The 'Roderik is attracted to younger boys' FER

Boys and girls! Before I begin lecturing, let me first give you some background information.

Introduction blah

First of all, some background information about the background. Did you notice the change? That's intentional, to stress the fact that I do not consider this page to be just another part of my 'normal' "Hi, I'm Roderik and this is my life" webpages that I just wrote up because I felt like it. I see this more as a 'specialised subject', intended for a subset of people with an interest in this, not for everyone who for some reason is just browsing around to see who this Roderik guy is.

This is where I get more opinionated, and for a reason: I feel the need to defend myself against certain opinions people might have. (In the previous page I half-jokingly called it "some guidance to give the confused people a hand", which comes down to the same thing: telling you how I think you should view the 'Roderik is attracted to younger boys' issue.)

Actually, estimating what other people's reactions will be is a bit tricky for me. You see, I've been living with myself for quite a number of years now. (Longer than anyone else, actually.) I'm so used to myself, to how I deal with this subject and to the experience that there's nothing wrong with that, that it's hard for me to imagine the reaction of an average someone who hasn't thought about this issue much or considers what I just said a big taboo. Something tells me, though, that there are a lot of people around who have only very negative associations with the subject, and who might therefore make some very negative, and wrong, assumptions about me.

(What that 'something' is, which is telling me that? Well, only the fact that there's not exactly many people publicly talking about this issue, the alarmed reactions I got from some people when I mentioned that I might do so, the coverage and reactions I've seen in the press about related issues, ...)

Second of all, what is this FER thing?

The FER is a term I just invented, which stands for 'Frequently Encountered Responses'. This just turned out to be the handiest format to write this text in. It's very much like a FAQ. There is a slight difference in that a FAQ would contain questions (which I would then answer), whereas a FER contains reactions from people or issues people have (which I will then react to or explain).

What they have in common is the following:
As you are all aware, boys and girls, most things you see nowadays are not people's actual reactions at all -- just reactions that a person theoretically could have, which the writer of the FAQ posed in such a way that they can get their point across in the answers. (I mean, come on, how many FAQs on websites have you seen lately which were actual questions, instead of lame excuses for throwing more marketing talk at you?)

This FER is of similar nature: it's reactions that I thought people could have. It's my lame excuse to build up a line of defense against these reactions. For reasons I've already mentioned. (It's also a good format to incorporate people's actual reactions, if I get any sensible ones. So it might be a real FER someday.)

Well then, now that I've digressed enough to lull you all to sleep, or hopefully enough anyway to have tempered any extreme emotions that people might have had when clicking this link, I'll come down to business and start the real lecture.

Reactions are divided into 3 categories. Skip ahead to the one that suits you, and then find the reactions that suit you.

Positive reactions

  • Way to go Roderik! People need to stand up for boylovers' rights!
  • Whoa there! If you get something positive out of my writings, then I'm happy for you. And yes, part of the reason that I'm writing up certain things on these webpages is that I'm hoping to help fix some misunderstandings/wrong assumptions about certain issues having to do with 'boylove'.
    But I want to make one thing very clear before you say anything else: I am not trying to represent some movement here. I do not know who these 'we' are, and have never experienced that these 'we' are denied any 'rights'. I'm not promoting anything else except people gaining more understanding for my personal viewpoints. Doing that publicly and non-anonymously is scary enough, thankyouverymuch. I've seen enough opinions about boylove and related issues that are not mine, and frankly, I have a healthy mistrust of 'other boylovers' possibly associated with those opinions, at least until I know them better. So please help me out and try not to make any statement associating me with people I don't represent. I'm not ready for that and it scares me at the moment, especially when I don't know the effect that these webpages will have. Thank you for understanding that.

Mixed reactions

  • I'm shocked! I thought you were a nice, friendly, sociable person. How can you be a like you be a - a pedophile?
  • Well, I hate to burst your bubble - but being attracted to boys is a thing which does not only happen to middle-aged socially challenged balding men with thick glasses and shabby beards who wear long raincoats. It is possible for someone to be everything mentioned above at once.

    Apart from that, I'd like you to refrain from using the word 'pedophile' when talking about me. It's got quite a negative ring to it, because the press (among others) always associates it with people who sexually abuse children, are part of some network that produces child porn, or do whatever other bad things. I do not have any link with people like these so I don't want to risk having people believe that I do. Thanks.

    Oh - and if that is what you meant with pedophile, if you see me as a potential sexual offender, then you are just plain wrong and I advise you to reread or rethink whatever made you believe that.

  • You're confusing me! I just don't really know what to think about this or what my opinion is.
  • Well, if you're really directly affected by what I'm writing: I'm sorry for you. Yes, the world is confusing sometimes. But you'll survive. Hey, I have learnt to live with it -- so you should be able to as well.

    If you're not really direcly affected: I've got good news for you. You don't need to! Why should you have an opinion on everything? The world is very, very big, especially since the late 20th century. There are too many things happening in the world to even know about if you spend your time reading 24 hours a day. So if this is not your piece of cake, then just like any other subject you can just leave it for what it is, and go read or do something that does interest you. Rest assured that there are people who do have (varied) opinions about what I wrote here, so they will address whatever issue you're confused about. You don't need to.

    (This is basically also why I have something against the often-heard statement that you forfeit your rights to comment on any political issues if you don't vote at elections -- even if none of the candidates have substantially different (if at all) opinions about any issues you care about. I don't buy that line of thought. It just does not hold up in the modern world. You cannot be forced to be informed about everything happening nowadays.
    But I digress. Yes, it's a hobby of mine...)

  • You're making a big fuss about a small thing! If you're happy around boys, then just be, and don't make all this noise.
  • Thank you! ;-) I totally agree with you. My opinion is actually that this should not be a big issue. In my personal life I have consciously tried not to make it one or to make it smaller than it originally was. Personally, I would be very happy if it appeared that I've overreacted by being so wordy and careful about the whole issue. That means noone really reacts negatively to it and 'the big bad world which will be hostile against people attracted to boys' is just a myth. I just have a hunch that this may not be the case...

    In summary: this page is not there for you but for other people.

Negative reactions

  • Perhaps you can't do anything about your feelings. But you can't just (be allowed to) go around proclaiming your love for boys in public. Boylove is bad. It's just - abnormal, and should not be promoted or heard about by everyone.
  • Well, that largely depends on your own interpretation of my words, I think. And depending on my interpretation of above statement, I could give different answers.

    First of all, I'm not 'promoting boylove' here. If anything, I'm promoting better understanding of it. There's a difference.

    I mostly agree that this is no subject to just talk about in depth with everyone. It's a very private matter that does not need to be 'promoted' and putting it on display on a webpage is just - strange. Even I think that. However, I also look at it from another angle. I should be able to just casually mention something about being attracted to younger boys if the subject comes up - just meaning 'I have a thing for boys' in the way I described it on my "What did you say?" page. In a world where the big majority does not overreact to such a statement and does not immediately see me as a potential sex offender or something like that, a lot of the text about this subject on my public webpages would be out of place and unnecessary. However, I have the feeling we still live in a world where very many people are immediately scared by this subject and react emotionally to it. These people's 'promoting negativity' about the subject is just as bad as my 'promoting understanding'. Actually I think there's a lot more potential harm in their negativity then in my openness And that is what I want to indirectly attack with all this text.

    If it appears that I'm wrong (or, when the world has grown up), I will turn out to be just another person who's talking to walls, fighting windmills. Once I find that out, I'll be completely happy to delete this unnecessary ranting.

    On a different level: I don't agree that boylove is bad or abnormal at all. Up to a certain level, it's completely normal and healthy, and I feel I should be able to say that I'm very fond of boys to everyone, without problems. If you disagree, then I suspect you of not being able to see the way I mean this.

    Ofcourse it could be abnormal, like almost anything could be bad or abnormal. In general, saying 'this and that is abnormal' without further discussion is wrong and leaves to unnecessarily stigmatising people in a lot of cases. On a broader level, I think the words 'normal' and 'abnormal' just don't mean anything. And something is only 'bad' if it has negative consequences for someone or something, not just because someone says so. So in this case, tell me about these negative consequences. I'm curious to hear them, if you see any. Otherwise, I'll just ignore you.

    I've already noted that many things are only bad if you drive them too far. So this applies just as much (/little) to, for instance, having a thing for cars from the 1950s. Or anything with a Nike logo printed on it. Well, I won't speak for anyone else here - but I know what I consider more sane... ;-))

  • Oh come on. You're just talking around the fact that you are sexually attracted to them.
  • No, I'm not.

    I'm not trying to hide the fact. I just don't want to go into it. I can mention the fact where I think it has practicle value in a discussion - but on places like my 'about me' homepage, there's no reason to.

    The fact that I enjoy talking to them or doing something together with them, and that that feeling is usually mutual, I can do something with. It's 'out there', it's 'part of my real life'. This physical attraction is not, it's just something that's only present in my thoughts - occasionally. It won't get out of my thoughts or become smaller than it is at the moment, but it's fine right there. This is not something I want to share with a lot of people because they'll never see it anyway (and probably won't cope with it very well). It's private and there's no need for it not to be, since it's being handled properly.

    Yes, it is being handled properly, trust me. I have lived with feelings of this kind for quite some time now, and have learnt to properly deal with them. I consider the physical attraction to be a healthy, positive feeling in itself. I am quite conscientious and careful about not doing anything with that feeling which affects anyone else, and it doesn't pose a problem to me. And after living with these feelings for some time, while being okay with them and being okay with the fact that I'm never going to do much with them, these feelings automatically become more and more of something 'in the margin of my life', not really important overall - even though they don't really go away. That's basically why it's not a big issue, and since it's not, it can be something private to me.

    In conclusion: here's where I draw the line. This is my business, not yours. So I'd like you to not even think about it, I'll handle that, thankyouverymuch. Only if you think you have a genuine reason to be interested in this subject, you can talk about it to me privately. But don't make any misguided assumptions like you would have the right to know about things, just because I tell you a lot of other things. Or like thinking that the physical side is the biggest part of my attraction or I'm hiding things from you here.

  • Well, you can say all you want, but I still don't want anything to do with you / I'm not letting you near my kids!
  • Oh, that's perfectly fine with me. Not that I agree with you, but if you stick to that opinion, you're as entitled to yours as I am to mine, and I'll respect yours as long as you respect mine. I'm not planning on confronting or provoking people who don't want anything to do with this subject - as long as you leave me & likeminded people in peace too. And it's not like I'm actively searching for boys to be with, anyway.

    I just hope that your kids don't 'by accident' get into contact with me, or even -God forbid- like me! If that horrible situation happens, you have a way out as long as you show some respect. Just tell me in a civilised manner that you can't really handle me having contact with your kids and perhaps even why. If I hear your reasons, I'll probably respect them and back out, even though I'll probably disagree with you.

  • You're really a sad person actually. I just feel sorry for you.
  • Well, all I can say is, you obviously don't know me personally :-)

  • People who are attracted to boys are sick in the mind / deluded / posessed by the devil / ... You need to be cured / converted / brought back to the True Path / ...
  • I guess you live in a different world than I do, and there's probably nothing I can do about it.

    My first thought about such a reaction is: if you pose such a statement then you can't see what I'm really about. You are apparently so wrapped up in your own assumptions about me, that you either have totally misinterpreted what I'm saying or you think you have a reason to shove it aside (because you think I'm lying, in denial, posessed by some evil line of thinking that is clouding my brain, or whatever). Arguments like these have a big change to lead to 'religious' discussions with no end, where one party is so wrapped up in their own opinion that they can't really listen to the other one. Or they have a reason to feel that they're better, so they don't even have to listen.

    My argument would be: Tell me why. What is so sick or bad about it? Where am I different from a 'normal' person (a loving parent or relative, for instance) and where's the danger in those differences? Give me a reason and I'll listen to you. I bet this reason will show assumptions about me that are just plain wrong. Or it will show that you actually have a different problem than you think you do. (For instance, if you think boylovers are sick or evil because you believe it's bad to not be married with children, then I don't want to discuss boylove with you at all. I want to discuss the necessity to be married with children nowadays.)

    Or maybe you can teach me something new. I'm happy to adjust my viewpoints if you give me arguments. But if all you have to tell me is "you're evil" then we're immediately done talking. Similar arguments have led to a lot of wrongdoing in the past. (People being shut out of society for nothing, religious wars -- hey, the examples are all over, you can think of some.)

    Self-righteous people are so frustrating because you run into some wall. No reason will hold up to the assumptions they make. All I can do is try not to get frustrated, to ignore you, not devote any energy to this because it will not do any good.

    If you can't understand me, fine. I can have peace with that. Just trust that there are people who can talk to me and who can keep me from doing any harm. (Hey, that's one of the points of being open about this subject: being open to scrutiny of other -sensible- people.) Let's just stay out of each other's way. If you don't bother me, I will not bother you.

  • No, I won't stay out of your way. You need help and I'll make it a mission to give it to you. / You're a sick bastard and I'll take any possible action against you.
  • (I really hope that no people who are so sad as to fall into this category ever reach my webpages. But you never know...)

    HELLO! What planet are you from? Obviously not the one I live on.

    There's obviously no reasoning with types like you. Let me just present you with some facts:

    • I have never harmed anyone. (Never in my life, in any way? ...well, you know what I mean.)
    • I have never had intimate physical contact with any boy younger than 16 (and 11 months), if that's where your problem is. And I'm not looking out for it either. (OK, intimate is a flexible term as well. Not anything more intimate than what a parent would do, like having someone sitting on my lap or tickling someone, okay?)
    • I am not hiding anything from anyone.
    • I am very much a social and well-liked person. There are enough people who know me well. Nobody of those people thinks negatively about me. (Not that I know of, anyway. Maybe these webpages will change that, we'll see.)
    There is no reason for bothering me, stalking me, or whatever. If you are still planning to do that, then you are the person bothering and being very offensive to a person who has never done any harm to deserve it. YOU are the one who is on the brink of criminal behaviour and this cannot be tolerated. You better watch out what you're doing.

    If you really need to devote your time to pestering people, please do that to people who feed on negativity just like you apparently do. Don't do it to me, I have a lot more useful and positive things to do with my life. What's even better is if you devote your energy to something more useful and positive too. Please grow up. You'll benefit from it.