In a study of 1,310 Finnish adult male twins we found that sexual interest in children aged 12 or younger was reported by 0.2% of the sample. Sexual interest in children aged 15 or younger was reported by 3.3%. Participants reporting sexual interest in children aged 15 or younger were younger, reported stronger sexual desire, and had experienced more childhood sexual and nonsexual abuse. The present study is the first to give a population-based estimate of the incidence of sexual interest in children among adult men. The 12-month incidence of sexual interest in children below the age of 16 years is roughly comparable to the one-year incidence of major depression or the lifetime prevalence of transvestitic fetishism.
- child sexual abuse
- sexual interest