It’s normal for young people to express themselves through ‘dressing up.’ Some young people will develop a niche interest or hobby or be encouraged to do so by others. Events like Comic-Con and the popularity of superhero fandoms have made the idea of creating and donning intricate costumes more mainstream and accessible.
The danger comes when an interest turns into an unhealthy obsession, fixation, escape, or when the activity may potentially expose the young person to risk. If a young person feels unsatisfied or upset with their situation in life, it might be easier for them to disappear into an alternate reality or world they are able to control. This is especially true if they do not feel they have a supportive community around them. Fixation at this level may cause dissociation, anxiety, depression, and irritability.
Whilst many people involved in the community dispute this, the fact remains that beneath the suit or persona, is a real person, and we know that some people by virtue of their sexual motivation will invariably represent a risk. This is true in many environments, from those who hide behind anonymous online accounts to those who misrepresent themselves and engage in groups with an ulterior motive.
It can be difficult to teach children the importance of balance. We know that boundaries are key to healthy behaviours and relationships. When we add the fantasy/roleplay dynamic, which blurs the line between reality and make-believe, it can be harder to outline clear boundaries. This creates additional risk for children, young people, and vulnerable adults who engage in this type of interest, as they may not understand how serious a situation is until it is too late.
By Douglas Muth, via Wikipedia