Much of our work in child sexual abuse prevention focuses on protecting younger children from pedophiles. Often used colloquially to identify anyone who has a sexual interest in a minor, the term pedophilia is specific to people attracted to pre-pubescent youth. Knowledge and awareness must be raised around predators focused on older children. Hebephilia is the term used to describe a sexual attraction to pubescent children and Ephebophilia refers to primary sexual interest in mid-to-late adolescents. These offenders, particularly hebephiles, often can operate in plain sight as an attraction to sexually mature teens is more socially acceptable than attraction to small children. However, the impact of this abuse is just as devastating as pedophilia. This workshop will present the clinical and behavioral definitions of ephebophiles and hebephiles and review typical modes of operation. We will focus on the intersection of sexual awakening in adolescents and teens and the concomitant vulnerability to this type of exploitation. The role of accurate information around human sexuality as a protective factor for adolescents and teens will be stressed, and resources will be offered to facilitate this.
Define hebephile and ephebophile.
Identify the behavioral characteristics of hebephiles and ephebophiles.
State how adolescent developmental capacities and characteristics present special risks to exploitation.
Articulate specific educational techniques that promote protective factors for children and youth.