How could he?
This is a question I have wrestled with since I left my fathers house at fifteen. Here are the answers I have discovered after thirty years of asking.
1. No baby is born a sexual predator — brutally, they become one.
2. There are different types of predators with specific paraphilia’s, but usually they have more than one pathway for offending.
3. Sex offences are committed on a continuum from dreadful to even more dreadful.
4. Many pedophilic sex offenders have difficulty rightly relating to adults. Interpersonal isolation is always a factor. Having a legitimate means of sexual expression is not a remedy to sex offending.
5. A combination of attachment issues, personality disorder (i.e. narcissism, sociopathic, etc.) engagement in cognitive distortions, sexual entitlement, and moral disengagement are at play.
6. Sexual predators often start early and stay late. Early intervention can help. Most sex offenders self report a lifetime of offences if given the opportunity to reoffend.
7. Sex offenders will offend in their heads (fantasy) when they can’t offend with their bodies.
8. Recidivism rates reflect the rate of getting caught in a repeated offence — they do not accurately reflect the number of repeat offences or efficacy of rehabilitation.
9. Sex offenders should be treated — they should never be trusted.
10. The issue of redemption is a tricky one that I have wrestled with deeply. Great evil requires a great remedy — those who commit the former, rarely want the latter.
11. 93% of sex offenders self report to be religious or very religious. The very religious have the highest number of victims, the youngest victims, and commit the most egregious crimes.
12. There is a link between religiosity and criminality — this link should be explored.
13. True monsters are rare — but they do exist.
14. All sex offenders lead a double life. All.
15. Sex offenders dehumanize their victims with sexual abuse. Any remedy to the problem of sexual abuse will include humanizing offenders and understanding the pathway to pathology/paraphilia.
15. It is humans who do these inhumane things to other humans. Do not likewise dehumanize offenders into monsters.
16. It shows a grave lack of knowledge/awareness to suggest that sexual offenders are merely committing run of the mill sin.
17. He ‘could’ because sexual abuse has a dreadfully low detection/incarceration rate (3-5%).
18. He ‘could’ because even when she disclosed you didn’t believe her anyway.
19. He ‘could’ because he held the balance of power and he abused that power.
20. I confronted my father when I was still a child in his care. I demanded to know why he was abusing minor children and women for sex when he already had a legitimate means of sexual activity.
This is what he said,
“It’s not about sex, it’s about power.”
That was the most profound thing my father ever said to me. I will never forget it. If you have read this all the way through, I hope you never for get it too.