Describe what the research has found eabout adolescent prostitutes.

are a debt she will one day repay. As soon as the relationship becomes sexual and the girl has professed her love for the pimp, he begins asking her to “prove” her love by selling her body. The girl may agree to do so only once, not realizing the destructive cycle she is beginning. This cycle is based on breaking down her self-esteem and increasing her feelings of helplessness. Male adolescents may enter into the life of prostitution in sim­ilar ways. Some may choose a life of prostitution to meet their survival needs or to sup­port a drug habit.

Outside the United States, adolescent prostitution is prevalent in many countries, such as Brazil and Thailand. Female adolescents in Brazil are drawn to prostitution pri­marily for financial and economic reasons (Penna-Firme et al., 1991). (See Personal Voices “Sexual Trafficking” on page 639.) In Thailand, some parents sell their daughter’s virgin­ity for money or act as their managers and arrange jobs for them. One Thai prostitute said:

I started to work when I was fourteen years old. I worked at a “steakhouse,” an enter­tainment place which was half a nightclub and half a restaurant. During this time, I went out with customers only when I wanted to. I had worked there for about one year before I met one man who took me to a brothel. This man was a friend of a friend. He said he would like to show me the beach. He took us four girls. He did not take us to the beach but to a brothel and he sold us to the owner. Every day I had to receive fifteen men. If I did not obey the owner or did not get many men, I got beaten. I could finally escape from that brothel because one man helped me. (Pheterson, 1989, p. 64)


Define and describe a pimp.

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