Respecting Your Addiction

“Chester, you’re a pedophile; of course I won’t bring my kids around you.”

My friends Theresa, Katie and I were having a chat about the “2 Missouri Boys Found, But Questions Remain” headlines that have been all over the news.

(The family will be interviewed for the first time on today’s Oprah. (We will be meeting again tomorrow to follow up.)

It led us into some deeper conversations with humor sprinkled in to dispell the darkness. Some disconnected tidbits follow but there was a great deal of conversation that followed these so please understand we were not bashing on boys.

“It is not normal for a male adolescent to want to watch your children.”
“Do not let your female baby sitter allow her male friends/boyfriends over to do homework.”
“Pedophilia can not be cured, just like alcoholism can not be cured. These people struggle with these thoughts every day.”
“State the obvious.”
“Don’t give them the control.”

It is hard to summarize this conversation which included all the nightmares that every parent has, but a key point was Theresa’s message from a former employer and friend who has worked for years with these type of people in the mental health care field. Don’t let them make YOU feel uncomfortable about their problem. That does not mean that you remind them every time you see them that they have a problem, but when they create a moment that is intended to make you uncomfortable – such as:

Uncle Chester the pedophile (charged and convicted)at a family reunion (where everyone knows his history) approaches you and wants to know why you did not bring your kids. State the obvious:

“Chester, you’re a pedophile; of course I won’t bring my kids around you.”
“If you were an alcoholic, I wouln’t buy you a bottle of wine.”
“Just respecting your addiction.”

Just respecting your addiction.

It’s a new catch phrase. T-shirts will be printed next week.

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