As you expand your sexual repertoire, you may run across a fetishist or two. So what exactly is a fetish and how can it affect your life? The dictionary will tell you that a fetish is an extreme devotion to a traditionally non-sexual object. This may be a body part, such as feet, or an inanimate object, like gloves. It might also be a particular action or trait, like having a fetish for being tied up.
Fetishes can be fun to a certain degree (what girl doesn’t love shoe shopping?) and you should certainly be patient with your partner if they discover one. If you’re comfortable with it, explore it with your partner. If you’re uncomfortable with his fetish, seek counseling to mediate a solution. It’s better to attempt to engage your partner’s fetish on some level than for him to feel as though he can’t express it around you – if the fetish is strong enough, he may seek out other avenues to indulge it.
There can come a point when a fetish can be destructive. If the fetish is more important than the person you’re engaging in it with, it’s a problem. If the fetish is kept a secret, it’s a problem. If the fetish is acted upon outside the relationship without permission from the primary partner, it’s a problem. If the fetish is illegal, it’s a problem. Any time a fetish is driving a wedge between yourself and your partner, professional counseling should be sought out to resolve any issues and to maintain the stability of the relationship.