An important, if controversial, new mutual support group just celebrated the first anniversary of its founding. For most people, pedophile is a synonym for child molester, but they are very different things, as the Virtuous Pedophiles demonstrate (www.VirPed.org). 'Pedophilia' refers to the sexual interest in children, whereas 'child molestation' refers to the actual behavior. Despite the common notion that pedophiles are all child molesters in waiting, very many—perhaps even most—pedophiles know they cannot express their sexual interests and work to be celibate, for their lifetimes, with no support from anyone. These are the Virtuous Pedophiles, and they deserve every credit and support we can provide them.
All our current science indicates that men don’t ask to be attracted to children any more than anybody else asks to be attracted to whatever they’re attracted to. Most of us are born destined to have sexual attractions we can enjoy and share. Some of us are born with sexual attractions we can enjoy, but take some work or creativity. But some of us are born with sexual attractions we can never express without risk of harm to someone else.
The media are rife with broadcasters and editorialists who capitalize on the anger and hate that can puff up ratings. Rarely discussed are the crimes that don't happen and the people who are in a position that most of us could hardly imagine. With all of my science and all of my research, I have not been able to find a way to turn pedophiles into non-pedophiles, and I am not sure when or whether any human should ever wield such power. But I do believe that, until there is such an option, it is the Virtuous Pedophiles who are doing what is ethical and what only few of us can imagine. I congratulate them, their sense of right and wrong, and their humanity. I suspect that only few people could pass the test we demand of them.
Happy Birthday, and I wish I knew better how to help.