It’s Throwback Thursday, time for a classic column. This post originally ran in December 2009.
Question to the Sexpert:
“My boyfriend has a foot fetish and it’s fine with me. I’ve learned what he likes and how to keep my feet looking pretty. But there are some worries I have and I don’t know who to ask. I guess I’m worried that if I go too long without a pedicure or something that he won’t find me attractive or that if some other girl comes along wearing sandals with even cuter feet that he might leave me for her. I don’t know enough about this to know if these are reasonable concerns or not.”
Whether or not your worries are reasonable is irrespective of the man’s proclivity for toe-sucking. If he decides to trade you in for a new model with brighter shade of nail polish, it’s cause he’s a douche, not a fetishist.
And if he can’t get it up because he notices a patch of dry skin while rubbing your arches, then you’re better off finding that out now and deciding if foot stuff can be that important in your relationship… and if not, planning your exit strategy accordingly.
A fetish can be completely harmless, but it can also be a powerful thing. A strong sexual attraction to something (especially if it’s not easily available or readily understood) has brought down many a powerful man who took dangerous risks to satisfy their desire. And I say man because fetishes are more likely to be be important to men. Women have their own bag of inexplicable, of course, and some form attachments to designer shoes with a zeal that rivals the most ardent fetishists, but it’s rarely a sexual thing.
So you’re wise to pause, wondering if this preference of his is so strong he might fuck up a perfectly good relationship with an accommodating partner by trying to better deal himself. Many have certainly done it before, fetish or no. However, I can reassure you that the relationships ruined by random sexual penchants are destroyed by lack of communication. The fetishist feels embarrassed about their desires and doesn’t speak up or the partner quickly reacts out of fear and doesn’t even try to adapt. These are the times when someone feels compelled to look elsewhere for their kicks: when it’s not safe to be themselves at home with their partner.
But you’re going along with his interests. And it sounds like you’re doing an admirable job of it: not only being open to foot play and integrating his desires into your sexual activity but even putting up the money and time for regular foot beauty treatments. If this guy doesn’t see what a sweet deal he’s got with you, he’s an idiot.
But, he might be. I don’t know the guy. Relationships also sometimes just end. It’s easy to focus on the unusual sexual thing as the explanation, even if it’s really not. But, in the worst case scenario where he leaves you for another set of feet, it’s not because you didn’t do your best to accommodate him. Relax and enjoy that foot rub.