Pregnant women beware! The mere act of recording your little milestones, uploading and sharing images of your sexy baby bumps, could be drawing attention of maiesiophiliacs.
There are individuals out there afflicted with maiesiophilia or a fetish for pregnant women.
Thus, to satisfy their ‘cravings’, they go around collecting and even sharing photos of these trending baby bumps images.
Checks Facebook revealed that there are about 100 of such groups in existence.
What is more worrying is that these predators have also created Telegram and Whatsapp groups to share these images and leave disturbing comments.
A kindergarten assistant, who wants to be known only as Hani, 29, learned the hard way after the pregnancy picture she shared on Facebook was misused by irresponsible individuals, who took it upon themselves to circulate her picture.
“The picture was uploaded when I was pregnant with my eldest son. There was not a single worry when I shared it on Facebook as I was wearing proper clothes without exposing any part of my body.
“A week later I was told by my friend that my photos were shared in other groups and when I read the comments, I felt so disgusted,” she said when contacted.
According to Hani, after seeing the obscene comments she sent a personal message via Facebook to the owner of the group and asked for him to delete the picture and lodge a police report.
Hani said, however, the individual refused to delete the picture and blamed her for uploading the image to Facebook.
“Two days later, the page was blocked by Facebook, but until today I am traumatised and do not want to upload any more pictures on Facebook,” said the mother of two.
Malaysian Psychiatric Association president Dr Ahmad Rostam Md Zin said maiesiophilia is a mental illness that is an abnormal sexual fetish much like paedophilia, zoophilia and necrophilia.
He said that the interest for such images began with the shot of a very pregnant Demi Moore on the cover of well-known magazine in 1991.
Those who suffer from this rare affliction think nothing of it nor choose to seek treatment, he said.
“However technology advancements have allowed this fetish to grow and these individuals have come together to share their obsession.
“They are more likely to commit crimes when they cannot control their urges as what usually happens with paedophiles,” he said when contacted.
According to him, it is hard to identify maiesiophilia sufferers, as such he advises women to be cautious in public areas and always be alert to their surroundings including in cyberspace.
“We understand that we are facing maiesiophilia sufferers who have a strange sexual addiction.
“They are driven by lust and do not care about your privacy. If you are facing sexual abuse or detect that your pictures are being misused, please lodge a report with the authorities immediately and spread awareness of this illness to the public,” he said.