Child Prostitution In The United States

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Child prostitution is when a minor, a person who is under the legal age that is determined by a particular government or society, engages in performing sex acts for financial gain. Usually the child prostitute is a victim of kidnapping or a runaway and is under the control of some sort of pimp. Children are easily influenced and cannot be expected to understand the ramifcations of selling their bodies. Children, especially those who are abused at home, abondoned by their parents or that live in poverty are most likely to fall into the expertly woven web of a pimp. Sadly, there are maybe as many as ten million child prostitues-some as young as age five-and the number keeps climbing. Adult prostitution laws vary from country to country,…show more content…
50 ). Social, cultural, and economic factors contribute to child prostitution. In some cultures prostitution is more accepted resulting in children being forced into the sex trade. In other communities poverty plays a vital role in the life of a child prostitute. As heartbraking as it is to imagine in some countries people are so poor that children trade sex for food and a place to sleep. There is a subculture of "pocket money prostitution" in many consumer societies, including the United States,whereby girls and boys under the age of eighteen rent out their sexual services for cash or expensive gifts, or to save up for cars, motorcycles even college tuition ( Prostituton of Children;causes and content). While poverty is a cause of child prostitution another leading factor that steers children into prostitution is sexual abuse. A large number of children that are sexually abused usually end up becoming runaways. In 2001, Dr. Richard Estes and Dr. Neil Alan Weiner estimated that in the United States 162,000 homeless youth are child prostitutes ( / Prostitution of…show more content…
These under age prostitutes are just at risk of catching and spreading other sexually transmitted diseases to their babies and to other johns-not to mention each other. These children are also subjected to mental abuse from both the johns and the pimps which can lead to serious long term mental illness. These illness include everything from anxiety to depression to thoughts of suicide and even post-traumatic stress disorder. In the United States, 25 of 61 pregnant prostituted adolescents reported that they had seriously considered or attempted suicide within the past year( Pro- stitution and Sex Trafficking pg 54). The child prostitute has to endure feelings of hopelessness, abandonment, insomnia, nightmares and constantly being degraded by the johns and the pimps. These unfortunate children have to live with the mental anguish of feeling betrayed by adults that are supposed to be protecting these children rather than exploiting them. If the child prostitute is fortunate enough to escape the claws of their abusers, all the torment,( both physical and mental) makes it difficult to reintroduce these tortured souls back into normal

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