Vorarefilia: symptoms, causes and treatment of this paraphilia

The concept of cannibalism is generally unpleasant, frightening and macabre for the majority of the population. However, some people associate this act with a situation of power and domination, viewing the act of devouring or being devoured by another person as something sexually arousing. This is what happens with a curious paraphilia called vorarefilia. And it is this concept that we are going to talk about in this article.

    Vorarefília: the desire to eat someone or to be eaten

    It is called vorarefilia one of the most dangerous paraphilias, characterized by the recurrent existence of sexual fantasies related to the idea of ​​devouring or being devoured in life by another person, in part or in whole. Sometimes also with the idea of ​​being digested. These fantasies are repeated constantly for at least six months and are generating great sexual arousal or even the only means by which the subject reaches orgasm, and may even try to achieve them.

    In principle, fantasy does not necessarily have to include the idea of ​​death: what these people find erotic is not the idea of ​​killing or dying, but the idea of ​​consuming or being consumed by another person. However, this does not imply that some people with this paraphilia fantasize about eating or being eaten when they are dead.

    It should also be appreciated that what is erotic in people with vorarefilia is the idea of ​​consuming or being consumed, or that of integrating or being physically integrated with another person. this it generally involves the ingestion and digestion of the product consumedBut it’s also possible that the fantasy involves being consumed by a woman’s vagina (in some sort of reverse birth) or by a man’s urethra, anus, or even nipples.

    There are different types of vorarefilia depending on the type of fancy involved, although two of them stand out. The soft vore in which the eater is eaten while alive and / or whole and in which there is little violence, and there may not even be injury until it reaches the stomach. The second is the hard vore which they enter in which the devourer receives lacerations and profuse wounds, existing violence and suffering and with large amounts of blood and even mutilations and amputations. The latter is the least common, the most sadistic and the least sexually linked.

    Link with other paraphilias

    Vorarefilia can often be confused with sexual cannibalism because of its strong resemblance. However, there is a difference between the two concepts, although this is a nuance that may be difficult for many people to detect: Sexual cannibalism involves the excitement of eating human flesh, which is the subject of the debate. desire. In vorarefilia but the object of desire is not to eat human flesh but to devour or to be devoured by something or someone, it does not seem necessary either that this consumption be done by ingestion.

    This paraphilia is linked to other types of paraphilias, especially those related to domination and submission and the link between pleasure and pain. There is an element of sadism and masochism, although it is not the pain itself that generates the arousal. It can also be linked to other paraphilias such as macrophilia (sexual attraction to giants, being a common fantasy eaten by a giant) or microphilia (sexual attraction to a creature of much smaller size, and can also fantasize in devouring or being devoured).

    We are dealing with a rare paraphilia, which can appear in people of different ages and sexes. However, it is more common in men between the ages of 18 and 46. It can cause clinically significant discomfort in the person who suffers from it or a functional limitation in the life of the person, although in some cases the fantasies are not lived with discomfort.

    A fantasy generally not put into practice

    In general, vorarefilia does not go beyond the realm of fantasy, knowing people with this paraphilia its implications and the damage it can cause. People with this type of fantasy usually resort to masturbation or other sexual practices, or use subject-related porn videos or role-playing and pretend play. In addition, this paraphilia is rare with what it is extremely complex for two people to reach such an agreement.

    However, this does not always imply: there have been cases of subjects with vorarefilia who have come to practice cannibalism or have been victims of it, resulting in the death or mutilation of one of those involved. And while that may not sound believable, in some of these cases the acts are done with the connivance of who is going to be devoured. In other cases, psychopathy can even lead to the commission of murder.

    It is for this reason that vorarefilia is one of the most dangerous paraphilias, because in the case of the transition from fantasy to action in most cases it will result in death or serious damage to someone’s physical integrity. It would therefore be, with or without the consent of the person consumed, a blood crime punishable by law in most countries.

    Unfortunately, this paraphilia is also known to have caused several deaths, being one of the most publicized cases today, the Rothenburg cannibal.

    the causes

    The causes of this paraphilia are not fully known, although it is possible to make several hypotheses in this regard.

    First of all, it should be borne in mind that vorarefilia it is linked to power and the roles of domination and submission, Having the devourer in control and equating to the devoured, which is consumed. In fact, many people with this paraphilia use role-playing games of this type because of their similarity.

    Some people associate the fantasy of being eaten up with the need to lose control, such as in people who are dominant or excessively self-controlled in nature. On the contrary, the fantasy of devouring could be an attempt on the part of the subject to correct a lack of perception of control.

    In addition, in different cases, poor family models have been observed, with rigid parents and a lack of positive emotional expression. In these cases, there is the possibility that the devoured being seeks assimilation by another person as an attempt to bring together or be part of another being.

    There can also be a basic psychopathic personality, especially in those cases looking to put their fantasies into practice.


    Psychotherapy is needed to stop linking these mental ideas and images to sexual arousal, something easier to achieve from cognitive behavioral therapy applied to paraphilias.

    The cannibal of Rotenburg: when vorarefilia becomes reality

    One of the most well-known recent cases of vorarefilia and cannibalism was the case of the so-called Rotenburg cannibal, Armin Meiwes.

    This man, who claimed to have cannibalistic fantasies since childhood and adolescence, came into contact in 2002 with Bernd Jürgen Armando Brandes, agreeing to a meeting in which the former would devour the latter (being an act consigned by Brande himself ).

    After meeting and having sex, according to statements and a video recorded by Meiwes himself, they proceeded to cut Brande’s penis to cook it later and eat it in between (previously consuming multiple substances). de Brande to reduce the pain level.) After that, Brande started to feel bad from losing blood, being taken by Meiwes to the tub and losing consciousness.

    Once there, Meiwes cut his neck, later dismembering his victim and storing his meat. It will not be discovered until 18 months later, Still with Brande’s leftovers in his fridge, when he posted the fact on the internet while allegedly looking to repeat the experiment. A user would eventually alert the police, who arrested him.

    He is currently serving a life sentence for sexual assault, Although there were difficulties in the trial due to the consent shown by Brandes.

    Bibliographical references:

    • Griffiths, M. (2013). Light up the Dining Room: A Beginner’s Guide to Vorarefilia. Psychology today [Online]. Available at: https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/in-excess/201311/turn-the-eater.
    • Lykins, AD and Cantor, JM (2014). Vorarefilia: a case study on masochism and erotic consumption. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 43, 181-186.
    • Pfafflin, F. (2008). Good enough to eat. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 37, 286-293.

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