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Is it just me, or are sexy pics of teen getting more and more acceptable? I walked by a major mall retailer featuring a poster of teens running half naked, and with parts of a boys bum exposed.

 

Top models are in their teens dressing in a very suggestive manner.

 

MySpace is full of teens being provocative and suggestive at very young ages.

 

I saw an article the other day that teens are sending naked pics of themselves over their cell phones is the new "courting behavior."

 

Miley Cyrus dresses in plunging necklines for awards and has provocative photos taken for a magazine cover with her parent's full consent and knowledge.

 

Is it just me, or is it getting more acceptable for older men to lust after young girls? Does the media drive this? What constitutes pedophilia these days? How young is TOO young?

 

Just curious what others think.

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I think of someone that likes "young" children not of teenagers that have a woman's body. I believe the teen's are off limits, but I think any "normal" man is going to be attracted to a woman's half-clad body. I think they need to have self-control and look away. Which is getting harder since they are bombarded with it everywhere they look. I think someone is a pedophile and perverted when it is truly a child with a childs body. To make myself clear here; when I am talking about a teen, I am talking about someone that you really can't tell the age of, because of the way they are dressed and the makeup they wear.

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Pedophilia is used to cover both adult sex with children and adult sex with teens. There is also another more specific word for adult/teen sexual interactions that escapes me at the moment.

 

I totally agree with your concern about the sexualization of children and teens.

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There is a difference between the two. A pedophile is someone who seeks out and desires a child because she is a child. He is not the same as the adult man who sees a teen who has the body of a woman and the mind of a child and is easily exploited.

 

Both are equally repugnant.

 

What you are seeing in these teens is more like exhibitionist behavior. I think there is a link between this and early sexualization and exploitation of children. They have learned that this is the way to be loved :(

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DH and I discussed the Miley Cyrus pictures. He pointed out that she is in this seductive pose, but has the skinny back of a teenager. It's just... wrong!

 

What I want to know is... if a man downloaded pictures of non-famous teenagers in the same type of pose, what would we think of him? A normal male with a normal male response, or a pedophile?

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Here is a definition of pedophilia from Wikipedia. (Hey, that rhymes! :)) It refers mostly to adults who have an exclusive sexual attraction to pre-pubescent children and is considered a disorder or disease.

 

I agree that the teen displays you describe contribute to an over-emphasis on sexualization and the "cult of the young" that seems to permeate our society. It really does not relate to pedophilia, though.

 

Actually, I have far less of a problem with billboards of scantily-clad teens than I do with teenage FLDS girls wearing extremely modest clothing, as it is the latter I see as being more likely to be victimized by older men.

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Is it just me, or is it getting more acceptable for older men to lust after young girls? Does the media drive this? What constitutes pedophilia these days? How young is TOO young?

 

It's not just you; I completely share the outrage and concern.

 

Girls/women have been sexualized at younger and younger ages. It's scary.

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There is a difference between the two. A pedophile is someone who seeks out and desires a child because she is a child. He is not the same as the adult man who sees a teen who has the body of a woman and the mind of a child and is easily exploited.

 

Both are equally repugnant.

 

What you are seeing in these teens is more like exhibitionist behavior. I think there is a link between this and early sexualization and exploitation of children.

 

:iagree: :iagree: :iagree:

 

And I am so glad to see that I am not alone in my sadness and outrage over this.

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It's not just you; I completely share the outrage and concern.

 

Girls/women have been sexualized at younger and younger ages. It's scary.

 

Agreed. I can't believe the clothes they have out there for young girls. When my eldest was about six I complained to a store manager about having shirts that said "flirt" in my daughter's size. Seriously. What is UP with that?

 

When the Olsen twins were younger one of the sydicated morning radio shows had a countdown clock to mark when they would be 18 and legal.

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I was just talking to ds's dermatologist the other day when we were there for his monthly Accutane check-up. He has to put girls who have their cycle on bc pills if they go on Accutane. He had one patient a while ago who was 12 and the mother agreed with no problem. I said how ridiculous it was to mess with their hormones via bcp at that age. He agreed, but also said it's the law because of the birth defects caused by the Accutane if the girl gets pregnant. The doc had someone with him he was training who shared with us that he had just helped deliver babies to twelve and thirteen year old girls, recently, in our area!

 

So, what came first, the chicken or the egg? Are the ads becoming more provocative as a reflection of what is really going on out there in most of America, or are the ads influencing the behavior?

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Two bad things about pedophiles: They are not curable and they can be anywhere.

 

I remember many years ago discussing letting our children spend the night at neighbor's houses with the women at the bus stop. I said I would not because one never knows whether the man of the house is a pedophile. They all said I was nuts -- not in our neighborhood!

 

Last month, a guy in our neighborhood was arrested by the FBI on warrants from 3 states for just this reason. His wife is the head honcho of the Girl Scouts in our town and they have children. Everyone is shocked, appalled, etc.

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Actually, I have far less of a problem with billboards of scantily-clad teens than I do with teenage FLDS girls wearing extremely modest clothing, as it is the latter I see as being more likely to be victimized by older men.

 

:iagree: I don't think that the teens who are dressing that way, are doing it to get the attention of 40yo men, KWIM? If they are wanting to have sex, it's most likely with boys within their age range. That's totally different than a perverted man seeking out a young child and forcing himself on them, or tricking them into a sexual relationship with him. Teens are exploring, and without guidance of adults. I think it's sad that girls feel the need to dress that way, and wear make up, and walk like a hooker in order to "fit in" and get attention, at younger and younger ages.

I think that if men would be more involved with their DC- guiding their sons AND daughters, then both parties would benefit. If the girls had more healthy relationships with their fathers, they wouldn't necessarily go seeking male attention elsewhere. If the sons were give more opportunities of purposeful work, and leadership- they might be less likely to seek a sexual relationship at such young ages also. Of course, mothers who go around encouraging their dd's to have a boyfriend aren't helping things either. I'm not saying that having a boyfriend is bad in and of itself, but the sick way I've seen women encourage it- is disheartening.

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Here are a few opinions & articles I found intersting...

 

Here was a blog entry from awhile back:

http://farmschoolathome.blogspot.com/2006/12/made-you-look.html

 

And this opinion:

http://select.nytimes.com/2007/03/17/opinion/17warner.html?_r=1&th&emc=th&oref=slogin

 

And, this (the American Psychological Association's report on the current trend of sexualizing girls):

http://www.apa.org/pi/wpo/sexualization.html

"The proliferation of sexualized images of girls and young women in advertising, merchandising, and media is harming girls' self-image and healthy development. This report explores the cognitive and emotional consequences, consequences for mental and physical health, and impact on development of a healthy sexual self-image."

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So, what came first, the chicken or the egg? Are the ads becoming more provocative as a reflection of what is really going on out there in most of America, or are the ads influencing the behavior?

 

Good question. End result seems circular...each is feeding the other. Shock sells right along with lifestyle, aren't teens one of the largest and lucrative demographics for marketers?

 

And beansprouts- You are right about exhibitionism. A really weird mad dash (some of it to blend in w/the herd, some of it to stand out, I can't tell anymore) with the ultimate goal of attention and acceptance. That is the saddest part.

 

Does anyone think it only looks bad to those who are more conservative? Those that are shocked and dismayed are putting to much emphasis on it based on their prejudices? Just wondering...

 

I would sadly say it appears to be very acceptable to the mainstream.

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So, what came first, the chicken or the egg? Are the ads becoming more provocative as a reflection of what is really going on out there in most of America, or are the ads influencing the behavior?

 

To echo pixelroper, I was coming on to say that I see it as kind of a two-headed monster, not a chicken-led-to-the-egg. Each head of the monster justifies it's existence and continued growth by the existence and growth of the companion head.

 

And, of course, there are other influences and reasons than these...

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So, what came first, the chicken or the egg? Are the ads becoming more provocative as a reflection of what is really going on out there in most of America, or are the ads influencing the behavior?

 

I believe that the advertising and clothing industries continue(d) to push the limits little by little and parents, little by little, just give IN. So here we are with girls dressing and acting this way and are shocked and saddened, but not enough parents before us (or among us) stood up and said NO to both the purveyors and their own peer-driven children. It *is* a neverending circle!

 

Children have been left to their own devices more and more and through this neglect (and pressure), we have the not-so-surprising results. It didn't BEGIN with moms and dads seeking out slutty clothing or sleezy entertainment...little by little, it became easier to just not fight it because mom and dad were too tired or too busy or too interested in being their child's friend or being the cool parent. Why? We have generations of parents who never really grew up themselves.

 

I believe that the distorted goals of feminism have creeped into this, too, but that's another thread probably. LOL

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This is a complex issue. I have a lot of mixed feelings about this topic. One thing I can say without reservation, though, is that I would NOT categorize this as pedophilia at all.

 

Pediphilia is a sick, destructive, inexcusable attraction to pre-pubescent children. What's going on here is to my mind something completely different.

 

First of all, the distinction between a 17 year old being a child and an 18 year old being an adult is a completely arbitrary one. Nothing magical happens on our 18th birthday that transforms us into adults overnight. That process, at least in terms of physical maturity, is actually long since complete by the time most people turn 18. Throughout most of human history, a girl was considered a woman once she entered menses, and like it or not, probably had a child or two by the time she was 18. A man's basic instincts don't distinguish between 17 and 18, only between physically mature and physically immature. And here's the thing: the young woman's instincts don't make that distinction either! Legally, she may still be a child. But physically she has the body of a woman, including all the raging hormones. I think it's unrealistic to expect teenagers (of either sex) to behave completely asexually until they reach some arbitrarily chosen age that is years beyond the point where they physically matured.

 

What we have to do instead is allow for the safe, healthy, and positive exploration of what it means to be a sexual being. The problem is, I have no idea in practical terms how to do that, and I sure wish someone would figure it out and explain it to me before my dd reaches puberty!!!

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I believe that the distorted goals of feminism have creeped into this, too, but that's another thread probably. LOL

 

Based on my limited experience with the feminist movement, I would have to disagree with you. Things may have changed a lot since I was in college, but at that time, feminists were very much *against* sexualized images of women, believing that these were products of patriarchy and tools of oppression.

 

I happen to disagree (rather strongly) with that stance, but that was the viewpoint, at least at that time.

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Wow, I leave for half an hour to teach a lesson to my art student and look at all the great responses I come back to! It is an interesting point to ponder, isn't it? You all have such great insight, as usual.

 

"Distorted goals of feminism" really struck me as an important factor in forming the youth culture of today.

 

I can certainly see how the two sides developed, and continue to develop hand-in-hand, one adding fuel to the fire of the other. (chicken and egg analogy)

 

I suppose the vast majority of parents out there accept it as "just the way it is" and don't get upset over it for many reasons. They are too busy, everyone else is doing it, kids will be kids, etc... When the changes happen incrementally, you often don't see the amount of change that has occurred. It's like that old experiment of putting a frog in room temp water and slowly heating it until it boils. Because the water slowly changed and the frog had time to adjust, he didn't see it as a threat.

 

Does that mean we can become adjusted to any level of morals or even lack of basic moral standards that have sustained man as separate from other animals? Or have those parents merely "sold out" for whatever reason and really know it is wrong, internally.

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This is a complex issue. I have a lot of mixed feelings about this topic. One thing I can say without reservation, though, is that I would NOT categorize this as pedophilia at all.

 

Pediphilia is a sick, destructive, inexcusable attraction to pre-pubescent children. What's going on here is to my mind something completely different.

 

First of all, the distinction between a 17 year old being a child and an 18 year old being an adult is a completely arbitrary one. Nothing magical happens on our 18th birthday that transforms us into adults overnight. That process, at least in terms of physical maturity, is actually long since complete by the time most people turn 18. Throughout most of human history, a girl was considered a woman once she entered menses, and like it or not, probably had a child or two by the time she was 18. A man's basic instincts don't distinguish between 17 and 18, only between physically mature and physically immature. And here's the thing: the young woman's instincts don't make that distinction either! Legally, she may still be a child. But physically she has the body of a woman, including all the raging hormones. I think it's unrealistic to expect teenagers (of either sex) to behave completely asexually until they reach some arbitrarily chosen age that is years beyond the point where they physically matured.

 

What we have to do instead is allow for the safe, healthy, and positive exploration of what it means to be a sexual being. The problem is, I have no idea in practical terms how to do that, and I sure wish someone would figure it out and explain it to me before my dd reaches puberty!!!

 

 

Ahh, but I am talking about 13/14/15 year olds here. Also, men have brains to balance out their instincts, right? Or do you see men as being at the mercy of their hormones? Is it ok for a 50 year old man to regularly lust after or have sex with 14 year olds if the girls' bodies are mature?

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Does that mean we can become adjusted to any level of morals or even lack of basic moral standards that have sustained man as separate from other animals?

 

Yes, of course. Look at the atrocities man has committed throughout history. Once we accept that morality is relative, we can be pursuaded of anything.

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Pedophilia is used to cover both adult sex with children and adult sex with teens. There is also another more specific word for adult/teen sexual interactions that escapes me at the moment.

 

I totally agree with your concern about the sexualization of children and teens.

 

 

It appears as if lusting after teens is totally acceptable to many of today's men. It seems to be a wink, wink, nudge, nudge type of thing. Creepy. What happened to older gentlemen seeing teens as sisters and daughters to be guided along? What happened to adult responsibility for taking the higher ground?

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On a somewhat related but more hopeful note, here is a program that my 14-yo dd participated in this year.

 

 

http://www.purefashion.com/

 

 

Teens from all over the city met throughout the year (it was so much more than fashion and beauty). Look for one in your area! We can present a competing message to these young girls about what style and beauty really look like.

 

Lisa

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Is it just me, or are sexy pics of teen getting more and more acceptable? I walked by a major mall retailer featuring a poster of teens running half naked, and with parts of a boys bum exposed.

 

I absolutely agree that the sexualization of young people seems to increase with each passing year, although I agree with GretaLynne that such sexualization is not pedophilia, per se.

 

Top models are in their teens dressing in a very suggestive manner.

MySpace is full of teens being provocative and suggestive at very young ages. Miley Cyrus dresses in plunging necklines for awards and has provocative photos taken for a magazine cover with her parent's full consent and knowledge.

 

One benefit of not paying heed to much of our culture's consumerism and entertainment habits is that some of what you shared doesn't even cross my radar. I avoid malls like the plague. I don't do MySpace. I haven't a clue who Miley Cyrus is. I don't mean to imply that one can simply stick their head in the sand and pretend things aren't going to hell in a handbasket if indeed they are. Just that it is possible to exist without encountering garbage left and right.

 

Is it just me, or is it getting more acceptable for older men to lust after young girls?

 

Honestly? I don't think it's more acceptable now. Consider past eras when men in their 40s and beyond were married off with very young girls. Yes, I realize people ~ particularly women ~ had shorter lifespans. But the reality is that much of what's distasteful to us now was par for the course in the past. Shudder.

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Also, men have brains to balance out their instincts, right? Or do you see men as being at the mercy of their hormones? Is it ok for a 50 year old man to regularly lust after or have sex with 14 year olds if the girls' bodies are mature?

 

Fully realizing that my attempts at internet communication don't always turn out the way I intended, I just reread my post to be sure, and I'm pretty convinced that I said absolutely nothing to imply that 50 year old men having sex with 14 year olds is an acceptable thing, or that biology decides morality. Please don't take the fact that I did not address these issues specifically to mean that I feel a certain way about them. The only point I was attempting to make was to explain that I feel our society has unrealistic expectations of just how innocent and non-sexual teenagers on the brink of adulthood should be.

 

But to answer your questions: while I would not consider a 50 year old having sex with a physically mature 14 year old to be a case of pedophilia, I would consider it rape. What I'm trying to get at is that I think it is a very different instinct that drives one man to want to have sex with a teenager, than that which drives another man to want to have sex with a seven year old. Two different crimes, two different labels. Notice I said only that a teenager is PHYSICALLY an adult. That does not make them emotionally, mentally, or psychologically an adult, and they still deserve to be protected by their parents, the law, and society at large. And while I do believe we are all "at the mercy" of our hormones and our biology to some extent, I do not believe that this justifies immoral or illegal behavior, in this case or in any other instance that I can think of at the moment.

 

But having grown up in a home where I was treated like a six year old when I was sixteen, I guess I'm just concerned with the need to recognize that a teenager isn't a "child" any more, and we have to find better ways of helping them ease into adulthood in a gradual, positive, and affirming way. And if we're going to do that, we have to be honest with ourselves that, like it or not, our teenagers have sex drives! Is posting naked pictures of themselves on the internet a healthy expression of that developing sexuality? Well, I tend to think NOT! But expecting too much modesty and chastity can be just as unhealthy, IMO, because it sends the message (unintentional though it may be) that their bodies are icky and that sex is filthy and that the perfectly natural and healthy impulses they are feeling are unnatural and shameful. Somewhere out there is a balance, and I most sincerely hope that I am close to it for my own and my daughter's sake. I think our society was far too puritanical until very recently. And now the pendulum is swinging the other way -- probably too far the other way. We really need to find a happy medium.

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The only point I was attempting to make was to explain that I feel our society has unrealistic expectations of just how innocent and non-sexual teenagers on the brink of adulthood should be.

 

...I guess I'm just concerned with the need to recognize that a teenager isn't a "child" any more, and we have to find better ways of helping them ease into adulthood in a gradual, positive, and affirming way. And if we're going to do that, we have to be honest with ourselves that, like it or not, our teenagers have sex drives! ...expecting too much modesty and chastity can be just as unhealthy, IMO, because it sends the message (unintentional though it may be) that their bodies are icky and that sex is filthy and that the perfectly natural and healthy impulses they are feeling are unnatural and shameful. Somewhere out there is a balance....

 

 

Honestly? I don't think it's more acceptable now. Consider past eras when men in their 40s and beyond were married off with very young girls. Yes, I realize people ~ particularly women ~ had shorter lifespans. But the reality is that much of what's distasteful to us now was par for the course in the past. Shudder.

 

 

I'm so glad I read to the end of the thread before posting, as you two have captured the direction of my thoughts. While I can't fully agree with the ways that youngsters (and, yes, I believe it is both genders) are physically exploited by today's media, I also couldn't help but think that there was a time, in our world's (nation's?) history, when these same youth would have been sent off for apprenticeships at the age of 13, could have been married by 15, and bearing children soon after. Is it modern culture which has set up the paradox for our young people, as GretaLynne suggests? Do we expect our teens to behave as children in some ways (by "controlling" their sexuality until they marry, by providing shelter and financial support into their twenties) while enabling/expecting more adult behavior in others (clothing styles, t.v./movie viewing and programming).

 

These are questions to which I have not formed answers. Like GretaLynne, I sense an imbalance in our expectations and the reality that our young people experience, and similar to Colleen, I believe that our perceptions of society as "more depraved than ever" are probably frighteningly similar to the perceptions of those who lived as long as thousands of years ago.

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Children have been left to their own devices more and more and through this neglect (and pressure), we have the not-so-surprising results. It didn't BEGIN with moms and dads seeking out slutty clothing or sleezy entertainment...little by little, it became easier to just not fight it because mom and dad were too tired or too busy or too interested in being their child's friend or being the cool parent. Why? We have generations of parents who never really grew up themselves.

 

I believe that the distorted goals of feminism have creeped into this, too, but that's another thread probably. LOL

 

It's not JUST children being left to their own devices, it's way more complex than anything being covered here. How many years ago was it "normal" and expected for young girls to get married after/during puberty in order to produce as many heirs/workers as possible before her death? Life expectancy comes into play. I don't think that teens are mature enough in our present American culture to take on that role.

 

Raging hormones play a BIG role in the existence of the human race, ;)

Also, when my mom was in high school they were REQUIRED to wear skirts! They were not ALLOWED to wear pants. Keep in mind, during that era mini skirts were "in", and that's pretty much all the folks without boo-koo bucks could find in stores. So my mom and aunt had to endure wearing the darn mini-skirts to school, while the boys stood at the bottom of the stairs and looked up their skirts, and boys would tie their shoe laces together so they'd have to bend/squat down to fix it- boys got a GREAT view up their skirt then too. It was a completely sexist thing, and I find it apalling.

I don't know where it all "Started". I don't think that skimpy clothing by itself is a "bad" thing. I think we should all be free to express ourselves, and at the same time- we need to have and teach self control. I think it stinks how girls are blamed for a boys behavior because of the clothes she wears.

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I agree with what Greta Lynn has said, and I got what you meant the first time around, Greta.

 

And as Colleen has said, I don't think this is anything new at all. I don't even know if it is more prevalent. I think it has existed throughout history, one symptom of the fallen world in which we live.

 

Really, I find it a bit over the top to call the ads mentioned or the picture of Miley Cyrus p*dophilia. Perhaps that was just a misunderstanding of the term, though. However, I don't think I would even go so far as to call it child p*rnography. I do not agree with the oversexualization of children and teens that happens.

 

I did see the reports about Miley Cyrus' photo shoot, and I do know who she is since Hannah Montana is 11yodd's favorite show. I'm not sure what I think about the particular photo in question, though. I hesitate to ask this, but since it's been brought up anyway I will. Does anyone else think the photo does not quite warrant as much attention and criticism as it has received?

 

When I saw the photo for the first time, my first impression was that it was very beautiful and artistic, not that it was a nudey picture of a teenage girl. It struck me as something that might hang in a museum, not be featured as a centerfold. The only skin showing is her back and shoulders--certainly not the most modest pose, but nothing so very provocative in my eyes and the pose seemed rather innocent and sweet. Really, I thought, "What a soft, lovely portrait."

 

That was before I realized Miley Cyrus is only 15. For some reason I thought she was about 18. Then I had to think a little harder about it because I have a 15yodd. I'm not sure I would want my dd posing for a magazine like that, but more because of the mass attention and positive misuse of the photo (by pervs) than because I find it too sexy. So, my hesitance to allow my own dd to pose that way would be because of how I think some might see the photo and not how I myself see it.

 

I'm still undecided. From what I've seen and read, Miley Cyrus does seem to have a more level head and better family situation than some of the starlets who are having so much trouble now. I hope my perception is accurate and that she is able to stay above all of the garbage that so often goes with fame. I hope that the photo shoot was truly just a minor indiscretion and a product of her naivete (failing to see how others might see or use that photo) and not some publicity scheme. If it was for publicity, I hope her father was not involved with that and reigns her in a little. If he believes the words he sings (and I don't mean "Achy Breaky Heart"), then it would seem he has some good values.

 

What do you all think? Does anyone else see any artistic value in the photograph or do you all just think it's absolute trash? Would you feel any differently if she was 18 rather than 15? How about 25? If she wasn't a star on a Disney show? If she wasn't so popular with preteen girls?

 

For those who haven't seen the photo, here's the link.

 

BTW, dh just walked in and I asked his opinion. He says that it definitely has an artistic quality to it and doesn't seem particularly sexy to him. The only thing that bothered him at all about the photo was that to him she looked a little uncomfortable with having her photo taken, like she was being made to do it. He doesn't think that was the case, that's just how he reads her expression. I think it's reminiscent of late 1800's to early 1900s artwork depicting young women. I can't point you to any specific works, and I don't know the artists, but I'm sure of what I've seen. Maybe I can find some later.

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Teens are children. No matter what they wear or for what reason. Period.

I do not think it is normal for men to lust after a teen. I'm sure it occurs frequently, but that doesn't make it normal!

 

Recently I took my 7yo shopping for new summer clothes. We were both appauled at the SHORT shorts and the suggestive slogans on the clothing! For a 7 year old!!! (as well as younger/older) The shorts were about 1" ...maybe 2" in length at the inner leg. My daughter told me she didn't want her bum or belly to show like other girls'.

 

She's got the right idea.:)

 

We did find long capri pants that could be rolled up and buttoned at the bottom of the leg, but they still come below the knee. There was one brand that had shorts that came to/above the knee. She was so happy. There were also a good variety of shirts to match. (These were found at Target if anyone is looking for more modest clothing. Walmart had a couple things, like modest tank tops.)

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I think it's hard to compare MARRYING a younger girl in historic times when people lived to age 35 or 40 to the modern situation of older men lusting after young teens.

 

I was thinking in terms of when I was a kid or when my mother's generation. We don't remember such open raunchiness as is commonly seen now, especially in relation to our young teens. Initially, I was comparing the current climate to what I remember as a child. I don't remember girls being treated this way, or acting out this way.

 

What is "artificial" is actually a point of view. Self-control is artificial in one sense - it is always easy to run with our baser nature. I don't find control in the sexual arena artificial in the sense that it is unrealistic, for me it is an expression of respect for myself, my partner, and for the holiness of God. :001_smile:

 

Thanks to all who took the time to post!

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I agree with what Greta Lynn has said, and I got what you meant the first time around, Greta.

 

BTW, dh just walked in and I asked his opinion. He says that it definitely has an artistic quality to it and doesn't seem particularly sexy to him. The only thing that bothered him at all about the photo was that to him she looked a little uncomfortable with having her photo taken, like she was being made to do it. He doesn't think that was the case, that's just how he reads her expression. I think it's reminiscent of late 1800's to early 1900s artwork depicting young women. I can't point you to any specific works, and I don't know the artists, but I'm sure of what I've seen. Maybe I can find some later.

 

 

Most men would perceive a photo of a barely covered female as more sexy than a girl wearing a turtleneck and long skirt. :D I guess it depends what we are used to seeing - but this is not the image of girlhood I want my dd seeing. It is neither tasteful nor modest. I would not allow any 15 year old of mine to be photographed in such a way - so I put the responsibility on the parents. Too many pervs out there! I'm undecided about buying any more "Hannah Montana" merchandise.

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When I saw the photo for the first time, my first impression was that it was very beautiful and artistic, not that it was a nudey picture of a teenage girl. It struck me as something that might hang in a museum, not be featured as a centerfold. The only skin showing is her back and shoulders--certainly not the most modest pose, but nothing so very provocative in my eyes and the pose seemed rather innocent and sweet. Really, I thought, "What a soft, lovely portrait."

 

 

She looks like she is in bed, and that bugs me.

 

But to answer your questions: while I would not consider a 50 year old having sex with a physically mature 14 year old to be a case of pedophilia, I would consider it rape. What I'm trying to get at is that I think it is a very different instinct that drives one man to want to have sex with a teenager, than that which drives another man to want to have sex with a seven year old. Two different crimes, two different labels. Notice I said only that a teenager is PHYSICALLY an adult. That does not make them emotionally, mentally, or psychologically an adult, and they still deserve to be protected by their parents, the law, and society at large. And while I do believe we are all "at the mercy" of our hormones and our biology to some extent, I do not believe that this justifies immoral or illegal behavior, in this case or in any other instance that I can think of at the moment.

 

 

I agree with you that these are seperate issues. One man sees a woman's body, and the other a child. Man #1's desire is natural, but he needs to use his head. Man #2 is dangerous.

 

But having grown up in a home where I was treated like a six year old when I was sixteen, I guess I'm just concerned with the need to recognize that a teenager isn't a "child" any more, and we have to find better ways of helping them ease into adulthood in a gradual, positive, and affirming way. And if we're going to do that, we have to be honest with ourselves that, like it or not, our teenagers have sex drives! Is posting naked pictures of themselves on the internet a healthy expression of that developing sexuality? Well, I tend to think NOT! But expecting too much modesty and chastity can be just as unhealthy, IMO, because it sends the message (unintentional though it may be) that their bodies are icky and that sex is filthy and that the perfectly natural and healthy impulses they are feeling are unnatural and shameful. Somewhere out there is a balance, and I most sincerely hope that I am close to it for my own and my daughter's sake. I think our society was far too puritanical until very recently. And now the pendulum is swinging the other way -- probably too far the other way. We really need to find a happy medium.

 

I would be interested in hearing you develop this idea. I do have certain values which I would hope to impart in my daughter. How do I do this while respecting her maturity?

 

I still say it's easier just to lock her up!! :lol:

 

I don't know where it all "Started". I don't think that skimpy clothing by itself is a "bad" thing. I think we should all be free to express ourselves, and at the same time- we need to have and teach self control. I think it stinks how girls are blamed for a boys behavior because of the clothes she wears.

 

Weelll... I am not in favor of insisting that teen girls cover every inch of their bodies so the boys won't be tempted. He needs to take some responsibility for his own sin. (and the reality is all he needs to know is she is female and he can imagine the rest...)

 

However, I think it is wrong, and potentially dangerous, for a young woman to deliberately seek out this kind of attention. (Though he is STILL ultimately responsible for his own thoughts and actions.)

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I would be interested in hearing you develop this idea.

 

Yes, I'm very interested in finding out how I'm going to develop this idea too!!!! ;) At this point, I feel that I have only an awareness of the problem, and sadly no real answers as to the solution.

 

This may sound too vague to be meaningful, but the only way I can think to explain is that I really hope that I will always try to meet my daughter where she's at, rather than force her to be where I want her to be. From there, I can show her the way that I feel is best for her, and hope that we have the kind of trust and mutual respect that will allow her to feel she can rely on my judgment.

 

I'm not sure if that makes much sense, and I know that it's one thing to have this as an underlying philosophy and quite another to figure out exactly how it applies to real life day to day situations. The sad thing, for my dd's sake, is that I'm really just muddling my way through this whole parenting thing, kind of making it up as I go along! I think I'll get it all figured out though . . . about the time she moves away from home.

 

I still say it's easier just to lock her up!! :lol:

 

Hmmmm . . . maybe I'll put that down as Plan B! :001_smile:

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Self-control is artificial in one sense - it is always easy to run with our baser nature. I don't find control in the sexual arena artificial in the sense that it is unrealistic . . .

 

Right, I didn't mean to imply that self-control is unrealistic. Only that we have to be realistic in the way we approach these issues with our teens, and that (IMO, obviously) treating them as perfectly innocent children isn't realistic or fruitful. I think if we want to impart self-control to them, we have to be honest, with ourselves and with them, about what they're going through, the challenges they're facing. If we can't do that, how can we prepare them for those challenges?

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This is a complex issue. I have a lot of mixed feelings about this topic. One thing I can say without reservation, though, is that I would NOT categorize this as pedophilia at all.

 

Pediphilia is a sick, destructive, inexcusable attraction to pre-pubescent children. What's going on here is to my mind something completely different.

 

First of all, the distinction between a 17 year old being a child and an 18 year old being an adult is a completely arbitrary one. Nothing magical happens on our 18th birthday that transforms us into adults overnight. That process, at least in terms of physical maturity, is actually long since complete by the time most people turn 18. Throughout most of human history, a girl was considered a woman once she entered menses, and like it or not, probably had a child or two by the time she was 18. A man's basic instincts don't distinguish between 17 and 18, only between physically mature and physically immature. And here's the thing: the young woman's instincts don't make that distinction either! Legally, she may still be a child. But physically she has the body of a woman, including all the raging hormones. I think it's unrealistic to expect teenagers (of either sex) to behave completely asexually until they reach some arbitrarily chosen age that is years beyond the point where they physically matured.

 

What we have to do instead is allow for the safe, healthy, and positive exploration of what it means to be a sexual being. The problem is, I have no idea in practical terms how to do that, and I sure wish someone would figure it out and explain it to me before my dd reaches puberty!!!

 

I agree with all that's been said here. Wish I could contribute some inspiring message on the how, but I'm in the same boat.

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Right, I didn't mean to imply that self-control is unrealistic. Only that we have to be realistic in the way we approach these issues with our teens, and that (IMO, obviously) treating them as perfectly innocent children isn't realistic or fruitful. I think if we want to impart self-control to them, we have to be honest, with ourselves and with them, about what they're going through, the challenges they're facing. If we can't do that, how can we prepare them for those challenges?

 

Totally agree with you on this one, GretaLynne! :iagree: Also think that many younger girls' innocence is sadly stolen from them these days due to societal pressures. I think self-control in all areas is a habit that is "caught" rather than taught. It is a lifestyle choice that brings great satisfaction and joy, in my experience. Not that I have arrived! It always easier to eat the cookie NOW and buy bigger jeans later. :D

 

Have a great week-end,

Tami

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She looks like she is in bed, and that bugs me.

 

I hadn't seen that in the picture when I looked at it before, but now that you've said it and I've looked again, I can see how it could look that way. I can also see why it would bother people if that's what they saw in the photo. Honestly, though, it never occurred to me until you mentioned it. Maybe I have a weird way of seeing things:D

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