• Athena Ives

Are all Child Sex Offenders Pedophiles?

Are all Child Sex Offenders Pedophiles? By Athena Ives

According to the United States Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Administration on Children, Youth and Families, Children’s Bureau. Child Maltreatment Survey, 2016 (2018), every Nine minutes a child is sexually abused. There are millions of male and females alive today that have similar life changing scars caused by someone else, usually someone they know. If there are millions of children being sexually abused, does this mean that there are millions of pedophiles? Are they all pedophiles? According to Jordan, Wild, Fromberger, Müller, and Müller, J. (2019), only half of child sexual offenders are pedophiles. Labeling all child sexual offenders as pedophiles is dangerous because it allows those that don’t fit the criteria to hide and go overlooked.

According to the (DSM-5) “pedophilia” (F65.4) is defined as a “persistent or dominating sexual preference for prepubescent children” with a duration of at least 6 months. A person being diagnosed with pedophilia has to be at least 16 years old and at least 5 years older than the child/the children. Furthermore, the person has to act upon his sexual preference or is suffering from his deviant sexual preference. The DSM-5-criteria of the so called “pedophilic disorder” (302.2) are very similar, namely “recurrent, intense sexually arousing fantasies, sexual urges, or behaviors involving sexual activity with prepubescent child or children over a period of at least 6 months, which causes marked distress or interpersonal difficulty or the individual has acted on these sexual urges” (Jordan et. al., 2019).

Over the years, researchers have attempted to determine if pedophilia is genetic or environmental, or what the research community calls nature vs. nurture. Studies have found that similar to psychopathology, pre-natal factors are found in pedophiles. Other studies have found that environmental factors play a major role. So what does this mean in layman’s terms? Some research believes that pedophiles were born that way similar to homosexuality. They have identifying physical, neurological, and other biological distinguishing similarities. Others believe it was a result from environmental factors, meaning an event happened to them that created their sexual preference.

You might be asking yourself, if they are not pedophiles than why CHILDREN?? Here are some types of non-pedophile offenders researchers have found:

· Repressed offenders may be struggling with a job loss, divorce, illness, or death in the family or other life issue that is causing feelings of stress or depression.

· The morally indiscriminate may physically abuse children as well as sexually or physically abuse other adults. It’s not about sex as much as it is about control and desecration of another human.

· The sexually indiscriminate may have an addiction to sex and be involved in other illegal sexual behaviors – prostitution, bestiality etc.

· The inadequate offender may be considered a social outcast due to communication barriers or physical differences that make forming intimate relationships with their peers difficult.

· Situational offenders often have sexual relationships with their peers, or they may struggle socially and fail to form intimate relationships with other adults. Children are an easy target – easier to coerce, manipulate, control and silence. It is no coincidence that child abuse and animal abuse are connected. Those most vulnerable are at the greatest risk to be targeted by those that seek pleasure in abusing others.

· I would like to add the entitled/elite offender. These are the type that are on the hunt for the next thrill. Their money has driven them to believe that they are invincible and there isn’t anything they can’t have or buy. These are the types of individuals that hunt endangered animals because they can. Purchase virgins in Colombia because they can. Buy a child to rape because they can and it makes them feel powerful. IE: Epstein.

To many of us, we can’t comprehend raping a child. We can’t fathom being sexually aroused by an 8-year-old. I started studying child predators and pedophiles after being raped as a child. In an odd way, I found healing in this process. What I did find in my 20 years of research? Contrary to what many believe, pedophilia is not synonymous with child sexual abuse. I watched countless interviews of pedophiles, child rapists, serial child rapists, and have seen some of the most abominable acts towards children most of you couldn’t even comprehend. There is a difference between pedophiles and other sexual predators. I learned that homosexuality used to be seen in a similar light as pedophiles, that homosexuals should die for their sexual attraction. Now, homosexuality is accepted. Many believe that you are born homosexual and there is nothing you can do to change this. Some still believe that it is a choice. Similar to this, many believe you are born a pedophile, others that it is a choice. My personal opinion is that sexual preference is not a choice. I believe that biology and neurology play a major role in our sexual desires. That being said, if your sexual desire brings harm to another, that is a choice and it is wrong!

Imagine if we lived in a world that viewed heterosexuals as abominations? Am I saying that pedophiles should be allowed to have relations with children, ABSOLUTELY NOT!!!! Part of me is so disgusted by them and makes me want to have them all locked up for life. The other part of me feels sympathy, yes, I said it. Some of the interviews I saw made me feel bad for them. Some of them had never acted on their urges. Some were disgusted so much so that they wanted to die, and some of them killed themselves. I can’t comprehend living with that. I would probably kill myself too if I was attracted to children. Some are trying to get help and some never abuse children.

Is there a cure for them? There has not been any type of treatment found that can eliminate their sexual desires. Can they have a healthy relationship? No! They are attracted to individuals that cannot consent. Should they be allowed to view child porn? NO! Some may argue that they should because it will prevent them from acting out and hurting other children. What about the children in the porn?! Allowing this type of behavior is encouraging more to abuse children. It is not a victimless crime. Those that are trying to normalize pedophilia are 100% WRONG! What’s next normalizing psychopaths that kill people? Both are mentally ill but that does not make it ok to harm others. A psychopath didn't choose to be a psychopath but acting on it is a choice. Similar to murder, child rape is murdering that child’s innocence and damages them for life.

The reason I wanted to share this is that we are focused only on Pedophiles. We aren’t leery of our kid’s football coach with the loving wife and family. We overlook the rich CEO that is offering to pay for our daughters schooling. We don’t suspect the sweet art teacher who is always helping her students after class and offering to drive them home. Keep in mind, 34-40% are related to the abused child. These are the monsters that are slipping through the cracks.


Tenbergen G, Wittfoth M, Frieling H, Ponseti J, Walter M, Walter H, Beier KM, Schiffer B, Kruger TH

Jordan, K., Wild, T. S. N., Fromberger, P., Müller, I., & Müller, J. L. (2019). Are there any biomarkers for pedophilia and sexual child abuse? A review. Frontiers in psychiatry, 10.

World Health Organization The ICD-10 classification of mental and behavioural disorders: Diagnostic

United States Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Administration on Children, Youth and Families, Children’s Bureau. Child Maltreatment Survey, 2016 (2018).