This is a restored post from my WordPress. Originally posted on October 11, 2022. I still agree with everything I said here.
A little over two years ago I wrote a post here that I titled “My anti contact manifesto”. Despite its name, it was intended solely for inner arguments in the anti contact community and is not very useful for anything else. It’s still a semi decent argument for when I need to tell people that human brains do not undergo a sudden development hop at 18 and that “children can’t consent because they don’t know what’s best for them” is a bad argument. But it’s also outdated, because when I wrote it, I was still very into measuring brains as a solution to every complicated situation. Since then I wrote three more posts, criticizing some rhetoric in anti c and pro c communities – here, here, and here.
But I think I need a general type post about my contact discourse stance. What I say applies to adults (18+) with children (<11), adults with teenagers below 16 (with an exception for close age gaps, like 18 and 14), teenagers (11-17) with children (with an exception for close age gaps, like 10 and 13), older children with younger children, even though I will mostly say «adults» and «children» for shortness.
I am anti contact.
I define my own stance as believing youth age gap dating is a bad idea, because the younger the person is, the more likely they are to be traumatized by the older party, and I do not think it is ethical for the older person to endanger them like that. I see the cause of this trauma in replicating nuclear family dynamics within the relationship – as in, the older person becomes both the partner and the parent/mentor type and accidentally blocks the child necessary social outlets. Children, as our society shows, do not do well in extreme closeness with one-two adults.
I do not use the phrase “children can’t consent” to describe my views.
I think this phrase (as well as its opposite, “children can consent”) carries zero value in a world where children routinely agree to acts an overwhelming majority later regrets (like becoming a professional ballet dancer at 8) and are routinely pressured in things they do not agree to, and this is seen as the social norm. “Parental consent” also exists, and I find this concept extremely creepy.
I do not believe there are no exceptions.
Something does not need to be true in 100% of cases to be a useful rule. If you tell me you had a relationship with an adult as a child and it did not hurt you, I will believe you. There is not contradiction between this and my general anti contact stance, because your relationship turning out a success still does not mean I think it was a good idea for the adult to pursue you/accept your advances, because it still wasn’t worth the risk. And, from my personal observations, a sizable portion (at least 2/3) of adults willing to date children/young teens are horribly irresponsible about the safety of the young person, including fishing for porn and bragging about it. I have no reason to trust a random given adult who plans to date a child.
I believe what we call “cp” should be separated into several categories.
There are commercially produced images and videos of child sexual abuse, there are leaked self taken nudes of children and teens, and there are nudes that stay private. The first is the worst, because the abuse occurred both during filming and during sharing. The second is not as bad, but still bad – because only sharing is abusive. The third, where the nudes are never sent to anyone or only sent to peers, should be a private matter and should not be criminalized. By the way, even if you are not sharing cp you found online, you still should not watch it, because you are still viewing someone’s violation. Even if you believe children and young teens in these images are 100% happy and content, you need to understand that having nudes of you out there can fuck up your life perspectives, and these photos still very likely harm the people depicted by their mere existence.
I have a separate stance against casual one-time sex.
My contact stance mostly concerns romantic relationships. But I do not believe adults should have one-time sex with children either. Children will not be able to hide the consequences of sex in most families, and that means abuse.
I see no issue with children dating their peers, watching porn, talking about sex.
The first one is self explanatory. As for the second and the third, I do not believe there is something special in sex as a topic that makes it more dangerous for a child than other topics.
I do not see the point in defining my contact stance through “what if” and hypothetical future that might never happen.
There are a lot of niche arguments to be made here. But what if the child specifically requests to be harmed? But what if the adult partner is ideologically anti nuclear family and knows all the red flags? But what if in a better future there is no ageism and childhood is something completely different? But none of these are something I could see and check for in the present day. If the majority of adults will understand why confining children to closed exclusive bonding with a family member is bad, if the better future comes, I will review what I have to say on this matter. Till then, my contact stance is my code of conduct that I use to evaluate my own behavior and the behavior I see from others.