In its web magazine DW.DE, Germany’s international broadcaster Deutsche Welle has published an article emphasizing the distinction between sexual feelings and behavior, and the fact that MAPs can and do live law-abiding lives. The article tells the story of Graham, a British teenager who realized his attraction to younger children when he was 12, and who wants mental health care but is unable to find it. It also points out that Berlin’s most prominent hospital now provides a treatment program youth between ages 12 and 18 who realize they’re attracted to children. The article has some serious shortcomings–most importantly its focus on treatment for the sole purpose of control, a focus which fails to acknowledge the existence of both MAPs who don’t need such treatment, and those who seek services for a wide variety of other reasons. In addition, the article is accompanied by links to others in DW.DE that are based on the very myths the article attempts to dispel. However, the article seems to be part of an encouraging pattern of reports that are starting to challenge the myths, stereotypes, and stigma related to the attraction to children.
In this sensitive portrait of Daniel, who can only fall in love with a child, the director sought to demolish the label of sex offenders given to pedophiles and to highlight the taboos of modern society. A brave documentary encouraging discussion that would never be given the chance to take place, thus, setting a mirror up to the current level of social tolerance.
Researchers at Northwestern University, Department of Psychology, are conducting an anonymous survey of men attracted to persons below age 15. The purpose is further exploration of aspects of MAPs’ sexuality and personality that have not been studied well previously, such as attraction to adults and more unusual sexual interests. The anonymous survey should take about 30-45 minutes.
From Radio Prague:
The most discussed documentary at this year’s Jihlava festival was Daniel’s World, a portrait of a pedophile and other members of his community. Protagonist Daniel, who is in his 20s, speaks candidly about his love for a five-year-old boy – and about his responsibility to keep his urges in check. First-time director Veronika Lišková handles the subject sensitively – but why had she wanted to tackle such a thorny issue in the first place?
Think back to your first childhood crush. Maybe it was a classmate or a friend next door. Most likely, through school and into adulthood, your affections continued to focus on others in your approximate age group. But imagine if they did not. By some estimates, 1 percent of the male population continues, long after puberty, to find themselves attracted to prepubescent children.
From the Czech Film Center:
The feature-length documentary Daniel’s World by director Veronika Lišková takes a look at the world of the Czech paedophile community without prejudices or social stereotypes. The main figure in this tale of forbidden love and the constant struggle for self-reconciliation and for the possibility of acceptance in society is the young writer Daniel, who was born a paedophile. He is in love and he does not even hide his orientation from the parents of the boy he adores. The screening of the documentary on the borderline form of love and the human capability of trust and tolerance will be followed by a discussion with the director Veronika Lišková.
On Oregon Public Broadcasting’s Think Out Loud:
We’ll discuss combating the stigma of pedophilia and treatment options with author Wilson Kenney, who is the clinical director at the Professional Therapeutic Community Network in Salem. And we’ll talk with an Oregon man named Gary about how he has managed his own sexual feelings toward children.
From the Center for Sexual Justice:
A coalition of nonprofits alarmed about the gutting of patient confidentiality urges California Governor Jerry Brown to veto pending legislation that requires mental health practitioners to police their patients and report a growing list of statements to law enforcement—or face prosecution and potential jail time.
From CBC News Canada:
Ethan Edwards, a man in his mid-50s, last year confided his deepest secret to a close friend: that he was a pedophile. “He’s happy to keep my secret,” Edwards wrote in an online chat with CBC News, too fearful of vigilantes to give out his phone number. But he says his friend now feels infected by his secret. Edwards, a pseudonym, only realized he was attracted to young girls a few years ago. He says he’s never acted on it.