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The impacts of this often unconscious attitude on child rearing are the overt and/or covert discouragement of sexual interest, curiosity, expression and sexual behavior of children in the presence of adults and the continual obfuscation of the scientific answer to the question What is normal?

Sexually permissive cultures not only allow a less fettered expression of adult sexuality, but may give little attention to the sexual behaviors of children as long as they are not blatantly displayed.

The styles of acceptable sexual attitude and expression fluctuate historically and culturally between generally positive and generally negative polarities.

In early childhood, masturbation alone and in groups, leads to exploration and experimentation among children of same and opposite gender.

Late childhood (prepubescent) is characterized by heterosexual role modeling and attempted intercourse (girls may begin having regular coitus with older boys).

The cultural dictum that childhood was free of, and was to remain free from, sexual knowledge, interest and behavior, was contradicted by a constant and continual adult preoccupation with, and surveillance of, children's sexual potential.

Freud's attempt to bring some sanity into this schizophenogenic bind was theoretically helpful; however, the sadistic trend in anti-masturbatory therapy accelerated when people became aware of infant sexuality (Spitz, 1952).

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