Childhood now ends at 11, parents say (UK)

UK Telegraph 03 March 2008

More than half of parents believe that childhood is now over by the age of 11, according to a survey. The poll shows that children, desperate to keep up with their peers, are forcing parents to authorise freedoms that belie their years, in contrast with the traditional upbringings experienced by their mothers and fathers. Teenagers are increasingly being allowed to drink alcohol, stay out late and sleep over at their boyfriend or girlfriend’s house, according to the survey for Random House Children’s Books.

But many adults feel that parents are wrong to succumb and that youngsters grow up alarmingly quickly…. The survey of 1,170 parents with children under 18 blames parents for cutting short their sons’ and daughters’ childhoods by buckling to “pester pressure”.