For me the escapism factor is a big part of why I watch cartoons with a kid cast, but doesn’t really factor into who my choice of waifu or fap material are.
I’m just really into cute when it comes to 2D, and lolis have the advantage of having designs that were meant to be cute in the first place. It was the case even when I was a child myself that I would get crushes on the cutest loli characters and not on the buxom babes, for me it’s 100% aesthetic related and nothing to do with power dynamics or approachability.
Your reasoning probably is why nerd girl and tomboy characters tend to be popular though, i.e. Velma being overwhelmingly favored over Daphne by modern audiences