2015-12-24

Cross-wiring in the brain of pedophiles

There is this "common consensus" among "experts" that the brain of pedophiles is cross wired. In the last paper by Cantor et al, the authors say that there is no "disconnection", but a "dysconnection". Right. Or are they wrong? The "experts" claim the following. If a "normal" person sees a child, the parental love is activated. But in a pedophile, it is the sexual love instead.

Ok, there are studies using functional MRI's and they report differences. I have also seen a meta-study where they listed all those studies and listed which regions were activated in pedophiles - there was not much consistency to see. This could be a case of p-value hacking, which i discussed earlier.

Back to the "common consensus" of cross-wiring, how much truth is there to this assumption? Is there really an activation of something completely different in parents than in pedophiles? That is what cross-wiring implies, or am i wrong?

What are the chances that evolution created a sexual love system and completely separated parental love? Testosterone, oestrogen, adrenaline, dopamine, serotonin, oxytocin, and vasopressin are the usual suspects for love hormones or the cocktail of them. Some say it is a myth that mothers get sexual aroused by breastfeeding their children. But it is oxytocin that controls the milk let down. One treatment option for social interaction orders involves a nasal spray containing oxytocin. Just by reading the article about oxytocin, one understands that there are no two separate love systems, there is only one. So what is parental love, then?

I have read several accounts of boy- and girllovers, who did not feel any sexual attraction to their own children. However, the friends of their children had the usual effects. The reason for that is the Westermarck effect. It renders long known acquaintances sexually inattractive. Is parental love the same as sexual love, but with brakes put on by the Westermarck effect? I think so. From an evolutionary points, it makes sense to reuse an existing system and to add some inhibitors to it than to evolve a brand new system for offspring caring.

Moreover, it makes sense to loose sexual interest in a person after getting to know him/her for a long time. In former times children of age 7 were supposed to fend for themselves, coincidentally the seventh year is also the one with the most breakups in marriages. Love hormones make us befriend a complete stranger. The own kids are around from day one, not exactly being strangers. This is another reason, why parents don't feel a sexual attraction, they are already close to their children. If they have not been close to their children, genetic sexual attraction happens, just think of oedipus.

So, what exactly is this cross-wiring talk about if there is nothing to cross?

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