The National Coalition for Sexual Freedom has set up a petition to get the American Psychiatric Association (APA) to take kinky sex out of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorder. The DSM is the guidebook for mental health professionals and at the risk of oversimplifying the issue, if something is listed in it, it’s considered a mental health diagnosis or illness.
There is no empirical evidence that people who engage in kinky sex are any different from anyone else, other than their sexual desires. Of course, people who face stigma, ostracism, loss of their jobs, housing or children, or who just have to be in the closet because of sex-negative people deal with stresses that have an impact. But that’s the result of sexual oppression, not their practices. The issue is quite similar to the effects of homophobia on queer folks, in that regard at least.
I’m pasting the text of the email that I received below. Feel free to copy it into an email and send it along. I also highly recommend reading the DSM Revision White Paper that NCSF has on their site.
Kinky is NOT a Diagnosis!
DSM Revision Petition
The DSM Revision Petition is gathering signatures from individuals and organizations calling on the American Psychiatric Association (APA) to adhere to empirical research when revising the diagnoses in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM).
Statements currently within the DSM Paraphilias criteria are contradicted by scientific evidence therefore NCSF must conclude that the interpretation of the Paraphilias criteria has been politically -not scientifically- based. This politically motivated interpretation subjects BDSM practitioners, fetishists and cross-dressers to bias, discrimination and social sanctions without any scientific basis.
“We, the undersigned, support the American Psychiatric Association’s (APA) own goal of making its Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM) a scientific document, based on empirical research and devoid of cultural bias. A diagnosis of a mental disorder can have a severe adverse impact on employment opportunities, child custody determinations, an individual’s well-being, and other areas of functioning. Therefore we urge the APA to remove all diagnoses that are not based upon peer-reviewed, empirical research, demonstrating distress or dysfunction, from the DSM. The APA specifically should not promote current social norms or values as a basis for clinical judgments.”
To sign, go to: www.thepetitionsite.com/1/DSMrevisionpetition (You can make your signature anonymous on this secure petition site so it doesn’t appear on the Internet)
To find out more about the DSM and the Paraphilias section, read the NCSF & ITCR: The Foundation for NCSF’s “White Paper on the DSM Revision” at www.ncsfreedom.org
For more information, email: DSMrevisionpetition@yahoo.com
Please distribute to organizations and individuals and ask them to sign on!
A joint Project of NCSF and ITCR: The Foundation of NCSF
The National Coalition for Sexual Freedom is a national organization committed to creating a political, legal, and social environment in the United States that advances equal rights of consenting adults who practice forms of alternative sexual expression. NCSF is primarily focused on the rights of consenting adults in the SM-leather-fetish, swing, and polyamory communities, who often face discrimination because of their sexual expression.
National Coalition for Sexual Freedom
822 Guilford Avenue, Box 127
Baltimore, MD 21202-3707