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I steal all of my tricks’ underwear. Am I a freak?

Hi Jake,

I’ve been embarrassed to tell anyone about this, but I’m pretty sure I have a fetish. Whenever a guy comes over for a hookup, once the clothes hit the floor, I secretly hide his underwear in my bed. I grab it off the floor when he’s in the bathroom or not looking, and stuff it under the bottom fitted sheet against my mattress. When he gets dressed later, I feign utter confusion about where his underwear might have gone when he tells me he can’t find it, and pretend to help him look all over the room. Ultimately, he leaves without it and chalks it up to one of those weird unsolved mysteries. I’ve done this at least a dozen times with different guys. When I’m not hosting, I try to stuff the latest conquest’s underwear in my pocket on the way out the door. The reason I do this is because I find it such a turn on to collect them. They usually have a slight scent of worn man musk, and I find nothing hotter than a guy in his tight briefs (or jock strap). I now have a huge collection of these. Am I a freak?

Calvin Kling

Dear Calvin Kling,

You’re not a freak, but you are a thief. 🙂 The thing that is most alarming about your concern isn’t your fetish at all, but that you’re committing a violation of all these guy’s rights to their property. It never feels good to lose something that is ours, especially when it is taken from us. Underwear today can be expensive, especially designer brands. Before you take them next time, try to put yourself in his shoes, and imagine how you would feel if your favorite item of clothing was stolen, and you were lied to about its whereabouts. You probably wouldn’t be happy.

That said, I do want to help you normalize your sexual desire, and help you remove any shame about it. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with kinky turn-ons. Sexual attraction and desires get imprinted in us in a variety of different ways, sometimes from early sexual experiences, and sometimes seemingly out of the blue. I believe they should be celebrated, and not judged, as it’s part of who we are and something we can enjoy and have fun with. It’s never good to call ourselves “freaks” (unless it’s in a good way), as that can simply make us feel shame and feel bad about ourselves for being somehow “wrong.” As LGBTQ people, we already have to work through internalized homophobia and shame from the messages we pick up in childhood, so it’s not helpful to add even more shame by placing judgment on something that’s simply part of who we are.

What I would encourage for you is to find a way to engage this “fetish” without committing a crime. Underwear is definitely a common turn on. Many of us grow up in the locker room watching jocks getting dressed and standing around in their underwear, so no wonder this imprints a certain desire associated with it. Turn ons and fetishes can be fun and hot to engage in, but you want to make sure to do so in a respectful and honest way.

Perhaps during your sexual escapades, you can think about telling your partners about your turn on, and incorporate that into the play? Or, you might even simply ask them if they mind if you play around with the underwear for awhile, or even ask if you could keep (or even buy?) them. My guess is you may be stealing them because you’re afraid of the judgment you’ll get if you express your desires, but it’s up to us to not allow anyone else to make us feel bad about ourselves. Through therapy, we can work through internalized shame, and grow to appreciate and have fun with our desires.

As for that pile of stolen treasure you’re hoarding, you might think about returning some of them, if you can identify the owners. This will help you release guilt, and you’ll feel free. Perhaps a Cinderella style search is in order? You may just snag a prince!

Jake Myers the Founder of LGBTQ Therapy Space , the first LGBTQ-owned and operated national platform for teletherapy. He has a Masters in Clinical Psychology from Antioch University Los Angeles, with a specialization in LGBT Affirmative Psychotherapy, and is a Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in both California and Florida.

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