Woman has romantic feelings for Eiffel Tower

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For one woman, the intense feeling that inanimate objects can inspire goes much deeper and becomes something more like true love.

"The Berlin Wall is a masterpiece. I can feel how much he yearns to be loved," Erika Eiffel said.

Her love of the Eiffel Tower is somewhat recent, and two years ago the San Francisco woman had a commitment ceremony and changed her name to reflect the bond.

"Her structure is just amazing. You know, she's got subtle, subtle curves, you know," Erika Eiffel said of the famous Paris landmark.

"I just, it's almost like I heard her crying out, saying, 'Somebody, notice me. Somebody, really notice me. Here I am in the crowd crying out, somebody, somebody, hear my voice,'" she said.

Eiffel, 36, is part of a small group of people across the world who call themselves "objectum sexuals" where their intimate life revolves around objects, not people. The objects can range from a home computer to a set of drums or a national monument, anything they can feel a connection to. It may sound strange to most of us, but it's very real to them.

"We feel an innate connection to objects. It comes perfectly normal to us to connect on various levels, emotional, spiritual and also physical for some," Eiffel said.

Sexual Disorder or New Orientation?

Medical experts ABC News contacted said they were not familiar with objectum sexuals, some said it might be classified as paraphilia – a disorder in which a person has an unusual sexual interest. Some psychologists suggest that people with the condition may have been sexually abused.

Certified sexologist Amy Marsh, from Albany, Calif., has a different take. She said objectum sexual is not a disorder, but possibly a new sexual orientation. Marsh said she's been surveying a small online community of people with OS.

"One person said, 'They're real, they're complex, and they are no less and no more of value than other romantic relationships'," Marsh said.

"There's been very little research done on objectum sexuality," Marsh continued. "I can tell you that what I'm finding is not much history of sexual abuse, and actually not much in the way of psychiatric diagnoses either. I'm finding they're very happy, and they don't want to change. I am also finding out that quite a few of them have a diagnosis of Asperger's syndrome or autism, but not everybody."

Eiffel said she doesn't have Asperger's syndrome, nor does she believe her chaotic childhood -- shuffling between foster homes before she was adopted -- contributed to OS.

She said even as a small child she distinctly remembers having a great sympathy for discarded or wasted objects. She believes there is life, a soul in every object. Eiffel said she didn't choose to love objects, but was born that way.

"I thought everyone had a connection to objects in one way or the other. It really wasn't until I saw that they were dating each other and I was dating a bridge, that I was different. I just went to school and pretended I was like everybody else," Eiffel said.

Her love of certain objects has helped her become a world-class archer and win a $250,000 scholarship to the United States Air Force Academy, thanks to her attraction to the F-15 fighter jet.

Eiffel said she felt like "I'd like to get to know this jet. Kind of like a guy goes to a bar and he sees a really nice-looking girl and he, he wants to go sit next to her, buy her a drink and get to know her more. Well, I kind of felt that way about the F-15."

Her obsession has also led to ridicule by peers, abandonment by her family and a discharge from the Air Force. But she said she is fulfilled by her unusual love.

"I will tell you that I know love is being reciprocated," Eiffel said. "I'm happy, I'm not hurting anyone, I'm not hurting myself, I'm not being held back. I love my life."

Click here to visit the objectum sexuality web site.

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