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According to a recent enquiry, there has been a shocking increase in the number of teens and pre-teens who are being reported to the police for “inappropriate sexual behaviour.” Incidentally, this does not include “experimenting” children of the same age, or close-in-age consensual teenage relationships. Perhaps a little curiously however, is the fact that youngsters are also being reported for so-called “sexting” – the report speaks of “having sexual discussions” – and in circumstances where there is a perception that one child has “power” over the victim by reference to “age, strength, intellect or emotional maturity.”

All of this sounds fair enough but can lead to absurd results. The data suggests that a 3 year old has been accused of serious sexual impropriety. Also one 9 year old girl reportedly took pictures of younger children in indecent postures. The enquiry has rightly “warned against” the dangers of treating all such children as “mini sex offenders” or wrongly stigmatising them as such however. Common sense as well as logic would dictate that such behaviour in such young children is more than likely a consequence of poor, if not abusive parenting.


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