“The family is self-destructing, destroying itself from within, by its failure to nurture and value its young”
~ Andrew Vachss
Due to my recent articles on the incestuous dynamics within some families, I thought I would continue on this topic in order to help people understand how common incest is, and how it theoretically could happen to almost any family.
As I stated in a previous article, it would be a normal physiological reaction for people who live in the same home and who are tied together by emotions… to also be sexually attracted to each other, or for their physiological bodies to unwillingly react to one another. The physical body does what it does, but the emotional and mental body being attracted to incest, is not natural.
Most people ignore or suppress such feelings. But when an emotionally and mentally weak, stressed, or psychologically unstable person has those feelings towards their child, they are likely to act on them.
Child pornography is a massive industry, so there are many people in our society with sexual feelings toward children.
“I don’t want to know.”
~A friend’s reply to me when I asked her if she realizes how many fathers sexually abuse their daughters.
It is a fact that biological fathers who molest their children, often do so out of a sexual attraction to their own child because they find themselves in a situation with naked, vulnerable, and accessible children who are in need of love and attention. Sometimes, the child senses a mother’s hostility towards her child, and gravitates to the father for affection. The family unit can be a cocktail for impulsive desires perpetrated by an off-balance father (or mother, sister or brother).
Another dynamic not widely discussed, is that men sometimes cease being attracted to their wives, and after a certain age, women often no longer want to have sex. Although lack of sex has nothing to do with child sexual abuse, a man with a propensity to abuse a child, might go to the daughter because she loves him and wants to please her father. Or she might be coming into her teens, which means her hormones are wild. Another fact is that the visual stimulation is constantly in the family, and men are sexually stimulated visually.
It is also easier for the man to abuse a child in the home than to have an affair outside of the home, with an adult. Most situational sexual offenders prefer to have sex with an adult, but the dynamics in the home and closeness of the vulnerable child, make it more convenient for the abuser.
Children often run around naked and an unbalanced father might think it’s okay to touch the child because the child likes the attention and the touching often feels good. Once a father (or step-father) gets the response of pleasure from his daughter then he might justify his actions because of her enjoyment.
These men usually convince themselves there is nothing wrong with what they are doing, and because of the male sex drive, aggressive tendencies, stress, and emotional needs… the situation then escalates and becomes out of control.
“In the United States, society’s historical attitude about sexual victimization of children can generally be summed up in one word: denial.”
~Kenneth V. Lanning Former FBI Agent 1
While standing in a bank one day, I saw a man with his little daughter who was waiting in line ahead of me. Her head came exactly to the height of her father’s crotch. I watched as the little girl wanted her father to pay attention to her. She kept hanging on him and pushed her face against his pants. To her it was innocent and non-sexual. The little girl just wanted to be picked up or talked to. Yet I could not help but wonder if the man’s body may have reacted to his daughter putting her face right in the area of his crotch. In a public bank a man can control himself. At home in private, maybe not.
Perpetrators will often convince themselves that what they do is not abusive. They will also try and convince others they did nothing wrong if they are caught. A number of people, including the wives, buy these excuses:
- She wanted it
- She didn’t fight me
- She liked it
- I needed to teach her about sex
- I only did it once
Registered sex offender, Jake Goldenflame, began sexually molesting his four year-old daughter out of a need for “emotional satisfaction” when his new wife left him for a younger man. At first Goldenflame turned to alcohol and drugs, but says, “Here was a lovely person who cared about me, adored me. I was lonely. I allowed myself to lose track of the fact that she was my daughter. Sexual misconduct followed.” This statement magnifies the deviation of the mind of a sexual abuser. His daughter was four years old and yet he says he “lost track” that she was his daughter. Apparently he had also been confused that she was only four.
Goldenflame gave further testimony of the mind of a predator when he said, “How could I possibly have become involved with a girl not even five years old?” 2 Notice his use of the word “involved” –as if the child was in a consensual sexual relationship with him. He did not say “How could I possibly have sexually molested a four year-old?” Goldenflame’s comments show how sexual degenerates convince themselves that they are not completely at fault, and that the child was a willing participant.
Goldenfame’s story shows how easily a person can turn to their own child. Jake was in a state of self-pity and emotionally depressed when he sexually assaulted his daughter. She loved her father and Jake felt that his daughter would make him feel good about himself.
We are left to wonder: how many other men turn to their children to make themselves feel good?
Please note: “Situational” offenders are usually fathers, mothers, and other relatives that end up committing incest upon children who happen to be available because they are family members. Unlike pedophiles and preferential offenders, situational offenders do not have a preference for pre-pubescent children. They are usually not aroused by child pornography but will still sexually abuse a very young child if the conditions allow it.
Preferential offenders deliberately set themselves up to be in a situation with children and are more likely to have multiple victims. At the same time, the two types of abusers can share the same pattern of behavior and motives. Preferential offenders are more likely to be deviant in their behavior and are over twice as likely to have molest only male victims.
If convicted, Jerry Sandusky would be considered a “preferential offender.”
1. Child Molesters: A Behavioral Analysis for Law-Enforcement Officers Investigating the Sexual Exploitation of Children by Acquaintance Molesters, Fourth Edition September 2001, Kenneth V. Lanning, Former Supervisory Special Agent Federal Bureau of Investigation, Copyright 2001 National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, page 2
2. Canada’s Independent News Magazine, Candis McLean, Oprah Winfrey Show