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On the last track, we discussed several characteristics of co-addicts and the how they affect the client’s behavior. These characteristics included: distortion of reality; feelings of inadequacy and grandiosity; and enabling.
On this track, we will break down the personality types of pedophiles in order to better educate the parents of victims and the victims themselves. These personality types include: the powerless personality; the antisocial personality; the sexually impotent personality; and the impulsive personality.
What is one of the most common questions that parents of sexually abused or online stalked children ask you? In my experience, the most-asked question is “Why and how could this have happened? Who would do something like this?” Mary and Paul, parents of Genevieve age 16, asked these same questions. They wished to villainize the perpetrator and paint him as a conniving and strategizing stalker-in-the-night.
I have found that this image would only augment the Genevieve’s sense of helplessness in a world she has no control over. To counteract this, I try and provide relatively mature clients, like Genevieve, with a profile of perpetrators and the motives behind their actions. By understanding the victimizer, the family can better cope with the why and the how.
I have also found that families whose children have been abused by an anonymous online stalker are even more confused and helpless. A stranger has no face and personality and the family has an extremely, almost impossibly, difficult time in understanding the motives behind the pedophilic disorder.
On this track, I have included personality types consistent with certain pedophiles because I have found this is the most effective way to explain the pedophilic mindset to families and victims. I also include, in each category, a personal example of a client. Obviously, these clients and their names are fabricated and derived from generalizations of years of experience.
#1 The Powerless Personality
I gave a fabricated example to Mary and Paul. I stated, “Say you have a person, let’s call him ‘Joe.’ Joe rarely asserts himself and has difficulty forming friendships with adults who intimidate him. Because of this, he seeks the friendship of children, who rarely impose any sort of authority on him. Sometimes, if he is sexually confused, these friendships turn sexual.” How would you explain the powerless personality to your clients?
#2 The Antisocial Personality
Males brutalized by fathers often develop strong antisocial characteristics. These personality types grow up to be manipulating, impulsive, and extremely aggressive. I put it into other words for Mary and Paul. I stated, “Say this person, let’s call him, ‘Matthew’ was sexually abused as a child by his father. Not only that, but he was beaten severely if he resisted. Growing up in that kind of environment, Matthew became resentful of the world and its values, holing himself off emotionally and morally from that which hurt him.” How would you explain the antisocial personality to your clients?
#3 The Sexually Impotent Personality
Untreated, their sexual failure will increasingly whittle away at their self-esteem, making them more prone to seek sexual fulfillment in less conventional ways. My example to Mary and Paul went as follows, “Let’s call the sexually impotent personality, ‘Mike.’ ‘Mike’ is experiencing terrible shame because he just can’t seem to attract women much less receive sexual satisfaction from them. ‘Mike,’ bombarded with societal preconceptions about the connection between masculinity and promiscuity, feels less of a man. This attack on his personal identity leads him to try to find other sexual outlets, such as children.” How would you explain the sexually impotent personality to your Mary and Paul?
#4 Impulsive Personality
This kind of person is different from the norm in that he acts on his impulses whether they are socially acceptable or not. He will not restrain himself. His needs take precedence over other people’s feelings or even society’s rules. He may feel guilt afterward, but he cannot control his urges until they are satisfied.
I explained this type of personality to Mary and Paul through the following example, “‘Gil’ had trouble controlling himself. At parties and gatherings, he drank too much, smoked too much, and ate too much. Many people who knew him thought he just liked to have a good time. However, ‘Gil’ had a darker side to his spontaneity. When he got home, away from the societal restraints of groups and parties, ‘Gil’ turned to the internet to satisfy his need for sexual fulfillment. Sometimes, this included pictures of children and even talking to pre-teens online, toying with the idea of meeting them. He had to yet act on this impulse, but it was always there in the back of his mind.”
How would you explain the impulsive personality to your Mary and Paul?
On this track, we broke down the personality types of pedophiles in order to better educate the parents of victims and the victims themselves. These personality types included: the powerless personality; the antisocial personality; the sexually impotent personality; and the impulsive personality.
On the next track, we will discuss concepts related to the unique world of internet pedophilia and educating the victimized family with these concepts. These concepts include: accessibility; anonymity; and lack of consequences.
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