A person can just get tired of being afraid

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Dear Senator [Paul S.] Sarbanes: This letter is written with a lot of sincerity. A person can just get tired of being afraid. I am at that point. My name is --. I have a sexual orientation toward boys under the age of eighteen. This proclivity has caused me more problems than anyone could ever imagine. I am not a satanist, was not abused by my parents or molested as a child. This orientation seems just to be part of me. I do not feel guilty because I am who I am, nor do I have a need to persuade others into being like me. Although I know many people like myself, I am not a part of a national or international conspiracy against children. It is significant to note that I have never had an opportunity to know myself without fearing that other people might try to hurt me - a fact that has worked to the disadvantage of everyone. Since I was a small boy, it seems that I have always had to keep secrets and secrets can become heavy, especially in a child's mind. There was never any permission to do otherwise. Safety was my primary consideration. [...]

It is not my intention to discount the real pain and suffering of legitimate sexual abuse victims by writing this letter. At the same time, I do not want to dilute my need and right to know myself. The fiction and drama that surround my being almost preclude any reasonable understanding of my needs and necessitate my living constantly under a siege mentality. My everyday is a fear that I will fall victim to some fool that has been overly influenced by the Clint Eastwood "make my day" philosophy. This is a burden that no human being deserves. [...]

For us, communication has always been a unique way to play Russian Roulette. Our situation is made even worse today because of the wording of many new state laws. It is this reality that is so dangerous to our being and insidious to any solution to our many problems. I would hope that you could help do something about this, possibly by exploring the idea of a special hearing on this matter. [...] (This letter is being sent to all members of the United Senate and select news media.)

Editor's Note: Thank you for sending a copy of this to the Bulletin. It will be interesting to see what responses you got. I can certainly appreciate the frustration that moved you to write it, and can tell it was a heartfelt effort. But there are risks associated with such an undertaking. Your letter illustrates an impulse that many boy-lovers feel: a sort of will-to-confess that is rooted partly in an emerging confidence about the goodness of our erotic feelings, and partly in lingering doubts about them that push us to test that confidence. So we proclaim our boy love to anyone who may hear with a touch of righteous defiance, and urge our listeners to take us or leave us. Some boy-lovers do this at critical moments when their freedom is at stake. They choose to proclaim their lofty feelings for boys to police or parole authorities, supposing that their honesty will create mutual understanding. Would not the sheer presence of their humanity cut through the callouses of bigotry? Alas no.

Almost always the results of been devastating: rather than anyone marveling at their honesty, they were burned at the stake with no more mercy for their openness. (Indeed, police manuals encourage interrogators to seem understanding and moved, even to repeat some of the arguments we might give them, just to give boy-lovers more rope to hang themselves in the end.) [...]

You can bet that at least a few of the politicians' offices you contacted, the support staff passed your letter on to the police. If you are not legally vulnerable now, and plan never to be, this danger may not practically mean much. But don't be surprised to get entrapment solicitations.

source: Letter by someone from Maryland (USA); Nambla Bulletin, Vol. 12, n. 2; March 1991