Rind, Bruce, & Yuill Richard; Hebephilia as Mental Disorder?; Archives of Sexual Behavior; 41(4), 797–829, Jun 28 2012
A Historical, Cross-Cultural, Sociological, Cross-Species, Non-Clinical Empirical, and Evolutionary Review

Blanchard et al. (2009) demonstrated that hebephilia is a genuine sexual preference, but then proposed, without argument or evidence, that it should be designated as a mental disorder in the DSM-5. A series of Letters-to-the-Editor criticized this proposal as a non sequitur. Blanchard (2009), in rebuttal, reaffirmed his position, but without adequately addressing some central criticisms.

In this article, we examine hebephilia-as-disorder in full detail. Unlike Blanchard et al., we discuss definitions of mental disorder, examine extensive evidence from a broad range of sources, and consider alternative (i.e., non-pathological) explanations for hebephilia.

We employed Wakefield's (1992b) harmful dysfunction approach to disorder, which holds that a condition only counts as a disorder when it is a failure of a naturally selected mechanism to function as designed, which is harmful to the individual in the current environment. We also considered a harmful-for-others approach to disorder (Brülde, 2007).

Examination of historical, cross-cultural, sociological, cross-species, non-clinical empirical, and evolutionary evidence and perspectives indicated that hebephilic interest is an evolved capacity and hebephilic preference an expectable distributional variant, both of which were adaptively neutral or functional, not dysfunctional, in earlier human environments. Hebephilia's conflict with modern society makes it an evolutionary mismatch, not a genuine disorder.
Though it should not be classified as a disorder, it could be entered in the DSM's V-code section, used for non-disordered conditions that create significant problems in present-day society.
Rind, Bruce; Social Response to Age-Gap Sex Involving Minors: Empirical, Historical, Cross-Cultural, and Cross-Species Considerations; Thymos; 4(2), 113, Oct 01 2010
Social response to age-gap sex involving minors has become increasingly severe. In the US, non-coercive acts that might have been punished with probation 30 years ago often lead to decades in prison today. Punishment also increasingly includes civil commitment up to life, as well as scarlet-letter-like public registries and onerous residence restrictions for released offenders. Advocates and the general public approve, believing that age-gap sex with minors is uniquely injurious, pathological, and criminal. Critics argue that public opinion and policy have been shaped by moral panic, consisting of unfounded assumptions and invalid science being uncritically promoted by ideology, media sensationalism, and political pandering. This talk critically examines the basic assumptions and does so using a multi-perspective approach (empirical, historical, cross-cultural, cross-species) to overcome the biases inherent in traditional clinical-forensic reports. Non-clinical empirical reviews of age-gap sex involving minors show claims of intense, pervasive injuriousness to be highly exaggerated. Historical and cross-cultural reviews show that adult-adolescent sexual relations have been common and frequently socially integrated in other times and places, indicating that present-day Western conceptualizations are socially constructed to reflect current social and economic arrangements rather than expressions of a priori truths. Analogous relations in primates are commonplace, non-pathological, and not infrequently functional, contradicting implicit assumptions of a biologically-based "trauma response" in humans. It is concluded that, though age-gap sex involving minors is a significant mismatch for contemporary culture—and this talk therefore does not endorse it— attitudes and social policy concerning it have been driven by an upward-spiraling moral panic, which itself is immoral in its excessive adverse consequences for individuals and society.