THE EXHIBITIONIST

THE EXHIBITIONIST

By: Darrelyn L. Tutt

Exhibitionism - a perversion in which sexual gratification is obtained from the indecent exposure of one's genitals (as to a stranger.)
Merriam - Webster Dictionary
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Warnings and "sightings" of a disturbing kind have been posted and shared openly about an exhibitionist in the area. Concern for my welfare has been tangibly expressed by many and I'm deeply appreciative of the knowledge.
Years ago, such news would have been mentally debilitating to me:
-Walks would have halted or come to an end.
-Fear, distrust, and paranoia would have become a quick mindset.
-Doubts and anger at the male gender would've heightened and intensified.
-I would've passed my fear along to others.
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Praise be to God for His gentle mercy, kindness, and patience these past years;
He's brought me wisely and wonderfully along.
Here's what I now can attest to:
+Education has the power to put fear to rest and create new channels of learning by which  growth, development, and compassion occur.
+Education has the power to deescalate fear and replace it with wisdom, discernment, and empowerment.
+Education speaks to a desire to identify and help others.
+Education trains the mind to think practically and proactively instead of fearfully and negatively.
+Education is an able teacher in a difficult classroom.
 Beautifully and wonderfully, I've become a student adept at utilizing her and challenging others to do the same.
It's having an impact!
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Here's a few helpful facts I've found constructive and valuable about exhibitionism as reported by Psychology Today:
" ... it is thought to affect approximately 2-3 percent of the male population.
"Risk factors for the development of exhibitionism in males include antisocial personality disorder, alcohol abuse, and an interest in pedophilia. Other factors that may be associated with exhibitionism include sexual and emotional abuse during childhood and sexual preoccupation in childhood. Some people who display exhibitionistic behavior engage in other paraphilias as well, and are consequently considered hypersexual.
... Approximately one-third of sex crimes reported to the police involve incidences of exhibitionism.
The treatment for exhibitionism typically includes psychotherapy and medication.
Research suggests that behavioral models are effective in treating exhibitionism by providing individuals with tools to control their impulses and find more acceptable ways of coping with their urges than showing their genitalia to others. Cognitive behavioral therapy may help individuals to identify the triggers that cause their urges and then manage these urges in healthier ways. Other psychotherapy approaches include relaxation training, empathy training, coping skills training and cognitive restructuring."
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I've taken the facts and enlisted my own responses, which has proven a formidable and notable activity.
Encountering an exhibitionist:
+Since an exhibitionist is gratified and "turned on" by a fearful and notable response, try not to provide one.
+Divert your eyes and head and move toward the safest "people" channels available.
+Focus on facial description, possible vehicle information, and anything helpful in identifying the exhibitionist.
+Call 911 immediately and give the most detailed account possible of the incident.
+Go directly to the Sheriff's office and give a "face to face" account of the episode ASAP.
+Pray and ask God to use "your" negative experience in a postive, productive, and life-changing way which might impact and prove helpful to others.
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There are ways to deal productively and positively with people and problems.
Education and identification ...
are beautiful and able participants in displaying redemption and compassion.
Work to utilize ...
and openly exhibit them.
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