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#188353 - 10/22/07 11:15 AM Biological basis for pedophilia?
Ken Singer, LCSW Offline
Moderator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/24/00
Posts: 5780
Loc: Lambertville, NJ USA

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#188368 - 10/22/07 01:11 PM Re: Biological basis for pedophilia? [Re: Ken Singer, LCSW]
Still Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/16/07
Posts: 6602
Loc: FEMA Region 1
Maybe if we understand what drives it, we can limit CSA???? Sure, I can see that...but I surely don't ever want to see the results of such research end up in court as any basis for excuse. THAT is exactly what has happened with many insanity defenses. e.g.: Genetic pre-disposition to offend in some way ought never excuse decision-based behavior.....or "his history as a CSA survivor ought to result in a lesser punishment."

Sometimes (especially these days) science sets out on looking for answers with a social/political agenda. I smell one here....sorry to say.

_________________________
I'm "that guy."

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#188382 - 10/22/07 05:39 PM Re: Biological basis for pedophilia? [Re: Still]
dgoods Offline
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Registered: 10/15/07
Posts: 622
Loc: Richmond area
I know that maybe i'm not able to be objective about this, but sometimes i feel like Satan himself could appear, sulfur and all, and be simply diagnosed as having "Personification-of-Evil Disorder". When i read the bit about physically castrated pedophiles taking testosterone supplements and abusing all over again, and keep seeing "disease" and "disorder" in reference to pedophilia, it bothers me. I fully agree that the area of their brain that regulates impulse control must be damaged or deficient in some way, but i truly believe that what might have been a treatable condition if caught very early, becomes burned into the brain irreversibly with time, and the real issue is sociopathology. Whenever i read about a pedophile's suicide, it seems to have been motivated by being caught, not by guilt or remorse. It's to escape punishment, not to silence inner demons. Again, if they thwart castration, it's not sexuality that's the question (unless they somehow managed to get the supplements before their natural testosterone wore off). It's about a complete lack of empathy, total selfishness, an inner blindness or disregard toward the difference between right and wrong. They know it's "wrong" in the eyes of others, they just don't care. The only thing "real" to them is themselves, others may as well be robots or dolls, to be handled as necessary. Not all are necessarily this type, but i would imagine there are far more that profile closer to Ted Bundy than Jeffrey Dahmer. I know that serial killers and pedophiles are two different things, but there's way too much overlap there to ignore. Dahmer strikes me as one who could have been salvaged if someone had intervened in his life early on, when his behavior started showing abnormal signs, like mutilating squirrels, etc. He struck me as psychotic but remorseful, that he could not control himself. Bundy never had to drink himself into a stupor before doing what he did, planned his actions well in advance, and was always a model of charm, success, and intelligence externally, unlike Dahmer, who barely was able to appear normal enough to others to keep a job or an apartment. My point is that biological or no, I believe 99% of active pedophiles aren't treatable by the time their actions finally involve law enforcement/psychiatric evaluation. A dog that repeatedly attacks people, or who is rabid, may evoke pity, and might be that way due to neglect or abuse; but those things do not prevent euthanasia being the only solution. I'm not saying all pedophiles should be summarily executed, just that detection, enforcement, and prevention should remain society's focus, outside of a clinical or research setting. Pedophiles often lead double lives for years; they remain focused on escaping detection and punishment, and can often even fool psychiatrists. Because they are not emotionally invested in social interaction, their detached perspective makes deception and manipulation as natural as breathing to them. If criminal psychiatry is able to make strides in better understanding the roots of pedophilia, all well and good; but keep 'em locked up while you're studying them- they're always just waiting for the rest of us to blink, so they can go back to abusing again.

_________________________
Give sorrow words: the grief that does not speak
Whispers the o'er-fraught heart and bids it break.

-William Shakespeare, Macbeth, Act IV, Sc. III

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#188395 - 10/22/07 08:10 PM Re: Biological basis for pedophilia? [Re: dgoods]
Trish4850 Offline
BoD Liaison Emeritus
MaleSurvivor<

Registered: 10/15/05
Posts: 3280
Loc: New Jersey
Robbie and dgoods - you both said everything I was thinking with much better words than I could ever muster, especially this:

Quote:
If criminal psychiatry is able to make strides in better understanding the roots of pedophilia, all well and good; but keep 'em locked up while you're studying them- they're always just waiting for the rest of us to blink, so they can go back to abusing again.


The author of the article says, "Experts say the public isn't ready to deal with the subject from a rational, medical perspective." Speaking as a member of the public - he's right!

ROCK ON.......Trish

_________________________
If you fall down 10 times, Stand up 11.

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#188396 - 10/22/07 08:12 PM Re: Biological basis for pedophilia? [Re: dgoods]
theatrekid Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 06/03/07
Posts: 702
Loc: oregon
Seriously guys did we all not already know the pedophiles were mentally different than us?

The article even says "Scientists agree that pedophiles can choose whether or not to act on their desires, and that abusers should be jailed."

so its not like the article is giving them an excuse.

I think the men who hurt us should be punished very harshly

but at the same time we must recognize that their is a mental illness at some level effecting these people. if we are aware of this perhaps one day we will be able to fix it. you can lock all the people up who have abused kids in the world but the next day there will be more people ready to take there places. Treatment Must be offered if we really want to ever find a complete solution.

thats my thoughts any ways.

,Chris


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#188411 - 10/22/07 10:57 PM Re: Biological basis for pedophilia? [Re: theatrekid]
WalkingSouth Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/30/05
Posts: 16265
Well said, Chris. Thanks.

_________________________
“Life’s journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out, shouting ‘Holy ____…! What a ride!’” ~Hunter S. Thompson

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#188414 - 10/22/07 11:28 PM Re: Biological basis for pedophilia? [Re: WalkingSouth]
theatrekid Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 06/03/07
Posts: 702
Loc: oregon
any time \:\)


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#188417 - 10/23/07 12:02 AM Re: Biological basis for pedophilia? [Re: theatrekid]
dgoods Offline
Guest

Registered: 10/15/07
Posts: 622
Loc: Richmond area
Like I said,
Research it like crazy, absolutely. Find whatever neurological markers there are, so that perhaps some type of screening would reveal the risk at an early age, and hopefully some type of preventative therapy, whether a drug, cognition/affect realignment, or whatever they come up with, will work.

What irritated me is that they're still not able to distinguish biological from environmental factors when noting differences- kinda makes me think that PTSD or other trauma-related disorders would show similar differences between a sufferer and a control subject, whether that sufferer was a war veteran, a SA survivor, or a victim of a natural disaster.

It's not about "punishment" for me, it's about prevention-
Let's keep the ones we know about off the street, explore all avenues of treatment while we've got them in a controlled environment, AND work with all possible speed and diligence to prevent new ones from taking their place.
Sound reasonable?

_________________________
Give sorrow words: the grief that does not speak
Whispers the o'er-fraught heart and bids it break.

-William Shakespeare, Macbeth, Act IV, Sc. III

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#188424 - 10/23/07 12:56 AM Re: Biological basis for pedophilia? [Re: dgoods]
theatrekid Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 06/03/07
Posts: 702
Loc: oregon
Not quite reasonable. What if a man knows he is a pedophile but has the guts to come forward before acting out against a child? what do we do with him? i honestly dont know the answer but if the person comes asking for help shouldnt we give it to him?

(when i say we i mean society not MS just to be clear)

,Chris


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#188450 - 10/23/07 08:50 AM Re: Biological basis for pedophilia? [Re: theatrekid]
Ken Singer, LCSW Offline
Moderator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/24/00
Posts: 5780
Loc: Lambertville, NJ USA
It must be pedophile week in Toronto. Here's the latest theory:

This morning's *Toronto Star* includes an articl: "Pedophiles tend to be
short men, study finds" by Joseph Hall.

Here's the article:

Pedophiles are significantly shorter on average than men who are
attracted to adults, according to a new study out of Toronto's Centre
for Addiction and Mental Health.

Similar height differences can be found in men who crave sex with
pubescent teenagers, say study researchers, who speculate the link
between stature and pedophilia might be traced to conditions in the womb.

The study - which looked at 1,200 men, most of whom were assessed for
sexual disorders between 1995 and 2006 at the centre - was published
yesterday in Sexual Abuse: A Journal of Research and Treatment.

It found pedophiles were 2 cm shorter than the average Canadian man, who
stands 178 cm or 5 feet 10 inches tall, a statistically significant
difference.

"It's about double the effect that would happen if a mother smokes while
she's pregnant," said CAMH psychologist James Cantor, the study's lead
author.

The height of men in the study who were attracted to young teenagers -
known as hebephiles - was right in the middle of the pedophile and non-
pedophile average.

Cantor stressed the vast majority of shorter men have no sexual desire
for children.

But for men who are pedophiles, the pre-birth conditions that affected
their growth could also have interfered with the sexual wiring of their
brains.

While nothing in the study pointed to the exact time such a neurological
change occurs, Cantor said earlier research indicates it happens in the
womb.

"Pedophiles are (also) about three times more likely to be left-handed
and that's something that really only happens with brain organization
before birth."

It is critical that people understand the condition is, at least in
part, dependent on biology, he said.

"What's important about this entire branch of research is that it
demonstrates pretty conclusively that it is indeed about how the body
grows and how the brain develops," Cantor said.

"There are still a great many people who believe that this is purely
learned, or (a psychological) reaction to something that happened in
childhood."

Pedophilia expert Dr. Fred Berlin, founder of the Johns Hopkins Sexual
Disorder Clinic in Baltimore, called the study interesting, but said it
left room for doubt.

Berlin said the study did not look at the height of parents, and so
there is a small possibility they may have shorter mothers and fathers.

He also said there was a chance shorter stature may have made the study
subjects targets for teasing, and that their condition was
psychologically induced in childhood.

But Cantor said the suspected biological link to the disorder does not
lessen the culpability of pedophiles who act on their sexual urges.

"The best analogy is that the great majority of males are attracted to
women for biological reasons, but that doesn't excuse rape," he said.

The research has potential for a medical prevention for pedophilia,
especially if the conditions that cause the disease can be identified
and altered in the womb.

No one knows what percentage of men are pedophiles, but Cantor said it
is a uniquely male condition and that his group at the centre assesses
250 to 300 men a year who are suspected of being pedophiles.


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