Research into paedophilia mainly uses offender samples; thus, little is understood about non-offending paedophiles. The limited body of research has been conducted in North America or Europe whose health and legal systems differ from those in the UK. Using semi-structured interviews, the purpose of this study is to explore the experience of three non-offending British paedophilic males.
The interview discussed their paedophilia, refraining from offending and perspectives on treatment initiatives. Data were analysed using interpretative phenomenological analysis.
Three superordinate themes emerged: “paedophilia as more than a sexuality,” “acceptance leads to management” and “barriers to support.” These encapsulated how paedophilia was understood, how accepting one’s sexual attraction is tantamount to well-being and the various obstacles to providing support were discussed.
Acknowledging the sampling considerations (size and recruitment), the results implicate research into paedophilia. The onset of paedophilia was chronologically associated with typical sexual attraction, and not the result of sexual abuse as some theories suggest. Furthermore, the tenets of attraction to children extending beyond sexual desire were highlighted. Practically, the results influence future research into the area and highlight the dearth in our understanding of diverse behavioural management techniques (i.e. computerised images of children or human-like dolls).
This paper presents novel insight into the aspects of paedophilia, excluding offensive behaviour and highlights the need for affordable, UK-based services targeted towards people with a paedophilic attraction to manage child sexual abuse preventatively and not reactively.
The authors wish to express deep gratitude to the three brave and courageous men who shared their stories for the purposes of this project.
Dymond, H. and Duff, S. (2020), "Understanding the lived experience of British non-offending paedophiles", The Journal of Forensic Practice, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/JFP-10-2019-0046Download as .RIS
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