Juvenile, Pedophile, Heterophile: Hermeneutics of Science, Medicine and Law in Two Outcome Studies

Medicine and Law

Money, J., & Weinrich J. D.
Pagination39 - 54


Two young men, aged eighteen and twenty respectively, had a history of a juvenile and early adolescent relationship with an older male pedophilic lover. The erotosexual component of the relationship ended when the younger partner became too sexually mature, at which time each had a pair-bonded love affair with a girl. Subjectively and behaviorally they were neither homosexual nor pedophilic in orientation. They evaluated themselves as having not been traumatized by having had a history of a relationship with a pedophile.


In many legal codes pedophilia is synonymous with child molestation or abuse and, regardless of the involvement of threat and injury, is classified as a crime. In medicine and science, it is classified as one of the paraphilias, the catalogue of which comprises approximately thirty.4,8 A paraphilia is one type of erotosexual (i.e., erotic and sexual) syndrome in which erotosexual imagery and activity are atypical as judged by ordinary criteria of male-female erotosexualism. Gender transpositions, in particular bisexuality or homosexuality, belong in a separate category.

Principles of Paraphilia

There are two principles, displacement and inclusion, according to which the paraphilias are atypical. In the displacement paraphilias, erotosexual arousal and the achievement of orgasm are dependent not on the imagery or practice of genital juxtaposition, per se, but on a component element of erotosexualism that takes its place. This component is ordinarily peripheral or preliminary to the meeting of the genitals together. In exhibitionism as a paraphilia, for example, display of the genitalia takes the place of penovaginal pairing. 

In the inclusion paraphilias, erotosexual arousal and the achievement of orgasm are dependent not on genital juxtaposition, per se, but on the inclusion of some component element not ordinarily integral to an erotosexual pairing. Klismaphilia is an example. In this paraphilia. being given an enema becomes more orgasmically stimulating, in imagery and practice, than is penovaginal pairing.

Pedophilia is one of the inclusion paraphilias, insofar as affection and behavior usually typical of the parent-child relationship become included in the pedophile's erotosexual relationship.

Pedophilia, by definition, is a relationship between a person of juvenile age and an older person mature enough to create a pregnancy and become a parent. Pedophilia is not the same as ephebophilia in which, by definition, the relationship is between an adolescent and an adult. Pedophilia is also not the same as gerontophilia in which, by definition, the relationship is between a young adult and a person of the parental or grandparental generation.

Pedophilia is not synonymous with pedophilic sadism. The two are commonly confused, as in the vernacular use of the terms, child molestation and sexual child abuse. Pedophilic sadism or abuse constitute, by definition, a relationship between an adolescent or adult and a child in which the child is violently abducted and/or assaulted. Pedophilic sadism is not synonymous with pedophilic lust murderism (erotophonophilia) which is, by definition, a relationship between an adolescent or adult and a child that culminates erotically in the child's murder.

The conjunction of two paraphilias, as in the conjunction of pedophilia with sadism or lust murderism is not common, and one does not characteristically develop into the other.

Pedophilia uncontaminated by any other paraphilia is defined as the erotosexual condition in which an older person's erotic arousal, and the facilitation or achievement of orgasm, are responsive to or dependent upon the imagery or actuality of erotosexual activity with a prepubertal or early pubertal child. The sex of the child is typically exclusively male or exclusively female. A pedophilic relationship may be transient or lasting, and well matched or poorly matched in its reciprocity. In a lasting relationship, the pair-bondedness of the two partners may be loose or intense. Characteristically, the erotosexual component of the pair-bond is destined to come to an end when the younger person reaches the maturity of adolescence, chiefly insofar as the older partner in a pedophilic relationship cannot, by definition, experience or maintain erotosexual attraction towards (or be in love with) a partner who is postpubertal and mature. In addition, the younger person grows out of a parent-child type of relationship and typically becomes erotically attracted to a same-age, other-sex partner. For both partners in a pedophilic relationship, the break in their erstwhile erotosexual interaction does not dictate a complete estrangement, but allows the continuance of a non-erotosexual friendship.

Purpose and Rationale

This report presents a follow-up of two youths each with a history of having been the younger partner in a long-term relationship with an older, pedophilic man. The availability of such cases for follow-up is rare, but rarity value is not the sole criterion on which their presentation is justified. They represent also the value of the statistical calculus of the extreme case, that is to say the case that contradicts a widely held assumption or hypothesis. In the present instance, it is a popularly held assumption that if a prepubertal youth has an erotosexual relationship with an older man, then that relationship will inevitably be experienced as molestation and abuse, and will have undesirable sequelae, including homosexuality, behaviorally and erotosexually, in the boy's subsequent development. These two cases contradict these assumptions, and thus show that they do not apply universally.

Sample Selection and Procedure

The two youths herein presented became available for interviews because their
lovers had enrolled themselves at Johns Hopkins in a program of therapy,
combining antiandrogen and counseling (Money 1980), for paraphiliacs. The two men were self-referred. They were not on probation, and not under legal obligation to
participate in the program.

In the files of the Johns Hopkins Psychohormonal Research Unit, there are
listed six youths, all males, with an erotosexual history of a relationship with an
older male. Two of these six did not qualify for the present sample because the
genito-sexual activities in which they had been involved were nonconsensual. A
third was excluded because he was already an adolescent when he began a
relationship with an ephebophile, not a pedophile. The remaining three qualified
for inclusion except that one of them was too soon lost to follow-up. The other
two, the subjects of this report, have been in follow-up for six and four years,
respectively. Both were fourteen years old when first seen.

The data here reported were abstracted from indexed case files of
accumulated notes and taped and transcribed interviews. The interviews had been
obtained from both partners, with supplementary information from relatives.
Interviews covered a systematic catalogue of topics covered in variable sequence
so as to avoid stiltedness. Each topic was introduced with open-ended inquiry
prior to forced-choice and true-false questioning.

First Case Report: Andy and Tom

Mutual Bonding

Andy, just turned twelve, met Tom, who was around thirty, through two boys who
knew Tom well and had spent time with him. Tom recognized Andy's need for
friendship and big brotherhood.

  • "There was a note written by one of the school teachers", he subsequently recalled, "saying that Andy had not been able to develop an adequate adult-child relationship and, therefore, was not able to do his work properly — but that he would have no difficulty if the teacher were willing to bring him up to the front of the room and keep him on his lap at all times".

At home, Andy and his older brother got little more than their basic subsistence from their father, an older man, overburdened with the financial responsibility of a young second wife incapacitated by a degenerative disease. She was confined permanently to a wheelchair.

Tom had first become acquainted with Andy's father at his place of work, and the two eventually decided on a rent-sharing arrangement. Even before he moved in with the family, however, Tom was attentive to Andy's need to be cared for.

  • "One night", he said, "when the time came to go to bed, he walked up to me and lifted his arms over his head as though he expected me to help him take his shirt off — took it for granted that I would know what to do, even though it would have been very easy for him to take the shirt off himself, with no help. And he was of the age where most boys would not want help".

Sex and Eroticism

As Andy recalled it, when first interviewed, he had known Tom for somewhat
longer than two months when their relationship first involved genital contact. It
was limited to oral sex performed on him.

  • "The first one", he said, "well, it was kind of — scared, you know. I didn't know really much about it, because I was still young. I was kind of . . But, I was familiar with all the stuff, like between the legs with your tongue, and all that . . from magazines".

The feeling was pleasant, but different from that which would accompany ejaculation when it began at age fourteen.

He had never had a sexual experience "with another kid", he said. But he had
picked up enough street wisdom to know that a kid might have an episode of
homosexual experience. Indeed, his brother, two years older, subsequently
disclosed that he himself, as a younger teenager, had had a homosexual affair with
an older teenager, nineteen years old, though he believed that he had kept it
hidden from Andy, and wanted it to remain so.

Andy's street wisdom was broad enough to include the possibility of a homosexual experience that might involve brutality:

  • "Like some queers, they grab you and shove you in the car, and have sex with you, and if you don't, they'll punch you in the face, or something, and beat you up, or something like that".

In his own relationship, he had no worry about brutality. There had been no
history of force, nor of threat. Though he recognized his partner as homosexual,
he considered him "just as normal as anybody else".

He recognized himself as not homosexual, in part because in his fantasies his
erotic partner was female. He considered it would be abnormal for him to be
kissing with his male partner, and so did not. He avoided also anal intercourse. He
found fellatio performed on himself agreeable. The sensations did not include
orgasm, he said, until he became old enough to ejaculate semen. He preferred
genital contact to be infrequent, and eventually maintained it at the rate of about
once a month, according to his own report. He very rarely reciprocated,
genitosexually, in which case he would assist his partner manually. Otherwise the
partner would go down on him, orally, while manually stimulating his own penis.

He did not actually say in words that the genito-sexual activity was a tradeoff
for the non-erotic benefits, financial and otherwise, that accrued to him because of
his friendship with Tom. On one occasion, however, he actually worked out a
balance sheet of what his family could afford in better housing and higher
standard of living, because of the costs shared by Tom. He himself enjoyed better
food, clothing, recreation and transportation. He received help with schoolwork,
advice on contraception applicable to himself and his girlfriend, and advice on
avoiding street drugs. On one occasion, Andy said of his friend: "He is like a
second father to me".

Loyalty and Love

In the course of talking about his relationship with Andy, Tom did not call it a love
affair or say that he was in love. Nonetheless the intensity of his devotion, affection, and limerence [*1] was clearly evident. 

  • [*1] Limerence: the state of having fallen in love and being love-smitten. The term was coined by Dorothy Tennov (Love and Limerence — The Experience of Being in Love. New York, Stein & Day, 1979). In usage, it is an analog of grief.

On one occasion, he referred to a job offer in a far distant state. Even though it represented a substantial advancement, he could not take it, he decided, because he could not bear to be separated from Andy.

He suffered in the way that a limerent lover suffers from lovesickness as Andy
advanced into a well-virilized teenager and claimed more and more of the
independence that both of them had always tacitly anticipated and agreed upon,
in advance. Andy gave progressively increasing amounts of his time to a girlfriend
relationship which, as it developed, bore all the hallmarks of a teenaged love
affair. Though his sex life became transposed exclusively to his girlfriend, socially
he remained loyal to Tom without spending too much time with him. For its entire
duration, his side of the relationship with Tom had always been characterized by
loyalty rather than limerent love.

Eventually, for Tom, the quality of the relationship metamorphosed from love
into loyalty, also. As the maturity of his partner's adolescence progressed, he
found his own erotic response to him weaker and less frequent. It became
necessary to get Andy to take a shower and wash away adult apocrine odors
before having sex. The growth of pubic and axillary hair became a turn-off, as did
body hair, developing muscles, and getting too tall. Eventually adolescent facial
appearance joined the list, though the voice change was not given specific
mention. Nor was the increase in genital size.

The last time the two of them had sex together, Andy lay on the bed,
indifferent, covering his face with his hands. By this time they had begun to find
fault with each other, and quarreled more over petty things. Some years later, the
joint living arrangement ended when Tom moved out of state to a new job. Andy
opted to stay behind, chiefly to remain close to his girlfriend.


Andy reported that the only girlfriend he had ever had, prior to adolescence, was
when he was six years old. As a young adolescent, the most he had done was
kissing. He became attracted to a girl of his own age, but was only at the stage of
deciding "I might ask her to go with me".

According to his friend, Tom, he was at this time overtly attracted to females:

  • "He likes to look at pictures of women scantily clad. He talks about the girls in the neighborhood that he likes. He tries to draw my attention to women in the street when we're driving in the car . . . Once, in the office here, he tried to indicate to me by sign language that he liked the breasts on one of the women".

By the time he was fifteen, Andy told Tom that he was being pressured by a twelve-year-old girl to have sex with her. So, on his behalf, Tom obtained information on contraception. Subsequently, Andy himself had reported that he had had sex with a couple of girls who "were just out for getting lucked," and who didn't want him to use a condom.

By the time he was seventeen, he met a girl of fifteen whose relationship with him was completely different. They became lovers and established a sex life together, using contraception. They saw each other with great regularity and began thinking seriously of getting married, if only they could manage the finances.

In this relationship, the sexual/erotic encounters were mostly initiated by himself, Andy reported,

  • "though sometimes when I walk by her, she'll grab my ass, and all, like once when I was trying on some jeans. Like she adores my ass and all, and wants to play with it. She thinks its real sexy, but I don't think so. I don't think it's all that terrific. I just think I'm an average guy."

The relationship was more than sexual.

  • "I can talk to her," Andy said, "and tell her how I feel. And shell understand, and shell try to do whatever she can to help me. She won't just say: 'Well, this guy's getting a lot of problems, the hell with him,' and just split. She'll stand beside me, in case I need somebody to lean on".

It was very different with an earlier girlfriend.

  • "Whenever she'd get a problem", he said, "she'd run away from it. She'd either drink it away, to forget it — or smoke something, or take something . . . If you can't face your own problems, I said to her, you ain't going to get nowhere, because everywhere you go, you're going to run into them".

At the age of seventeen, Andy had no future image or anticipation of homosexuality as a component of his sexual life, not even on a bisexual basis.

Family Nonintrusiveness

For the years that Tom and Andy lived under the same roof as Andy's parents and older brother, they were circumspect about their shared sexual activities. The other three remained unheeding.

  • "They don't indicate that they know anything about it", Tom said. "It's difficult to believe that they haven't really guessed about it, but Andy hasn't told them anything, and I haven't either . . . I don't see how anybody with normal intelligence shouldn't be able to figure it out . . . I think it's because they know that the benefit Andy gets from associating with me outweighs any harm he might get".

Andy's own agemates were not so unheeding.

  • "If we were riding skateboards", he reported, "they'd take their skateboards and run them into the back of mine and say: `Oh, don't that feel like a dick going in an ass?' I mean, it was really hard to do anything . . so we just moved away".

The move was made possible by a financial agreement on housing that his father and Tom made jointly. In the new location, there was no more harassment.

  • "They just think of us as friends", Andy said, "like everybody has friends . . . And like Tom is just living with us. They think he's pretty cool". 

Second Case Report: Burt and Don 

Mutual Bonding

Burt was a seven year old with a history of successful cardiac surgery and juvenile baseball enthusiasm when he first crossed tracks with Don, a volunteer leader in community sports. They did not really get to know each other, however, until Burt was old enough to join the football team of which Don was the coach. At that timehe was approaching puberty.

He was a middle child in a large family in which his father was preoccupied with earning a living, with his wife's excessive drinking, and with the teenaged social problems of his older children.

  • "The signs say that I needed the attention", Burt reflected at age seventeen. "Like every involvement — if you don't need the attention, and you don't like it to start with, then you would back out immediately. So I must have needed the attention, and liked to have it go on as it was . . . At first I didn't know that he was the way he is. I thought he was normal — pretty neat. . . When I found out, I still liked him enough to still hang around with him".

Sex and Eroticism 

On weekends, and with his parents' consent, Burt spent overnight visits at Don's house. They slept in separate beds in the same room. At the outset, there was no sexual contact, but

  • "he told me that he was that way", Burt later recalled, "and I knew he couldn't go on forever not doing none of those things".

So Burt talked to a priest:

  • "I told him that I had a friend who was that way; and he said you can still be friends, but tell him there's to be no sex involved, and if you spend the night at his house, have somebody there with me".
  • "The first time was rather unusual", Burt recalled. "I was over at his house. We were up till seven in the morning. And then he couldn't resist any more, and you might say he raped me (orally). He came into my bed and held my hands behind my back and started . . . But then he let go; because I knew I couldn't stop him. I could have, if I'd wanted to. But there was a little bit of suspicion in there — I was curious. I knew he was going to do it. But I was surprised when he did it . . I didn't know what to expect . . . Now I know he's not out to hurt anybody . . and I know what it's like . . What the heck, it felt good, so why not do it again? He liked it and I liked it, so we just kept doing it".

Burt did not expect himself to become "queer" permanently homosexual as a consequence of his activities. Don had assured him "that nothing like that would happen". Moreover, reading his own mind, he said: "I never see myself looking at other boys, or anything like that". To get sexually aroused, "looking at pictures of girls does it".

He and Don had an agreement that "I can tell him when it's over with. He said it really depends on me, not on him". He appreciated the fact that he had the support of Don's clinical advisers in this respect, also, without being condemned because of his relationship.

When visiting with Don, Burt always slept in a separate bed. Rarely, he would initiate a sexual encounter by climbing into his friend's bed after waking up in the morning. Mostly, however, it was up to Don to take the initiative. Burt tolerated body rubbing but without reciprocating. He totally vetoed mouth kissing. Sometimes he permitted digital stimulation of his genitalia, but the primary activity was oral sex, with Burt always in the recipient role, and Don maybe manually stimulating himself to orgasm. There was no anal sex. Prior to having an orgasm with ejaculatory fluid, Burt said that he had had a dry orgasm: "When I jerked off, I would have orgasms, but nothing came out — same feeling and all".

He usually had about three orgasms a week, some of them alone, some with his partner. When with his partner, he might occasionally have in his mind the image of a girl, though "not often; I'm usually relaxed and not thinking about much". When he masturbated alone, he often looked at a Playboy centerfold.

Apart from sex, he enjoyed the relationship because

  • "when we're together we have a good time. He takes me different places — movies and all that. And we just are pretty good friends".

It was because of Don's influence and active assistance that Burt decided to go to college. He was the first member of his family to do so, and thus to fulfill an ambition that his parents held for all their children.

Loyalty and Love:

Don's words were that he was in love with Burt from the first time that he put his arm around his shoulder in what would ordinarily have been construed as a gesture of camaraderie. His preoccupation with Burt became obsessional in the manner of those who are love smitten or limerent.

  • "It's not very easy to say, okay, I'll quit. I don't think I can," he once confessed. "If it was a matter of somebody I wasn't emotionally involved with as well as sexually involved with, it would be one thing. . ."

For Burt, by contrast, the relationship was one of comradeship with a touch of hero-worship:

  • "He's neat; and he's nice, and gives me more respect than anyone ever has. He treats me like an adult, not like my parents treat me. To me, he's my best friend."

He did not dislike his parents, nor was he rebellious towards them. Not until he was in middle teenage, however, did his relationship with his mother become liberated from her alcoholism, following its successful treatment. He did not need Don as a surrogate parent, but as an older buddy.

The sexual component of his relationship had for him approximately the same status as does eroto-sexual rehearsal play that takes place among juveniles of similar age. He said he was not afraid to stop the sexual contact. He was quite sure Don would remain his friend. But he didn't mind continuing with sex, if it made Don happy.

As he progressed through normal hormonal adolescence, he remained youngish in appearance, and slight of build, and thus continued to be attractive as a junior partner. He himself, by contrast, became increasingly ready to desist from further participation in genito-sexual activities. He avoided initiating any close body contact, and rationed the frequency of responding to Don's first moves. Periodically, they discussed a deadline for terminating the sexual part of their relationship, and extended it two or three times, out of consideration for the suffering it imposed on Don, until Burt left town to go to college.

"Yeah, I do love him," Don said at this time, and he missed him greatly. They exchanged visits, chiefly on holidays, but Burt did not write, and phone calls became increasingly less frequent. Erotic attraction waned progressively as the bodily signs of maturity advanced.

Don had long known that body hair was a turn-off for him. Smell, too, was important. "Boys smell sweet," he once said, "even after playing football." One way he had of putting a freeze, so to speak, on adolescent maturation, was by means of photographs dating from the juvenile years. Don was a self-taught photographer. On occasion he used his pictures to recapture the past as he masturbated. It was a tacit recognition that erotic love had deserted the relationship, and that loyalty had taken its place.

From the vantage point of young adulthood, Burt reflected,

  • "To describe the relationship? Fabulous. That would be a good word. He is one person who I could go to and say avhing I wanted, and the sky wouldn't fall down, or the earth wouldn't shake, or anything. We could just stay home and listen to the stereo. We could do work around his house. We could do photography, go out and play pinball, go to the movies — just basically anything."

They didn't actually engage in any of these activities very much. Their visits became very infrequent as Burt spent most of his free time with his girlfriend. By this time Burt was in his late teens, and he recognized that he was the one who was in control of his relationship with Don.

  • "But I don't seem to need to use any control", he said. "I just see the rest of the relationship as being good — a close friend type of relationship . . . To me, in my relationship with a pedophile, there was never any harm physically or mentally, I feel. As a matter of fact, it's probably the best relationship I've ever had with anyone outside my own family — maybe even to go so far as to say with anyone in general, because of the openness that it brought out".


When he was seventeen, Burt reflected on the meaning of his not being gay:

  • "It's a feeling you have in your mind that you'd rather not be doing it because you're uncomfortable . . . Like society throws you towards girls, but really it's not only society, it's your feelings. It's something that changes in you. When you're smaller, you don't like girls, but when you grow up you do. It changes. I don't know why".

At this phase of his life, he did not yet have a girlfriend.

  • "Attempts", he said, "but no success yet".

Recalling sleep dreams, he said:

  • "I do dream when I'm asleep. I guess my most memorable dream was when I dreamed I was a photographer for Playboy , and I ended up having intercourse with the Playgirl of the Year . . ".

At the age of twenty, in the course of reviewing himself as a teenager, he said:

  • "No, I was never antisocial. I was a little bit — shy, I guess is the word . . . I don't think it had much to do with my relationship with Don. I think it was just my personality and my upbringing — I mean in a Catholic, up-tight family. In my family, any premarital sex is definitely taboo. My father really gets on me, even today, about it . . . They just cannot, and refuse to accept any sex outside of marriage — especially when my sister, three or four years ago, went to live with her, now, husband . . . they condemned them for living together. I guess I got a lot of their ideas from them, but I don't agree with them now".

He had known his girlfriend for some time before he began visiting with her after she had separated from her husband.

  • "I never intended or even had the thoughts that anything would eventually develop in terms of love and a longer relationship".

For eight months, the relationship was non-genital. Then, one night,

  • "we were watching TV in her bedroom and she fell asleep, and I woke her up, and then she put the make on me. But I didn't resist. Probably, subconsciously, I had woken her up for that purpose. I had feelings that there was sexual attraction not only from me to her, but the other way, also". 

He discussed his relationship with his girlfriend in terms of his inner mental experience.

  • "Well, that reaffirmed to me that, yes, I am heterosexual — that is what I like, and I really do enjoy this. The other, well, I wasn't particularly interested in it. I didn't really like it, or go looking for it . . . it wasn't exactly dislike. The feelings and all, they were good. Like orgasm, they're the same — not quite the same, because that was the only sexual relief, and after experiencing the heterosexual, the mental frame of mind and the inner thoughts that went along with the heterosexual relationship, like my fantasies and all, they weren't just fantasies, they were reality. It wasn't that I would like to be having intercourse with her. It was that I was doing it, and I didn't have to imagine".

Together they had a varied erotic repertory.

"Usually, there's a lot of foreplay. That's probably the most exciting in itself. Practically anything you can imagine, we've tried . . . sometimes, we take both roles, and act out through the evening , . . through the course of intercourse, and afterwards. . . Like one time I was an alien from outer space, and she was just an earthling. Once, she was a virgin, and I wasn't; and once I was a virgin and she wasn't. Just things of that nature . . . And the ultimate end of all of them is intercourse."

They both thought it highly likely that they would get married, once he completed his education. He did not plan to become a parent until around age twenty-five. Routinely, therefore, they used contraception.

Family Nonintrusiveness

Looking back at age twenty, Burt considered it possible that his parents simply did not pry too deeply into his relationship with Don. They agreed to the two of them vacationing together overseas, for example.

  • "There was not exactly plenty of evidence," he said, "because we always tried to disguise it, of course."

At one phase, he devised the subterfuge of disguising a weekend visit with Don by picking up a program from the church, and leaving it in his pocket, to be found when his clothing was laundered. His father did not have anything to say, but on one occasion, early in the relationship, Burt's mother warned him that his older brother had had an encounter with a basketball coach, and that "she wanted to make sure that I wasn't getting into any situation like that." Once the mother questioned Don as to why he would so frequently drive so far to pick up Burt for a ride, or just to visit him.

Don was accepted as a family friend.

  • "He has a voice in my family," Burt said, "like he's an opinion — a second or third opinion. . . . They have a great deal of trust in him, and feel that he was beneficial to me in my growing years. I guess a lot of it has to do with education. My father really pushes education, and Don did help."

After the parents became aware that Burt had established an active sex life with his girlfriend, his mother disclosed that for some time she had been "sort of suspicious, inasmuch as 1 wasn't out dating, and everything, when I was always going over to Don's place. Now she was pleased that I was with her, and not with him."


Definition of Heterosexual, Homosexual, Bisexual

These two cases exemplify very clearly the existence of the semantic problem of the dual grammatical status of the term homosexual as both noun and adjective. This duality permits a homosexual (thie noun) to be defined as a person who, in either imagery or practice, or both, engages in acts that are homosexual (the adjective). Thus it may all too easily appear that a person who engages in one or more homosexual acts is a homosexual.

There is, however, no such easy equivalence between the adjective and the noun, as the two cases here presented so well demonstrate. Whereas each young person, as he grew into adolescence, engaged in sexual acts with an older same-sexed partner, and did so over an extended period of time, neither developed as a homosexual with a continuing homosexual history, nor even as a person having bisexual encounters. Both of them grew up, by contrast, to engage in heterosexual acts only, whether in fantasy or in reality. They classified themselves as heterosexual.

A heterosexual is a person who has a continuing history of heterosexual genital/erotic contacts in either practice, or imagery (fantasy), or both. If at any age the heterosexual engages in a homosexual act, then in the imagery of what takes place, the partner is represented not as of the same sex as the self, but as either of the other sex, or as of no sex in particular, but only as a genital arouser.

The ultimate criterion of being heterosexual or homosexual is the experience of limerence, that is, of falling in love or being love smitten. The heterosexual is not able to fall in love with a person of the same external genital anatomy and body build as the self. The converse applies to the homosexual. The visible somatic sex of the partner is the essential criterion of heterosexuality and, conversely, homosexuality; not the chromosomal sex, gonadal sex, or other internal and invisible criteria of sex, as can be conclusively demonstrated by reference to the data of hermaphroditism and transexualism (reviewed in Money, 1974, and Money and Ehrhardt, 1972).

The two young people in this study did not have the semantic sophistication to be able articulately to define themselves as engaging in homosexual acts without being homosexual — or gay, or queer. They did so by falling back on the folk wisdom available to them, according to which each could consider himself as a heterosexual person, despite a relationship with a homosexual person.

They both had a conception of their relationship as destined to be time-limited, and of themselves not, therefore, becoming homosexually involved in perpetuity. Their older partners endorsed this conception, and it was supported in the street-corner folklore of their then juvenile society.

They had a conception of their relationship as one that, though it included their own genital stimulation, specifically and by their own demand excluded kissing. For them, kissing was universally acknowledged in public, and particularly in the media, as evidence of romantic love between male and female. They did not experience themselves as being in love.

They defined their relationship as one in which their male genitals retained their male function, namely as being subject to stimulation by a partner, as in a female-male interaction. They did not themselves actively engage in the stimulation of the partner's male genitalia, as a female might have done. Subjectively, they were thus absolved of the moral responsibility of being erotically oriented towards the male rather than the female genitalia. In fact, they were responsive to imagery, in pictures or in fantasy, of involvement with female genitalia, even while being serviced by the male partner.

In this sense, they were bisexual, in being able to project onto the partner the mental representation of being mono-ecious, that is of being both male and female at the same time. They were not bisexual in the di-ecious sense of being personally eroto-sexually responsive to the genitals and body form of either male or female, even though not in equal degree. Rather, they either neglected the male body form and genital morphology, or replaced them, in fantasy, with imagery of the female.

Origins of Bisexuality

The origin of mono-ecious bisexuality is unknown. It may be that it is analogous to the bi-potentiality of the embryo to differentiate, after the early neutral or hermaphroditic phase, the genital morphology of either male or female. In embryology, bi-potentiality is time-limited, and eventually comes to a close. Only a few individuals are born as hermaphroditic, whereas in most the process of dimorphic differentiation is completed as either male or female.

If the embryological analogy is correct, then one would expect that some individuals differentiate beyond the phase of mono-ecious bisexuality and so lose that potential completely. If so, the age at which bisexual potential ceases is not known, nor are the developmental variables responsible for the cessation. The proportion of males and females who lose this potential versus those who retain it also is not known.

In cases of the type here presented, it is not known whether the boy could be picked at random, or whether only a special sample of boys qualify as potential mono-ecious bisexuals for a given period of their development. In favor of the special sample hy­pothesis is the evidence, at least in some cases, of a deficient parent-child bond for which the juvenile-adult sexual bond serves as compensation.

In favor of a more universal hypothesis is the evidence of normal eroto-sexual rehearsal play among juveniles, some of which may involve same-sex partners -- even to the point, around the time of the onset of puberty, of their becoming rather intensely bonded for a period of up to two or three years.

In the juvenile years, homosexual genital and erotic pairing may be covertly promoted by institutionalized sex segregation. Sex segregated boarding schools have been, and to some extent still are an example, though in our society sexual pairing of juveniles is specifically condemned. In comparative ethnography, however, one finds societies in which sex-segregated homosexual interaction between juveniles or between juveniles and adolescents is not condemned but positively sanctioned and overtly institutionalized throughout society.

One example is that of the Batak people of Lake Toba in Sumatra (Money and Ehrhardt, 1972). Among these people, the institutionalized phase of homosexual interaction for all boys lasts from around age nine to nineteen. It comes to a close when a young man, with the help of a close male friend as a go-between, makes a marriage agreement acceptable to both families. Thereafter, a man typically spends the remainder of his life in a heterosexual relationship with his wife. The resumption of homosexual activity is not prohibited, but it occurs only under special circumstances, as when an all-male group might leave the village, for example, to do seasonal work in the jungle.

The Ratak example supports the hypothesis that, in the development of all the young males of the society, there is a period of homosexual-heterosexual bi-potential­ity, and that by adulthood it has metamorphosed into a predominantly heterosexual uni-potentiality. The bi-potential phase and the uni-potential phase are both endorsed socially. In our society, there is no uniform endorsement of two such stages in de­velopment, so that their existence, when they occur, is covert, and their prevalence unascertained.

Origins of Homosexuality and Heterosexuality

The two cases of the present report are significant with respect to the theory of the origin of homosexuality insofar as they show that, in each case, the boy was already too well differentiated in the direction of heterosexuality to be recruited into full-time homosexuality. In other words the social contagion hypothesis does not hold up, even though each boy had an extended period of close personal and sexual contact with an older male.

Thus, it might appear that nurture lost out to nature, if one resorts to that outdated dichotomy. More accurately, one needs a trichotomy, of which the middle term is the critical period. Then it can be said that, in each boy, the differentiation of a heterosexual status had advanced sufficiently beyond the critical period that, by the time the homosexual encounter began, it was already too late to change the momentum of continued heterosexual differentiation.

The origins of that momentum cannot be decided on the basis of the evidence available in these two cases. From other sources (summarized in Money, 1980a, 1980b, 1981) it may be inferred that the prenatal history of brain-hormonal interaction plays a part, but not to the exclusion of early, postnatal development factors.

The paradigm may, indeed, be similar to that of a native language, in which the first stage of develop­ment of the language brain is pre-natally programmed, whereas the native language itself is programmed into the brain post-natally. Typically, it makes its entry by way of the ears from other people who transmit it vocally. Once it becomes entrenched, that is, after the critical development period has expired, it is so well and truly en­trenched that only neuro-surgery or a brain lesion can eradicate it.

Getting a native language is not, however, an exercise in robotics. There is some selection of alternates, as when a child takes on, as a native language, not the language of his immigrant parents, but that of the country to which they have immigrated — and speaks it without the accent that characterizes his parents' usage.

There may be a similar type of selection of alternates in the early childhood years when gender identity and role (G-I/R) are being differentiated, in preparation for their eventual eroto-sexual expression as heterosexual, homosexual, or bisexual. This process of differentiation takes place prior to prepubeny.

In one long-term outcome study (Money and Russo, 1979; see also Chapter 13), evidence of incongruous G-I/R differentiation was manifestly overt by middle childhood in eleven boys. Twenty years later, nine of them were traced for follow-up. In all nine cases, the early juvenile manifestations of G-I/R incongruity proved to have been not transitory, but the early signs of what would develop to become homosexuality — of the socially prevalent type — in adulthood.

In these cases, there was no early history of genito-sexual participation with a partner of any age. The differentiation of eroto-sexual status as homosexual, according to this evidence, is independent of childhood genito-sexual encounter or experience.

Hypo­thetically, one may implicate not the presence, but the absence of childhood eroto­sexual experience, specifically in the form of rehearsal play among agematcs of both sexes, as having contributed to the homosexual outcome. This hypothesis is, however, speculative, as are all hypotheses and theories of the origin of homosexuality, bisexuality, and heterosexuality. No proofs are available at the present time.

The Outlaw Effect

According to the evidence presented, it would not be scientifically and medically accurate to diagnose the two junior partners as having been the victims of sexual child abuse. The legal diagnosis, however, would by fiat be precisely that, with no exceptions permitted. Here the law and science are hopelessly at odds (Money, 1979).

The law is the repository of the sexual taboo of our society, and the institution of its enforcement. The taboo itself is of multi-millennial antiquity, and is in defiance of the empirical rationality of the young science of sexology. Medicine, itself of venerable antiquity, allies itself conservatively with sexual taboo and the law, and only slowly assimilates the findings of sexological science in spearheading reform of the law.

The explanation is not hard to find. The law decrees what is legal and illegal in the practice of medicine, and physicians who disobey are subject to arrest and imprisonment. Thus the physician who performs an abortion, if the law decrees it as a crime, becomes a criminal. In California today, the physician who learns that a female patient not yet eighteen years old has engaged in oral sex is himself a criminal if he does not report her as a pervert to the police or child abuse authorities.

The criminalization of the health-care professional, as in the foregoing examples, casts the professional in the role of an agent of the criminal justice system. It forbids the rendering of certain services, and also the conduct of research and investigation into that which is forbidden. He who conducts such research becomes, in effect, an outlaw.

This outlaw effect is particularly in evidence with respect to those paraphiliacs who are legally decreed, regardless of their actual social danger, to be sex offenders. Should such a person volunteer for either treatment or research, he can no longer, as formerly, be legally guaranteed privileged communication and confidentiality, if the law decrees that he must be reported. If he has already been arrested or imprisoned, then he automatically has no such privilege, and he may even be deprived of the right of informed consent, should he volunteer to participate in research or treatment.

The net result of this "Catch 22" is that society effectively deprives itself of knowledge related to the etiology and prevention of the very phenomena it regards as abhorrent and heretical, just as it did under the Inquisition. Professionals have accommodated to this deprivation, probably unwittingly, by inventing the bastard discipline of vic­timology. According to the implicit rules of this discipline, the offender, whether assaultively dangerous (as in rape and lust murder) or harmless (as in exhibitionism and most instances of pedophilia) is processed through the criminal justice system, and the victim through the health-care system.

While being processed, the victim may in fact be further traumatized, and subjected to well-meaning, but unproved rehabilitation procedures based on little more than prejudice and guesswork.

In the case of pedophilia, the young person's forced separation from his friend may, in many cases, if not the equivalent of enforced separation from his family. For his own well-being, it may he more beneficial to provide professional support that permits him to negotiate the transition of his relationship from sexual to asexual, so that his sense of loyalty is left intact. Such a program of support may well extend to include his family, as well as his pedophilic friend.

Within the criminal justice system, the pedophile, like all paraphilic sex offenders, is subject chiefly to vengeance and incarceration. He becomes sequestered from the health-care and scientific professions, and from participation in research for the advancement of knowledge concerning etiology and prevention.

Paradoxically, the result for a society concerned about victims is that it guarantees for itself a constantly renewed supply of fresh victims to keep the victimologists in business. Only a scientific knowledge of etiology and prevention can stem that tide. The penal system fails to do so.

There are famous examples in the history of science of outlaws who, seeing through the system that outlawed them, defied it.

  • Galileo is a prime example.
  • Vesalius is another — he dared to challenge the church and break the law against desecration of the corpse, and so to establish the modern science of anatomy.
  • Kinsey and Masters and Johnson also challenged the law by undertaking investigations and publishing data that legally qualified as obscene or pornographic, and so established the right of modern sexological science to begin in America.

There is much more still to be done. The etiology and prevention of pedophilia and of all the paraphilias is still subject to the outlaw effect, insofar as research is concerned.


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Money, J.: Sexual dictatorship, dissidence and democracy. Int J. Med. Law 1: 11-20, 1979.

Money, J.: Endocrine influences and psychosexual status spanning the life cycle. In: van Praag, H.M., Lader, M.H., Rafaelson, O.J. and Sachar, E.J. (eds.), Handbook of Biological Psychiatry, Part 3: Brain Mechanisms and Abnormal Behavior-Genetics and Neuroendocrinology. New York: Marcel Dekker, 1980a.

Money. J.: Love and Love Sickness: The Science of Sex, Gender Difference, and Pair Bonding. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1980.

Money. J.: The development of sexuality and eroticism in humankind. Q. Rev. Riot. 56: 379-404, 1981.

Money. J.: Lovemaps: Clinical Concepts of Sexual/ Erotic Health and Pathology. Paraphilia and Gender Transposition in Childhood. Adolescence and Maturity. Paperback. Buffalo, NY: Prometheus Books, 1988.

Money, J. and Ehrhardt, A.A.: Man and Woman, Boy and Girl: The and Dimorphismof Gender identity from Conception to Maturity. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1972.

Money, J. and Musaph, H. (eds.): Handbook of Sexology. Amsterdam, New York: Extcerpta Medica, 1977.

Money, J. and Russo, A.J.: Homosexual outcome of discordant gender identity/role in childhood: longitudinal follow-up. J. Pediatr.. Psychol. 4: 29 41, 1979.

Tennov, D: Love and limerence - The Experience of Being in Love. New York: Stein and Day, 1979.