Human Sexuality Working Group: Sexuality Between Children and Adults
I. Formulating Questions - Clarifications
– What is Sexuality?
– To what extent do children already feel sexual?
– Is there a "molding" of homosexualtiy through homosexual experiences?
– How does pleasure-oriented child sexuality develop?
– What is our present-day society's attitude towards sexuality?
– What does 'pedosexual' mean?
– What does 'pedophile' mean?
– In the assessment of pedosexuality, should a distinction be made between boys and girls?
– How might we go forward?
l. The rights of pedosexually-acting or pedophilic adults.
2. Children's right to the undisturbed development of their sexuality.
3. Children's right to sexual self-determination.
4. On equal rights and consensuality in pedosexual contacts.
5. On the special responsibility of adults regarding the safeguarding of equality and consensuality.
6. On protecting children from the abuse of power in sex.
7. Potential consequences of sexual contacts.
8. Potential consequences of normative and statutory rules.
9. Conclusions and demands.
III. Postscript by Wolf Voegel (1994) – The Lie of Self-Determination
The statements in this document represent the state of knowledge and the discussion position of the Child Sexuality and Pedophilia study group within the Human Sexuality Working Group (AHS). It is explicitly not to be regarded as self-contained. The study group welcomes suggestions and criticism.
The examination of what, in terms of public opinion, is the particularly sensitive issue of sexuality between adults and children should contribute to a broadening of the factual knowledge base, as well as help to rectify any prejudices or misunderstandings which may arise.
In a fundamental sense, this topic is about social relationships or contacts. There, as component phenomena, sexuality on the one hand and violence on the other – or both – can play more or less significant roles. However because in terms of the public consciousness, sexuality between children and adults is, for the most part, equated with violent activities vis-à-vis children, as well as with the seduction of and psychological harm to them, which is why it is a contentious issue, differentiating sexuality from violence must be done right up front.
Because women who deal with the subject of sexuality between children and adults typically do so only through the lens of violence, and because, within the Child Sexuality and Pedophilia study group women currently take little part in discussions over the necessary disassociation of sexuality from violence, in the present position paper, the statements to be found within it are predominantly from men. However, the study group welcomes the participation of women who are prepared to make the distinction between sexuality and violence.
This paper will address all of those who have some stake in sexuality between children and adults; these include:
– all parents, because they deal with children and their sexuality,
– all educators as well as caregivers, because they work with children,
– adults who aspire to or have intimate relationships with children.
– parents and families of children who aspire to be or have intimate relationships with adults,
– parents and children of pedophilic adults.
– police officers, lawyers, and judges who, due to the criminal law, must deal with sexuality between children and adults;
– physicians and therapists, who offer advice and assistance, or who serve as expert witnesses,
– politicians, so that they might bring prejudice-free knowledge to the formation of their political opinions as well as legislation,
– everyone who wants to know more about this subject and wishes to join the discussion.
Ideally, children themselves should also be included in the discussion. However this paper, in its present form, is aimed at adults. And this makes sense, because sexuality between children and adults actually only becomes a problem because of adults.
Admittedly, a possible shortcoming of this document is that there is no such thing as adults as a uniform target group. Within the great spectrum of the target readership, widely varying levels of education and knowledge are to be expected; however, it is scarcely possible to be completely fair to this subject in terms of content, language, and choice of words. The authors therefore ask for your understanding.
The present position paper is subdivided into two parts:
Part l) Formulating Questions – Clarifications.
Part 2) Positions.
Because the positions refer back to the clarifications from Part I, and because the individual sections and positions themselves overlap, occasional repetitions could not be avoided. Berlin, summer of 1988.