English Professional work

Abstract Firenze Abstrakt Firenze

Abstract Firenze Abstrakt Firenze

Kjær, R.: ”Stigma, Psychiatry and the sadomasochism-fetish population”
Foredrag på World Psychiatric Association International Thematic
” Treatment in Psychiatry: an update”. Symposium SS20.2 Firenze
WPA Section “Psychiatry and Human Sexuality

Stigma, Psychiatry and the Sadomasochism – Fetish Population

The prevailing attitudes and related myths in the western societies about this population are presented, and contemporary stigma theory is used to analyze the relationship between the mechanisms of stigmatization, stereotyping and discrimination and these attitudes. Members of this population experience harassment, loss of jobs and custody of their children and this is often legitimized by lay people referring to the categorization of these three sexual orientations as diseases in the ICD system.

The ICD-10 diagnoses F-65.0 (fetishism), 65.1 (fetishistic transvestism) and 65.5 (sadomasochism) give occasion for labeling as mentally ill a large population that does not fill the ordinary scientific criteria for psychiatric disorders. Possible psychiatric problems and disorders in this population that are presented to the clinician can better be described as in any other population by using the ordinary diagnoses that are not connected to specific sexual behavior.

In contrast to the fight against stigma related to schizophrenia, the sadomasochism – fetish population as a minority group faces stigmatization, to which our non-updated psychiatric profession is contributing.

The shortcomings of the present three diagnoses in the ICD-10 are discussed. The use of diagnoses based on myths and not science also gives the psychiatric profession a bad reputation. A revision is suggested to reduce this double-stigma.

R. Kjaer
M.D. Psychiatrist. Private practice