I got accused of being a pedophile today...

But I’m really not. I swear. So, I am 18 years old, and my little brother is 10. For about the last 5 years or so (since he moved), I have been the “cool older brother” for the neighborhood kids. Anyway, his little group of friends consists of kids between the ages of 8 and 13. I play the part of the cool brother well, and I roughhoused with the kids (as I have for the last 5 years), and have been known to tickle the girl (12 now). Well, today I tickled her, as I have done a hundred times before, and apparently, she runs back and tells her Mom that I “touched her inappropriatly.” It was innocent! Little jibs in the side, ya know? Same thing I’ve don’t ever since I’ve known her. So, my Dad gets a call from her Mom, and then I got a lecture about how girls will “fuck you over (words of my dad),” and to just stay away from her from now on. What’s the deal with that? I did nothing wrong, nor did I want to! ARG!:mad:

Listen to your dad. He may not be stating it eloquently but an 18 year old adult man, which is what you are legally, playing tickle me Elmo with a 12 year old girl is not a good idea no matter how innocent your intentions are. It’s not a good idea, not a good idea at all. It’s a bad, bad idea. I just can’t say it enough.
Both you (especially you) and she are just too old for these games now.

What astro said.

While it’s not exactly molestation, I would think that common sense would tell that wasn’t a smart thing to do.

Welcome to the world of accountability. Be very careful. Say you get rail-roaded into court on a bogus charge. The judge will put you in jail unless you are charmed. It may not even be the girl’s trying to “tell” on you. Don’t worry about that. Dad is right.

I don’t see anything inherently wrong with it. Physical contact doesn’t always have sexual connotations. In my mind the only thing that makes it a bad idea is that there are sickos out there and you probably want to avoid being mistaken for one.

It’s a shame that it happened, but it’s one of the things we have to deal with in today’s society. There’s some bad people out there, and they’ve created a lot of fear and what it means for the rest of us is that we have to be very careful.

I was at a playground once with my daughter and another girl on a swing fell off and started to cry. I asked her if she was ok, and still crying she held out her arms, and I did without thinking what I would do for my own daughter. I picked her up and gave her a hug, and told her everything was ok.

The mother of the little girl was not pleased. I apologized quickly and convinced her I was just trying to help, and everything ended fine, but for a moment I thought I was going to get the police called on me.

As an adult, one needs to be very, very careful about touching other people’s children no matter how innocently.

It’s a shame that it is this way, but I really can’t say that we have this attitude without reason.

My advice would be to take it as a lesson learned.

It’s a real shame that this is the way the world has gone.


Not too long ago I was walking along a crowded high street. A little girl (maybe 4 years old) walks past me crying, calling for her mum. First thought: go and help her. Second thought: what if it’s taken the wrong way?

Fortunately Mum appeared at that point and it was never an issue, but it’s terrible that I had (or had to have) that thought at all. If it came down to it you’d have to help, but you really are laying yourself open to accusations.


Nerrie, in that situation, my instinct would be to make sure the child didn’t need any help - but also to protect myself. Not that I would do anything that I would think appeared inappropriate, but you never know how something might be taken.

So I’d end up crouching down so I was on the child’s level, holding out a finger or two so they could hold onto it with their hand, and simply talk to them - and even then someone could take that the wrong way. :frowning:
But Chekmate, 12 year old girls are at the point they are becoming aware of their bodies, other’s bodies and are definitely more aware of the opposite sex. I’d take your dad’s advice and not allow yourself to be in that situation again. And remember, accusations don’t only come from girls, so watch roughhousing with the boys too - because it only takes one accusation, true or not, for your face to be plastered all over the news as “an accused child molester”. And no one would ever hear your side of the story - that’s not the sensationilist news we all like so much. :rolleyes:

You have got to understand that girls at around that age start to feel weird about their bodies and maybe her folks have started to tell her “evil men will try to molest now so watch out!”. The thing is that tomorrow she may want to be tickled but you can’t do it.

But try and find a graceful way to stop or slow down your ‘cool older brother to the neighborhood kids’ thing. I think you can still be their friend but you have to be the grownup.

The politically-correct social pendulum has swung very far to the side that says, “you are bad.”

Totally illogical and irrational. But that’s just the way it is today. It’s unlikely you can change it, so you (and all of us) will have to live with it appropriately.

My mother was a first-grade teacher all her long life, and I think a very good one. She would hug a child who needed it and spank one that deserved that. No parent ever objected to the hugs, and if there was a rare objection to a rare spanking, her principal backed her 100%. But personal interaction such as this would be highly inadvisable today. The social climate has become paranoid. It would be prudent to be aware of that.

Usually in school students get lectures on what is appropiate touching & what is not & what might be okay now but might lead to more. So the kid was probably just doing what she was taught.

52 year-old med pro checking in. It is part of my job in the ER of my hospital to do electrocardiograms on patients coming in with chest pain, drug overdoses, and the occasional sternal collision with a steering wheel or seat belt from an MVA.

Sometimes these patients are young women 18 or below in age, and I always try to make sure a nurse is standing by when I do an EKG on them, because it is necessary to place the electrodes on the chest and below the nipple line to get an accurate reading.

With the nurse in attendance, I calmly explain what I am about to do and then I ask the nurse to assist with the gown. I do this to protect myself from an accusation of touching inappropriately. They can be drunk, stoned or whatever. All it takes is one scream, and if there’s no witness (nurse or doctor) in the room, I’m done for, career-wise.

I have been an RT (respiratory therapist) for 12 years now, and luckily nothing like that has happened to me, and I hope it never will. But I take precautions against it.

I hope this helps you somewhat even though it’s a bit unrelated to your experience.

I might add also that I did not intend for the above paragraph to relate directly to 18 year old females. It can happen with any female. It’s just rare that it happens with a mature woman, who is in need of help and knows it.


My husband won’t be alone with any little girls ever, for fear of this kind of thing happening. It is truly sad. I always told my son to go to a “lady” if he ever got lost in the store…I know it’s not fair, but I think statistics show that women are somewhat more trustworthy than men. I hate that I just said that, but it just always felt safer in my mind.

It’s not a function of trustworthiness, Echokitty. It’s just that more men are pedophiles than women.

Yeah, how many women priests are there?


As a mother, I would have BIG issues with an 18 yr old man holding down my 12 yr old daughter and tickling her. Doesnt come under my definition of cool at all.

if your ever with a young girl make sure you have proof of what went on

I’m 17 and a 12 year old girl at my church has a VERY obvious crush on me. As a result she insists on hugging me ATLEAST 7 or 8 times every single time I’m at church (which is 3 times a week). Course her whole family is friends with our family, it just makes it kind of aqward for me to somehow politely tell her that hugging CONSTANTLY isnt very appropriate. So, as a jokey manner, I poke her in the ribs to get her to let go. The parents think its a riot, and it doesnt make her mad (except for I’m breaking off the hug) so as of right now its not considered bad.

I’m starting to drop subtle hints for her to stop, but its kinda hard considering this IS a 12 year old girl…I dont want to make her upset or anything…so if she doesnt stop soon I’m just gonna have to be politely blunt.

Chekmate: Honestly, from being in a similar situation, I have to say, its not you’re fault. Unless you get some sort of disgusting sexual pleasure from it, but from what i can see from what you’ve wrote, you’re just a normal guy like I am. Personally, I recomend just not talking to the girl anymore as much as you possibly can. As long as everyone knows their limits, everything works off fine. Personally, I dont think you did anything wrong.

I’m the quintessential matron but I am very careful about any contact I have with a stranger’s children. It’s only prudent in this day and age when it seems like once a week a child is abducted or molested/battered by a stranger or, worse, a family member/acquaintance. We ALL must be vigilant–a sorry state of affairs, but reality.

What’s wrong with this?
I’m always playing with little kids (our house is full of the things) and tickling and pokes in the belly is a MAJOR part of the routine.

Man, society is twisted if they can make that perverse…