Two days ago I found out through his partner that my friend was engaging in illegal and inappropriate behavior towards minors online when his boyfriend confronted him and was going to report him he beat him up and destroyed the apartment and fled the state. I have been doing what I can to help him wlth food and groceries and another friend did as well but everyone is shocked with the double life he was living. I feel bad for him because his life is already ruined and he won’t survive prison as a convicted pedophile and sex offender. I pray for him and his partner and our friends through this difficult time.
It must be terrifying to be made aware that someone we love has been living this double life, especially when it comes down to a life that was potentially destroying others. For me personally, this would be such a conflicting situation - feeling torn between the love I have for someone, yet knowing they have done something absolutely terrible. On top of potentially feeling betrayed and wondering who’s the person we’ve known for a while - if that was a lie or not. I truly commend you for sending your prayers to him as he is, like anyone else, a human being who also deserves to be helped. I hope that help will turn out to be met with needed accountability for him - for what he did or attempted to - and that anyone who has been hurt by him as well can find justice. Through all of this, I hope you manage to take care of yourself as well, Ranma. I imagine that this can brought up questions regarding what could have been done or said differently. Ultimately though, people only offer to see what they want us to see.
You’re right to be shocked, and it’s okay to feel angry and hurt by this side of someone you thought you knew, but it’s gracious of you to not condemn him and to pray for him.
Double life is exactly right. He would never have wanted anyone to find out, and chances are good he wanted to stop, but by the time he got to that point he was in a crushing shame cycle. He probably knew he couldn’t tell anyone, not even a therapist, without legal consequences, so he was left to deal with unwanted urges alone. It’s the same thing that happens when people don’t want to come forward and admit they’re depressed–perceptions of harsh judgment and disappointment from others–so they keep it to themselves, put on a big fake smile, and spiral further and further down.
Society won’t be kind to him. Nor will the legal system, nor will prison. He will face justice for his actions, but people who were in no way involved will heap judgment on him forever. It is possible to hate what he’s done but hope that he can heal from it, become a better man, and create beauty instead of destroying it. He will never be redeemed if people don’t give him that chance though, and that is unjust. Even if you’re the only one to hope for a better future for him, that is precious.