As You Desire: Perversion or Preference – What’s it to You?

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Is it perversion or preference?  You have certain sexual or sensual experiences that make you feel good, that toot your horn, blow your skirt up or knock your socks off. You enjoy acting out your fantasies with others who share in your excitement.  You are not hurting anyone.  You pay your taxes, contribute to charity, and are a loving family member and good neighbor.  So what if your sexual preference is dressing up in furry animal costumes (BTW, this is called being a furry)?  Or if you enjoy a weekend in latex being whipped into submission by a dominatrix?  Or the feeling of balloons really gets you going? Or you might prefer to enjoy a quiet lovemaking session with your spouse of 30 years in the privacy of your own home with the lights off?  Maybe giving oral sex is high on your list of favorite sexual acts?  Perversion or preference? I guess it could depend which side of the fence you are on. The tendency is to believe if it’s different from what we are comfortable with, it must be perversion.  Is it really perverted to have sex with the lights off? It’s all in the eye of the beholder.

It has become commonplace in the USA to judge another because of what they do for sexual pleasure. The tabloids and media feed us these judgments like candy.  We grow to believe it’s acceptable to be cruel and abusive to those who are different from us.  Simply stated, it’s just bullying.  It’s harmful and completely unnecessary.  Because of the conservative sexual attitudes in the U.S., we are more inclined to seek out others who have similar interests and attitudes because none of us enjoy feeling like the oddball in a crowd; or worse yet, receive the ridicule that often accompanies being different. We do this in search of acceptance.  In Europe, what you enjoy sexually is freely discussed and easily accepted.  No one judges another because of what they do in their personal sexual life.  They are interested but not judgmental. Because of fear and conservative attitudes here, many have turned to the Internet as a way to find like-minded people.  You can now easily find groups who also enjoy the furry outfits, latex fashions or the dark.  Finding acceptance for exactly who we are is what we all seek; not feeling pressured to conform to a group who is unlike ourselves in order to receive acceptance.  Does this ring a bell with you in your life?

As I have mentioned in many of my other columns, sexuality is a natural and unique expression of our humanness.  We each have desires and needs for which it’s our birthright to satisfy.  If your sexual preferences fall outside what is considered usual for your peer group you are most likely keeping your desires and behaviors under wraps.  I would venture to say this has less to do with your concern that what you are doing is wrong, and more out of fear of ridicule and judgment.  This saddens me.  We need to remember that if we are judgmental about the choices others make, then our closest friends and family will be less likely to share with us their true nature, such as being gay.  Being a judgmental person in general is a sure-fire way to keep the door closed to honest and intimate relationships.  (Refer to my last column “In Search Of Intimacy). Maybe you really don’t want to know.  That is your prerogative.  It still does not warrant the harmful judgments that you may be unwittingly inflicting on those in your presence who might quietly be what you are expressing judgment toward.

Once we become better educated about the wide array of what is really “sexually normal” we are less afraid to explore our own personal sexual boundaries; this can make life a lot more interesting and exciting.  Do you stretch your boundaries?  Ever tried something new and discovered that you liked it?  Because you liked it, would you deserve the ridicule or judgment of others because you have different sexual preferences than they do?  This is not to say that we need to inflict our personal sexual preferences on others who are just not interested in knowing.  I believe in privacy.  However, occasionally privacies are broken … or you hear a rumor … what do you do with that information?  Can we still see the whole person even after we learn something very personal that is outside our comfort zone?  Do we move right into judgment?  Food for thought.

We all want to feel accepted and loved for exactly who we are. What we do (as adults) in our sexual lives is nobody’s business or place to judge.  Really, who am I to judge how someone else chooses to derive sexual pleasure?  There is always more to learn about the buffet of possible ways to give and receive pleasure.  In your most intimate sexual relationship, do your current judgments interfere with your or your partner’s expression of sexuality?  The fear of ridicule or judgment can be a strong force in our willingness to open up even in our closest relationships.  When we “feel” different we fear we are not good enough or broken. Truth is we are just different ~ not superior nor inferior ~ just different.  It keeps life so interesting.

We cannot possibly know what is best for another person, what is “right or wrong” for them.  We can only know this for our self … and even that is a moving target!

An extraordinary spectrum of sexual preferences have been known to humankind since the beginning of time.  Whatever is considered the “norm” just means the middle of what is currently being practiced.  We know that on either side of the middle is a sea of variations.  As we expand our consciousness toward greater understanding and compassion, judgments will fall away.  With this freedom we can live in harmony, sexually fulfilled, loving, and working together for the betterment of our planet and survival of humanity.  Wasting time judging yourself or another for what is sexually pleasing seems like a senseless waste of precious life time.  Whether you are or are not as interested in human sexuality as I am, at least consider reviewing your burden of judgments.  Releasing them might just allow you greater freedom to explore and enjoy the sensual delights this life offers.  If yours happens to be having sex in the dark or wearing a furry animal suit, I say go for it, life is short!

Intimately Yours,


Nancy Sutton Pierce RN, Health Educator is the Founding director of Nancy Sutton’s House of Yoga and Radio Talk Show Host on The Conscious Living Show LIVE every Saturday 11a-12noon on KCNR 1460am You can reach Nancy at with your comment or questions.

As You Desire is proudly sponsored by Body Logic MD; helping both men and women restore their libido and vitality through hormone therapy, fitness and nutrition counseling.

A News Cafe, founded in Shasta County by Redding, CA journalist Doni Greenberg, is the place for people craving local Northern California news, commentary, food, arts and entertainment. Views and opinions expressed here are not necessarily those of

Dr. Nancy Sutton Pierce
Dr. Nancy Sutton Pierce’s eclectic background places her expertise in a league of its own. The compilation of her career as an RN, health educator, intimacy author, radio talk show host, and yoga therapist all fuel her passion as an International speaker and clinical sexologist. Earning her Doctorate degree in human sexuality has broadened her reach around the globe teaching Conscious Living Sexuality™. When not traveling the globe inspiring others, Dr. Nancy enjoys her home life with the love of her life for more than 30 years. They’ve raised three children and now bask in what she refers to as “the dessert of parenting” -- being grandparents. Website. Contact Dr. Nancy
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15 Responses

  1. Avatar JD says:

    Love the column! Well said, hopefully those out there feeling embarrassed by their sexual preferences will find comfort in knowing there is no normal.

    You have the guts to say on record what everyone else only whispers about in the corner.

    • Nancy Sutton Pierce Nancy Sutton Pierce says:

      Dear JD,

      Thank you for reading and taking the time to express your thoughts. Because of you I will keeping on doing what I do!



  2. Avatar Kisha says:

    Awesome article Nancy! It is right on! Who am I to judge, or be judged, on my or someone else's sexual preference? Sexual pleasure between consenting adults is no one else's business! Well, unless we have an open minded best friend that actually enjoys the recap of the escapade, lol. That being said, and I am sure you agree, illegal acts involving minors is preversion and we as society should not tolerate that under any circumstances!

    I love reading your columns…keep them coming my Dear friend!

    • Nancy Sutton Pierce Nancy Sutton Pierce says:

      Dearest Kisha,

      Thank you for being a devoted and friend and reader. I am so grateful for you.

      Also I want to thank you for pointing out the difference between what my column is about (acts between consenting adults) and everything else. Performing any act against someones will or with a minor is not in this realm of discussion. Mental illness resulting in violence against another being is not sexual or sensual… it's simply violence. I do not advocate violence of any nature.

      That being said, what happens between consenting "grown ups" is their business and I'm so happy to hear you feel the same way!

      Keep on reading and sharing your thoughts! I love it!

      With my love,


  3. Avatar gamerjohn says:

    Aren't all the acts that my wife allows me to do normal while those that you do either prudish or perverted depending on which side of the spectrum they fall?

    Things change over time. As a teenager I didn't think about oral sex very much and never about other things that we enjoy. We love feeling good and making each other feel good.

    If anything, I wish it did not take so long each time so that we might do it more often, but others would feel I am bragging.

    • Nancy Sutton Pierce Nancy Sutton Pierce says:

      Oh GJ,

      You are so bad! Your wife is apparently a VERY LUCKY woman… and YOU are a very lucky man! Way to go… and maybe you need to speed it up a bit so you can get to it a little more frequently! LOL

      What a problem to have!T

      Thank you for reading and taking the time to write in. I always look forward to your comments.

      A big hug to you and the Mrs…


      • Avatar gamerjohn says:

        Who would die if her friends and family knew. I can imagine the looks at school as she picks up our kids. And I never even mentioned her exhibitionism.

  4. Avatar Thomas says:

    Everyone has a prefrence but the ablity to express that is not that easy. Some people fall in love with ones they can only be partly free. Yes it is sad.

    • Nancy Sutton Pierce Nancy Sutton Pierce says:

      Dear Thomas,

      I do understand the fear that accompanies sharing deep desires. My husband and I (of nearly 18 years) created a communication style that I actually wrote a column on called New Version of Truth or Dare.
      This might be a way to approach those tender topics and at least test the waters of honesty. You might be surprised by what you discover using this tool. We sure were! We now use if for everything that might be a touchy subject. It works for us.

      If you want more guidance on how to approach those tender topics feel free to write directly to me. Life is a long time and being able to share our deepest secrets and desires is what brings us the greatest amount of joy and intimacy.

      With much affection,


  5. Avatar soner says:

    wonderful… women…

  6. Avatar linda bott says:

    Here it is early in the am enjoying your well put together words once again! We'll have expound a little more live!!!


    • Nancy Sutton Pierce Nancy Sutton Pierce says:

      I look forward to it! We can certainly keep it PG… but powerful!

      Enjoy your day Linda!

      With Love,


  7. Avatar Ed says:

    "Normal" is a town in Illinois and the neighbors always have something to say about how I cut my grass.

    Among consenting adults, there is nothing that is wrong. It is sometimes easier to put your desires or fantasies on paper to share than to speak them initially.

    Once again, you've knocked it out of the park.

    • Nancy Sutton Pierce Nancy Sutton Pierce says:

      Thank you for reading and writing in Ed! I really appreciate you.

      Yes, taking that initial step to share some of those hidden away fantasies or desires is scary! We hide because we don't want to feel shame… and really, there is nothing to be ashamed of. If we ALL honestly poured out our secret fantasies to our partners we would find some incredible surprises… mostly that we are not alone!

      And personally, I love that criss-cross lawn cutting technique…. 🙂

      Stay curious!


  1. October 4, 2011

    […] ignorance and judgment, which lends itself to sad and devastating consequences. In my column “Perversion or Preference,” I discuss what happens when we become aware of something different or unfamiliar. How we […]