Virtuous Pedophiles


ASAP: A Virped Perspective

I'm writing this specifically for the ASAP website. It's based on my experience at Virped and attempts to describe why the relationship between Virped and ASAP is so important.

I should note that in my experience prior to Virped, my advice to those who were considering some form of therapeutic counseling was always: Don't do it under any circumstances. The risk of your life being ruined is too great. You never know how someone will interpret the concept of mandatory reporting. Will a therapist determine that an admission of being attracted to children constitutes being a danger to them? How will they interpret an admission to having viewed child pornography? If they listened to me, that left them with peer support only. Sometimes, that was adequate, sometimes, not so much.

Who joins Virped? People who are attracted to children but are determined never to engage in sexual contact with them. Some are totally comfortable in their resolve and are at peace with their attraction. But the majority is there for support. The simple acknowledgment that there are others like them is often a great relief. Too many have adopted a societal image of a monster and wonder if that's who they are destined to become. In an ongoing survey of members, less than 10% say that they have never contemplated suicide. 25% say they've attempted it.

Peer support is often sufficient, but so often, it isn't. Just today, I was reading a post by someone who was encouraged that his new therapist was experienced in sex related issues, but before he could mention anything about his attractions, she said she doesn't judge anyone, except pedophiles. He came away from the session, more depressed than he already was. Today someone else posted: "I am truly grateful I found my current therapist because I would have committed suicide long ago otherwise. I am slowly regaining hope to live a happy life, learning so very much about myself and trying to be a better person every day."

Some days, it seems that dozens of members describe a need for therapy and counseling. We try to help as best we can. Often, we refer them to Gary Gibson to see if there is a safe ASAP therapist in their area, or maybe provide a referral to a trusted online counselor. But the need is a significant one that we are constantly reminded of.

A therapist may ask if treating someone who self identifies as being committed to never having sexual contact with a child, will help prevent child abuse? Speaking on behalf of Virped, I think it's unlikely that a member would abuse a child, even if they don't have access to therapy. But that's just an opinion and there is some speculation involved. It's not difficult to see that a pedophile who has progressed from a self loathing state, to one in which they're able to cope and understand that they have the ability to control their actions, is someone who is safer than a person who has concluded that they're a monster anyway, so why not act out their fantasies. Simply put, therapists can aid in making pedophiles more self accepting and confident, while at the same time, helping keep children safe.

About the author

Nitro (pseudonym) is an administrator on Virped's peer support forum.

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