Sunday, May 28th, 2017

Our Boys And Porn

Published on September 19, 2016 by   ·   No Comments Social Buttons by Linksku - Share links onlinePin It
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Your young sons may be watching, or unwillingly coming across, porn. These visuals can be truly damaging to a young child, but how can you stop this from happening? Today Janet Allison, an expert on raising boys who thrive in our sexuality-led culture shares her tips on how to best protect our little (and not-so-little) guys: (Note: Janet Allison is a boy expert, but these tips really all hold true for girls too!) Welcome her to the GirlieGirlArmy.com community as the newest contributor to our Mamazon section!

He will see porn – sooner than you can imagine. You won’t be ready for him to see it – and he won’t be ready either.  On average, in America, he’ll see porn for the first time by the age of 9. Unfortunately, as kids become ever more at ease in the on-line world, the average age keeps getting lower.

Did you ever put him in the car without making sure his seatbelt was fastened?

His physical safety is a priority for you, always.

Now, with the prevalence of porn, you may be jeopardizing his physical, emotional, AND intellectual safety:

  • If you haven’t talked with him early about body parts and healthy sexuality.
  • If you haven’t talked with him about what adults do in a loving relationship.
  • If you haven’t talked with him about his growing, developing body.
  • If you haven’t talked with him about girls and their growing, developing bodies.

You might as well put him in a race car – unbuckled.

At the point when he sees porn, his lack of safety will be on you, because HE WILL SEE IT…

  • It may be as a surprise image popping onto his ipad screen.
  • It may be a friend or older brother showing off what he’s found – and he’ll have to go along to “save face” because you haven’t taught him refusal skills.
  • He may have innocently googled a word that’s led him to “a cornucopia…of stuff.”
  • And if he hasn’t actually seen porn yet, he’s heard about it, guaranteed.

How To Protect Our Sons From Porn

And even if he hasn’t seen pornography as we think of it – do you think he isn’t noticing the latest Ralph Lauren commercial?

And even if he hasn’t seen pornography as we think of it – if he plays video games, he’s already been over-exposed to unrealistic images of bodies and the treatment of women.

Do your own research: note how often women’s bottoms are shown in his video game of choice. As Damon Beres writes in The Huffington Post, “Games often emphasize the rumps of female characters while male characters have their posteriors hidden.” (This may seem harmless. You may think, “Oh, he’s so young, he won’t notice.” Problem is – it begins to foster a culture of unrealistic expectations and views of women.)

But I Digress.  Back to PORN:

Current statistics are:

  • 92% of boys are exposed to porn on-line
  • 62% of girls are exposed to porn on-line How To Protect Our Sons From Porn

What are you doing to protect them?

Remember, the images he sees are not your father’s Penthouse or Playboy magazines. The images he sees and hears will be in living color and very, very realistic. He may be shocked AND he may also be very curious. Most of all, he can’t ‘unsee’ what he’s already seen. SO, what are you doing RIGHT NOW to keep him safe and prepare him BEFORE he sees any inappropriate images?

As Amy Lang advises in BOY TALK #13, you start by having conversations – many conversations. They will be short, awkward, and embarrassing. But just like you’d jump in front of a train to save your kid, you’ve got to jump into these complex and awkward conversations – and be prepared to jump into them over and over again.

Amy says you must convey to them early and often, ”It is for adults, not for children. Just like alcohol and coffee.”

Is it harmful?

Yes, to our kids it is. As an adult, you can make your own educated choices. It is up to us to communicate to our children that pornography conveys an unrealistic view of a healthy sexual relationship between two loving adults. Among other things, porn conveys unrealistic views and expectations about:

  • Violence
  • Racial stereotypes
  • Body types
  • Women – disrespect, mistreatment
  • Sexual actions
  • Relationships between men&men; men&women; women&women

Above all, it can be highly addictive. In the New Zealand Herald, ‘Nick’ tells his story of watching porn when he got his first laptop at age 15 and was soon watching it for up to two hours a day.

He said, “It quickly escalated and it was every day. What I was watching, it definitely got more extreme over a short period of time. There was nothing that would give me a kick. Normal stuff didn’t do anything anymore, so I had to get more and more extreme material. It was disturbing stuff that disturbed me.”

He went on to say that he had trouble being attracted to females as his sexuality was “completely wired towards porn.” Only after undergoing a 100-day porn-fast was he able to return to normal sexual relationships.

Let that serve as “worst-case” scenario for you.

What do you do now?

You fasten their safety belts! You put on your mama-bear-armor and your papa-bear-armor and you make it a priority to install parental controls and monitoring software on ALL devices. You make sure his friend’s parent’s have done the same. You educate yourself, you practice the conversations, and – above all, you remain calm, cool, and collected when he tells you about what he saw on his friend’s iphone the other day…

Janet Allison is an author, educator, and Family Coach. She has been helping parents and teachers understand the boys in their care for over 20 years.  She lives in Portland, Oregon. Connect with her and learn more at boysalive.com

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