Living with POCD

(unwanted obsessions that a person might harm a child)

Experiencing Unwanted Thoughts about Pedophilia

Are you having unwanted intrusive thoughts about pedophilia? For sufferers of Pedophilia OCD, or POCD, these unwanted thoughts result in panic, anguish and depression. People living with POCD have no desire to harm a child, yet they are tormented by thoughts of doing so. Panicked sufferers seek to escape their thoughts, which only makes them worse. They constantly search for evidence to prove whether or not they’re a pedophile. The nature of this subtype is so taboo that it often leads to years of suffering in silence.

The difference between someone living with POCD and an actual pedophile couldn’t be greater. While a pedophile takes pleasure in seeking out situations where they may have an opportunity to find sexual gratification around children, someone living with POCD will do the exact opposite. Sufferers of POCD are so horrified by their thoughts that they will avoid children at all costs.

Dr. Stephen Phillipson of the Cognitive Behavioral Center in New York says, “I tell my pedophile spikers that I’d be happy to leave you alone in a room with my two children for a week. And at the end of that week, you’d be in a lot more danger than them.”

Many people living with POCD start experiencing intrusive thoughts about pedophilia as young as 12 years old. This can result in a debilitating condition where the person avoids being in the presence of children. They might even avoid having children despite the desire to start a family. The best way to take control of these debilitating fears is to educate yourself, learn from the community and engage in Exposure Response Prevention (ERP) with a clinical psychologist specializing in OCD.