“I can’t handle my husband’s fetish”

By Jana Förster and Konstantin Marrach

When the partner suddenly finds out that her husband has an extremely unusual fetish and she can’t cope with it… That’s what the popular BZ column “Frau Förster’s Question Time” is about this time.

One reader, who wished to remain anonymous, wrote: “I (30) have been newly married since September last year and have actually been perfectly content in my relationship. Our honeymoon was a dream and right after that I got pregnant.

I am now 16 weeks and found out 2 days ago that my husband is secretly wearing my underwear. He then masturbates, also using sex toys.

It feels like my life has suddenly been destroyed. We had a happy and settled relationship. He likes to be dominated. However, so do I.

He also has a feminine way that I can’t deal with. I asked him if he might like men. He denied this.

I can’t assess all of this and am about to raise the baby as a single mom.
Maybe you can help me?”

Sex counselor Jana Förster answers: “You describe a very broad topic that I want to cover as well as possible in one article. Nevertheless, I can tell you in advance that you are addressing very profound topics that are probably much easier to deal with with professional support.

You found out that your partner wears your underwear and masturbates. From your description, everything speaks for me here for an underwear fetish.

What actually is a fetish? Fetish means that an object, a body part or a material is given increased sexual appeal and is associated with high arousal.

The earlier assumption that fetishes are abnormal is now completely obsolete. But unfortunately it is still a taboo, which is why there is hardly any open dealing with it in society.

That’s why it’s a shock and incomprehensible for you, dear reader, what you found out. Let’s put it this way: You’re straight, so an erect penis probably excites you. Let’s assume that this would not be recognized in society, but would be perceived as very unusual. How would you feel if it came out that you desire something that others find abnormal?

They like erect penises and find them pleasurable. In addition to his other sexual desires, your partner also finds female underwear erotic. However, this does not mean that he would like to live in the body of a woman! Fetishes aren’t something you can turn off easily.

Back to the example: You can’t just tell yourself that you don’t like erect penises anymore just because other people can’t handle them. So a “ban” on your partner will not be a way to have a fulfilling and happy marriage on both sides.

Only communication, tolerance and education will advance you on this point. Let’s get to the point of sexual dominance. You said he likes to be dominated. But you would also like to have that from him. Maybe you can talk about it openly and find a way through eg roleplaying where each of you can live out this passion?

There are also often times in life when you feel more comfortable in a powerful or submissive role. A lot of people actually switch from time to time.

Sex toys that are used anally are also not a sign that a man has same-sex love. The anal region is very sensitive and a great erogenous zone that almost every (heterosexual) man likes! The sensations about the prostate are a gift of nature. Perhaps as a couple you can incorporate this into your sex life together?

Now on to the last topic: You are addressing his feminine side. Every human being has feminine and masculine parts. How strong these are pronounced varies. You said you can’t deal with it. However, you have also said that you have been very happy in your relationship so far.

I have the feeling that you are rejecting this side of him, especially with the current events, because you find it difficult to assess the extent and you are confused, which of course is very understandable. But the fact that your partner has not yet had the courage to talk to you about the full extent of his sexual inclination and desire shows how much he fears judgment and misunderstanding.

I can only strongly recommend that you engage in conversation openly and respectfully. This is a chance for you to reconnect and perhaps reach a new level of trust.

You may be able to integrate parts of his inclinations, which you may then understand better with his description, into your common sexuality. You may also have unfulfilled desires that you could explore together. If you don’t find access to yourself with an inclination even with conversations, that’s perfectly ok too. But then maybe you can find a way that he can live out this preference alone with himself.

In any case, I can understand that you are very confused and need answers. The more open and unprejudiced you can have the conversations, the more confident I am that you will find a common path and soon be happy parents.”