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three pairs of lovers with space



This is the sixth chapter of Secret Love: Eros between Boy and Man (2022), an anonymous translation of Wolf Vogel’s  Heimliche Liebe: Eros zwischen Knabe und Mann (Hamburg: John & Ernst, 1997).

It consists of six letters apparently written to the author after he had, as he says in his Foreword, “placed ads in two German daily newspapers, asking adults to tell me about any such [cild/adult] love-relationships they may have had.” A seventh letter which concluded this chapter is presented separately because it was written to an association, not to the author, and by Dutchwoman, not a German.


“I am thirty years old and love boys. I met my current young friend at a major event, when he accosted me and begged me for some money to buy something to drink. I gave the money, without giving him a second thought. After about five minutes he came back, in order to show me that he’d spent the money.

But still, no further reaction from me. About two hours later, when I’d bored myself with something or other, I remembered the boy and began to look for him. Once I’d found him, we chatted a bit and enjoyed ourselves for the rest of the day. When the event ended, I brought him back to his house. His parents weren’t home. Two days later I got a call from from his mother. We arranged to meet, and I introduced myself. His mother seemed to attach great importance to her son’s reaction, and to assess our relationship based on the boy’s response.

11  man in street 1990 d4

I met up with him—he’s eleven years old by the way—often in the period following that. At the beginning we saw each other once or twice a week, more often later on; but there were other times a whole week would go by without seeing each other at all. The relationship grew and strengthened with the freedom which we allowed ourselves. Our friendship is based first and foremost on affection and trust. Actual sex plays a secondary role. There are times in which a whole lot of things are going on; but there are also times when little is happening. Affection, physical contact, taking one another by the arm, and cuddling are, however, almost always wanted on both sides, and are also put into practice, even in public. Of course, I also have the desire to experience physical sexuality with my young friend. But this desire is closely linked to my boy’s desires and statements. His parents know about and support the relationship, and see it as being positive for both of us.”

(Man, 30 years old)



“I met my older friend by chance, at a playground in the park, when he spoke to me. We enjoyed ourselves, goofed around, and arranged to get together the following day. I heard he was into boys from a friend the same age as me who, in turn, had learned about him from another friend. This news didn’t frighten me but instead made me curious and horny. I admit to rubbing it almost every day, and therefore, it was very interesting to meet a man who was interested in what was important to me.

We had our first sexual contact after about three weeks. At that time, we got together two or three times a week. At his house I discovered a book about pedophilia, with photos showing a boy and a man hugging and kissing each other. I showed him the book, and asked him whether he was into that. He wasn’t surprised, and said: ‘Clearly I am into that, but only when the boy is also into it, and the two want something together.’ After that he told me a bit about himself and his feelings. I edged closer and closer to him, until we were laying arm in arm and cuddling. Because I was wearing only cloth trousers, he could see my erection quite clearly. He caressed and stroked my entire body, eventually including my... I would prefer not to say any more—you can imagine the rest. I think it’s stupid that these things, when both want them, are punished with the clink. It makes me happy, I like my older friend, and sometimes, I have to endure not being able to walk arm-and-arm with him and kiss him when we’re taking a stroll in the park.”

(Boy, 13 years old)



11 watching television 1990 d1

“Love means a great deal to me. Four years ago, I found a man who I’ve grown very fond of. My life was entirely different before I met him—much more boring. When I came home from school, I sat around the house, with only my mother around—who was also not in a good mood—and no one else. Evenings, television after dinner, and then to bed—and so it went every day, until I met him. Then a whole other world opened up for me. I knew nothing whatsoever about people or about love, but he’s taught me about all of that. When you don’t have anyone, you sit in front of the TV every night. I used to do this too, but now, nights are marvelous with him in bed with me, where we tell each other what’s been going on, and I think this is wonderful.

Now I truly know what love is. Love is not merely going to bed with someone, getting off, and then it’s over and done with. No, love is something entirely different. Most parents go to bed together, get off, and then do it again a week or two later. No, this is not love. When you love someone, surely you want to spend every day with him as well as sleep with him. When I go to bed with him, I find this very good, because I feel completely at ease, and all of my stress goes away.

Although at the very beginning things were pretty difficult with my parents, lucky for me, this is no longer an issue. My older friend now has a really good relationship with my parents, and comes to visit us often. Mom and Dad think it’s quite right for me to go see him and have a good time over there.”

(Boy, 14 years old)



“I’m turning to you today because I can no longer see a way out, and don’t know what else I should do. My name is Andreas; I’m 13 years old, and have three siblings. Between the ages of eight and eleven, I was in a group home. For roughly a year now, I’ve known that I’m gay. Girls don’t interest me. My mother knows this. My father must not know, because if he did he’d hit me. My older brother teases me about it, and makes life difficult for me. My mother had to go down to the youth department with me, because my brother was telling horror stories. Now they have to send me to a psychiatrist.

Some time ago I met a man I got along with very well. He would like to help me. He’s already been with someone for several years now. Now the youth department is trying to get my mother to file a report against him, which she will probably not do. But I am afraid that I will get blamed if my friend were punished, because, of course, I was the one who sought him out. It’s hard with kids my own age because they just laugh at me and say ‘gay boy’ to me.

Now to my questions: Who can I turn to who will help me with all this? How can I see my friend without putting him in danger? What should I tell my mother and siblings? How should I conduct myself at the youth department? Please write back to my trusted friend’s address with your reply.”

After his letter was answered:

13 reading letter 1990 d2

“I read your letter with great pleasure. Many thanks for that. It is very difficult for me to explain to my parents that I am not sick. Is there any way that you might be able to write a couple of lines to my mother about how such feelings are actually quite natural? It’s mostly my older brother who makes things difficult for me. He’s 16 years old and a huge liar.

He makes me look bad to my mother by making up stories about where I’ve supposedly been staying, which really isn’t right. Sometimes I think my brother wants to get rid of me, and I’ll be sent back to the group home. I also have a twin brother; he’s like the weather—sometimes helping me, but sometimes lying also. I was so delighted with your quick response and, above all, by the fact that you were willing to help me.”

Following a further reply:

“I have such welcome news to report to you. My mother now understands completely. Also, my brother is not allowed to say anything against it. I visit my older friend every day. My mother would also have nothing against it if I were attracted to him.”

(Boy, 13 years old)



“Someone said: ‘Sexual intercourse with children—this is not permitted!’ My spontaneous response was: ‘Pedophiles don’t fuck!’

When I had time to reflect on this exchange, what I wished I’d said is that one shouldn’t look at it in such narrow terms. Even a child suckling a mother’s breast is—at its core—a kind of sexual intercourse with a child. Presumably, everyone knows that the infant is not simply filling its tummy, but at the same time is also experiencing sexual pleasure. The mother is told that nursing is good for the womb, so that it will be able to quickly rejuvenate itself following delivery, or something along these lines. What mothers are not told is that many of them—perhaps only those who are particularly sensitive—will, possibly for the first time in their lives, feel the deepest, most tender sensations throughout their entire bodies, including the womb and every sexual organ. Reflecting on this should at least placate our fears about pedophilia somewhat.

Someone said: ‘Well, once they’ve reached adolescence, sexual maturity, one doesn’t find that so bad.’ I find ‘sexual maturity’ to be a very misleading phrase. It’s intended to mean ‘reproduction age,’ or something along those lines. Because, human beings are ready for sexuality from birth onwards. Everyone comes into the world equipped and ready for sexuality and affection. That later on, when the body has become big and strong enough for reproduction—the functions necessary for that falling into place—changes nothing as to the facts of the matter. The whole of the sexual event actually plays out in the brain, where the nerves’ messages are processed, and the child’s brain is quite sufficient for this.

We must first cleanse our ideas about pedophilia from every association with concepts such as brutality, exploitation, self-interest, and filth before we can begin to glean a few scraps of understanding about it.

Sexual love is still the most beautiful thing in the world, and we should not spoil the joy associated with it by holding onto dirty ideas about particular manifestations of it. Why are we still so inclined to find fault with this most beautiful thing? After all, we all have sexuality to thank for our very lives. We have to assume that our parents—who at that time long ago were not as enlightened as we assume ourselves to be today—pursued our conception with many misgivings and reservations. Perhaps these scruples of our parents have just become second nature to us, as inherited genes so to speak. For generations now, we have been handicapped by heaps of myths and mendacious Victorian moral concepts. They are stuck deep inside our subconscious and prevent a clear recognition of reality.

Surely we mist dig far deeper into what it means to be a child in order to truly face all facets of this jewel ‘sexuality’ sensitively, impartially, and amazedly.”

(Woman, 52 years old)



16 has letter taken by mother 1990 d1

“I’m having to write you today quite urgently, because there has been some trouble. Actually, for a pen pal from a neighboring village. His name’s Joseph and he’s 16 years old. I got a letter from him today, in which he writes that his mother has found my letter to him. So he’s not allowed to write me anymore; all of my letters are confiscated by his mother.

But the worst part is that he used to have a boyfriend (over 18 years old). Of course, she immediately put an end to it. But there is still a danger that she will report him—I am, of course, quite beside myself. What should I do now? Please (once this is mailed) respond to me quickly, because I—and above all Joseph—need some help.”

(Boy, 15 years old)