Based on my own experience, and that of many spankos I've talked to, read postings by, etc, I agree this seems to be something wired into us from Day One. Real life experiences (especially in childhood) trigger or color the fetish, but its there waiting to be set off the second our synapses start firing. I fantasized and yes, sexualized (though I didn't realize or understand I was doing that) from a very early age. I remember as far back as 5/6 years old having vivid fantasies that are still with me in some form or another to this day. It got especially intense at age 11 - I was home alone all summer and that's when I first tried self-spanking. I seemed to spend part of every day in spanko (and related) fantasy land. I was only spanked once but certain aspects of that spanking instantly became strong aspects of my fantasies (and remain so), so yes, our actual experiences impact our "spanko-ness" pretty strongly.
And yes - I thought there was something VERY wrong with me. Even at 11 I thought it was very weird that I got so excited, even had a sort of desire for something that I desperately avoided in real life.
As I got older, into my teens, it concerned me even more. By then it was clear that it was sexual for me, and I wondered why I was 100x more excited by a spanking than by regular old screwing, which seemed to send most guys into a frenzy (not that I wasn't interested in sex - its just that the thought of sex was like a jolt of 10 volts of electricity, but a spanking was like a jolt of 10,000!).
I wouldn't say I was cursed by it, but I was haunted by it. No, I never discussed it with anyone, though I do remember occasionally prodding some info from other kids about their spankings when I was a schoolkid. Once I got old enough and was actually in physical relationships with girls, it eased my concerns a lot - i.e. I was capable of enjoying "normal" sexual relations. By then I had also come across info that there were other people in the world obsessed with spanking, but it was generally presented in a kind of "look at those weirdos" manner (i.e. David Reuben's books on sex - although I seem to recall The Joy of Sex, or More Joy Of Sex included some slightly favorable talk on the subject, and even had a kind of hot drawing).
An additional problem for me was that I am, it seems, an ageplayer. As a kid, my fantasies were about myself. As I got older, they turned to myself as a kid, and then later, to imaginary youngsters. That bothered me a lot, and I felt very guilty about it and as if I must be some kind of monster. It was years before I fully wrapped my head around the concept that the youngster in my fantasies was actually me. It had nothing to do with wanting to witness or participate in a young person being spanked or hurt or humiliated, but rather wanting to BE a young person being spanked/hurt/humiliated.
There are still spankos out there who can't wrap their heads around that distinction. Despite that, it doesn't seem to be that uncommon among spankos.
So no, I never openly revealed it to a partner until the last one some years ago. And to her I only revealed that it was a thing for me - not the extent or the depth or the details. She wasn't turned off by it, but she wasn't interested either (which was okay, being as I didn't share her interest in biting).
I was 30 the first time I got on the internet. And believe it or not "spanking" wasn't the first thing I looked up. I think it was the second. Or third.
And yes, I got my mind blown when I found there was a whole community out there in which I was not a freak but completely "normal". On sites like The Witness Homepage, C-Red and alt.sex.spanking I found people with interests and fantasies very much like mine. And it was intoxicating.
Offline, no one in my life knows about my interests - though I do intend to find the local community once this pandemic passes and people can safely mingle once again.
No, I didn't ask to be this way. And no, I don't throw myself out there in the big wide world, as many people wouldn't understand. But no, neither am I ashamed of it anymore. My kink is harmless and I have found ways to derive great pleasure from it. If the internet has taught us anything, it's that there's no such thing as "normal".