Date: September 07, 2020
‘Non-offending pedophiles’ or ‘minor attracted persons’ are individuals who suppress an attraction to children. Previous analyses of this population’s mental illness employed overt self-report methods, limited by social desirability. Additionally, studies assessing the coping mechanisms employed to remain offense-free are underpowered; understanding of these would facilitate the rehabilitation of prior offenders. A thematic analysis of coping mechanisms and mental illness was conducted on 5,210 posts on the ‘Virtuous Pedophiles’ forum. Four themes emerged for coping mechanisms: Managing risk and attraction to children, Managing mood, Managing preferences prosocially and Friends, family and relationships, with 13 subthemes. Five themes emerged for mental ill-health, including: Addiction, Anxiety, Depression, Self-hatred/Self-harm/Suicide and Other. Self-hatred/Self-harm/Suicide accounted for almost a third of discussed mental ill-health. These results highlight the severity of mental ill-health amongst this population and the coping mechanisms employed to remain offense-free.
KEYWORDS: Suppression, pedophilia, minor attracted person, mental ill-health, coping mechanisms”