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Some of the
Most Common Formative Elements of Infantilism

         While not all cases of infantilism begin in same way, it is fair to say that all end with a similar seemingly unstoppable craving to wear diapers. Once this craving has been catered to, usually a certain sense of security and relaxation is felt by the diaper wearer. Various infantilists report a wide range of cravings and also practices. Cravings range from only an occasional desire to wear (and not use) a diaper, perhaps only amounting to a few hours a month to, on the other extreme, the persistent desire to have a full-time 24/7 experience all the while acting as if they were fully incontinent.  Practice also ranges accordingly, however I have not heard of more than a few instances where the 24/7 cravings have been able to be accommodated for more than a year or two at a time. On the other hand I have heard of many reports where the 24/7 experience has been tried, but has ultimately resulted in unemployment, and then later to a "cutting back", for practicality's sake, to exclusively practicing in private.  

         Where might these cravings come from?  There are several theories, but as of today, to the best of my knowledge, no one single theoretical cause has yet been found to be unmistakably the cause in all cases.  Some of the primary contributory factors that most infantilists would agree upon are:

         Emotionally Withdrawn Parents. One childhood experience that all of the infantilists I have met so far have reported is the experience of having what I will call "empathetically challenged" parents. In other words, their parents seemed to be missing a few important abilities to be generally supportive, caring and nurturing as most parents are, throughout the childhood experience.
         For example, the parents are usually perceived to be too engrossed in their own personal problems to have the time or energy to reach out and assist the young child in mastering the problems one must normally go through while growing up. This might have manifested as the parents seldom or never offering to help with homework, seldom or never offering to provide a ride or transportation when it is needed, seldom or never offering to assist with any project or activity in which the child is involved, or seldom or never reading bed-time stories. The bottom line is that the child may on some level have has an abiding sense that the parents never really cared, knew how to care, or on some other crucial level were inadequate.

         Physical Abuse. Due to the fact that infancy and toilet training are necessarily almost always a time in a person's life of which there is little or no conscious adult memory, and also due to the fact that if there were any abuse that took place during this early time period, it is almost certain that the adult abuser would never admit to whatever abuse was perpetrated, it therefore becomes nearly impossible to confirm or deny that any such abuse is or is not necessarily one of the formative elements of any one case of infantilism. One other factor in this early stage of life is the possibility of psychological, but not physical abuse.
Of the many infantilists I have spoken with or corresponded with, I would estimate that only about 25% remember being in any way physically abused in any manner associated with diapers.

         Psychological Abuse. Psychological abuse could theoretically take place even without the perpetrator being fully conscious of the abuse he or she is inflicting. For example, if the mother should for any reason give the infant the impression that affection is for some reason withdrawn or noticeably reduced at the time of toilet training, the infant may begin to subconsciously equate affection with being diapered. This too is subject to the infancy-memory-loss, and is therefore difficult to prove.

         A New Child. Some infantilists relate stories of their belief that their infantilism may have been triggered by the arrival of a new sibling, when previously the person affected had been the ‘baby' of the family. One infantilist relates a story where shortly after his baby sister arrived, he began to secretly wear diapers to bed, perhaps in envy of all of the affection now being showered on his new baby sister.

         Physiological Problems. Another factor which is sometimes involved is an early incidence genuine childhood (and sometimes adult) bed wetting. While there is no doubt that some children experience this problem, sometimes almost all the way up until the years of puberty, and something like one or 2% of all people never grow entirely out of this problem, the manner in which the parents deal with this problem could be a contributory factor in the formation of the subconscious infantilistic yearning. Perhaps those parents who fail to recognize that this may be a real medical problem and not a psychological one may inflict unnecessary trauma on their child through various types of counterproductive humiliations, harangues, and disciplines, thus causing their child to subconsciously yearn for the care free time prior to toilet training before the harangues and humiliations first began.

The Roots of Infantilism (They're Deep!)


         The Example of The Duckling. Perhaps just as a duckling automatically bonds to the first thing it sees when it is hatched, even if that thing is not it's true mother, we have managed to "bond" with the state of infancy, falsely connecting that state with the acceptance and security that we once knew, yet still crave. By coming to a greater understanding of just exactly how this all began and of the dynamics of it all, perhaps it may be possible to return to this state of simple joy in a more satisfactory way, perhaps someday even without the need of the external crutch of infantilism.
If you may have any other theories or insights regarding this matter, (other than the theory that it's simply beyond our ability to understand) please don't hesitate to email me or to discuss this in the forum.

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