I confess. I suffered from a rare condition known as the uniform fetishism. My uniform fetishism was sexual in nature. Uniform fetishism is a sexual fetishism where an individual is sexually aroused by uniforms. Yes, you read that right, a uniform can aid in sexual matters. Well, it did for me. But, that doesn’t make me a jerk. All I am advocating for is that all human beings in their diversities must be allowed to explore our rights of desire to the extent necessary without impediments.
It should be noted that the academic literature on uniforms as a fetish is sparse. Generally, the most common uniforms in uniform fetish category include those of a police officer, prison warder, soldier, schoolgirl, and nurse.
Sociologists describe uniform fetishism as someone who derives sexual pleasure from viewing others dressed in the typical uniform. In my case, my irrational obsession was with the South African Police Service (SAPS) uniform worn by women. And, for me it was also directly linked to the presence of a firearm.
Dr. Dinesh Bhugra and Dr. Padmal De Silva are one of a few researchers who have studied this phenomenon. Their 1996 paper looked at the function of uniforms, and their relationship with sexual fantasy and sexual fetishism. They noted that uniforms can be seen as ‘outer skins’ that can be material and attractive in sexual terms, and that can enable individuals to display and wield power. Bhugra and Da Silva described the functions of uniforms as comprising the ‘five F’s’ (formal, fashion, fun, fantasy and fetish).
For me, I have something uniquely perplexing about the women in blue. I have had a desire to sleep with an armed woman dressed in the South African police uniform. I know it’s wacky but hear me out. My desire does not make me a masochist. I don’t have sexual deviant behaviour, hence I don’t associate the police uniform with punishment or torture as part of sexual pleasure.
My fetishism with the women in blue has a long standing condition. I became acutely aware of it in the early 90s. The more women joined the police service, it simply worsened my condition. Somehow, I felt like a sexual deviant, but I realised I am not. In any event many forms of sociologically deviant behaviour are not sanctioned by law, so I am not a sexual criminal either.
My sexual uniform fetishism reached its crescendo in 1999 when I finally dated a cop. Yes, I was once in love with a woman to the extent that she was in a police uniform and brandished a gun. I must admit. She wasn’t my kind of girl. She was short, a little chubby and fair in complexion. As readers of this column know, I prefer my women tall, slender and yellow boned.
For this particular woman, I am certain that I was not sexually attracted to her beyond her in a police uniform. Let’s put it this way, I was sexually attracted to her to the extent that she was a cop who wore a uniform and carried a gun. Our love “affair” if you can call it that was short-lived. We had fun while it lasted. I had to cut it short because my uniform fetishism was wearing thin. She was an emotional being in need of emotional excitement beyond her profession. I couldn’t be there for her emotionally. I was not into her.
In fact, I was into her to the extent that she was only allowed to come and see me during working hours, and, wait for it – she had to be in full police uniform and have her gun in the holster. As part of our play, my job was to disarm and undress her so that I could have my way with her. Clearly, this was not sustainable at least for her. For me, it felt like having your own cake and eating it too. I had the time of my life. I never disclosed my uniform fetishism condition to her. She genuinely believed I was romantically attracted to her. Poor thing!
Our relationship ended abruptly. She had in her mind fallen in love with me. However, for her to be certain, I had to pass an emotional test. She had manna from the heavens when in one of our sexual encounters there was an incident where the condom went kaput. Obviously, after the fact we had to get an emergency contraceptive pill which allowed us to play, “couple”. Weeks later she told me she was pregnant. She also demanded that we both go for HIV/Aids testing. However, every time we had an appointment to do the test, she didn’t pitch. Any meeting with her had become cumbersome as she threatened to shoot herself if she discovered that I had infected her with HIV/Aids.
A month later, in a bizarre confession, she admitted that she had just been playing games with my mind. She was neither HIV/Aids positive, nor pregnant or suicidal. “I just wanted to see if you love me,” she said. For me during this period I was in a panic because I feared that I might have contracted the sexual transmitted diseases especially HIV/Aids. While, I was relieved that she wasn’t pregnant, I couldn’t forgive her for putting me through the emotional roller coaster ride just to see if I loved her enough. The fact is I was not in love with her, but in love with her police uniform. After this episode, my condition was somehow cured. I now look at police women as women not just objects of desire.