We Interview The Woman Who’s In Love With A Vacuum Cleaner
If you think back to your early childhood, I’m sure you can remember one special object you were endlessly attached to over any other. Be it a blanket, a cuddly toy, or a giant oversized replica of Flik from A Bug’s Life, we can all point to that one object we loved more than all the rest.
Now, imagine if you never shook your childhood attachment to objects. What would such a life be like? Well, there’s a growing group of people who report experiencing just this. They’re knowns as objectum-sexuals and they’re in love with objects. From the tiniest model train to entire buildings, there’s no apparent rhyme or reason to the objects objectum-sexuals find themselves falling in love with.
According to clinical sexologist Dr Amy Marsh, objectum-sexuals are “people who experience emotional, romantic, affectionate and/or sexual relationships with objects”. Just as hetrosexuals form emotional bonds with the opposite sex, and homosexuals prefer to stick to their own sex; objectum-sexuals form genuine, lasting bonds with objects.
I spoke to Erika Eiffel, the woman who famously married the Eiffel Tower, in an attempt to better understand the objectum-sexual community she is a part of. She put me in touch with a member of her community, Objectum-Sexuality International, who’s in love with a vacuum cleaner.
Carolyn Methven-Kirby is a 51-year-old woman from the UK. She’s in a committed relationship with a Kirby homecare system, and opened up about her life as an objectum-sexual. By her own account, it’s not been an easy journey.
How do you define objectum-sexuality?
“Objectum sexuality is the definition of an individual who forms significant, meaningful relationships with objects of any type.”
What was the first object you felt sexually attracted to?
“A Monopoly board.”
Is the attraction always sexual in nature?
“Absolutely not. My attraction is never purely sexual. It is a combination of factors. I always feel the love involved tries to gain my attention using a variety of ways, some more subtle than others. Some are in a bad situation and reach out to me to rescue them.”
Was it difficult to come to terms with your sexuality? Why?
“Yes, it was difficult to come to terms with being objectum-sexual.
“Being 51 years of age, homosexuality was illegal for a time in my country when I was younger. I was raised in a heterosexual environment to eventually marry and have children so I felt I had to hide my true self for many years. It is certainly understandable why my parents raised me as they did. But, the down side was I felt I could not live and love as I wanted and needed to.
“Everyone deserves happiness, contentment and to be with their soulmate in life. It took many years before I was brave enough to take that step. Finding the Objectum-Sexuality Internationale community offered me a support network where I realised that I am not an anomaly, rather one of many who are orientated to develop significant relationships with objects. Since then I have never looked back and my life has been enriched in so many ways.”
Have you ever been attracted to humans in the same way you’re attracted to objects?
“No. I tried relationships with both sexes but never felt the attraction or love I do for my object partners.”
Do you give objects a gender? If so, how do you sense their gender?
“My object loves tend to display certain traits to me that indicate a gender.”
Do you believe objects are sentient in some way? Do you feel like you can communicate with them?
“My object loves are sentient and are able to perceive, feel and sense things. They sense what I say and how I feel and have subtle ways of communicating back to me.”
Objectum-sexuals often tend to be attracted to very large objects such as bridges or towers. Do you know why this is?
“Actually that is a misnomer because not many do love public structures due to the complexities. However,admiration for large structures is quite common by all people so it’s not too surprising that such a structure can win the heart of a person inclined towards objects.”
Do you feel an affinity with the LGBT community, or, since most other sexual orientations deal with human relationships, do you feel like objectum-sexuals are in a classification of their very own?
“There is certainly an affinity in some ways with the LGBT community due to the minority element of it.
“Each sexuality is in its own classification simply by the fact classifications exist. Our classification is unique mostly because of the non-human partner aspect. However, the relationship process is really not so different. We court and date. We make commitments and we also break up. Our relationships are not just a simple matter of choosing whatever for a partner. They are complex and while many think they are about control, that is far from the truth. Especially for those who love a public object.”Carolyn ended our discussion by saying: “Our sexuality is very misunderstood. We face so many challenges just to try and get anyone to listen to us with an open mind.” In a world where even loving a human of the same gender can spell utter rejection, it’s easy to see why objectum-sexuals are still so badly misunderstood.