A 16-year-old Women24 reader shared her dilemma with us, hoping to get some advice.
Her story, which basically summed up the fact that she was performing sexual favours in exchange for material gains, was greeted with mixed opinions by our Facebook fans:
Lauren: Concerning much! Where are this child’s parents and are they completely blind to all her new "stuff" that she is bringing home???
Leratoe: She’s still young and was not ready yet and this woman was supposed to be a role model - not destroy her life.
Tshepiso: Peer pressure!!
Brenda: This is just horrible. This child needs help & the woman that introduced her to this man needs to be locked away in prison with him.
Hajni: This is incredibly sad - it goes to show that as parents we need to KNOW who our children socialise with - the girl next door is not what it used to be, especially in this sick society. Keep open communication with your child and be open about consequences if they make decisions that they think is 'fun' - my heart goes out to this teenager...where are her parents as role models to teach her about what the dark side of life is really like?
Shereen: The woman who introduced her to all of this should be bloody SHOT. She just ruined a 16 year old life.
Thandi: My god! The neighbour, what was going through her mind and the old man? That is just sick! The fact that he was specifically looking for a young girl... I wonder how many young girls have lost their innocence to him in such an unhealthy way.
Yvette: Case of "grooming" a victim for exploitation. The scary part is at age 16 she has heard about HIV, STDs and knows where babies come from BUT for instant cash all self pride goes out the window and now she's in love! What about focusing on your studies, your future career, travelling, making your own money? When did that stop being cool?
Lisa: This is extremely common in South Africa - often with parental consent and encouragement. We have huge social problems here - having a sugar daddy is often seen as a way out.
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