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  #1  
April 15th, 2013, 05:50 AM
Spyctre's Avatar Arwen
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Sensitive topic. I found something out last night from a friend, and I am really wondering about it now.

I was told someone I know--or thought I knew--very well had committed child on child sexual abuse. When he was between 13 and 15 he had abused her son, then 7ish now in his 20's, on multiple occasions. This was about 15 years ago.

I know people change greatly when they grow up, but could he have? Is there a chance he could ever abuse my kids? My husband already said he's no longer allowed at our home. His parents don't know, and I don't think I'm going to be the one that ever breaks that news to them.

I was reading that kids like that are very often abused themselves so now I'm wondering about other people in our old neighborhood. Did any of the other numerous children act especially child on child molestionally? I don't remember.

So do you think a child that did such a thing would do something like that as an adult? Do you outgrow it? Would you trust someone like that around your children even though the man always seemed like a wholesome person?
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  #2  
April 15th, 2013, 06:04 AM
mamarazzi40's Avatar Veteran
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The one being abused doesn't always become an abuser.

However, with the abuser how could you possibly know he has not continued? For me, there would be no possible way I'd let this person around my children. Period. Not. worth. the. risk.

First question though...Do you know if the information is credible?

I'd elaborate a lot more about this topic, but not on a public forum.

If you've never seen the episode of Oprah where she had an entire audience of men who were sexually abused as children, it's must see. I had NO idea that 1 in 6 boys are. That was astounding to me.
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  #3  
April 15th, 2013, 06:40 AM
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Wow, what a tough situation. I don't think I would be able to trust that person around my kids. I would be very leary of it. I know that the abused do not always grow up to abuse, but it is just a risk that I am not willing to take. I think I would distance myself and my family from the person in a non obvious way. I am so sorry that anyone has to deal with something like this.
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  #4  
April 15th, 2013, 07:02 AM
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  #5  
April 15th, 2013, 07:05 AM
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I am no expert, but I would be very wary about having him around a son, and never would leave him alone. Kids often sexually experiment with each other and younger kids might not realize they are being abusive, but the age difference - the abuser was post-pubescent and the abusee was prepubescent, suggests to me that he might have some pedophile leanings. Normally I would forgive small crimes committed by a 13 year old, but abuse leaves serious repercussions and as a parent I would be extra careful.
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  #6  
April 15th, 2013, 07:58 AM
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I kind of share Jenn's opinion...BUT I really don't know what I would do if I really were in that situation. ie knowing a person did such things as a teenager would I now allow my kids around that person. Then again, I never leave my kid alone anywhere with anyone except at preschool. So IDK! Also there is the question of what exactly was the 'abuse', ie how far did he go?? Sorry you are facing this situation. Just very difficult to deal with all around.
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  #7  
April 15th, 2013, 08:06 AM
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My mom had stuff happen to her by her cousins when they were kids. She won't tell me who it was, so I can't really even provide a useful anecdote, but none of them seem like predators now.

Thing is, if you're 13 years of age and you don't fully know what sex is or what the implications of something like that are (and in some populations, access to information about sex wasn't always readily available) you can make some bad decisions really quite innocently, but without more information about this individual, it's pretty hard to say either way. Were the acts forceful? Did the 7yo go along with things out of naivete? Kids are a whole different story, yanno?

I probably wouldn't kick the person out of my life, but I wouldn't leave them alone with my children either (due diligence) until such time as we could talk about what happened. If that day never came due to the nature of the relationship, then so be it.

This person isn't an automatic predator, but you're right to demonstrate a measure of caution. That said, the accused hasn't had a chance to defend himself legally, and so the claim that he's a pedophile is pretty libelous. Be really careful about how you proceed from here.
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  #8  
April 15th, 2013, 08:10 AM
soul_donut's Avatar Melissa
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Without knowing whether the person had faced legal issues for it, or received treatment, it's hard to say. People can move past stuff like that, and some people don't. I would just trust your gut.

My grandfather is very sweet and caring but has/had an alcohol problem - my mom never really left me there unsupervised just in case he had remembered he forgot something at the store and wanted to drive out to get it or something. He wouldn't try and put me at risk but addiction is powerful, and can override good reasoning. Same with any kind of untreated mental/medical issue...
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  #9  
April 15th, 2013, 08:11 AM
Leah
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First thing I wonder is exactly what age are we talking? I think there's a difference between 13 and 15. When I hear a 13 is involved in any sex act, I automatically think that there's either been abuse or they've been exposed to sexual behaviors.

Thinking about the late 90s, you did have some of the overtly sexual behavior that we see in media now, so kids being curious and acting as they see is possible - but extremely unlikely when the other party is 7. So this leads me to believe that if a 13 year old is abusing a 7 year old, there's a history of abuse. It may not be the case, but much more often than not, it is.

Now, if we're talking 15 on 7, then I think there's a higher chance that the 15 year old is acting out fantasies of their own. This could also be caused by abuse, but maybe not. I'd question if it was the first time the 15 year old had done it. I'm thinking that the older they are for the first time, it's more likely to be their own yearning versus learned behavior.

The next thing I'd wonder wound be if drugs or alcohol were involved. If so, were they simply dutch courage or part of the cause?

I do believe that kids who were abused can be rehabilitated. But I'd have to have proof beyond any doubt before I let my children around them. Not only do you have to worry about your kids' safety, but you've got to think about how you explain everything to them should they ever find out about the abuse (once they're of age to question). We spend all our time telling kids to be on the lookout for these bad people; it would be confusing to find out a friend is one of those people we warn them about.

I don't necessarily think that actual pedophiles stop thinking that way. I do believe that many probably don't act out of fear or guilt, but I'm not sure they stop having fantasies. I believe that perhaps it's wired in their brain.

If you're really close with this person, it may be best to address it, as awkward, scary and uncomfortable as that is. But in doing so you may get an explanation. You can judge his demeanor for yourself and that alone may go a long way to easing your mind, whatever your conclusion is, and if you care about this person I do think that's important. Just make sure that if you do, you've chosen a safe place - take into consideration that you can't anticipate how someone will react if they feel cornered and threatened. If this is someone you can easily cut out of your life, then maybe save the hassle.

Adding later: I do want to add that I do believe that ostracizing someone who has made efforts to become a productive, healthy member of society can be detrimental to whether or not they remain that way. I'd definitely be careful with what info gets out there. Which is a hard balancing act while also considering the safety of kids.
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  #10  
April 15th, 2013, 08:40 AM
~*Nicole*~'s Avatar Nicole
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It seems like you're asking about the perpetrator, not the victim. In that case, no I would not allow the person who committed those acts in my home or near my children. At 15, he knew what he was doing and was likely acting out of desire. I am very skeptical of rehabilitation for pedophiles who undergo treatment and have been incarcerated for their crimes, so someone who has never been held accountable would be at an even higher risk to reoffend. The fact that he appears "wholesome" is not a factor in his current behavior.

In this case, I think your husband is right not to want him around your family. It is better to be safe than sorry.
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  #11  
April 15th, 2013, 08:46 AM
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I also want to add not EVERY abuser is a pedophile.

And just because a child is a certain age doesn't mean they are mentally and physically that age. There is always more to the story.

Again, things are not always so black and white as most people assume.
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  #12  
April 15th, 2013, 08:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drewbears View Post
I also want to add not EVERY abuser is a pedophile.

And just because a child is a certain age doesn't mean they are mentally and physically that age. There is always more to the story.

Again, things are not always so black and white as most people assume.
Agreed. I think lots of times at a hormonal age, they are just looking for sexual release in the wrong place rather than specifically looking for or desiring a 'child' which is the definition of a pedophile. I worked for a medical transcription company & one of our clients treated people with such behaviors. I was exposed to a lot of sad information/stories. But the saddest were when they did stupid one time mistakes & were so guilty and wished they hadn't done been such astupid teenager.
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Last edited by Anitha; April 15th, 2013 at 08:55 AM.
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  #13  
April 15th, 2013, 08:59 AM
~*Nicole*~'s Avatar Nicole
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Someone who demonstrates a sexual proclivity towards children is a pedophile. The chances that it only happened that one time are slim to none. OP suggests that he acts normally now so it's safe to assume that he was a normal 15 year old. I don't think a sexual predator should ever get the benefit of the doubt. I think it is black and white, she doesn't know if he is still offending so wouldn't it be safer to assume that he is? I would without a doubt.
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  #14  
April 15th, 2013, 09:06 AM
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Nicole, my conclusion would be the same as yours if I were in OP's situation... like I mentioned in a previous post. But I feel sorry for that person looking at the situation from the outside. I am saying I wouldn't judge them so harshly based on heresay. But then again if it was in OP's shoes I'd keep my kid away too. Kind of hypocritical I know.
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  #15  
April 15th, 2013, 09:08 AM
~*Nicole*~'s Avatar Nicole
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anitha View Post
Agreed. I think lots of times at a hormonal age, they are just looking for sexual release in the wrong place rather than specifically looking for or desiring a 'child' which is the definition of a pedophile. I worked for a medical transcription company & one of our clients treated people with such behaviors. I was exposed to a lot of sad information/stories. But the saddest were when they did stupid one time mistakes & were so guilty and wished they hadn't done been such astupid teenager.
Being at a hormonal age does not excuse behavior like that. Our jobs as moms is to PROTECT our children from potential dangers, not feel bad for someone who molested a child because maybe they've changed.

ETA: i read your response after i posted this. I'm glad to knowyou would respond similarly. I really thought I was in the Twilight zone for a second lol
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Last edited by ~*Nicole*~; April 15th, 2013 at 09:10 AM.
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  #16  
April 15th, 2013, 09:14 AM
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Originally Posted by ~*Nicole*~ View Post
Being at a hormonal age does not excuse behavior like that! Our jobs as moms is to PROTECT our children from potential dangers, not feel bad for someone who molested a child because maybe they've changed.
Ouch Nicole...I do feel a bit attacked there. Like by feeling bad for someone who did that makes me a bad mom I did say that if I were in OP's position I'd keep my kid away. I am not trying to justify anything. But it hurts nevertheless to be implied that I am a bad mom. I usually try to tread very gently in controversial threads, but even then I guess I get burned sometimes. I will just try to be extra careful in posting opinions I guess. I was just thinking out aloud and kind of helping making kind conversation with the OP who is in a troubled situation. I wish you hadn't been so harsh
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  #17  
April 15th, 2013, 09:15 AM
Leah
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Being at a hormonal age does not excuse behavior like that!
There's a difference between an excuse and an explanation. And the alleged perpetrator in this case is also a child.

It most absolutely is the parent's responsibility to protect their child, but my personal opinion is that the protection should come from an educated opinion and currently not all facts are known. Immediately rounding up the lynch mob can do damage as well.
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  #18  
April 15th, 2013, 09:21 AM
~*Nicole*~'s Avatar Nicole
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Originally Posted by QL1516 View Post
There's a difference between an excuse and an explanation. And the alleged perpetrator in this case is also a child.

It most absolutely is the parent's responsibility to protect their child, but my personal opinion is that the protection should come from an educated opinion and currently not all facts are known. Immediately rounding up the lynch mob can do damage as well.
I'm pretty educated on sexual deviancy and recidivism for people who commit crimes against children. I wouldn't want or need to be educated further on the particular case if it were my children at potential risk. Why take the risk?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Anitha View Post
Ouch Nicole...I do feel a bit attacked there. Like by feeling bad for someone who did that makes me a bad mom I did say that if I were in OP's position I'd keep my kid away. I am not trying to justify anything. But it hurts nevertheless to be implied that I am a bad mom. I usually try to tread very gently in controversial threads, but even then I guess I get burned sometimes. I will just try to be extra careful in posting opinions I guess. I was just thinking out aloud and kind of helping making kind conversation with the OP who is in a troubled situation. I wish you hadn't been so harsh
I never implied anyone was a bad mom. Sorry if you took it the wrong way.
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  #19  
April 15th, 2013, 10:23 AM
Leah
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I'm pretty educated on sexual deviancy and recidivism for people who commit crimes against children. I wouldn't want or need to be educated further on the particular case if it were my children at potential risk. Why take the risk?
I'm pretty educated myself, both with sexual abuse and juvenile offenders; I'd not qualify children acting out as a result of abuse sexual deviants, which could be the case here. A 13 year old, even 15 year old, doesn't have a fully functioning brain and that can be related to certain behaviors. No diagnostician would label a 13 year old a pedophile. If this were an adult, I'd be right there saying no way, but because it was a child there's just too much that's unknown - especially if this is a person that's a close friend. If it weren't a close friend, I wouldn't deal with the hassle. But if it is, it's worth knowing whether you're dealing with someone who was acting out as a result of their own abuse, or if this is someone with their own behaviors. Lots of abused kids act out sexually without becoming predators. If the behavior continued into later teens then that's a sign that regardless of the origins of the behavior, it wasn't dealt with.
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  #20  
April 15th, 2013, 10:38 AM
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I was molested by my grandfather at 4 and raped by him at 12 and 13 so sexual abuse is a sore subject for me

I have known a child at 12 that did very wrong things to another child that was 5 and despite the issues that child had mentally or otherwise he committed sexual abuse plain and simple, 2 willing kids playing doctor(I did this lots as a child)and 1 kid doing something to another kid that they don't want are two VERY different things!!!!!

I would NOT let anyone I even suspect had committed sexual abuse around my children but that's just me!
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