Hello Dr. Schwartz, I have a question for you. I am a 22 year old male who has in the past occasionally read erotic fictional stories that revolved around sadistic sexual fantasies. First of all let me explain a little about myself. I am a loving kind young man, who is going to college and actually majoring in Criminal Justice. I have a sister, and loving parents who are still together , and was raised in a really relaxed loving family. My parents have always been there for me, as has my sister, and close relatives (I could talk to them pretty much about anything). I am not a bad looking young man, but I have never had a girl friend in a serious relationship. Well around my late teens (17-19) I came across some erotic fiction that revolved around rape, non-consensual forced sex. Most of these stories turned me on because they were "fiction." I am completely able to understand the difference between fiction and reality and would never want to harm anyone or thing in real life. And I never have. Some of these stories (maybe 5 out of around 300) had minors in them (some were quite young). Now granted, in my mind I don’t think it was the fact that it had minors in them that turned me on. I believe it was mostly just the "control, forced" aspect of them. Also I never specifically went looking for fictional stories that had minors in them. I came across them on various authors websites and liked the writing style of those authors, so I read them. No pictures, or anything that is illegal. I would of course never get involved in any of that. Now granted that I can still get aroused by regular pornography, is this something in your mind that raises an alarm? I have told my sister, my really close friends and close family, about this problem (it is very embarrassing, and as I look back on it, probably was a bad judgement call). I have never had a fantasy or thought about doing any of these things to anyone. I am currently on Effexor for anti depressant and (General Anxiety Disorder). I worry about things that I have done in the past, like what I just wrote to you. I am a very honest person and usually like to get rid of baggage thats why I like asking for professional’s opinions etc. on this issue. I guess it just makes me irritated that I got aroused by a "fictional story" that revolved around such heinous activity? Could it be that because these things are taboo that maybe that is why it turned me on? Even though I have never been turned on by thinking about these things in real life? I have always only been attracted to women my age, blonde hair, tan skin. etc. I just want to be able to raise a family, and make a living and have a loving wife and kids that I can take care of. But would that woman still love me for who I am if she found out about something I had read (that was fiction) in the past? Should that be brought up in a relationship? Thanks for your advice, Dr. Schwartz I look forward to hearing back. P.S I just worry that people would think I’m some freak or something. I am not a real rapist or pedophile. I’m pretty sure I would know that by now. All my friends say it’s no biggie because they know who I am, and it was a fictional story etc., etc. Thanks.
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It seems clear to me that your friends have not shared their sexual fantasies with you or you would feel more assured.
No, you are not a pedophile, rapist,pervert or any such thing. The fact is that it is very common for young men to have these types of erotic, sexual and sadistic fantasies. I agree with you that the fantasies have a lot to do with control, with being the "master."
However, despite the fact that you try to assure yourself that these are nothing but fantasies you seem to get confused between fantasy and action. In one part of your post you report being concerned about "what you have done in the past." The simple fact is that you have done nothing, other than read and look at some erotic and masturbated.
So, what I am saying is that you have nothing to worry about except one thing: that you told your family about this. There are some things that should remain personal unless you are seeing a psychologist. Parents and family are not the people with whom one shares sexual fantasies or sexual material of any kind.
Here is what I believe you need to do:
1. You really need to have a girl friend. It is time for you to be dating in a serious way. I have the notion that you have not yet had sexual intercourse. I believe that it is time for you to date, find a serious girl friend and enter into an intimate and deep relationship that includes sex. One of the things that you will gradually discover is that women also have sexual fantasies. You need real experience with a young woman you deeply care about.
2. It seems to me very apparent that, while you are taking an anti depressant medication, you are not in psychotherapy. There is too much of this type of thing happening, in which people of all ages are given these medications and without referral to therapy. I am not again the medication, although I think they are given too easily, but I am opposed to giving medicine without therapy. In fact, in many cases, therapy alone would help resolve these problems.
For you, I would suggest psychodynamic or psychoanalytic therapy because there is a lot you need to learn about yourself and this would enable you to learn, at least, this is my opinion.
So, please be assured that you are not a pervert, that you will marry someday and have a wonderful family but that you need to start dating in a serious way and find the right girl friend and, important, enter psychotherapy.
Very best of luck