But it really wrecked my optimistic view of humanity at a young age.

I don’t have any. But it’s more “social impressions”.

I’ve worked with kids on and off my whole life since I was a kid myself [tutoring 3rd graders when i was in 5th grade, leading scouting activities and stuff]. It just comes naturally to me.

But there would occasionally be whispers. Looks. Or I’d get asked strange leading questions when I was younger the occasional adult around me. Things that didn’t make sense to me. “Don’t you think you’re spending too much time with…” “You really should keep the door open when you…” and stuff like that.

I remember thinking, “What are they THINKING about me here?” It was very creepy and strange. “Oh, well, you know, people might talk”. stuff like that.

I learned of course. Always had to keep in mind the worst possible impressions I might get from other people before even considering working with kids.

I understood why: they don’t know me. I could be a wolf in sheep’s clothing just waiting for the “right moment”.

But it really wrecked my optimistic view of humanity at a young age. I still am optimistic about humanity but the gossipy dark side can REALLY get extremely dark.

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There’s a lot of possible perversions and fetishes in the world by men and women. For as many things that exist there’s probably a fetish for it somewhere.

Women can be just as perverse as men. I’ve known a few and a cursory glance at the romance industry or “Real Housewives” type shows there’s plenty and it’s all pretty well out in the open now. But I don’t think they’re seen as “quite as dangerous” as if it were men.

Yet it’s still there. I remember encounters with a few female teachers where there was no doubt they were getting cheap thrills with some of the things they did. Kooky science teacher who liked to walk close behind the boys at the blackboard and brush her boobs against our backs. That hug that’s a little too long and a little too “roaming hands”.

Of course when you’re a kid what do you do? You let it slide. Part of growing up. Some adults are pervs and you deal with it. But I’d have to put the percentage at 50/50 male/female split on just about any fetish that might exist out there.

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I’m not implying there’s more women than men pervs out there. But I believe it’s about equal amounts just expressed differently.

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Looking back at your question: “Why wasn’t it seem younger?”

Well, you wouldn’t see it would you?

If a 12 yr old is attracted to 12 yr olds, nobody thinks anything of it.

But if that same 12 yr old is now 23 and is still attracted to 12 yr olds, then, well, they need a better hobby..

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I think it’s fetishing. Someone gets fixated on a particular “something” and their whole sexual world is wrapped around it.

For one man is might be a women’s legs. For another woman it might be a beard and hazel eyes attached to a man For another man it might be an “ideal” of youth. For another woman it might be an ideal of “romance”.

Some are culturally sanctioned. Some are not culturally sanctioned.

I’m glad some are not culturally sanctioned.

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BUT: the gay/bisexual/straight spectrum I think is not directly related to fetishing.

I think there’s a built-in “something”. It’s no purely environmental *or* circumstantial. [environment or events]

In the spectrum of things, using the 100% gay/bi/100% straight spectrum, I believe most people are on either side of the middle. Few are purely 50/50. Few are purely 100%.

But I think there are socially sanctioned ways to *express* “other side” tendencies allowing one to feel “as if” they’re 100% one or the other.

Example: men hanging around men. Women hanging around women.

Each might only date / have sex with / get married to / whatever in a standard way but they can BECAUSE they _also_ have socially sanctioned ways to express their “other side” without consequence.

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