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Hey, Look at This!
November 15, 2007 10:01 PM   Subscribe

Exhibitionism can refer to a wide range of behaviours, ranging from fun with a willing partner, to a crime when done to the unsuspecting and unwilling. As a clinical matter exhibitionism is a sexual paraphilia in which a person (usually a man) obtains sexual pleasure from exposing his or her genitals to strangers, usually in a public place. Prevalence of the condition in the general population is not known, but approximately 30% of sex offenders have exhibitionistic tendencies and it is one of the most common sex offences. Some argue that for people with this paraphilia "it should be a possible to exist happily as an exhibitionist and still stay within the boundaries imposed by our legal systems." While often the belief is that they are harmless, research is indicating that they may progress to more serious crimes. Others note that "exhibitionism...is dangerous in that it can produce traumatic experiences within its victims."
posted by never used baby shoes (34 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite

 
Deja vu.
posted by -t at 10:05 PM on November 15, 2007


This thread is useless without photos.
posted by Astro Zombie at 10:10 PM on November 15, 2007 [1 favorite]


Depends on what you use the pictures for.
posted by wendell at 10:12 PM on November 15, 2007


What happened to the cash prizes?
posted by cytherea at 10:15 PM on November 15, 2007


Don't wave your willy at me in public!
posted by ericb at 10:15 PM on November 15, 2007


You know, with a userbase as large as Metafilter, there's bound to be people who like anchovies.
posted by empyrean at 10:45 PM on November 15, 2007


I mean, uh.
posted by empyrean at 10:46 PM on November 15, 2007


Before webcams, dating sites, and social networking, exhibitionism seemed like a much rarer paraphilia. Apparently, it was just lack of opportunity. Who knew?
posted by meehawl at 11:00 PM on November 15, 2007


In the "harmless" camp: Exhibitionism for the Shy. Great, great book.
posted by mediareport at 11:01 PM on November 15, 2007


The paraphilia is something you have, like a flu, right, or like a social phobia, or depression, you have it, or you don't. If you have it, you're sick. Well maybe social phobia doesn't apply because I think it's natural, I'm not trying to say if you aren't afraid of people you're insane, or anything, but it's just that it seems sort of natural to be afraid of people, and how clean, absolutely sickless they are.
posted by nervousfritz at 11:09 PM on November 15, 2007


Confession time:

*deep, heavy sigh*

I like exposing myself.


To anchovies.


I can't help it. The best is when I'm standing on the transom of a nice boat, just sort of dangling there out over the depths of the glassy, green sea. I open my luxurious egyptian cotton terry bathrobe slowly, carefully.

And then, suddenly, I let them have it! (But not all at once, just a little tease. At first.) Flash goes the robe! Flash go the startled anchovies, silver bellies all a-glisten in the sun and sparkling water!

I know that deep down, they truly appreciate the attention.

But, that's the good part. It's a high point, in my life. That expensive hired boat, the terry-cloth bathrobes I really can't afford.

The bad part? The lows are really low. Right now - here in reality - I'm about 15 minutes away from going and buying a can of anchovies. Just a small one, maybe 15 anchovies. In tomato paste. I have no luxurious cotton bathrobe, only a dingy old towel. These anchovies won't startle. They just sit there, putrescent in their can of congealed paste, lifeless, dark of eye. Sometime later tonight, in a fit of self-loathing, I'll eat those anchovies on some saltines - made even saltier by my lonely tears.

And yet I find myself shivering with anticipation. Heeeeere fishy fishy!
posted by loquacious at 11:14 PM on November 15, 2007 [12 favorites]


I'm not sure exactly what you're arguing, nervousfritz, but I can tell you that I know numerous exhibitionists personally and none of them are any sicker than the next person. Wanting people to see you naked isn't a sickness. If it were, everyone who ever had sex with the lights on would be diagnosed with it. It's only a problem when you show your naughty bits to people who didn't sign up to see them. But then, just about any behavior you care to name is a problem when you involve people who haven't consented.
posted by Clay201 at 11:16 PM on November 15, 2007


Okay...

Normally, giant paragraphs on the front page about sexual paraphilias are padding for the one link that a poster REALLY REALLY wanted to post but couldn't make themselves just link to youporn by itself, or whatever.

But all of these links go to boring articles.

Where's the link? What's the deal?
posted by blacklite at 12:14 AM on November 16, 2007 [1 favorite]


You can wrap it up in ribbons,
You can slip it in your sock.
Just don't take it out in public,
Or they will put you in the dock
...And you won't .. come ... back.

Wait, this isn't the Monty Python thread is it ...
posted by kcds at 3:42 AM on November 16, 2007


This thread is useless without photos.
posted by Astro Zombie at 1:10 AM on November 16


If this thread is about you - post.
posted by caddis at 4:04 AM on November 16, 2007


It would be interesting to have a debate between exhibitionists and nudists. They'd both want a more relaxed attitude to nudity, but in one case because it's sexy, and in the other because it isn't.
posted by Phanx at 4:13 AM on November 16, 2007


It would be interesting to have a debate between exhibitionists and nudists.

SWORDFIGHT!
posted by TheOnlyCoolTim at 4:29 AM on November 16, 2007 [2 favorites]


I heard this story from my father. Therefore it probably has little basis in fact, but whatever.

Upon being flashed a woman responded "That looks like a penis, only smaller."

If that's not the perfect response I don't know what is.
posted by muthecow at 4:30 AM on November 16, 2007


How often do men report women who flash them? My guess is that the victims are generally women, and that the sense of threat is the issue...
posted by ewkpates at 5:45 AM on November 16, 2007


(Previously posted, but that thread got deleted. And what with the writer's strike and all, we're forced to recycle some material.)

In the first grade, my little (strictly platonic) girl friend and I were sitting in class with all the other kids, while Ms. Teacher was enjoying a chat with another grownup and basically ignoring the class. We were coloring something, using a flesh colored, possibly magenta crayon as I recall, when, for some reason, my little friend decided she wanted to see my "thingy". Nobody else was looking, so I thought, "why not?" and pulled my elastic waistband back. She leaned over and took a good look at my business, then her eyes got wide and she covered her mouth with both hands. And then, in a sudden flash of insight, she quickly stood and RAN UP FRONT TO TELL MS. TEACHER!!

I just knew I was going to be in big, BIG trouble. What would Ms. Teacher do to me? What would the principal do?? I was going to get kicked out of school, then my parents were going to kill me in a very painful way and feed me to the dog. I mean, I was panicked like no 6 year old should ever be, just crushing my eyes shut, clenching both fists, and going ohnoesohnoesohnoesohnoes in my head. I vividly remember that feeling.

Plus, I felt so betrayed. I mean, SHE had asked to see MY junk -- it wasn't even my idea! And there she was, Telling On Me.

But. . . what's this? Ms. Teacher was so completely engaged in her grown-up conversation that she dismissed my girl friend's repeated pleas for attention with a wave of the hand. Looking dejected, my EX girl friend put her head down and walked back to sit next to me, as a wave of relief washed over me. Whew, that was a close one!

Needless to say, I didn't share my peach cobbler with her at lunch. She was cut off. Sorry, babe, but you fuck with the bull, you get the horns.
posted by LordSludge at 6:40 AM on November 16, 2007 [3 favorites]


I heard this story from my father. Therefore it probably has little basis in fact, but whatever.

Upon being flashed a woman responded "That looks like a penis, only smaller."

If that's not the perfect response I don't know what is.


I heard this story in yesterday's metafilter thread about exhibititionism. I look forward to hearing it again in tomorrow's.
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 6:43 AM on November 16, 2007 [1 favorite]


On preview, LordSludge's peach cobbler story also only gets better with time.
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 6:44 AM on November 16, 2007


I've been flashed at the movies twice, within the space of about a month. One guy left when he realized I wasn't going to give him the attention he wanted and the other guy ran out when I went to report him to the theater staff. It wasn't the same theater or the same guy but I've always wondered about the likelihood of that happening twice within a relatively short time period in a fairly bland metro area.

UR HARBULS. LET U NOT SHOW ME THEM.
posted by fuse theorem at 7:14 AM on November 16, 2007


Serendipitously, I received this link yesterday.

With pictures. (NSFW if you work someplace exceptionally up-tight.)
posted by abulafa at 7:34 AM on November 16, 2007


Well godammit! Is it really a double if the first one was deleted...?
posted by abulafa at 7:36 AM on November 16, 2007


Is it really a double if the first one was deleted...?

It's a double to the people who read it before it was deleted, not-a-double to the people who didn't.
posted by LordSludge at 8:29 AM on November 16, 2007


( @ ) ( @ )
posted by orange swan at 8:52 AM on November 16, 2007


approximately 30% of sex offenders have exhibitionistic tendencies and it is one of the most common sex offences

Or is it just that sex offenders who have a powerful sexual compulsion to make themselves seen are, for obvious reasons, among those most often apprehended.

"Hey look at me!"= often caught.
posted by ManInSuit at 9:17 AM on November 16, 2007 [1 favorite]


It's a double to the people who read it before it was deleted, not-a-double to the people who didn't.

And the sound of one hand clapping is 'cla...'
posted by quin at 12:23 PM on November 16, 2007


"exhibitionism...is dangerous in that it can produce traumatic experiences within its victims."

This always bothers me somewhat. There is in that argument and implicit assumption that each of us is responsible for other peoples reactions. Now to some extent I suppose this is necessary for social order, blah blah. But realistically, if you are traumatized by someone flashing their penis at you in a public place without even a hint of violence then you have a problem. Every action, not even flashing, can be judged on the bases "well he/she was offended". We are responsible for our own emotions, especially in passive situations. Now I'll give you that exhibitionism is borderline on the 'passive'; at some level, it is "directed" towards the audience. But unless the exhibitionist tries to corner their prey or the like, it is pretty hard to argue it is a particular offense "against" the audience.

People really need to be brought up to say "WTF???", store it away for a good story, move on and quit freaking every time they see something that doesn't meet their sensibilities.
posted by Bovine Love at 1:20 PM on November 16, 2007


"cannot be judged", dammit, not "can be judged". Why can't I proof-read? What part of my psyche demands I click right away?
posted by Bovine Love at 1:21 PM on November 16, 2007


@ManInSuit: That is certainly one of the arguments about why exhibitionists are represented to the degree that they are in prison. However, the researcher in this article believes that most exhibitionists are actually quite clever and can go for years without being caught. (Not a particularly well-written article).

@Bovine Love: I understand where you are coming from...for me the difficulty is the fact that the exhibitionist is "sexually aroused by the shock or suprise of the victim." Does that not imply that the offender is deliberately trying to cause some level of distress or discomfort? Unfortunately, there don't seem to be case studies of exhibitionist offenders around I can link to on this question (in terms of what is going on in their mind).
posted by never used baby shoes at 2:07 PM on November 16, 2007


Talk about disturbing sexuality: The sex slave is an orangutan.
posted by nickyskye at 8:51 PM on November 16, 2007


Thanks to orange swan, my mind is parsing "at signs" as nipples. So never used baby shoes's post starts out as "nippleManInSuit"...
posted by LordSludge at 8:05 AM on November 17, 2007


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