What I'm doing is very good

In the book ‘Boys on Their Contacts with Men’ published in 1987, Sandfort reproduces various extracts from interviews with boys. Here is the published part of the interview with Wouter, 12 years old.

Source: Theo Sandfort: Boys on Their Contacts with Men: A Study of Sexually Expressed Friendships. Elmhurst, NY, USA, Global Academic Publishers (1987).


Wouter: I feel at home at Gerard’s. I can hide from my dad. I get a lot of support. And if I’m unhappy he understands why I’m unhappy. He is a wonderful guy, and you can do anything with him if (Laughs) you don’t go too far. He is considerate of me, and I’m considerate of him.


Theo Sandfort asks 12-year-old Wouter who usually initiates sex in his relationship with a 42-year-old man:

Wouter: Mostly I do.

Sandfort: You start it?
Wouter: I decide if we’re going to have sex or not.

Sandfort: You decide that?
Wouter: Yes. And every day I come here it happens. I don’t keep Gerard waiting around.

Sandfort: Is that a kind of rule, that it happens every time?
Wouter: No. I like it. When I feel like it we just start. Then we first take a bath and then go to bed. Sometimes we do that the other way round.

Sandfort: But if you have to say who starts it, on average, who would that be?
Wouter: Well, sometimes one of us, sometimes the other. Yes, and sometimes he wants it and I don’t, so then we don’t do it. Mostly I’m the first one to begin.


In the case of Wouter (12), only the mother knew about the relationship; he was happy she didn’t discuss it with his father:

Wouter: Well, my father can never be told, never, because if he does it’ll have to stop. And I can imagine him beating the hell out of Gerard (42), because he’d rather do it than bring the police.

Sandfort: What do you think of that?
Wouter: Well, it’s rotten… someone who just does nice things being treated like a dog.

Sandfort: And your mother?
Wouter: I suspect my mother really knows… and doesn’t think it’s so bad. And she won’t say a word to my father… that’s the main thing as far as I’m concerned.


What would happen if your peers found out about your relationship with Gerard? [paraphrased]

Wouter: Well, I know one boy who is making out with girls. I don’t think he’d have any problems about it if I told him. But the others would, especially if they just heard about it. But I’m not telling anybody: they’re going to have to find out about it for themselves if they want to know what it’s like.


None of the other boys stopped having sex with their older partners during the course of the investigation. How did they feel about the sex? The majority of them simply said it was “nice” or"just plain good”. Some of the answers were a little more detailed:

Wouter: Well, I think it’s great.

Sandfort: Didn’t you ever think, ‘You can’t do this! Is what I’m doing really good?’
Wouter: What I’m doing is very good.

Sandfort: But haven’t you ever asked yourself that sort of question?
Wouter: Well, I just feel it really is good–it’s how you’re brought up and so on.

Sandfort: It depends on how you’re brought up?
Wouter: Yes, of course. You can bring up a child that way. And you don’t have to be pedophile especially to do it either; because I’m a completely normal boy, but I prefer to make love with men, with Chris (38), and with boys. I’d rather do that than with girls.

He added that he would never try it with any of the’dirty old men’:

Wouter: I don’t want to make up to any of them, the people who try to grab all the boys, make nude photos and so on. I just can’t understand that sort of thing; it’s stupid. Sex-photos, no! The real thing is a lot nicer.