Addictions and fetishes?
In my discussions with a lot of victims and a few perps, I've noted an amazing variety of addictions and fetishes that have been born as it were, from these abuses, especially the ones begun in childhood and teen years. I've had to deal with my own issues in both of these categories and trust me, it wasn't easy. I went for years in weird behaviours never realizing that in some cases, I was reenacting childhood trauma. Several times in my own personal counselling sessions I was led to view things from a more normal perspective and thereby realizing I was totally missing what should have been an obvious inappropriateness.
I can remember several times leaving my sessions after spending minutes weeping uncontrollably over some revelation that turned my world upside down. Or maybe I should say right side up. It was painful.
One that I will relate here is the time my counsellor asked me to relate my first experience with sex. I talked about it for a few minutes and then he asked about my second, then my third. I was beginning to get the uncomfortable feeling he was perving on me when he stopped me and said he wanted to point something out to me.
What he then pointed out was that he had asked me about my earliest experience with sex and I would always go to my earliest experience with my abuse/abuser. He pointed this out and said "Roger, you equate sex with your abuse. That's not sex."
When I realized that in my marriage I was reliving my role as the victim instead of really relating to my wife as my lover; when I realized where I had been placing her as the seducer, I broke down for probably five minutes. I knew nothing about intimacy at all. I'd failed in my role as husband and lover and ruined intimacy for both of us.
We never really know sometimes the whole ramifications of what might have been done to us and our view of healthy normality. With good professional help, much can be done to steer us back to healthy sexuality. I am forever grateful to those who were willing to wade through the mess of my life and lead me back out of the twisted mindset to which I was blind.
Don't be afraid to ask for help. It's worth it.