At this time, our own restrictive culture time is still preoccupied with imposing sexual constraints rather than promoting sexual competencies as a basic value system.
We are certainly less zealous in this pursuit than the repressive Victorians, but fears of sexual excess and pleasure leading to a fall from grace are deeply imbedded in the Judeo-Christian ethic.
In early childhood, masturbation alone and in groups, leads to exploration and experimentation among children of same and opposite gender.
Late childhood (prepubescent) is characterized by heterosexual role modeling and attempted intercourse (girls may begin having regular coitus with older boys).
It is well to remember that prior to the Victorian idealization of childhood innocence, children were commonly used and abused physically and psychologically.
Eighteenth century aristocratic tradition imposed a barrier between parent and child.
It was the height of bad taste to love one's spouse and children, as parenthood was thought to render both men and women less fit for amorous adventure.
The impacts of this often unconscious attitude on child rearing are the overt and/or covert discouragement of sexual interest, curiosity, expression and sexual behavior of children in the presence of adults and the continual obfuscation of the scientific answer to the question What is normal?
Sexually permissive cultures not only allow a less fettered expression of adult sexuality, but may give little attention to the sexual behaviors of children as long as they are not blatantly displayed.