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Unfortunately, a clear understanding of adult-minor sexual attraction is hampered by the lack of precise, consistent definitions. Terms are used differently in science, law, and public discourse, as well as in different parts of the world.1

For the most part, this site uses terminology as defined by North American and European psychological researchers who have studied the subject in depth, and who have attempted to develop precise definitions. The following sections provide an overview of these definitions.

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1. Ames & Houston, 1990; Freund, 1981; Haugaard, 2000; Kilpatrick, 1987; Okami & Goldberg, 1992; West, 1998.