Are All Men Pedophiles?

By Kendra Holliday | February 23, 2012

This girl is 14 years old.

Are All Men Pedophiles?, a documentary premiering next week at The Queens World Film Festival 2012 in New York City, is already creating a lot of furious discussion by people who have not yet seen it.

Good! This topic sorely needs discussion.

So often sensitive or taboo subjects are avoided, and it’s better to be open and honest about them so we can gain a better understanding of ourselves and those around us.

Let’s start with a simple question: Are we, as a society, sexually attracted to youth? Yes or no?

What is youth?

Youth: the appearance, freshness, vigor, spirit, etc., characteristic of one who is young.

the time of being young; early life: His youth was spent on the farm.

the period of life from puberty to the attainment of full growth; adolescence.

the first or early period of anything.

Have you ever been attracted to a woman, only to find out later she is 13 years old?

Therefore, this film asks: what is the difference between you and pedophiles?

From the film’s synopsis:

We live in a society that condemns pedophiles, though biological instinct and world cultures throughout history suggest that an attraction to adolescents is as natural as it is unavoidable. The fashion industry on the one hand sexualizes ever-younger girls while those who act on these instincts are reviled. The apparent hypocrisy at the heart of society forces the question: What do we mean when we talk about Pedophilia? Are All Men Pedophiles?

Before we go any further, let’s define pedophile. In clinical terms, a pedophile is a person at least 16 years of age and five years older than the pre-pubescent youth they are sexually attracted to. If a 10 year old is attracted to another 10 year old, does that make them a pedophile? According to this definition, no.

The legal definition varies widely – the age of consent around the world is anywhere from 9 years old to 20 years old. The Western standard is 18 years old.

If a person is 24 and is in a relationship with a 16 yr old, is that wrong? What about 30 and 16? 40 and 16?

The film argues that girls mature sooner than boys, and for thousands of years our life expectancy was 33 so it made sense to reproduce as soon as the woman came of age (began menses)

These days, girls are developing into women earlier (11-14 instead of 16), PLUS we are living longer are a species. This shift is significant.

What’s more, we live in a society that is not conducive to emotional maturity, which is admittedly a serious issue. What’s the reasoning behind the genital shaving fad? Many people say they do it because it feels more comfortable for them, but are they talking physical or mental?

Let’s Talk Numbers

If sex with children is wrong, why does it figure prominently in so many religions? Mary was 12 or 15 when she was divinely fucked by God. Throughout history, the average age for a female’s first birth was 13.

In 2012, the Jewish bar mitzvah still marks the age of 13 when a boy becomes a man – really?! They haven’t thought to adjust this ceremony to take place at 16 or 18?

How old were you when you first started thinking about sex? I was 9 years old. How old were you when you started experimenting with sex? 16? 14? 12?

I was 9 years old. And it wasn’t consensual. I was molested by my older adopted brother. He molested my younger siblings as well. According to the clinical definition, that makes him a pedophile. I told my parents, and they had to fight the courts to get him removed from the home. They had to prove to the legal system they were unfit parents in order to keep their younger children safe. It took months, and they locked him in the basement at night to keep him away from us. He moved away and I don’t have contact with him, but I know he married a woman with daughters. I wonder if he chose to molest his stepdaughters.

Many argue that to use the word “pedophilia” is misleading, that technically most people are attracted to teeangers, which makes them a hebephiliac. Does that make it better? How come the word “hebephilia” is not widely used by the media? This film attempts to mirror society and analyze the truths behind the hateful, fear-inducing stories.

MOST people are technically a mix of hebephile and teleiophile (an attraction to adults). This is clearly evident in the fact that the average fashion model is 16 years old. The girl in the movie poster above is 14 years old.

We have priests and other positions of power who get away with molesting children for years. What about all the female teachers who have been busted for fucking their students?

In the film, they interview a female pedophile. Her graphic story was difficult for me to hear. Another shocking moment is when they interview a woman who was repeatedly raped as a child by her father and a neighbor (you can read a similar story here, featuring Quanitta Underwood and her sisters).

They also interview a man who is out about being a pedophilia. During that interview it is noted that pedophilia is an orientation, not an action. The man interviewed claims to be a non-exclusive, non-offending pedophile, meaning he admits he is sexually attracted to children, but is also attracted to adults and does not act on his attraction to children. He believes a lot of people are attracted to kids; they just won’t dare to acknowledge it.

In this article “Who Is Hurting the Children? The Political Psychology of Pedophilia in American Society,” by Dr. Michael Bader, he poses the question:

Why does the act of sexually molesting a child seem to command our collective outrage and desire for vengeance, while acts of ignoring, humiliating, or starving that same child do not? After all, no one goes to jail for the crime of “narcissistically using your child as an extension of yourself,” or “demeaning your children because you feel demeaned,” or “being so drunk and depressed that your children have to raise themselves.”

I think that our defense of childhood virtue and innocence is so extreme because it bundles with it all of the ways that we, ourselves, feel–but cannot acknowledge feeling–afraid, rejected, unfairly taken advantage of, betrayed, subordinated to the self-interests of others, and helpless. At the deepest level of our psyches, we cannot compassionately face our own innocent victimization and, instead, project it onto the picture we create of the sexually virtuous and naive child.

What about the weird sexualization of girls in our society, such as making sweatpants for little girls with words like “JUICY” on the butt? Makeup for kids grooms them for future sexual advertising. And of course, there’s the whole beauty pageants for little girls racket.

A friend of mine went to jail for a year because his friend sent him a topless pic of his girlfriend. Turns out the gf was 16 and he got busted for possession of child porn. When he got out of jail he found a job, but was fired two weeks later when the employer found out about his criminal record.

Chid porn is people under age 18 who are portrayed in sexual, lewd conduct erotic behavior. So wouldn’t that mean that many magazine ads are child porn?

Hell, after doing research for this review, I hope no one digs into my Google search history and gets the wrong idea.

The film’s world premiere is Friday, March 2, 9:30pm at the Queens World Film Festival, Jackson Heights Cinema, New York City. Buy tickets here.


Stephen 2012-02-23 12:31:14

A topic I’ve been passionate about forever. There HAS to be a difference, but legally it’s tough – how do you make sweeping laws (which they have to be) about individuals?

Some 15-17 year old people are ready to have relationships with 19 year olds (or in SOME cases 24 year olds – Mexico has a culture that expects this age difference). But other 15-17 year olds are way too young for sex/relationships. It’s nearly impossible to create laws recognizing this individuality – Mary Kay Letourneau is still married and a mother to Vili Fualaau’s children, and if studied individually, she was as much a victim as Vili – she’s the mental health sufferer and abuse sufferer, not he.

You suffered horrible abuse, Kendra, and were clearly a victim. Many victims of childhood sexual abuse act out in their teens sexually with older people – are they still victims? By law, yes, and therefore their ‘abusers’ are pedophiles.

I like this article you’ve written the most of any. I do wish we’d use the term hebephile more. Clearly people have openly ogled the underage Miley Cyrus, Justin Timberlake, etc. There were online countdown clocks for when Natalie Portman and MaryKate and Ashley were going to turn 18.

You’re absolutely correct in how we’ve sexualized underagers for the last 40-50 years. Brooke Shields (very religious and virginal) at age 14 in Calvin Kleins. Brooke Shields later in Blue Lagoon.

Yet if you dare own a Tracy Lords porn video you could be jailed for possessing child pornography. Your friend did a YEAR?!?? I have a friend in Fresno who did a year for having sex with a 15 year old girl when he was 19. They were together at the time, the 15 year old and her family refused to press charges, but he served a year nonetheless.

There is a double-standard (or triple). I believe school teachers or people in authority positions should never have sex with children under their care no matter the age – even if they are 18-year old seniors in high school. Priests can have sex, I don’t care, but not with someone in their flock, regardless of age.

16 year olds as strippers? NO! 16 year olds as nearly nude billboard models? YES! Hmmmm.

Sexual issues are the last set of taboos, and it’s going to be a very long time before they are discussed openly, especially by lawmakers. Keep fighting the good fight, Kendra.

And I hope this film sparks much-needed debate.

I also hope lawmakers and judges finally develop better Romeo and Juliet laws. I have proposed a 2-3-5 law, hopefully still on the table in California.

Age 15 – okay to be with someone 2 years older.
Age 16 – okay to be with someone 3 years older.
Age 17 – okay to be with someone 5 years older.

Here’s hoping….

(oh, and if that girl on the movie poster is really 14, then yes, I’m a hebephile).


dayglow 2012-02-23 21:22:41

There was an interesting Savage Love about this topic a few weeks ago. It’s episode #272, and he interviews Dr. James Cantor who is an expert in pedophilia and hebephilia. I appreciated Dr. Cantor’s perspective on the issue. He believes that our culture is too reactive and that the way people who have these issues are treated is not therapeutic or helpful. I would also emphasize that there is a major difference between being attracted to someone of a particular age group and acting on those fantasies. I actually feel quite sorry for people who are exclusively attracted to children and/or teens. Many times they don’t want to act on it, so they have very few sexual outlets besides porn which can be risky if you are “caught” with child porn. I would venture to say that the vast majority of men and perhaps many women are sexually attracted to teenagers who have gone through puberty. Our rational and logical minds may prevent us from acting on these fantasies, but the attraction is still there, and I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that.


    JanusWanders 2012-02-24 06:45:53

    It’s worse than you can probably imagine actually. I’ll cast off the protection of lurking to provide a bit of insight.

    You remember that commercial from way back in the day showing the distraught teenage girl moving through the house while hateful old white men like Pat Robertson talked about how all gay people were evil? “Homosexuality is an abomination. The practices of these people is appalling. It is a pathology, it is a sickness.” And she finally finds the handgun hidden in her parents’ room and starts to cry as the announcer tells you that over 30% of teen suicides are thought to be gay or lesbian kids.

    Now imagine that if instead of being a sobering commercial about tolerance and compassion the commercial had ended with a gunshot in the background, a cheer from the invisible audience, and an immediate return to the latest episode of “Glee”.

    That’s the kind of cognitive dissonance you have to live with as someone who finds children programmed in to your list of sexual interests today. And it haunts you constantly, no matter how well you try to make a prison of yourself and fake being like everyone else. In the back of your mind you’re always aware that you should feel like you are a monster, a horrible thing that could cause near infinite suffering to the most helpless and innocent. How can I go out drinking and be uninhibited with the rest of my friends without revealing the monster trapped inside that cage? How can I even try to date someone when I’m terrified of what I might one day become if I let my guard down? And of course I could try to find someone out there who happens to also share my interests, but I don’t want to hurt anyone and the danger of combining two people in a relationship who both think children sexually interesting is an almost unconscionable risk to take. So that leaves just porn as a sexual outlet, and not much as an emotional social outlet. And I read the story from that says porn rewires your brain and you have to step away from the internet and basically re-brainwash yourself with society’s “correct” set of sexual paradigms in mind and know that they probably mean well, but I just want to be able to acknowledge and experiment with my sexual interests like everyone “normal” is allowed to.

    But I can’t. I can’t risk the kind of harm to a child that might mean. I can’t risk the infinite scorn of my small town community if they knew the truth. I can’t risk the inevitable prison time that comes with searching for things to keep the horrible beast in that prison fed enough to remain quiet so I can go about faking my life.

    In the end maybe everyone else has been right the whole time. Maybe I am a monster.

    I’m just trying so very hard not to be a monster -today-.


      Stephen 2012-02-24 12:29:46

      You’re not a monster. You ARE an excellent writer.

      And you are aware. Awareness is everything.

      Brilliant and brave. Well said.


swedishskier 2012-02-24 15:42:17

I think there are two important distinctions. The first is there’s a BIG difference between attraction and action. You can be attracted to a girl who is 16 but if you’re 40 and you act on that attraction, I have a problem with that. I’ve worked with teenagers a lot as an adult, and I just don’t think it’s ok to have sex with them. I don’t care what biology says about it. Be attracted to them, fine, but they are not adults and should have their sexual experimentation amongst themselves. I’m decidedly traditional on this topic. I understand that they are partway through puberty and that especially girls may be more mature. But chances are good they aren’t as mature as they represent. The most important distinction for me is between being attracted to prepubescent children and adolescents. If someone is attracted to prepubescent children, that is a problem and needs psychosexual treatment. Its tragic for that person, but our children deserve to be protected from that.


oncefallendotcom 2012-02-26 18:55:42

No doubt you’ll have the so-called “victim’s rights groups” up in arms. With the proposed DSM-V on the horizon, the concept of what constitutes “pedophilia” will be convoluted. Adding the hebephilia to the mix is even worse. So being attracted to a 17 year old or someone who merely looks young will now be considered a “mental illness.” While the so-called victim rights people claim this works against them, I see it as working against an honest approach to sexual offending.

In Kansas v Hendricks, the standards for civil commitment were lowered to “a personality disorder or any mental illness that makes one likely to re-offend,” with the standard of proof lowered. This means potential for people to be civilly committed at an even higher rate.

There is 750,000 people on the registry, and many are juveniles, and many didn’t even molest a child. Our society’s tendency to create mythical “monsters” has not helped matters.


My Son is an SO 2012-02-27 14:53:08

My 31 year old son is registered as an “aggravated” Level III (worst of the worst) offender for the remainder of his life. He has spent most of the past 14 years either in prison or on parole or probation. Along with legal fees and court costs, polygraphs, sexual counseling, fees, fines, etc. he (with some of our help) has given the system thousands of dollars for a stupid teenage mistake. He was 17 and his girlfriend was 14. They were in high school together. She was more sexually active than most adults. Her single mother allowed her to dress provacatively, wear heavy makeup and use birth control. She stalked my son in school and at home. She gave him a birthday card offering oral sex for his birthday. But he is the one who is punished and he is the one who gets put into the same category as dangerous child molesters. I get sick to my stomach watching shows like “Toddlers and Tiaras” and “Dance Moms” where little girls are made up to look like prostitutes. This new social hysteria about sex crimes is doing nothing but creating more laws imposed by stupid legislators who probably are guilty of the same offenses they want to punish others for. It is out of control and outrageous.


    Stephen 2012-03-01 18:07:13

    yeah. i’m guessing there’s a LOT more to this story.


Shelly Stow 2012-02-27 15:23:38

There is another aspect of this situation involving hypocrisy that no one ever addresses.
Today a 16 year old took a gun to school and shot classmates, with five injured and one dead at this point. He will, rightly so, be treated as an adult in the justice system, fully responsible for his actions. If instead, he had engaged in sex with a 21 year old woman, he would be called a child and a victim, in no way responsible for the actions in which he engaged, and the older woman would be labeled a child molester and registered as such. Similarly, a 15 year old can legally and autonomously obtain birth control as a preparation for having sex, can choose to have an abortion should it fail, but cannot legally choose to engage in the act which required the birth control and necessitated the decision of having an abortion.
This is an excellent article.


Stephen 2012-02-27 20:26:11

Here’s an excellent documentary (with good comments after) about this point, onefallen. Is warehousing potential sex offenders a good thing? I’m especially struck by the gentleman in this doc who was convicted of date rape, served his time, and is now being warehoused in Coalinga’s special state not-a-prison with no idea when or if he’ll ever get out.


Belladonna 2012-02-29 22:31:14

This is a complicated topic that deserves extensive discussion.

I think my own sexual history serves to highlight some of the complexities raised. I can remember being sexually curious as early as age six. When I was eleven my grandfather took an inappropriate interest in me, which luckily went no farther than him touching my underwear. However, when I later learned that many child molesters had been molested when they were children, I became terrified that because of my experience one day I would wake up as a raging pedophile. This terrified me so much I avoided children altogether until a few years later when a good therapist set me straight.

When I was fourteen I was dating both a seventeen year old and a twenty-one year old. We did not have sex, but we did fool around. The twenty-one year old was perfectly sweet and respected my desires while the seventeen year old ended up taking my virginity in a date rape.

When I was fifteen I dated a nineteen year old. We are still together today, ten years later.

How would we label my grandfather and the three men I dated? How would my sexual willingness and maturity, or lack thereof, factor into any of these assessments? Does my experience shed any light on how society and the law should handle these kinds of attractions and actions?

My attractions have always skewed older, though I have appreciated some hotties my age or younger. I find myself turned off by teenagers even when they have physically developed due to their (admittedly assumed) mental immaturity.

An issue I have with any “hard line” sexual attraction is that it can interfere with the ability to maintain a relationship that is more than that attraction. By “hard line” I mean the big and beautiful lovers who would dump their partner for slimming down, or the foot lovers who would dump their partner if they lost their feet in an accident, or the pedophiles/hebephiles who would dump their partners for growing up. Obviously in the first two examples any adults entering into a relationship where that kind of hard line attraction was present would be able to have an understanding about the fundamentals of what they are engaging in. I do not think that that is equally possible for a young person and their older admirer as the young person lacks the mentally maturity to properly grasp the situation. This immaturity combined with the age difference is also what leads to the problem of power dynamics and coercion.

Again, a complex topic that deserves more discussion than it gets.


    JanusWanders 2012-03-01 07:26:27

    I think many of the problems you point out with relationships between children and adults could be managed with changes to our interpersonal expectations and attitudes, and with an increased expectation of openness and honesty in relationships. I’ll try to explain my position as best I can.

    In elementary school I had the luck of having some amazing teachers who taught me much more than just rote book knowledge. I grew a lot as a person during those magic years, and I remember visiting their classrooms in later life just to catch up and say hello from time to time. From the moment our “relationships” began however, there was never any expectation from either of us that it would be a permanent arrangement. Everyone knew that there would be a first day of school, a period of time that might seem like forever or fly by during which we would all be together in class, and then a time when we would part ways and things would change.

    We’ve allowed ourselves to be sold on the classic Fairy Tale story of how a relationship should be for so long now that we’ve forgotten that only the tiniest percentage of the relationships we make at -any- point in our lives will last beyond a very narrow timeframe. We pretend that every girl or boy will find their perfect soulmate, maybe “the one God meant for them”, and that then they’ll be happy together for the rest of their lives. If we taught the reality of life as a continuous chain of temporary events rather than as the building of some epic struggle towards eventual “perfection” you could allow things in life to progress without the incredible baggage of everyone else’s expectations. Think of all the classic teenage angst you’ll see posted online with heartbroken teenagers thinking their lives are over because their “one and only true love” has left them. Wouldn’t it have been much healthier if from the beginning we had told those kids at a young age that all relationships are temporary, and should be cherished while they flourish and mourned but then moved past when they’ve ended?

    What shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone is that children are perfectly capable of participating in many forms of sexual play, alone or with others, and enjoying the experience. I think if it were possible to study the subject scientifically we would find that the deepest traumas of child abuse rarely come from the sexual acts themselves but instead are a horrible snowball effect of the lies, threats, shame, and coercion which haunts the victim in our “enlightened” society in order to maintain their silence.

    People of many ages are capable of adjusting to the idea that things they didn’t enjoy happened to them. I was bitten by a snake as a child on my family’s farm and am still afraid of them to this day, but I don’t hate that snake on a deep personal level. The snake doesn’t torment my dreams or force me into endless cycles of self-abuse because I know exactly what happened. It was a snake, it was probably scared of me, bad things happen, and phobias that set themselves up when you’re young are hard to overcome. Now imagine that according to Christian tradition anyone bitten by a snake is branded as forever unclean, a ravaged victim of a terrible beast, like a walking scar upon the land. If you’re bitten by a snake everyone expects you to have mental and emotional problems eventually, because no one could ever overcome that kind of horrible trauma. Imagine the government decreed that any land which had been found to conceal snakes must be razed and burned that the horrible threat be put down and not spread their scaly venoms to nearby plots of land. How condusive to actually dealing with the problem of snake-bites would this approach be? How likely do you think I would have been to run for help after being bitten, regardless of the fact that I know some snakes are poisonous and I might die from the bite?

    What I would propose is a socially recognized role as a sort of “mentor relationship”, much the way we understand children will sometimes find “puppy love” at a young age. We teach the Golden Rule and most people (recent Republican debate audiences excluded) seem to find it serves us well as a basis for living together. If what you want to do with someone causes them injury you should be punished for inflicting that injury. While there are many forms of sex play that children could safely experiment with there are also simple physiological limitations on a human body and recognized stages of emotional development, and the foremost concern in the mind of someone with a position of power should always be the well being of his submissive partner. Does that mean that with this new system all of the problems of child sexual abuse would magically disappear? Of course not, there are some bad people out there who do bad things to good people. But keeping an understanding of the simple realities, pleasures, and pains of sex, life, and relationships from our children only helps those bad people, and the way we do things now does tremendous damage to all the honestly curious children and adults who could otherwise have a chance at happy sexual lives.


      Belladonna 2012-03-09 21:46:51

      It’s hard to argue “against” a vision of a world where we don’t lie to our children or each other, or hang on to ridiculous fantasies, or cause harm where there was none just because we assume that “of course it was wrong”. Furthermore, it’s hard to argue against healthy, happy, consensual sex activities. However, if society made a “space” for these kinds of activities/relationships, it would not stop child abuse from taking place. And unfortunately, creating a “gray area” where in some contexts (healthy, happy, consensual) sex acts with young people are ok while in other other contexts (unhealthy, coercion) they are not may only make distinguishing the two harder. How do we tell the difference between a child who has consented and one who has been coerced? Can you imagine a child at their rape trial hearing arguments that they asked for it, or that they were willing then but are lying now? Teaching a child good sexual and self preservation habits still does nothing to address the power imbalance that is inherent in all adult/child relationships. Maybe this child would be empowered to say no, and then report it if the worst happened, but then the child would somehow have to prove that the rape/molestation (as opposed to a consensual act or nothing at all) occurred. Taking the hard line against any and all sex acts with minors removes this problem. And because the bottom line is that there is absolutely no need for minors and adults to engage in sex acts together, both can do without and stick with age-similar partners. Of course the ideal of happy healthy sex acts between any consenting partners is better than our current system which does punish and cause harm to those who don’t deserve it. But when you take that ideal and try and enact it in the real world you find it is bound to another ideal- that the difference between consensual and coerced sex acts would be as plain as day and night and visible to all so there would never be any question whether someone had indeed been assaulted or not. That second ideal can never be realized, so we do what we can with our imperfect system to minimize pain. Which pain is greater, that adults and minors have to avoid sexual relations with each other, or that a child might be raped and then further harassed through a trial and then may or may not ever be believed or have justice? My personal answer to that question is “protect the kids, everyone (kids & adults) can get their rocks off another way”.


Joy 2012-03-11 03:17:17

The issue that makes a clear and dividing line for me is the issue of consent. To think that a 5 year old can give any sort of informed or reasoned consent is outrageous. To think that a 15 year old can give informed or reasoned consent may be a little more of a gray line, but there are plenty of 15 year olds that would starve in a house full of food if left alone for a week. I suppose there’s some 40 year olds with that much lack of common sense, but they’re much rarer.

We withhold many rights and privileges from children because we as a society don’t expect that they have the capability (as a group, acknowledging that any particular individual might differ). We don’t allow children to vote, because we don’t trust that they have the capacity to make wise choices involving such far-reaching implications. They cannot drive, get a tattoo, or buy a beer.

I am sex positive, and I support the idea that consenting adults can do whatever they want so long as it’s with other consenting adults. Having sex with an animal, or a child, or a comatose or otherwise incapacitated adult….I think that’s wrong. I think that’s rape.

For what it’s worth, I don’t support trying children as adults, for the same reason. Adult accountability should arrive with the onset of adult privileges and rights.


WTVelocity 2012-03-13 10:50:07

I just wanted to make a standard correction to the TECHNICAL definition of a Pedophile in psychology.

“The sexual *preference* of underage women”

What does that make people in Hawaii, who have no legal definition of statutory rape, last I heard? That means a 40 year old being attracted to a 14 year old, is NOT Pedophilia, as she’s “of age”.

If you go to Thailand, which I believe the age is 14, does that make him a Pedophile there?
No, many to most Americans are trained to be close-minded, and often only think IN THEIR OWN rules/laws… And thing everyone else is wrong.

Even many to most Christians (and I know, I’m a Unitarian Christian), claim 15 year olds having sex is “sickening”, when they fail to realize the age Mary was when getting married, because the government edited that out of our bibles hundreds of years ago.

For an example, look up the “Jefferson Bible”.
People over time change what they want to believe in the bible, in the example, Jefferson removed parts containing spiritual things.

In other words, saying something is wrong is usually people just being conditioned to believe it without thought.


Stephen 2012-03-16 16:25:05

Hawaii’s age of consent is 16.

I have known many 15-17 year old girls who had sex with older men, some with teachers. They did so willingly, and often pursued the sex/relationship.

And I have known those people because to a person, they have regretted those childhood decisions well into adulthood. Some of them are even slightly sickened that those pervo’s took advantage of their young minds and sexuality. Even one very sex-positive woman I know who has always loved older men and accepts her daddy issues is still not thrilled that she started acting out sexually at such a young age. She was subject to adult expectations of monogamy or shared sexual behaviors. 15-17 is often just too young to have to deal with manipulation from a partner, with adult jealousy, or tougher to deal with men who also want to sex it up with the child’s mother, or her friends.

Sure, drunken three-ways can be much fun as a kid. So can the giggly prospects of sharing their older studman with friends.

But 10 and 20 and 30 years later? As regrettable as a tattoo at age 16. You accept it because that’s who you once were, but you regret it anyway, and wish you had known then what you know now.

As a much older man, tho, God Bless the hottie 16-17 year olds who have those horrible issues and flirt with me. It’s SUCH an ego boost…even when I have to ignore their advances and/or let them down. I know they’ll thank me later for turning them down, but man oh man…it’s exhilirating!


Phoenix 2012-03-20 10:53:43

I’m a little dubious about some of the responses here. A few sound like self-serving arguments meant to make the author out to be a victim of his desire. Rapists use some of the same logic to explain their behavior. We are having an open discussion about a difficult topic and trying to be cute about it is obnoxious and creepy.

All humans are sexual beings from the moment they are born until the moment they die. While American society does not like to admit that the very young and the very old are included in the world of sexual experience, it is a fact that we all have sexual anatomy and, unless it is malfunctioning, it is a source of physical pleasure.

That said, it is not healthy for all human beings to be having intercourse or engaging in other forms of sexual activity at every stage of their lives. Young children can be physically harmed by vaginal/anal penetration. They are vulnerable to tissue fissures, urinary and bladder infections and STI’s. Those 11 and 12 year old girls who are already menstruating are not helped physically or emotionally by the experience of pregnancy/delivery or abortion at such an early age.

I was sexually abused as a young child (5-7 yrs. old) and while some of those repeated experiences included physical pleasure, they also included confusion, manipulation, fear, pain, and secrecy. Secrecy is a big deal here because it breeds shame. So, at that time, my sexual identity was that of “pleasure provider” for an adult who found his own needs to be more important than mine. He never concerned himself with my desires or interests… he used me and he abused me.

I first had sexual intercourse just after my 13th birthday with some guy who was moving away from our apartment complex following a divorce. Frankly, I approached him and I suggested we have sex. I didn’t lie about my age and while he was in his mid-late 20s, he didn’t seem to care. Let me recap: I approached him. And I still think he was wrong to have followed me home and if he had been caught I wouldn’t feel sorry for him now. I know, I was a horrible kid. I would try to seduce every man I met- teachers, doctors, the husbands of my babysitting clients… and many of them took me up on it and they were wrong for it. Now, it doesn’t seem right, does it? Having some horny 13 year old with a chip on her shoulder and a desire for destruction throw herself at these poor, unsuspecting men must have been so awfully hard on them. Sorry. But they were all wrong in choosing to engage with me.

“How is that fair?” you ask. Well, if a man came to you and said, “I’m sick and in pain and I would like you to kill me,” would it be reasonable to kill him? He asked you to… he might even pay you to do it. Or what if a visibly mentally ill woman approaches you and offers you her wallet with all her money and ID? She’s offering it to you, so it’s not theft, right?

I get that this is dicey legal territory and that technically sex with a 15 or 16 year old is legal in many states, but my point is that we adults have many other resources for meeting our sexual needs, so why trouble kids with them? Those men should not have had sex with me because it didn’t help me, it only hurt me. Just because you can have sex with someone, doesn’t mean you should. Those adult men should have used their adult reasoning to assess what the best thing for both of us would have been. Instead, they, like the adult who abused me when I was younger, thought only about their needs and their desires. I was a jerk. But I was also a kid and I should have been given permission to be a jerk, a kid, a flirt or a young temptress without having to put out. That’s the benefit of childhood -getting to try out new roles and personae without risk or obligation. And at the same time, our responsibility as adults is making the tough call on when to act for the benefit of others. Like saying, “no thank you, little girl,” when a kid throws herself at you.

Yes, we are all sexual beings. We all deserve to have great sex when we are ready and able. But children shouldn’t have to grow up serving the sexual desires of the adults around them. I don’t think our current laws are quite sane on this issue. I definitely think that most of us have an attraction scale that slides from end to end throughout our lives. The kind of boy I found attractive at 15, is still attractive to me now, although I can put him in context and recognize that he’s a child and I’m now an adult and while he may be attractive, he is not for me. If you care for children, don’t have sex with them. Its better for them not to have to lie to their parents and doctors and friends. Its better for them not to risk their future or sexual health for your pleasure. Try to remember when you talk about this issue, you must include the needs of the child and her/his best interests. Rarely are a child’s best interests served by having sex with an adult.


    Stephen 2012-03-22 05:14:05

    Absolutely agree with you on every point, Phoenix. I’m terribly sorry for your abused childhood.

    It is 100% the adult’s responsibility to say ‘you are very attractive, but I can’t’ or some other good response that means NO thank you.

    It doesn’t matter WHAT the reason was that you threw yourself to those adults – it’s our responsiblity as adults to look out for the children of the world, no matter how flattering your approach is, no matter how ‘adult-looking’ you are, no matter no matter no matter.

    Nothing you did at that age was your fault. Nothing.

    I also feel sorry for the adult men who took advantage of you, who allowed themselves to fall and fail.

    I just heard a great ‘key’ for kids and adults: Any adult that asks a child to keep a secret? Red Flag. Huge. (aside from ‘don’t tell mommy about her surprise party tomorrow, it’s a secret).

    Well written, I’m glad you joined the discussion.


John 2019-03-31 15:00:17

I think most men are attracted to little girls but they’re just ashamed to admit it. Personally, I don’t consider it abnormal and I’m not ashamed to admit that I have had sexual fantasies including even 5 year old girls. There are many female children who are really beautiful and have plenty of womanhood traits.


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