Teen watching porn

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Founding member

Teen watching porn

One of 'those' moments happened a little while back and I'm still chewing it over. How would you deal with it (or would you feel the need to do anything?)
So we accidentally came across a series of comments our 14 yo daughter had made on YouTube about how great various 'soft porn' videos were. Won't go in to detail but it was pretty much M or higher related sex scene related stuff.
We talked it over and after initially denying it she came clean and did feel guilty, she'd been watching a fair bit though all soft-ish.
We've put blockers on devices now and talked over what is or isn't appropriate but I sort of wonder if that's just putting off a 'future explosion' when she's old enough to work around that. In the same way I'm not inclined to give a 14 yo free access to whatever is on the www.
Thoughts? Advice?

Frequent scribe

Re: Teen watching porn

Tough question!

 

The internet is not something that you are going to be able to 'police' forever.  I think it's a good idea to have filters etc (you should be able to set something up in your modem / router so it effects all devices), but the reality is a smart kid will find out a way around it eventually.

 

Teens will always be curious, and looking to test boundaries.  I believe it's a parent's role to let the teen know when they've hit that boundary, and it sounds lik ethat is exactly what you have done.

 

You can be certain that she is not the first to watch porn!!



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Super frequent scribe

Re: Teen watching porn

Hello and welcome to the parents forum @Sbaussie

 

It sounds like you have stumbled into the secret life of your teen and are a little lost on how to best handle it? I think you may have to have a broader conversation with your daughter rather than attemp to prohibit her behaviour.  Have you asked your daughter why she accessed these sites? Was it simple curiosity? Did she enjoy it or feel guilty watching it? Did she do it because her peers were doing it? You did say "she'd been watching a fair bit" so she would certainly have an opinion.  I know that it would be really hard to ask these simple types of questions given that it is essentially about sex... and who likes having sex talks (at any age!) with their parents!? Could it possibly be natural sexual curiosity on her part?

 

I do understand your concerned regarding your teen accessing pornography or 'soft porn'... I would be too.  However, I don't I believe you can simply prohibit ANYTHING with teens without either making them more curious about it (what's all the fuss?!) or making them feel bad (guilty); and in both cases more likely to hide their behaviour. And, trying to police your teens access to internet content would be extremely difficult.  Teens are extremely tech savvy and love to have unfettered access with smart phones, youtube, snap chat, messaging, email, mobile data roaming, free wi-fi, friends wifi logon, etc, etc.  So...  if there is a will, they will find a way.  Maybe the solution is not with policing and prohibiting access to what teens see as their right to the www?  

 

Maybe open a dialogue regarding acceptable and unacceptable behaviour in every day life?  I am sure that your daughter would have a sense of your values?  If so you can only hope that they make decisions based on positive values.  Of course in an ideal world your teen would heed your sage advice! But don't they love making their own mistakes!!!

 

Have you had a look at Effective Communication?  This might help you to open a dialogue with your daughter.  

 

Please let me know what you think and how things are going. Good luck!

 

 

Contributor

Re: Teen watching porn

I agree you can't protect her from it forever, but you can talk to her.

 

As she's only 14, I'd keep it fairly "high-level" but maybe focus on the IRL (in real life) experience as opposed to the manufactured experience. Use examples like the way magazines Photoshop celebrities to unrealistic ideals of perfection. Explain the IRL can be exciting, awkward, a bit overwhelming but that it can be a beautiful connection between people. I'd also make sure she knows that any films where people are treated in a degrading way are OFF LIMITS. She also totes needs to know about IRL unplanned pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases.

 

I think it's probably just teenage curiosity and wanting to appear sophisticated?

Frequent scribe

Re: Teen watching porn

I think Mitzie's comments are really valid. I reckon the important thing here is to make the disctinction between real life and porn - hopefully your daughter will be willing to have a discussion about it - she may not - that will be the hard part.

What we don't want is for our young teens to think that they have to behave like the porn stars. Perhaps - don't overdramatise the fact she's watching porn but have a sensible conversation about the differences and the real issue about standing strong on what SHE wants to do, as well as safe sex practices and all that.

I'd love to know how that conversation goes. I'm sure you'll kill it Smiley Happy

Contributor

Re: Teen watching porn

If you are up for using humour, I thought this video was terrific about "porn vs reality"

 

Frequent scribe

Re: Teen watching porn

Hi @Sbaussie - any progress on this tough one?
Prolific scribe

Re: Teen watching porn

@Sbaussie, just thought i'd check in and see how you're doing with this? Did you feel like what we were suggesting alligned with the values in your family?

Founding member

Re: Teen watching porn

Hi all,

An interesting development occurred. We thought we'd worked through this issue (hence my post was more a 'wondering how I went and/or if I should do anything else now') but just in the last week our daughter initiated a discussion after church with a youth leader which she also shared with us that she's continued to look at inappropriate material.

 

Now having said that, the inappropriate material isn't actually videos this time - and I'm kinda relieved in that way. It's lower level books that describe sex in graphic terms, and in my daughter's words it's been every night for the last 2 years. That's a lot of sex, even in low level - and obviously something that's got her hooked.

 

Thankfully she's got some accountability other than us in the form of her youth leader, and she's chatting to God about it too (she's pretty real about her faith). But I'm still left wondering if there's something we should do to help her work through this.

 

Hmmm,

Sbaussie

Founding member

Re: Teen watching porn

I'm still chewing over your valuable thoughts tenacious_dad, thanks!