What Is Vorarephilia?

Vorarephilia is a type of paraphilia or fetish, which typically includes arousal at the idea or role-playing act of eating or being eaten by another person or creature.

Growing up, some of the most pervasive children’s stories include monsters who are intent on devouring an innocent protagonist or hero. From Little Red Riding Hood and Hansel and Gretel to Jonah and the Whale, the idea of being consumed by another creature or person is surprisingly common in popular culture. However, for some people, this narrative of being consumed becomes connected to sex or eroticism, at which point it falls into the realm of vorarephilia.

What is Vorarephilia?

As mentioned above, vorarephilia is a paraphilia (an abnormal sexual desire, often linked to dangerous or aberrant behavior) and a fetish in which people are sexually gratified by devouring others, being devoured or observing this act being carried out. To being with, this sexual fetish isn’t a literal form of cannibalism, and most of these fantasies are engaged with through other media, such as art, comic books, videos, stories, images and video games. Real-life vore practice, often involves willing partners role-playing situations in which they are either being devoured or devouring the other.

Commonly referred to as “vore”, this sexual predilection has deep roots in history and storytelling, but it has only recently been widely recognized in the kink and fetish community. While there has been limited research on this particular paraphilia, some studies have found that people experiencing such feelings may emanate from our earliest relationship to the mouth and other orifices of the body, driven by our birth and breastfeeding habits. Some people have described the desire to be consumed by another person in order to gratify their needs or provide them with pleasure from the inside out.

As mentioned, vorarephilia isn’t limited solely to interactions between humans. Fantasies often include large creatures, snakes, dragons and other monsters devouring one’s body, or being devoured by the individual. In the verbiage of this fantasy, the person being consumed is referred to as the prey, while the creature or individual doing the devouring is called the predator.

Soft Vore vs Hard Vore

As opposed to sexual cannibalism, in which erotic feelings are linked to the act of being eaten piece by piece, by another human, vorarephilia commonly includes a person being swallowed whole. This is known as soft vore, in which a person may be released from consumption in a non-fatal way, similar to a person being swallowed by a whale and then later finding a way to get free.

Hard vore, on the other hand, usually involves the idea of a person being chewed and swallowed, and is often a more graphic or visceral fantasy. In some cases, hard vore descriptions or depictions include being digested and enduring a longer, or more painful process after they are devoured. These more graphic fantasies often feature the flesh being ripped, torn, bitten and swallowed, which is why this style of vore is often linked or associated with BDSM and other paraphilias, as explained in more detail below.

Fetishes Related to Vorarephilia

In the realm of sexual fantasy and paraphilia, there are many close associations and unexpected crossovers. In terms of vorarephilia, there are obvious links to macrophilia (fantasies about giant people, often women, in which men are the smaller partner being dominated or consumed) and sexual cannibalism (erotic pleasure at the idea of being eaten by a mate, i.e., praying mantises).

However, given the power dynamics of the fantasy and other related elements of the paraphilia, BDSM, furry fetishism, coprophilia and unbirthing are also closely linked kink arenas. BDSM (Bondage/Discipline, Domination/Submission, and Sadism/Masochism) can often be incorporated in the role-playing of predator and prey, for both hard and soft vore. Furry fetishism is clearly linked because the devouring creature can be another animal, not necessarily another human, and the dynamics of predator/prey are more apparent in animal costumes.

Coprophilia is a sexual link to the consumption, interaction with, or embodiment of fecal matter. Some proponents of vore take pleasure in the act of being digested and eventually excreted, attaching a sexual connection to becoming fecal matter over the course of the erotic process. Finally, unbirthing, which is characterized by a desire to re-enter the vagina and uterus, is another form of being “devoured”, and is an associated paraphilia to vore.

A Final Word

The already broad spectrum of sexual fantasies and kinks continues to expand, as individuals are given more freedom to express their most subversive or surprising desires. While these topics may make some people uncomfortable, it is important to understand where these sorts of proclivities may come from, how they can be healthily managed, and what other types of sexual play they may be connected with. Some experts, in the past and currently, characterize paraphilias as psychiatric disorders, but that is a very broad brush to paint the intricacies of sexual exploration.

A critical part of holding safe spaces and moving through the world without judgment (born of ignorance) is learning about and accepting the many different ways that human beings find pleasure!

References

  1. Psychology Today
  2. Springer
  3. LWW Official Store
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About the Author:

John Staughton is a traveling writer, editor, publisher and photographer who earned his English and Integrative Biology degrees from the University of Illinois. He is the co-founder of a literary journal, Sheriff Nottingham, and the Content Director for Stain’d Arts, an arts nonprofit based in Denver. On a perpetual journey towards the idea of home, he uses words to educate, inspire, uplift and evolve.

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