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Your kinky desires are totally normal, says study

Lizzy Hill is an internationally published writer, into writing about arts and entertainment, food and drink, feminism and her own misadventures. With a background in film and television production, journalism and visual arts, Lizzy's in...

You shouldn't feel ashamed about your sexual tastes because they're probably normal

From SheKnows Canada

Think your less-than-vanilla sexual tastes make you a little abnormal? Think again! A new study published in The Journal of Sex Research finds that your kinky tastes are totally normal. 

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Kinky people haven't historically had it easy. Until 2010, the American Psychiatric Association listed fetishism, BDSM and transvestic fetishism (a fetish involving cross-dressing) as pathologies. And the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders still lists most kinky sexual interests as paraphilic, or abnormal.

But guess what! Being into kink isn't unusual at all, according to the latest research, and it's high time we accepted it as normal and healthy. A study of 1,040 people from Quebec found that nearly half of them had sexual tastes that we consider outside of the norm.

"The main goal of the study was to determine normal sexual desires and experiences in a representative sample of the general population," explains study author Christian Joyal in a press release.

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The researchers found that 45.6 per cent of respondents said they were into in at least one kind of sexual activity that's considered anomalous, while 33 per cent of people had actually experienced these fantasies IRL.

"These facts suggest that we need to know what normal sexual practices are before we label a legal sexual interest as anomalous," explains Joyal. "Some paraphilic interests are more common than people might think, not only in terms of fantasies but also in terms of desire and behavior."

So what were the most common kinky fetishes? Most people admitted they were into voyeurism (35 per cent), while 26 per cent of people said they were into fetishism. Another 26 per cent fantasized about frotteurism (which entails rubbing an erect penis on a non-consenting person's body, so I really hope this remains just a fantasy) and 19 per cent expressed interest in masochism.

While men were more likely to self-report an interest in these so-called paraphilic behaviors than women, untraditional sexual tastes were still present in women, especially when it came to fantasizing about sexual submission. "In fact, women who report an interest in sexual submission have more varied sexual interests and report greater satisfaction with their sex lives. Sexual submission is therefore not an abnormal interest," explains Joyal.

The takeaway here? Whatever your fantasy, you probably shouldn't feel like a weirdo — and as long as you engage in safe, consensual sex, there's no reason to feel ashamed of spicing things up in the bedroom.

More: 12 unusual "safe" words people actually use in the bedroom

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