Some pedophiles use the term ‘coming out of the toy box’ to describe the process of disclosing their sexual orientation to other people

Coming Out to a World that Hates Pedophiles

I have been sexually attracted to little girls for 60 years but choose to not act on it. I am not exclusive and am happily married with three children and ten grand-children. I spent a lot of time with children over the years without any problems, including teaching school and having foster children. My pedophilia simmered in the background during the 25 years of my first marriage, but when I did ask a counselor for help, she promptly abandoned me without a referral.

Three years after living in our home, our foster daughter falsely accused me of molesting her. That never happened, but I told my wife that I am indeed sexually attracted to young girls. She encouraged me to become a counselor so I could help other people with pedophilia. When I had almost completed a masters degree in mental health counseling, Walden University dismissed me based solely on my sexual orientation. I experienced severe anxiety but at the time the only hospital in our county had banned me from their premises because of the false allegations, even though no charges have ever been filed.

Gary Gibson on the Dr. Phil show


I came out to many of my family and friends, who were all very supportive because they understood the difference between attraction and action. In 2014, I came out on a live Oregon Public Broadcasting talk show without any serious repercussions. Earlier this year I did an interview for an article in The Sun, not realizing the impact it would have on our lives. About the same time, someone posted a YouTube of my coming out at an Association for Sexual Abuse Prevention workshop that my wife and I conducted in Portland, Oregon. It ended up on Facebook and created quite a stir in our local community. It also got the attention of the media and within a week my wife and I participated in two television and two radio live talk shows. The next week we appeared on the Dr. Phil show. We were immediately banished by our church and received a number of credible death threats. Now this isn’t about “poor me,” as I understand that many of these people assume I am a child molester, but I don’t understand why they hate my wife so much.

Tabitha Abel, Gary’s wife, interviewed for British show ‘This Morning’


What can we learn from this experience? Not all pedophiles are child molesters. Many people who work with children experience some level of sexual attraction to them. The majority of people with pedophilia will never molest a child, but will also never come out. Hating and ostracizing pedophiles does nothing to protect children. When someone does come out, we should support them in not acting on the attraction.

If you or someone you love is sexually attracted to children, you may call me at +1 541–891–6168. Check out our website at