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Teenage Problems/Weird Fetish

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Question
I'm 16 years old and live in Australia. I have a weird fetish that I was interested in from about 12 years old and when i turned into a teenager the feelings turned sexual. I used to search and just look at the pictures. I get turned on by fast growing bellies or pregnancy bellies in general. It freaks me out and makes me feel like a freak. Is it normal to be turned on by weird things like that? Another fetish is gay/lesbian sex I know it is normal to feel that way so I don't have a problem with that. I had a crush on my best friend which was kind of like an obsession. When we touched hands it just stopped. I am scared that I was crazy because I fit obsession with people being crazy and unstable. I want to experiment with girls and boys but one side of me wants to wait and another side wants to try. So which side should I listen to? Hopefully I have been specific enough for you to answer my question. Thank-you.

Answer
Hi there Kat,

Thank you for taking the time to write to me and I hope that I can help.

Firstly, let me reassure you that you are not mad or a freak; you are incredibly normal and you are just going through an experimental part of your life that most teenagers go through. It is normal at your ages to begin to having feelings towards the same and opposite members of the different sexes, as well as noticing that more and more things are becoming sexual. These feelings are triggered by hormonal shifts that take place during puberty and they usually settle down by around 18/19, as well as a general curiosity about sexuality that again, is perfectly normal.

Fetishes start from this curiosity and interest and they only really turn sexual as you hit puberty; but it is important to remember that each person has their own fetishes and their own little quirky things that arouse them but in most cases this is perfectly normal as long as does not become illegal or detrimental to you or another person. You might find that this is something that will just disappear naturally as you get older but the more you beat yourself up for having a fetish the more anxiety you will cause and the more psychological damage you will do to yourself. As long as you fetish involves looking at pictures and little more, you will be absolutely fine.

In terms of your sexuality, as I mentioned before, you are at the point in your life where you are at your most curious and you want to try out different things before you become settled; this is fine and this is normal. Most teenagers, male and female, go through a phase of having crushes on members of the same sex but this, again, disappears as hormones begin to settle down and we naturally end up going down one path or another. You are at a point in your life where you can experiment and try new things without worrying that you are going to be labelled or punished for it; this is not as easy when you get older. Embrace your sexuality as being part of you and do what you feel comfortable with with people who feel the same. Do not put a label on yourself or let other people attempt to do this as chances as, this label will change and once you have 'come out' as gay/lesbian it is difficult to reverse this if you have already told people but changed your mind.

The only advice I can offer you is to believe in yourself as being normal because that is what you are; and live your life the way that you want to making the choices that you believe to be right. As long as you are safe and nobody gets hurt then you are doing nothing wrong and that is all that matters. There may come a point when you think that this may be more than curiosity and that you are actually bisexual or lesbian and if that is the case then brilliant, it is just another aspect of your life and nothing to be worried or ashamed about. You should not be judged for the people you choose to sleep with or the decisions that you make as long as you make these decisions with the best possible intentions. Do this and nobody can ever tell you that you have made a wrong choice.

I hope that helps and good luck.  

Teenage Problems

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Daryl Taylor, BSc (Hons) Psychology, PGDip (pending certification)

Expertise

My expertise covers everything and anything to do with growing up, being a teenager or a young adult or being the parent of one of the pre-described. I can cover issues on identity, sexuality, love, relationships, families, drug/alcohol abuse and anything and everything in between.

Experience

I have volunteered for AllExperts.com for over ten years now, but even before that I was trying to use my experience to help others by working with Advice4teens.co.uk, Teenadviceonline.org and even Lycos and Ask Jeeves. My experience comes from being a teenager primarily but this lead me to work with young people from the age of 13. I have worked front line, face to face and over the telephone, e-mail and webchat for a government department called Connexions UK (aimed at young people aged 13-19); as well as being student counselor in New York, a Peer Mentor, a student teacher and working for my school, college and University to help raise the aspirations of young people. My life has not been easy and I have been through my fair share of issues; so there is little that I haven't been through in reality opposed to just reading it from a book or from my academic studies. I have been featured as a case study as achieving through adversity for a number of magazines and I have featured in a couple of books on both sides of the Atlantic; even though I am UK based.

Organizations
The Albert Kennedy Trust

Publications
Relationships: Cathy Senker, 2012, Raintree The Dean and Chapter Positive Nation GTEN Television Aim Higher

Education/Credentials
BSc(Hons) Psychology Post Graduate Diploma in Multidisciplinary Design Innovation Basic Counselling Skills Effective Listening Skills Mental Health First Aid

Awards and Honors
Outstanding Student achievement Adult learner's Award

Past/Present Clients
Allexperts.com Advice4teensuk.org Teenadviceonline.org lycos.co.uk askjeeves.com Connexions Direct

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