Thursday, 22 December 2016


UPDATE - 28.12.16

In response to Bampots on Madeleine McCann Mystery, and to whom, many thanks :)

[quote="Bampots"]I must admit have been extremely brave to say what you did....i did not get any impression you were in anyway supporting pedophillia![/quote]

Some do unfortunately Bampots, it is usually the first insult thrown if anyone is 'brave' enough to discuss this subject honestly.  Accused paedophiles are not allowed to have any defence, because anyone defending them will be accused themselves.  It's all pretty medieval actually.  When someone, like Jim Gamble [who is no academic] states looking at underage images leads to heinous crimes, it is taken as a fact because he is the expert.  I believe he also wanted to include watching obscene cartoons in his long list of arrestable offences. Does he have any evidence to back up these claims?  Who knows, no-one dare ask him. 

The Paedophile Hunters, men after his own heart, they like the cut of his jib and are exactly the time of people who would be attracted to his proposed vigilante task force.  They too have great enthusiasm for rooting out and garrotting witches, all under the guise of 'look how macho I am'.  And of course, ripping a paedo limb from limb proves how straight and heterosexual I am.  Of course it does.

I know I go on and on about lucky I was to have such forward thinking parents, but I truly was.  I was so outgoing that I made dear friends of every age and from every walk of life, I feared no-one.  And I was always drawn towards the outsiders, those excluded.  I've always taken the time and trouble to get to know the outsider and it has always enriched my life.  It is probably why, as a feminist, I have never hated men!  I had the best dad in the world, and men around me who took the time and trouble to teach me everything they knew, even though I was a girl, lol. 

I also worked for 3 years as a support worker for those with mental health problems and learning difficulties.  Of all the jobs I have in my life, it was the most rewarding.  When the interview panel asked if it was 'empty nest syndrome', I gave a resounding yes.  I grew to love all the clients I looked after, I was deeply touched by their innocence and simplistic view of the world.  One client, a partially disabled guy in his 60's was fixated on cameras, videos and technology, but with learning difficulties, it was on an ongoing struggle.  He worked at a local factory sweeping up, for which he got paid £9.40 per week (yeh, I know).  On his way to and from work, he had a penchant for strolling through the local park trying to take pictures of children, school girls especially. He was picked up by the police several times and returned home, having been given a good talking to by the police, and full of tears and remorse.  He was not a malicious or violent man.  He shared his flat with another disabled guy who was a wheelchair users, and during the night when they were on their own, he looked after his friend.  I, and indeed all the other carers, knew that he wasn't in any way a threat to children.  There was nothing 'mean' about him, he was a child himself. 
It does indeed chill me to the bone to think that 'Alfie' could be a victim of this horrendous form of public justice and punishment.  He is a vulnerable old guy, in fact just the kind of guy who would be pilloried as a monster.


I have threatened, a couple of times I think, to tell the story of my close relationship with an adult man (not a relative) who I first met at the age of 4.  Tom was an amateur photographer and I was a precocious kid who loved his company.  So how did we meet?

As a small child I lived with mum, dad, my older brother (by 11 months), and our Landlord, in a small house opposite Holloway Sanatorium in Stroud Road, Virginia Water.  It was a sanatorium for the rich and famous and the visitors arrived in chauffeur driven Bentleys and Rolls Royces.  I remember them well because I once ran into the road chasing my ball, and a lady in a very smart suit got out of her car and smacked me!  I remember all of us swearing secrecy because if my mum had found out, she would have smacked me too. 

It was an idyllic place to grow up, it was pre 'Moors Murders' and the whole neighbourhood was our playground.  There didn't seem to be any such thing as childminders in those days.  My mum and dad worked shifts, my mum nursing and my dad in the kitchens.  And we had lots of playmates, as most of our parents worked across the road in the hospital. We were the kids of doctors, nurses, porters, kitchen workers, from all sorts of backgrounds, mostly immigrant.  My best friends were 3 little Indian sisters and a German boy called Heina who wore lederhosen.  I loved the shock value of introducing Heina as my best friend, it was the early 1960's and it was great the way their eyebrows flew up when I said, and he's German.

Our houses backed onto a large paddock that was surrounded by nurses homes and staff accommodation and that was how I came to meet Tom, a wonderful man who became my next best friend.  Tom was a single man who lived in the male nursing home and it was his job to deliver bakery goods to all the staff quarters.  It was the era of Cowboys and Indians in the films we used to watch in a staff cinema within the hospital.  It was at a time when institutions took care of  their employees and their families - we also had use of an outdoor swimming pool and beautiful grounds. Tom in his slow moving electric cart full of goodies became the wagon train we kids used in ambush while pretending to be a tribe of marauding red Indians.  Tom accepted our 'raids' in good spirits, often playing along and pretending to have been shot by an arrow, and we always came away with treats. 

Tom was an amateur photographer and when he was off duty he would often come out to the paddock and take pictures of us as we played.  I was fascinated by his cameras and what he was doing, and I became a frequent visitor to his room, where he would show me all his cameras and pictures and give me cups of tea and cakes.  He was a quietly spoken and very thoughtful man, in retrospect he was shy with other adults, but with me, to my delight, he would talk for hours, and better still, he had the time and patience to listen to all my chatter.

I honestly don't remember how old Tom was, in the 1960's all men had the same hairstyle and all men looked old! From all  the thousands of pictures I have, there is only one of Tom, taken by myself according to what's written on the back, where he looks in his late 30s.  He always wore a suit, shirt and tie, and a rainmac he wore over the top on rainy days.  When working he wore a brown hospital coat over  his clothes.  He was a very kind, mild mannered man, always smartly turned out, very well spoken and the complete opposite of my loud, crazy family, where you had to fight to get a word in. 

When my brother started school at 5, I was the unhappiest child in the world.  On his first day, I totally showed the whole family up by having a full scale temper tantrum in the playground, because he was allowed to start school and I wasn't!  I had to be carried out of the school kicking and screaming.  Not only was I irked (thus began the feminism), but I no longer had anyone to play with.  I'm not sure if I latched onto Tom, or he latched onto me, but I began visiting Tom frequently when my brother was at school, and I soon brought him home and introduced him as my new best friend. 

My parents were then, and in fact for most of their lives, irritatingly unshockable. They didn't bat an eyelid and gave him the same warm welcome they gave to everyone.  I think they found him a little awkward to talk to, but they liked him.  I did once ask my Dad many years later if he was ever worried about my friendship with Tom.  He said he did of course, but the main thing was, I was happy.  And because I was the type of kid who never stopped talking, I would give him every detail of where 'me and Tom went' and 'what me and Tom did'.  I never kept anything back.  Still can't.   

I became Tom's muse, that is one of the main, if not the main subject of his photographs for the next 5 years, that is, up until I went into care.  At the age of 21 I received a huge box of albums that captured and documented most of my childhood. One of the most wonderful gifts I have ever received.

It's difficult now to remember what Tom and I used to talk about, but we talked constantly as we walked miles and miles looking for nice scenery and locations for Tom's pictures.  If he looked sad I would run up behind him and hold his hand, and sometimes I would just jump on him and give him a hug when he least expected it.  I could always make him laugh. Quite often I would go back to his room with him and lay on his bed while he fiddled about with his cameras and negatives or sat in his chair.  He was completely engaged in his photography, possibly somewhere at the lower end of the autistic scale.  He was always striving for perfection, the right lighting, the right angle.  Some of the notes that accompany the pictures recall how impatient I would get waiting for him to press the button, apparently I told him, he should be 'quick like me'. 


Never in all the time I knew him and spent time alone with him, was there ever any question of anything sexual, and yuck at the thought.  Tom only ever showed me kindness and friendship and respect and it breaks my heart to think what would happen to him in this hysteria led climate.  Tom was a well brought up, highly educated man with impeccable manners. He found my quite frequent temper tantrums and fallings out with my family highly amusing - I would turn up at his door hating everyone and he would put the kettle on.  He always managed to calm me down and even see the funny side.  He taught me some great lessons for the bipolar that was to come. 

I'm not naïve, and as an adult I have to consider there is a slight possibly that he got his jollies from the pictures he took of me, but I very much doubt it. 
He was more interested in the position of the tree, the shadows in the leaves and the position of the sun, than he was in getting me to keep still.  But even if he was, I don't really care because he never harmed me, all my memories of him are happy ones.  One picture captures a moment when I myself and a pal meet Tom in a country lane, the dialogue on the back says we were running towards him [to smother him in hugs and kisses] when he told us to stop so he could take the picture.  Kids don't greet abusers in that way. 

I'm loath to discuss sexual abuse in the same blog as dear old Tom, but probably like many, I didn't go through childhood unscathed.  At least 3 of my divorced mother's (uppercrust) suitors exposed themselves, and 2 of them thought I might like to look at pornography with them.  One of them did actually touch me, once, then bought me a new dress in Harrods and let me steer his open topped sports car in a car park whilst I sat on his knee which was how the grope occurred.

Was I traumatised by any of it?  Not at all, my honky tonk mumma taught me how to defend myself and not whine.  Both good lessons.  And I don't hate any of the men either.  They were trying to get to me with kindness, not abuse, and accepted my rebuttals graciously.  It pains me to see all of these victims claiming their lives were devastated by an inappropriate grope.  I wish women would 'man up' (I hate that expression as much as the next feminist, but it's late and I'm tired, lol) and stop using the victim card.  The world is full of men (and women) who will try to take advantage, and that applies at 6, 26 and 66, every age actually.  I think the incidents described above will probably apply to many adults, especially where parents have new partners.  And in most cases the grooming will be of the generous kind, rather than assault and battery.  The majority of paedophiles woo children in the same way as heterosexuals and homosexuals woo their 'love interest', with kindness and charm rather than with shackles and masking tape. 

The reality is, a lot of men do like very young women and adolescent girls and boys in a sexual way, there is no point in denying it.  See Ancient Rome and Sparta. And the same applies to adult women leering at shirtless teenage builders and attractive young men.  When I taught at college, I had two teenage students who brought to mind Adonis!  I would fantasise about that whole 'she was 31, I was 17' song, lol, but only my female friends found it funny. They were both lovely lads, one black, one white, each stunningly attractive, with a thirst for knowledge and adored by the girls. One did actually ask me if it was OK to ask a lecturer out to dinner, and I gave him a firm no, though I was secretly chuffed!

I wonder when it became taboo to appreciate the beauty of children and young people.  Happily history, literature and the Old Masters were able to capture the joy of childhood before the paedophile watchers and hunters moved in.  Writers like Hans Christian Andersen, Lewis Carroll and JM Barrie enjoyed close, some might say, intimate, relationships with children and out of those relationships came the most wonderful children's literature, written by men who could understand the world from a child's perspective.  They could bring the imaginations of those children to life and touch the big kid in all of us. 

Distinguishing between what is and isn't the sexual portrayal of children only seems to matter to those who are looking for signs. I doubt people in the 15th century were sent into a frenzy by the cherubs genitalia in the masterpieces of Raphael.  These hunters both official and official, remind me of the late, barmy, Mary Whitehouse, the kind of people who want to put a thong on Michelangelo's statue of David.   

But back to dear old Tom.  I am eternally grateful that I had parents who were so enlightened because my friendship with Tom was one of the most rewarding relationships of my life. I expect though, despite everything I have said, there will people  out there, who will claim the relationship was unnatural.  I accept it was unusual, but unnatural, not in the slightest.  One of the joys of life is that every now and again we will meet another human being who will be on the same wavelength, it might be a stranger in the supermarket, a neighbour or a work colleague.  And that attraction to that other person doesn't have to be sexual, it can be as simple as a shared sense of humour or a knowing look, we meet friends we like all through life. 

My relationship with Tom wasn't one sided, that is, I was never under his control.  I was a very determined little girl, a bold bitch according to my Irish Aunts. He had to show as much interest in making mud pies and catching spiders as I showed in his cameras.  We were so in tune, he bought me a pet mouse for my 5th birthday that I insisted on carrying around in my pocket, to scare old biddies.  My stories would make him laugh out loud, we had the same mischievous sense of humour. 

I like to think that our paths were destined to cross, I was always determined to be a writer and Tom supplied me with a photographic account of my childhood, possibly one of the most treasured gifts wannabe author could ever receive.  I guess I will never truly know if there was more to Tom's fondness for me than the constant photographs.  Some will probably say, of course there was, are you mad?  I honestly don't know, and not really sure I would want to, though I would be interested in the thoughts of others.  This is first time I have discussed this in public, I think it is fear that people will take something that was so precious to me and degrade it. 

We all thrive when we receive love and affection, and as a small child who regularly fell out with everyone, Tom was the 'constant' who always adored me no matter what.  I returned to see him again and again because I loved the way his face lit up when I knocked on his door and I loved listening to him telling me how wonderful I was.  If the best gift you can give a child is confidence, then he gave it to me in shedloads, I feared no-one, not even the brutal sadists and paedophiles who rescued me when I was 11.  But that's a whole other story. 


  1. "I expect though, despite everything I have said, there will people out there, who will claim the relationship was unnatural"

    Why? There is nothing in your blog that suggests that he did anything illegal with you?

    Or have I missed it?

    1. I hear ya 19:30, but my question would be how would such a relationship be perceived today?

      It would be very easy to make assumptions about Tom's intentions towards me, and indeed the other kids. He was a man who preferred the company of children to adults and he always carried a camera.

      He was a single man who lived in hospital 'digs', he had no female partner and no friends that I knew of. He is almost a textbook psychological profile for a child predator.

      Except, as you rightfully point out, he did nothing illegal to me, and was never likely to. My problem is with the presumption that he would, that minority report mentality, that assumes men who like children want to harm them.


    Who on earth is saying that all all men are perverts - maybe you could give a quote?

    1. I fear there has been a shift in the paradigm 19:55, this terror of paedophilia puts everyone under suspicion, but men especially. There are even barmy groups out there who want to ban single adults from walking through parks. The cesspit have entire threads devoted to the subject of men bathing children and holiday snaps under the microscope!

      Unfortunately the creepy ideas of the few have drowned out the sane and reasoned voices of the many. It is now forbidden to take pictures or videos of children in a nativity plan. I can't imagine what the enforcers of those bans think anyone will do with pictures of kids with tea towels on their heads. Are they hard currency on the dark web? Does anyone else thinks this is ridiculous?

  3. I am the anonymous that asked about your pending blog, thank you for publishing it.

    Just one question. How did your friendship with this man end?

    I got the wrong end of the stick about your experience with sex abuse as a child, I thought you meant something more serious.

    1. Thank you for prompting me 20:08, I'm glad that I did and I hope it resonates with some.

      It ended when my parents' marriage broke down and my brother and I were put in care we were moved from Surrey to Kent and we lost touch.

      I yadayada'd my way through the sexual abuse 20:08, like anything a memory can be as traumatic or nondescript as you choose. My most disturbing childhood memories come from the violence and institutional cruelty of the convent.

  4. Rosalinda,

    In my view there is a difference between the photographs of you and those of MM (not to mention those of JonBenét).

    The photographs of you are unique, they are about you and tell your story. Those of Madeleine being published don’t tell me anything, neither positive nor negative. They just show empty pictures which could reflect any other child. Perhaps because the photos are all about the parents?


    1. Hello NL and seasons greetings to you!

      My photographs, I have to agree are unique. But mostly because Tom followed me around with a camera! Most are not posed, they are just natural shots of myself and my friends playing.

      Most of us don't have the time or inclination to follow our kids around with a camera and we have little, if any, interest in the games they play with their pals. That's life, and it is as it should be.

      I sometimes think Fate brought Tom into my life. My legal action against the Church put my beloved parents on trial. It even, for one brief moment made me question everything I ever believed in.

      Fortunately, I brought the albums Tom gave me along to the trial, and after a gruelling day in the witness box, my best pal and I sat in the hotel room and went through them. My spinning head was saved by all the happy memories they brought back. Not only was I looking at the 'bold little bitch' in the pictures, I became her! I found the inner child I had lost so long ago and she wasn't afraid of anything. I returned to the Court room the next morning, bloodied but unbowed. When the questioning began, one of my first retorts was 'how dare you speak to me like that'. After the trial, my psychologist said I disassociated completely in the witness box, even my appearance changed before their eyes. She believes I have multiply personalities and the entire courtroom witnessed the transformation. I try not to take it too seriously, though it must be said, my entire family freaked out when watching the film 'Sybil', especially as I had more than a passing resemblance to Sally Field.

      I don't know why Tom chose me. I was not the most attractive of little girls, I hated having my face washed and I wouldn't let my mum near me with a hairbrush. Whilst she tried her hardest, the ribbons and bows were discarded the moment I stepped out the door. I wasn't in the least bit girly, my hero was my big brother, I wanted to just like him. I wore the pretty dresses my mum liked but my entire childhood is a litany of disastrous haircuts, all of which have a story behind them that always includes myself throwing a humdinger of tantrum.

      For most families, including the McCanns and indeed my own now, our albums are made up of birthdays, special occasions and pictures that are awkwardly posed. Most of us don't have the 'photographer' gene, we just want to get it over with. If we are lucky we have friends and relatives who have captured the moment, and sent it on to us.

      Tom I think had the troubled soul of an artist. He was always striving for that perfect picture. His theme, if he had one, was capturing the beauty of the world around him. The towering Holloway Sanatorium, the beauty and tranquillity of the surrounding lakes and fields.

      He was also capturing a 60's childhood (happily mine)in all it's glory. Whilst other photographers were capturing the kids in the slums on celluloid, he was capturing us in picturesque Virginia Water.

      That gift Tom gave me has saved my troubled mind on so many occasions. Especially in those 'it's not me, its all of them' arguments that ravage away in my tormented head. The main arguments my critics use against me is my mental instability brought on by my pitiful childhood. I would say au contraire, my childhood empowered me, I can see right through the BS.

    2. But apologies NL, I strayed from your point.

      I think it is a little harsh to say the Madeleine pictures look empty. The same could probably be said about family albums up and down the country.

      As I mentioned briefly above, most of us would rather be having fun at family do's and get togethers. Whilst we all want to look at the pictures after, no-one really wants the responsibility of going around with a camera. That's why rich people hire professional photographers.

      I don't think Kate and Gerry were any more or less enthusiastic about photographing their kids than most parents. Probably less. Gerry has that 'new toy' mentality of spoilt kids, the new camera would get used until he got bored with it, probably Boxing Day.

      I agree they put their own lives above their children's, but I think most 30 somethings do, it is almost within our genes. We are the providers, we have to go out hunting.

      As a young single mum, my philosophy was 'if I'm happy, the kids are happy'. If I could get a babysitter, I was out the door! And I didn't feel in the slightest bit guilty.

      I actually assigned Quality Time to the kids, lol. That is time when they would have my full undivided attention. I think I read it in parenting magazine and it worked a treat!

      We had one designated family evening for the 3 of us with no visitors and no phone calls. We made bread, we made jam, we went for long walks, especially if it was raining, or we snuggled up on the sofa binge watching videos.

      Not only did those nights salve my conscience for having to work and for going out, it gave us all treasured memories. Even all these years later, none of us can resist the urge to walk in the rain.

      Goodness me, I am off on the 'me, me, me' again, I think it's the time of year, it always makes me reflect on the past, in a happy way, I'm pleased to say. That's the message I am always trying to get through to survivors, focus on the happy memories, not the sad ones. And both give you the strength of character you have today.

      Jeez, haven't even hit the gin yet (but about to), watch out for the next blog lol, I'm going to accompany the writing of it with a medley of good old Country and Western songs beginning with Honky Tonk Angels, hic.

      Cheers to you NL, have a wonderful Christmas!

    3. Thank you Rosalinda for your comprehensive response.

      You are right, many albums are made up of birthdays, special occasions and pictures that are posed. Besides, anyone can buy a camera and take shots these days. Everyone is a ‘photographer’, but not everyone is an artist.

      And, as always, I also disagree with you; I find the little girl in Tom’s photos attractive and interesting, in contrast to Madeleine and JonBenét captured in pictures.

      Over and above all other considerations, for me the main issue is that in your case you are the one who decides what happens to photographs of you. That can’t be said of Madeleine and JonBenét.

      Oh, and Björn your comments are wholly intelligible to me, but then English is also not my native language. :)

      Season’s greetings Rosalinda to you and yours, to your friends and to your readers.

      Fijne Kerstdagen!


  5. Hi Rosalinda, and thanks again for talking about a touchy subject, and
    Merry X-mas and many thanks to all here, who try to understand, what I write from my Swedish perspective in a language, that is not my mother tongue.

    I, personally, think that people’s suspicious minds alone can change the attitude and behaviour to the worse of any unusual person, who is basically good, honest and nice, as he/she may begin to look upon himself as others do.

    In short, you become the person, who other people see in you, but not always the person, who you are, or who you had wished to be. I fear that a man like Tom, would today be defined as a potential paedophile by many people, especially by social workers and by society’s child protection institutions as a whole. He would not only be lonely, but certainly also without a job and explicitly rejected by a lot of people.

    What I’m trying to say is; that paedophilia may be our own little creation, which comes about when society excludes people, who like children, from being a part of it, due to
    the range of normality, which seems to have narrowed for children in their contacts with adults, anyway with those who aren’t their parents or their relatives.

    1. I am in awe at your ability to write so well in a language that is not your mother tongue Bjorn, reminiscent of the amazing multilingual Joseph Conrad! Not only do you find exactly the right words, you use them with incredible effect!

      I agree that monstering people, especially those who are socially awkward can drive them to commit terrible acts. A concept frighteningly and poignantly captured by Mary Shelly in Frankenstein. All the creature ever wanted was a friend.

      A Very Merry Christmas to you Bjorn, and thank you for your wonderful contributions, they are greatly appreciated.

    2. Your gushing admiration and agreement with someone who describes himself as being from Sweden and not having English as a first language has been repeated by you many times Ros.

      Perhaps you would like to clarify something:

      Björn said on 18/12/16 "those who are sexually oriented towards children, are not so much different from me"

      You said on 18/12/16 "I totally agree it is ridiculous to assume that those who are sexually attracted to children want to hurt them."

      Can you please explain to me and you readers how you accept that men who are sexually attracted/orientated towards children are not perverts or paedophiles?

      There is no middle ground here.

    3. Happy to clarify Dave. Bjorn is attracted to women, but he doesn't want to hurt them. I am attracted to men, but I don't want to hurt them (well maybe some). Sexual attraction and violent feelings are entirely separate entities. Whilst sexual attraction to children is perverse it is not necessarily accompanied by an urge to rape and kill.

      I can distinguish between dangerous, predatory paedophiles and harmless social misfits Dave. It is not a difficult distinction to make. Assuming a paedophile will act on his desires, takes us back to thought crime and the entire premise of Minority Report. It is fallacy to state that men who look at underage porn will go on to assault children. Do men who look at 'regular porn' go on to assault women?

      Of course there is a middle ground and pretending there isn't can lead to huge misunderstandings and too often, tragedy.

      No apologies for my admiration of linguists Dave, they take the road less travelled and are able to enlighten all of us.

    4. @ Rosalinda, Cristobell Hutton24 December 2016 at 19:20

      Your reply - as usual means nothing.

      You and Bjorn are defending men who have a sexual orientation/attraction to children and trying to defend it and play it down.

      It is paedophilia.

    5. Understanding and defending are two different words with entirely different meanings Dave.

      This shoot dead any man who has ever shown any attraction towards a child is bloody minded and ignorant. The assumption he will commit a heinous crime comes from you, not him.

      Hanging a man for his sexual tastes and thoughts rather than his actual deeds and actions is a very dangerous road to go down. It may be popular among angry mobs, but reasonable people prefer justice of the democratic kind.

    6. @ Rosalinda, Cristobell Hutton24 December 2016 at 20:38

      You are wrong. You are digging yourself into a deep hole here.

      I will repeat what I said earlier

      "You and Bjorn are defending men who have a sexual orientation/attraction to children and trying to defend it and play it down"

      You are now defending any man who has sexual tastes and thoughts about children and saying that is fine as long as they don't do anything!

    7. The word I actually used was perverse, I don't know how you took 'fine' from that.

      I cannot control what goes on in people's heads Dave and neither can you. However, all the while it is in their head, they can't be arrested for it. Unless you think thought crime should be prosecuted.

    8. @ Rosalinda, Cristobell Hutton24 December 2016 at 21:02

      I have looked back at my posts and cannot see that I said "fine" (you quotation marks).

      EVERY paedophile does it in their head first. That is OK with you.

    9. The quotation marks were there because I wasn't repeating you verbatim.

      As for EVERY paedophile does it in their head first - really? How could you possibly know that? Violent crimes are rarely pre-planned, they are usually the result of a series of events that have got out of control.

    10. @ Rosalinda, Cristobell Hutton24 December 2016 at 22:09

      We are not talking about violent crimes.

      "As for EVERY paedophile does it in their head first - really? How could you possibly know that?"

      Nonsense comment -a paedophile must have had the thought beforehand.

    11. Again, you can't possibly know that.

      Most child murders are spontaneous and unplanned, and most are committed by people who know them. Random kidnappings from a public place are extremely rare, that's why they make headline news. But even then they are likely to be opportunist rather than premeditated.

      Heterosexuals and homosexuals are not all alike, their tastes cover a wide spectrum. The same applies to paedophiles, each one is an individual, you can't just lump them all together. Some will be violent predators, but most won't be.

      Claiming to know how a paedophile thinks is nonsense Dave, even respected experts with a string of qualifications would never make a grandiose claim like that.

  6. Hi Ros ( and forum)
    Firstly, I love that story ; open, honest and superbly written.
    The world you inhabited back then was idylic, as you rightly say. Unfortunately the door to it was slammed tightly later. I doubt it will ever re-open.
    I feel it's important to have well defined lines that should never be crossed. It's not as difficult as you think to decide when 'love of 'becomes 'desire of' (taboo). Real love doesn't feel the need to express itself physically or sexually. Desire does. Children have no natural awareness of that kind of desire.
    Your world then had safe places. Schools, Churches, Brownies, Girl guides, Boys brigades. And they were run by people who did it for the right reasons. All of the above aren't now. Too often we hear of arrests of paedophiles from them. And the homes some kids go to are the same too often.
    Politicians, chief constables, judges and people we rely upon to clean it all up are often worse again. So- are we really to be blamed when we can't trust who we should be able to ?If we get panicky should we be labelled paranoid ? Or responisble..
    In the 90's it was stated by politicians jointly with the church that sex education should be taught to children aged 9. We have Patricia Hewitt coinidentally suggesting the age of consent should be 10 .Agenda ?
    Jon Benet typifies the other side of the coin. A small girl might play with make up and imitate her mum for fun at home, but to teach those little girls to strut in those costumes is horrible. Let children be children. Innocence dies young now.

    1. Merry Christmas to you Ziggy! Ziggy Stardust was the first album I ever bought and the divine David Bowie one of first undying loves.

      Things did indeed change after the Moors Murders. It was almost impounded in children that they mustn't speak to strangers. And because of Myra Hindley, even women were no longer to be trust. Prior to that, it was run to the nearest woman or policeman.

      I'm not sure schools, churches, etc, were run by people who did it for the right reasons though Ziggy, in fact kids were far more vulnerable and their word was never believed over that of an adult.

      As far as sex education for kids is concerned, I'm not sure where I stand with that. The only sex education I ever had received came from a sexually repressed nun and an ex Jesuit monk who had his testicles in shackles as we spoke. Bizarre doesn't even begin to cut it.

      As liberal as my parents were they never spoke about sex and my dad was very strict about swearing in front of us. I was just as bad, with my kids, it was 'ask your dad'. I think like most kids, I learned about sex in the playground, probably a little later than most, because I went to an all girls school and hung around with the nerds.

      Jonbenet, I am going to cover in my next blog, and thank you, you have sparked some new ideas. I'm not sure where I stand with little kids strutting about in costumes, though I do find it upsetting to see them cry when the false eyelashes are being applied.

    2. Ziggy 22.25 - "Your world then had safe places. Schools, Churches, Brownies, Girl guides, Boys brigades. "And they were run by people who did it for the right reasons."

      Have to disagree with you there - I was at primary school in the sixties and our headmaster was caught abusing girl pupils. Instead of being hauled in front of the courts he was transferred to an all boys school. I still know one of his victims and she is still traumatized by the whole episode today. The difference between now and before is that years ago these things got swept under the carpet.

    3. @ Rosalinda, Cristobell Hutton24 December 2016 at 13:43

      You were abused at school and also witnessed sexual abuse of other at school.

  7. @16.17
    I take your point and believe and agree with it. I should have added a 'generally'. I think the further back you go in the last century the less was known about the whole area of paedophilia in the wider public arena. That doesn't mean it didn't happen, obviously. It's a human flaw . It was swept under carpets and , sometimes even within families it was never talked about and denial set in. Denial is at it's most dangerous in these circumstances be it 'in house' or in society. Nobody is truly protected by denial. What goes down, must come up .

  8. @Dave Bottomley

    '' You are now defending any man who has sexual tastes and thoughts about children and saying that is fine as long as they don't do anything! ''

    '' I have looked back at my posts and cannot see that I said "fine" (you quotation marks)''

    I'm not having a pop, just helping to shorten the rally so we can begin a new set.

    The 'having a sexual orientation toward children' mentioned elsewhere and whether or not they want to hurt them is a less simple argument than it seems here . Firstly, having that sexual orientation is evidence that the 'wiring' is wrong in the head. before the man or woman who owns that head acts in any way at all it's their responsibility to try and get it fixed. They owe it to themselves and society . If they have no perception of it being wrong, their problem runs even deeper. The other side of this is the inner battle or torment that is seldom won. that's when the trouble happens. They may begin by honestly not wanting to hurt a child, but do when the battle's lost. Regarding a definition of 'hurt' I'd say this. Any sexual act regardless of the physical damage or ferocity of it, is violent. The raping of innocence is psychologically violent.It can destroy any concept of barriers and right and wrong in the child. It can arrest the moral development of the child. And, often if that child carries that around because they've been too scared, or threatened, or haven't been believed. What kind of isolation follows ? What private logic is formed in the child ? Whatever it is, it's hard enough to detect, let alone remove in order to give back their life.

  9. I almost forgot...
    Happy Christmas to you and yours Rosalinda :) x
    and to all on the forum ..

  10. Hi Dave (Bottomley)
    Rather late, but I just felt I had to comment on what you say.
    It may come to you as a shock Dave, but there is sexuality in all our hugs, kisses and caresses, no matter what our sexual identity/orientation may be, because we are all sexual human beings by nature.

    So, anyone, who associates with children, expresses some kind of sexuality, whether it’s a mother, a father or a teacher. Whatever we may call such intimate contacts, they are different from adult’s love affairs, in that they are about the relations between adults and children.

    If a person, who does not fit in society’s social structures, does what any mother can do to her child, any elder sibling can to do its baby brother or sister, or what any female kindergarten teacher can do to a child in her care, that is, embrace it tenderly and make it feel physical closeness, that person would be defined by others as a potential abuser (paedophile). Yet, such a person may love children, or some special children, just as much as anyone else.

    What should be more discussed here is how we as adults are connecting with our and others’ children in society, and of course how sexuality, sexual identity and gender affiliation affect our lives.

    I am against the witch-hunt for pedophiles, because we don’t really know what’s all about.

    1. Interesting comments Bjorn!

      Actually you have got me thinking about the way homosexuals were treated in the 1950's and 1960's. It seems bizarre now, but in those days, it was assumed that homosexuals were a risk to children. And I think that is where most of the distaste and violence towards homosexuals came from. Eg, men who didn't want to have sex with women would turn their attentions to kids.

      Of course we are far more enlightened now, and we can see how cruel and inhumane that kind of thinking was. Homosexuality was illegal, and hating gay people was a national sport, the Sunday tabloids competing with each other to out VIPs.

      And of course it carried the same vulnerability to blackmail and corruption. Being exposed as gay was the kiss of death to the career a politician or a celebrity. And for ordinary people it had the power to devastate lives, kids considered at risk taken into care and being shunned by the entire neighbourhood.

      That same kind of sinister witch hunt is back 21st century style. Literally any man with 'family day at the beach pictures' can be prosecuted for being in possession of underage images.

      Then there is this huge mythical leap that somehow links looking at images with violent crime. That argument has been disproved again and again in a variety of different situations.

      I think someone should be brave enough to bring the subject out into the open. All the ignorance around the subject is due to lack of information and the fact that most people are too afraid to discuss it. If they say anything reasonable or less than condemnatory about the paedophiles, they will be accused of being sympathisers.

      I fear it will be a long, long time before the reasonable voices are heard Bjorn. Meanwhile we do at least have one small corner of the internet that is trying to understand.

    2. @ Björn25 December 2016 at 23:05

      I am very concerned about your comments - particularly if you have access to children in any way whatsoever.

      You are wrong.

    3. FFS 16:41, it's comments like yours that prevent any sort of discussion around this sensitive subject. Bjorn's comments are reasoned, considered and show no hostility towards children whatsoever. If my children were young I would leave them with him before most others. I wouldn't be leaving them with dodgy child protection officers and enthusiastic (Bennett) social workers, who's main concern is removing parental rights.

      Your blinkers are preventing you from seeing the light 16:41, maybe you should adjust them.

    4. @ ros 17:11

      I expressed a different opinion - based on what Bjorn had said. Is having a different opinion preventing discussion in your view???

      Fascinating that you would be prepared leave young children with a stranger from the internet!

    5. Not at all 00:38, I welcome alternate opinion, without it, how would I ever learn anything?

      Actually my sons are grown men, and it was figuratively speaking 00:38. Though it must be said, as a young working mum, I had my share of dubious nannies! When your child is covered in chicken box, the minder won't have him and you are desperate to keep your job, you have to make decisions on the spot.

      I get really irked by people who are surrounded by family who smugly relate how careful and responsible they were as parents. Especially in the Madeleine case. Trying to sustain a full time job and raise kids is a nightmare for most parents, especially for those who have moved away from the bosom of the family. Why do the 'smugs' have to continually rub it in? Grrrr.

      But aside from all, yes I would trust Bjorn implicitly, it is delightful and extremely rare to stumble across someone who is so enlightened.

  11. Bjorn
    There isn't sexuality in all of our hugs and kisses. Hugs and kisses can be to console and comfort. Touch is our most important sense.We may all be sexual beings but I think you need to draw a few lines.

    As for paedophilia , we do know what it's all about. If you don't, fair enough, speak for you, not all of us . Witch hunts are wrong no matter who the hunt is for. But it's too easy to be politically correct and 'aware' and call everyone who gets angry a mob or hunter. If there's a genuine reason for anger and a genuine anger at justice not being done, it's called being human . A witch hunt is only a mob of angry people looking too hard to vent and not hard enough at the reasons and evidence they think they have.

    1. Hi Ziggy S.
      You’re quite right, I shouldn’t really implicate everyone in my thoughts. I’ve an old habit of using “we” when talking or writing. I respect your opinion on “paedophilia”, though it’s somewhat different from mine. I really hope that adults’ love for children and its alleged connection to “paedophilia” will be further discussed here, later on. It’s of course up to Rosalinda to decide.

    2. That distinction between love and paedphilia is driving a huge wedge between men and children Bjorn, and I find it heartbreaking. So much love, guidance and wisdom lost through ignorance and prejudice.

      I have no doubt it will be a recurring theme Bjorn, I would gift every child a 'Tom', someone who cared enough about them to record every smile and every tear.

  12. Yes, Rosalinda I agree, in that we should all learn from society’s prejudice, in the recent past, against homosexual individuals, when sexuality in general is being discussed. I hope that you will bring up this subject later on.

  13. To state " It is fallacy to state that men who look at underage porn will go on to assault children" misses the point. These "watchers" create the marketplace for the child abuse to be created, to order.

    1. I get it Mark, and in a sense you’re quite right, but the problem, as I see it, is to define child pornography. If it’s about films/photos of children having sex with adults, it’s nothing but rape and violence.

      Nevertheless, a lot, or perhaps most of all images/photos of children, which by our authorities (Swedish/British) are considered to be child pornography, are completely innocent and inoffensive, such as children bathing naked, small girls sunbathing in bikinis, or children in swimsuits eating peeled bananas in the “wrong way” and of course all the cartoons with naked characters of imaginative children. And what about our treasure of children's literature, with its fantasy illustrations of children.

      A Swedish translator of Japanese Manga cartoons was prosecuted a few years ago for having child pornography in his computer, that is, he had the cartoons in it. Without watching these fantasy images of children, it would have been difficult for him to do his job.

      He was convicted in a lower court, but acquitted in a higher court, but of course he lost his job and got his life destroyed.

    2. @17.28
      Porn is Hollywood's dirty cousin . Child Porn is that dirty cousin's twisted son. All three are driven by supply and demand ; If you want to gauge the audience size , look how much is supplied in each .The effect of each branch of this 'entertainment' seems to have influence on a lot of those who view beyond the experience alone. The herds of sheep who obsess over celebrity trivia while the real world heads to hell on a bike is frightening.Porn is giving wrong impressions and now wannabe studs and 'babes' suddenly have an 'awakening' and get experimental( it's a movie folks, don't try this at home ). Child porn is as much a stimulus to those who have that yearning. So, what's their next step going to be. Frightening stuff. Monkey-see, monkey-do is my number 2 pet hate.It really disappoints me. And make no mistake about the next step that's been under way for a few years - the sexualising of kids. Their 'role models' changed the game with Britneys famous schoolgirl performance. Lady GaGa is a soft porn act when she isn't dressed as an uncooked meat pizza. Madonna ? enough said. But the prize goes to the clowns behind a certain video 2 years ago. I watch some great stuff music -wise on youtube and some have a couple of hundred billion hits. But when i saw Sia - Chandelier on some tacky music channel when at my son's i nearly choked. his has almost 2 billion hits on youtube. You can't tell me that video isn't being deliberately provocative . All female gymnasts are small so i see no reason whatsoever to use an 11 year old girl 'dressed' that way and dancing that way other than to dare us to respond. And, before the 'people who see it must be it' clones throw their arms up in sanctimonious indignation, watch it.

      The rules are being changed all the time by the vile creatures who fund these mediums . I'm no religious zealot by the way. I'm not religious at all .The long game is their Fabianistic speciality. here's no rush to reach their goal, as long as they reach it. When the gap between innocence and experience is closed the lines will be blurry enough to the point where ages of consent will have to be reviewed. It won't be to raise them. Bet your hoouse on that .

    3. Hello Mark, hope you had an enjoyable Christmas.

      I'm glad you raised the point about creating a market, that is of course the second strongest argument to root out those watching child porn on the net.

      That argument however, is comparable to tracking down users of drugs rather than suppliers. It could be said the users are creating the market. The users of course far outnumber the dealers and tackling the drug problem in that way would mean quadrupling (at least) every drug squad. Type 'got any drugs' and expect to be pounced on by a swat team.

      The drug users, on the whole, are not lawbreakers. Some it could be said, are just pathetic and there is no public appetite to hound and imprison them.

      Tackling the problem of underage pornography by arresting and publicly humiliating anyone who looks at illegal images (and who is to judge what is legal?)will make little or any difference to those children who are being abused. Like the drug industry, Law enforcement needs to go after the makers of the films and the suppliers.

      Assuming a man is a predatory child abuser because of what he likes to look at on the internet, is simply bizarre. The sex industry is not only multi million/billion, it caters for every known fantasy and creates a few new ones. If men who like to look at young girls or young boys are sex offenders, what are those who like bondage and S&M? Should we assume they are violent and should not be allowed out in public?

      Criminalising people for what they look at and what they 'might do' is a very slippery slope. Rounding up men who 'might' have looked at underage age pictures, and destroying their lives anyway, is probably the most scary legislation we have. It gives unscrupulous people at the top the power to invent false charges against almost anyone they want. If we accept the persecution of this small (unpopular) minority group without question, who will be next?

    4. Goodness me Ziggy, I thought that missive had been penned by Ebenezer Scrooge! Porn and titillation are as much a part of human history as reproduction, and is closely related. Birds and bees and all that. And, incidentally, unless you can supply something far more dazzling and entertaining, the herds will go back again and again.

      Does it all really influence young people? Other than seeing a lot of young girls with very strange eyebrows, they seem pretty level headed to me. Leaps and bounds ahead of myself at that age. I don't think they raise an eyebrow to be honest, they have had glitz all their lives, todays celebrities have to keep upping the ante.

      I am afraid you are sounding a bit 'old fogey' Ziggy, repeating the arguments of all the granddads who have gone before, lol. Kids are what you bring them up to be, they are not going to be corrupted by a wanton young hussy singing provocatively anymore than women were raped en masse when mini skirts and hot pants were all the rage.

      You make a couple of sweeping statements there Ziggy, 'child porn is as much as stimulus.....' - really? What evidence is there to support this? You then cite a music video with child gymnasts as an example of 'things going too far' [my words]. I'm baffled. Surely anyone with that specific fetish (little girls in leotards), can look at them quite legitimately on the sports channels?

      Youngsters don't want to see their idols standing still on stage like a choirboy, they want to see them thrusting their hips a la Elvis (who also caused an outrage) and swinging half naked on a wrecking ball. I quite like that video myself, go Miley!

    5. You have hit the nail on the head Bjorn, it should be clearly defined as to what images are deemed legal or illegal. And who judges the images? Will it a panel of right wing Christian Judges who will ban children's swimming costumes?

      The Swedish examples you give are ludicrous, but no doubt, the UK ones could match them. Under that criteria the pictures I have published above could see me arrested! It really does feel as though we are living in a twilight zone. Neither myself, nor 99% of the population see anything sexual in kids in bathing suits, nappies and naked. When my first son was born, I took loads of snaps of him naked, he was the most beautiful, scrumptious little creature I had ever seen, I could barely resist the urge to sink my teeth into his chubby little bottom! Is that now weird?

      Children are beautiful and for 99% of us they are not sexual in any way! Running society along the lines that everyone thinks like the 1% makes no sense whatsoever.

      I agree with you Bjorn, that violence, rape or anything that distresses a child should be classed as heinous and anyone making films of that nature should be arrested immediately and the children rescued!

      Reaching them via their viewers is a long, laborious and time wasting exercise. They are going after the easy targets which looks good on their arrests figures, but the abuse of the actual children in the videos goes on.

      What's makes me so mad about this whole subject Bjorn, is the way in which the majority, politicians especially, dig their heads deep into the sand. Unfortunately, the 'I'm not listening' approach, has placed ridiculous laws into the hands of wannabe Judge Dredds who would happily throw the works of the old Masters onto a bonfire.

      It is madness, but a sign of the huge leap backwards society is taking with politics swinging to the right all over the world. We are heading for a new Age of Ignorance, gawd 'elp us.

    6. ZiggySawdust/Rosalinda,

      There are as many minds as there are heads I guess, but with regard to Maddie Ziegler, isn't it significant that Ziegler herself tells us about her journey in the Maddie Diaries? Her own story is all that matters in my opinion.


  14. @ Ros

    Old fogey lol tut tut if you only knew. Over the years there's been many suggestions fly my way but think everyone of them is the opposite of old fogey or prude.

    I take your points, Ros. I understand where you're coming from. I'm not sure you know where I'm coming from though. I agree Re Elvis ( remember the 'outrage' concerning his pelvis turning good ol' boys in US of A into sex maniacs and women to lose their morals and minds ?). Miniskirts are always nice. I say that objectively as a sexist pig ( ducks). But that was then, this is now, to coin a cliche.

    Today, stars(?) still wear the same.Even the ones with a bit of real talent(gaga etc). But the choreography is all sexual and provocative. Ask a cross section of 'lads' or men their thoughts on those stars.You'll learn what they want.And the girls want to be wanted too-that's also been around as long as the birds and the bees. What's twerking for ? All ok in rap videos but teaching pre teens ? its rife and i think wrong. Once you're old enough twerk your brains out- just wipe it up.

    ''unless you can supply something far more dazzling and entertaining, the herds will go back again and again.''
    That's the 'nail on the head' moment. The psychology of addiction and the evolving of it.Addiction can happen to anyone regardless of their upbringing.It's not just drink or drugs now.But addiction is mechanically the same whatever your 'poison' of choice. Addicts are still a minority . But if only 5% of drinkers or drug takers are addicts, what numbers are we talking ? If kids can be desensitised to violence and all crimes relating to it, they can be desensitised to anything. As for the Sia vid and my opinion..the flesh coloured leotard is deliberate. It's for shock value. The lyrics? You choose. The Elastic Heart's more of the same. But this was about the chances of child porn triggering the viewer to act if i remember. Best i can offer up at short notice..

    1. Music and art is supposed to be provocative Ziggy, if it isn't it will be instantly forgettable. The same applies to writing by the way, the objective is to make the viewer/reader think.

      As for kids being desensitized, the Elvis argument returns. Fifties teenagers were probably also thinking what's all the fuss about. And I've no doubt the sexy beat and all that jiggling steamed up a few car windows on the way home, but isn't that what rock and roll is all about?

      This generation of kids have grown up in an age of technology is that is so completely different to the worlds I, and possibly yourself, grew up in Ziggy.

      Kids who grow up in loving homes with good communication will not be desensitized. Their families are their strongest influence. If their parents are respectful to them and everyone around them, they will be too.

      Probably about 90% of teenagers have watched things they are not supposed to. And that figure probably applies to every generation. Those who are led astray, would have been led astray anyway because their roots are already unstable. The majority however wont be affected one way or the other, just as we weren't when we got hold of an illegal copy of the Evil Dead when aged 16.

      I think we should have a lot more faith in the younger generation, they are of course what we made them!