Hebephilia refers to the sexual preference for individuals in the early years of puberty (generally ages 11–14, though onset of puberty may vary). Hebephilia differs from ephebophilia, which refers to the sexual preference for individuals in later adolescence, and from pedophilia, which refers to the sexual preference for prepubescent children. A classic example of hebephilia is the novel Lolita, in which the object of erotic affection is a 12-year-old girl.
The term hebephilia is derived from the Greek goddess Hebe, daughter of Zeus and Hera, who married Heracles. She was the goddess of youth and the term means having an attraction toward youth or youthful people. A person feeling/having hebephilia's called a hebephile. The APA has designated it to mean persons 11-14.
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