Those who hoped to see sexual fetishes removed completely from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), the bible of psychiatry published by the American Psychiatric Association, will likely be disappointed when the new edition is released in May. The DSM-V will probably still mention certain sexual predilections, reported LiveScience, but they won't necessarily be labelled as mental illnesses.
The DSM currently defines "unusual" sexual turn-ons as paraphilias. Paraphilias include everything from foot fetishes, S&M and erotic eating to exhibitionism and pedophilia. These paraphilias are considered harmless unless the person experiencing them feels distressed about their preferences or if their unusual sexual practices are harmful to others. "Simply put, the DSM V will say that happy kinksters don’t have a mental disorder. But unhappy kinksters do," wrote Slate's Jillian Keenan.
It appears that the DSM-V will further formalize this idea and separate paraphilias from paraphilic disorders. This means that a benign fetish like being turned on by feet or enjoying some consensual bondage play would be considered a paraphilia, while having a sexual obsession with underage children would be considered a paraphilic disorder. LiveScience also reported that the definition of paraphilia may be made more specific in the DSM-V. The proposed definition is: "any intense and persistent sexual interest other than sexual interest in genital stimulation or preparatory fondling with phenotypically normal, consenting human partners between the ages of physical maturity and physical decline." ...