affirm a common fetish, without it meaning that the commonly affiliated transgenderism is necessarily invalidated.

>thinking I could have a discussion without people telling me, like Blanchardet al, that I’m a fetishist.

It is as simply a question of whether you or whether you are not sexually aroused by the given fantasies. You are welcome to invent a term denoting this.

>I think I made clear at the end of the article I wanted us all to be friends so can’t you just give a dog a bone.

Friends…. under what terms? ….. *”we are all actually woman, repressed or otherwise”* and if you don’t conform to this, then go away.

>and for the sake of harmony… substitute the word for another? Please…

This is disingenuous, because the required word is one which you actually want to avoid. That means that you are sexually aroused by something. It is no accident that “crossdreaming” contains the word something so vague as “dreaming”.

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