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9. Conclusions and Recommendations

The stated goal of this pilot study was to capture the self-concept characteristics, sense of  well-being, and feelings of being under stress of pedophilic men from general as well as  differential perspectives using quantitative and qualitative methodologies. 

The results  make it clear that the social status of primarily pedophilic men is, in the long run, an  untenable situation, which is presumably even more brutal than that which faced  homosexuals in the 1970s. Although sexual science's theoretical viewpoint on and  assessment of the phenomenon are quite different matters, many authors have called for a more constructive social approach with this marginal group. In the final analysis, with any change in approach the highest priority would be given to the presumed well-being of  the child, which would be the decisive factor. 

(Stöckl, 1998; Seikowski, 1999;  Bundschuh,  2001;  Dieth, 2004)

The conceptual framework underlying this study, that of operational psychology, suggests that pursuing an exclusively interventionist approach -- moving away  from making improvements in act-regulatory capabilities and general well-being -- is  inadequate. If they are to be taken more seriously, it would of course be a good idea to  provide locally-based and anonymous offers of therapy to pedophilic men. Albeit slowly,  the first steps toward this have already been taken (Berlia's pilot project at Charité). 

A more effective and constructive approach with this marginal group would, however,  only be possible if the social circumstances were also addressed, and the conditions of  isolation were overcome. Both pedophilic persons as well as -- indirectly -- the effected  children would thereby be helped. Implicit in the operational psychology conceptual framework is an assumption that because it is too much for him or her, a child can  potentially be primarily or secondarily harmed by a sexual advance as well as the circumstances surrounding it (the child becomes the bearer of secrets). 

Under current conditions, the risk of secondary harm to children is presumably such  higher that it would be if the phenomenon were dealt with in a more objective and  intercessory manner (e.g., extra-juridical resolution, mediation). This point of view is also  increasingly present in the English speaking realm. The argument is typically along the  lines that because there would thereby be greater controllability, the best prevention  would be the social integration of this minority. (Silverman & Wilson, 2002). 

In the author's opinion, it is incumbent upon a humanistic-oriented sexual science to  contribute to the de-demonization of persons with this sexual orientation. Important  starting points for this endeavor lay in the areas of teaching, research, and politics. 

In the several years of a psychologist's training, university curricula should devote at least  a few hours to considering the phenomenon and its attendant social problems from  various perspectives. Insofar as it is possible, it would be a good idea to invite those  concerned to be interview partners in these sessions, so that each student can also get a  personal impression of these individuals. To the extent that it actually has been  addressed, chiefly by psychology faculties in Germany, there has not been one word as to  the differentiability of this sexual science topic. 

It would be helpful to have additional empirical research whose stated aim is to provide  discernible benefits to effected children as well as pedophilic men. The finding of the  present work suggest that it would be interesting to classify a larger number of pedophilic men who are living abstinently in terms of their sense of well-being and  feelings of being under stress and then compare them, via interview, with reference to  individual mastery-styles. Such a research plan would encompass ideas relating to  prevention, while simultaneously supplying important suggestions for counseling or  therapy directed towards the population of pedophilic men. This could provide an  answer to the question of which abstinent, individual lifestyles, under what conditions , are more likely to be saluto-genetically favorable or unfavorable. 

A clear improvement in the life-situation. of pedophilic persons can be attained  chiefly trough a de-pathologization of the phenomenon on the sexual-political level. (APA, WHO) When the point of reference is the norm of compulsory heterosexuality and the psychoanalytic paradigm, there are among pedophiles --  just as with gays and lesbians -- real psychodynamic peculiarities in the sexual sphere, with important psychical functions. In the sexual sphere they are simply differently and immutably oriented. 

As Rauchfleisch (1996) makes clear, a pathologizing approach leads to exclusion and stigmatization. This should not be the psychologist's job. For purely pragmatic reasons, the deletion or de-listing of the primary form of pedophilia (the same applies to transsexuals) in the international diagnosis system ICD-10 and DSM-IV-TR is to be demanded (See Green 2002). 

Whether it is a form of pathology or not cannot, in the final analysis, be answered by supposedly 'objective science'; rather, it is, as in the analogy to homosexuality, a morally and ethically influenced values question which is socially constructed. It has simply become politically correct to not declare homosexuals disordered on the basis of their sexual orientation. The same should apply to persons with a pedophilic orientation. 

Furthermore, given the fact that most of those effected find them helpful, the question arises as to what extent pedophile self-help groups are worthy of social support (e.g. making space available, club memberships, etc.). In the media, pedophile self-help groups are sometimes categorically characterized as criminal rings. Based on the author's experience, there are some serious pedophile self-help groups which incorporate expert psychological care (e.g. in Frankfurt) that certainly do not constitute criminal organizations, and which are worthy of support. This is also Dieth's (2004) impression. 

Partly due to the pedophile emancipation movement, the demand for sex with children has been brought out into the open with a vengeance. Such demands are counterproductive and are likely to foster prejudice against the pedophile minority, making the former even stronger. There is no doubt that the inner views of a major portion of pedophiles are simply not comparable to those of the average citizen. 

It should be emphasized that there is no general perceptual disorder among those affected. In personal conversations, respondents were clearly in a position to recognize potentially harmful aspects for the children; among 'dark number' pedophilic men, there is no lack of reflective ability per se. The SSF results also speak to this. However, when criminally convicted pedophiles are considered part of this 'clear number' -- which is normally the case -- additional aspects such as the 'perpetrator-responsibility defense-system' (Deegener, 1995) and 'self-exchange actions' (Berner, 1985) must also be considered when assessing perception. Under these conditions, a pedophile would not behave any differently from any other sexual delinquent ('of course they wanted it'), which has to do with justification pressures. 

Pedophilic men's inner view -- that sexual contacts with children do not automatically  lead to detectable harm to the boy or girl -- is in fact anchored in reality. 

(See. e.g., Sandfort, 1986; Rind, Tromovitch and Bausermann, 1998

A different approach to this subject will strike many people as provocative, and will  obviously arouse strong fears about the decline of moral values. (Jenkins, 1998*) Due to  the high degree of downright hatred directed towards this minority, great significance  must be attributed to projective mechanisms. 

[* For Jenkins, go to < http://www.ipce.info/ipceweb/Library/reg_j.htm > and scroll to "Jenkins".]
(Hauptmann, 1975; Bornemann, 1985; Griesemer, 2004c)

Phallometric studies show that there is a large number of men with secondary  pedophilic tendencies. (Berner, 2002) Moreover, a large number of female victims exist. Both  influence factors bolster this assumption. 

What in more recent times has become a classic example of the manifestation of a panic  over the decline of traditional values are the reactions in the United States to the large  meta-analysis by Rind, Tromovitch & Bauserman (1998). This study, adjudged 
by peer reviews to be scientifically correct, which was published in the American  Psychological Association's (APA) respected technical journal Psychological Bulletin, was  demonized by the American Congress, on the basis of moralistic value judgments, 
as untrustworthy. In the United States, Republican politics combined with moralistic  judgments arrogate to themselves the right to decide which research is scientifically  proper and which is not. Obviously the only scientific results approved by  politics are those which are in accord with its own particular image of the world. 

Those reactions can be explained in terms of mechanisms and assumptions which Jenkins (1998) and -- above all -- Jost et al. (cited in Stöcker, 2003), describe, 'particularly in a  strongly Christian-imprinted country with a real and palpable tendency towards  encroaching religious fanaticism (Chomsky, 2004). 

On July 3rd, 2003 in the German parliament, a proposed law to strengthen reporting  requirements, which would have criminalized scientific studies in the area of  pedosexuality, was rejected. 

It is the view of Grandt & Jamin (2002) that the nature and ways in which sexual offenses  are dealt with governmentally, in research in this area, and in media reports represents a 
great challenge for every social community. Constructiveness in dealing with this  difficult subject would, in the final analysis, be a good indicator of how well a society  grasps the notion of democracy. 

Differences in the understanding of democracy between  the U.S. (see, e. g. , "Megan's Law") and 'Old Europe' are still discernible. However, there  is, in our country [Germany], also the following problem: Researchers who do not condemn this phenomenon from the very beginning make themselves targets and have in  the past sometimes been slandered by colleagues, which has not contributed to  a constructive discussion of the topic. Perhaps it might be necessary and sensible  to establish definite rules for dealing with one another via the [German] Professional Association of Psychologists (RDP). 

At present, as far as the subject of pedophilia is concerned, it would appear that sexual  science has been turned into the "whore of politics." (see Gigi 1/2006.) A discussion aimed  at improving the social situation of pedophilic men and the children effected  can, moreover, only be conducted constructively if the demand by representatives 
of pedophilic interests for the legalization of pedosexual contacts is tamped down. In the  current Zeitgeist this has shown itself to be fruitless, leading to a dead end. 

Even if harm is not always empirically detectable, it will, with great certainty, remain a  utopian dream to believe ,that pedosexual contacts would ever be legalized at  such-and-such time or place. The pedophile minority really has scarcely any chance of  crawling out of the air completely. Clinging to this Utopia is, however, obviously  important to many pedophiles, while at the same time also constituting -- looking at it in 
a different way -- a kind of tragedy. 

A more humane and constructive approach to this marginal group should be developed.  The author concurs with the option of Schmidt (1999), who writes of the tragedy of  pedophilic men: 

"Pedophilia is exactly like the love that homosexuals or heterosexuals have  for others of the same or the other gender, with the difference that whereas one  is permitted, the other  -- pedophilia -- is fundamentally prohibited, its  realization scarcely even possible. Because of this burden, and the imposition  of not being able to live out their love and sexuality, they deserve respect, not  contempt; solidarity, not discrimination." (pg. 139)

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