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About Pedophiles, Molesters and Types of
Not all pedophiles are child molesters. A child molester is an individual who sexually molests children. A pedophile might have a sexual preference for children and fantasize about having sex with them, but if he does not act on that preference or those fantasies, he is not a child molester.
It is almost impossible to estimate how many pedophiles exist who have never molested a child. What society can or should do with such individuals is an interesting area for discussion but beyond the role of investigators or prosecutors. People cannot be arrested and prosecuted just for their fantasies.
Not all child molesters are pedophiles. A pedophile is an individual who prefers to have sex with children. A person who prefers to have sex with an adult partner may, for any number of reasons, decide to have sex with a child. Such reasons might include simple availability, opportunity, curiosity, or a desire to hurt a loved one of the molested child. The erotic imagery and sexual fantasies of such individuals are not necessarily recurrent, intense, and focused on children; therefore, these people are not pedophiles. They are called situational abusers.
Although pedophiles vary greatly, their sexual behavior is repetitive and highly predictable.
There are two types of child
Is pedophilia an illness or a mental disorder?
The American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental Disorders (DSM) lists pedophilia as a mental disorder and the US Supreme Court has upheld the idea of pedophilia as a mental abnormality.
However, there are those - both respectable experts and pedophile apologists - who argue that pedophilia, should be removed from this list of mental disorders, just as homosexuality was removed in the 1970s.
There is, apparently, some evidence that between 20%-25% of the supposedly normal male population feel sexually attracted to children, according to a discussion in the US Archives of Sexual Behavior of 2002, and react to "pedophilic" stimuli.
There seems to be little or no agreement about what causes pedophilia. The old theory that child abuse itself was an important factor has fallen by the scientific wayside.
The existence of a cycle of sexual abuse from generation to generation has not been established.
Some studies using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the brain suggest that pedophilic men tend to have several differences in brain structure from other men and have one or more neurological characteristics at birth that could increase the likelihood of pedophilia.
However, for every one of these studies there is a crowd of experts to disagree with it. The only point upon which most experts seem to agree is that there is no treatment which can cure pedophilia. The disorder is chronic and lifelong. Abusers have been described as psychopaths* or sociopaths* lacking empathy for their victims and any form of conscience regarding their behaviors. See definitions below.
Therapies designed to prevent convicted pedophiles from harming children again have little success and many agree that being locked up is the only sure guarantee that pedophiles will not offend again.
Pedophilia is an intense subject that demands intense study. In the book
Conversations with a Pedophile, the writer, a sexual abuse victim herself and a psychologist argues that
while pedophilia is about sex,
it is more about control.
It is in essence a form of psychopathic behavior performed without conscience with the primary goal being the thrill of conquest and complete control over the child.
1. Psychopath (def): A person with an antisocial personality disorder, manifested in aggressive, perverted, criminal, or amoral behavior without empathy or remorse.
2. Sociopath (aka Antisocial Personality Disorder) (def): a person, as a psychopathic personality, whose behavior is antisocial and who lacks a sense of moral responsibility or social conscience.
3. Pedophilia - expanded definition (CSEC Terminology)
4. Sexual Preferences Based on Age - terminology
Child Molesters: A Behavioral Analysis
Pedophilia an illness?
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