There’s still time to nominate local icons for Best of D.C.
I’ve been married to my husband for two years. Five months into our relationship (before we got married), he confessed that he was an adult baby. I was so grossed out, I was literally ill. (Why would this great guy want to be like this?) I told him he would have to choose: diapers or me. He chose me. I believed him and married him. Shortly before the birth of our child, I found out that he’d been looking at diaper porn online. I lost it. He apologized and said he’d never look at diaper porn again. Once I was free to have sex again after the birth, it was like he wasn’t into it. When I asked what the deal was, he told me he wasn’t into sex because diapers weren’t involved. I broke down, and he agreed to talk to a counselor. But on the day we were supposed to go, he was mad about every little thing I did and then said he wasn’t going! I went crazy and called his mom and told her everything, and she said she found a diaper under his bed when he was 7! After this crisis, he agreed to work things out, but then I found adult-size diapers in the house—and not for the first time! I took a picture and sent it to him, and he told me that he was tired of me controlling him and he is going to do this when he wants. He also said he was mad at me for telling his mom. I told him no, absolutely not, he cannot do this. Then I found adult-size diapers in the house again this morning and freaked out. He says he never wants to discuss diapers with me again, and I’m afraid he might choose them over me! Please give me advice on how to make him understand that this is not him! This is who he chooses to be! And he doesn’t have to be this way! —Married A Disgusting Diaper Lover
First, MADDL, let’s calmly discuss this with a shrink.
“There’s a fair bit of controversy over whether people can suppress fetishistic desires like this—and whether it’s healthy to ask them to do so,” says Dr. David Ley, a clinical psychologist, author, and American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors and Therapists-certified sex therapist. “Personally, I believe in some cases, depending on the support of their environment and personal relationships, it is possible, but only when these desires are relatively mild in intensity.”
Your husband’s interest in diapers—which would seem to go all the way back to at least age 7—can’t be described as mild.
“Given the apparent strength and persistence of her husband’s interest, I think it unlikely that suppression could ever be successful,” says Ley. “In this case, I think MADDL’s desire for her husband to have sexual desires she agrees with in order for her to be married to him is a form of sexual extortion, i.e., ‘If you love me and want to be with me, you’ll give up this sexual interest that I find disgusting.’ Without empathy, mutual respect, communication, unconditional love, and willingness to negotiate and accommodate compromises and win-win solutions, this couple is doomed, regardless of diapers under the bed.”
Now let’s bring in a voice you rarely hear when diaper fetishists are being discussed: an actual diaper fetishist.
“The common misconception with ABDL (adult baby diaper lovers) is that they are into inappropriate things—like having an interest in children—and this couldn’t be more wrong,” says Pup Jackson, a twenty-something diaper lover and kink educator. “AB is not always sexual. Sometimes it’s a way for a person to disconnect from their adult life and become someone else. With DLs, they aren’t necessarily into age play—they enjoy diapers and the way they feel, much like people enjoy rubber, Lycra, or other materials. To understand her husband, MADDL needs to ask questions about why her husband enjoys diapers and figure out how to deal with it—because a lot of people want/need these kinds of outlets in their life.”
OK, MADDL, now it’s time for me to share my thoughts with you, but—Christ almighty—I hardly know where to begin.
“Great guys” can be into diapers; this is not who your husband “chooses to be,” since people don’t choose their kinks any more than they choose their sexual orientation; outing your husband to his mother was unforgivable and could ultimately prove to be a fatal-to-your-marriage violation of trust; a counselor isn’t going to be able to reach into your husband’s head and yank out his kink. (“I absolutely hate that therapists are seen as sexual enforcers who are supposed to carve away any undesirable sexual interests and make people ‘normal,’” says Ley.)
You’re clearly not interested in understanding your husband’s kink, per Pup Jackson’s advice, nor are you open to working out an accommodation that allows your husband to explore his kink on his own, per Ley’s advice. Instead you’ve convinced yourself that if you pitch a big enough fit, your husband will choose a spouse who makes him feel terrible about himself over a kink that gives him pleasure. And that’s not how this is going to play out.
Your husband told you he was into diapers before he married you—he laid his kink cards on the table at five months, long before you scrambled your DNA together—and he backed down when you freaked out. He may have thought he could choose you over his kink, MADDL, but now he knows what Ley could’ve told you two before the wedding: Suppressing a kink just isn’t possible. So if you can’t live with the diaper lover you married—if you can’t accept his kink, allow him to indulge it on his own, and refrain from blowing up when you stumble onto any evidence—do that diaper-loving husband of yours a favor and divorce him.
Follow Ley on Twitter @DrDavidLey and Pup Jackson on Twitter @pupjacksonbitez. —Dan Savage
I’m a 33-year-old man, and for years I’ve practiced edging. Recently I’ve experimented with long-term edges, where I’ll withhold coming for days or weeks while still maintaining a daily masturbation practice. I love living on that horny edge, and I’ve even learned to love the ache in my balls. But is this safe? Am I setting myself up for prostate/testicular trouble down the road? —Priapus Precipice
A study conducted by researchers from Boston University School of Public Health and Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health found that men who masturbated at least 21 times per month—masturbated and ejaculated—were at lower risk of developing prostate cancer than men who ejaculated less than 21 times per month (“Ejaculation Frequency and Risk of Prostate Cancer,” European Urology). Read the study, PP, weigh the slightly increased risks against the immediate (and horny) rewards, and make an informed (and horny) choice. —DS