The Pederast of Instagram: when the victims of abuse are men

Child sexual abuse is an elephant in the room. And a deep silence is heard when the victim has the face of a man.

The “Instagram Pederast” has brought this thorny issue to the table for a macho and patriarchal society. Behind this nickname – which seems more like the title of a Netflix series – hides a horror story of a man who was accused and recently sentenced to 700 years in prison for cheating and abusing almost a hundred minors.

José Ángel SS was accused of sexually abusing, having sexual relations and recording them, distributing pedophile content and cyberbullying almost a hundred minors. The 31-year-old subject led a double life, something common in pederasts. Although he was a “respectable man”, a lawyer and soccer coach in a municipality in the south of Madrid, he was also a sexual predator of 16-year-old adolescents.

Using the pseudonym of a woman as a hook to convince his victims of the first approach to later request material with strong sexual content, the aggressor made his contacts through the social network Instagram. If the number of abuses was around 100 cases, it was because most of the victims, feeling ashamed, did not comment on the abuse and did not consider it as such. “On many occasions, the minors minimized the meaning and scope of what happened, and later, once their respective parents were informed and the facts could no longer be hidden, they managed to verbalize the experience lived and recount it without being ashamed or guilty. ”says the judicial part, quoted by Spanish media. Finally, today he is in jail, where he will purge 30 years of the 700 to be the maximum cap in Spain.

Although it is undeniable that sexual abuse is a taboo subject, today, due to activism against gender violence, it has become a little more visible. But the treatment is still with a woman’s face. However, sexual abuse in men also exists. However, it is a reality that the incidence in men is still well below that prevailing in women. According to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, in the United States, with data from 2018, one in five women and one in 71 men will be victims of sexual violence at some point in their lives. 91% of rape and other sexual assault victims are women, and 9% are men. In the case of prevalence by age, one in four girls and one in six boys will be sexually abused before they turn 18 years old.

The fact that the incidence is proportionally lower does not make it less harmful. There is even talk of a much larger black number, as in the case of all rape complaints. While men will face the same effects of sexual assault, they may also experience some additional conflicts due to prejudices and stereotypes about men and masculinity in alpha mode, where men are believed to be capable of taking care of themselves at any age. to avoid an attack. If to this is added that in the aggression there has been some involuntary physiological reaction, they may experience shame of “having wanted it”.

How long will we be able to tear down those toxic masculinities that are affecting the social fabric of both women and men? Sexual violence against men exists and they are not Instagram stories. Damage prevail more than 24 hours. And they, like the women, didn’t ask for it either.

By: Sarai Aguilar Arriozola

@saraiarriozola*

*Doctorate in Education and Master of Arts with a specialty in cultural dissemination.