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For Girls, Pressure Is On

March 25, 1993

Some girls feel pressured to have sex, especially with older guys who have money, a car and no curfew, school officials say.

"Many girls believe if they don't do it, then that guy is going to find someone else, so they think, 'If I want to hold onto this guy, I've got to go to bed with him,' " says Rosemary Rubin, a teacher and counselor for more than 20 years with the Los Angeles Unified School District.

She says she has not heard of girls being paid directly for sex. However, she says, "teen-age girls like to go out with older guys because to them, the guys seem to be more worldly. They have more money and they have no parents to answer to. They seem to offer the girls the good life."

Rubin says some parents pressure a daughter "to have a boyfriend and will let the girl move in with the boyfriend and his parents."

Richard Lieberman, a school district psychologist, blames peer pressure.

"It is not unusual for the high school boys to go to the junior high schools and the junior high school boys to go to the elementary schools and pressure the girls into having sex. And the girls are thinking 'Gee, here's an older boy looking at me, and if I don't satisfy those needs, he'll go somewhere else. I'll lose him.' "

Says Rubin: "I'm not sure that young people understand all the ramifications of having sex. They are doing it because they are looking for love because there is not a lot of love in their life."

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