Teen watching porn

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Re: Teen watching porn

Hi @Sbaussie

 

I was just reading through your most recent post. It sounds to me like your daughter is curious about the ins-and-outs of sex, perhaps more than she is looking for sexual gratification. At her age it is very common to have this kind of curiosity, and equally as common to feel very embarrassed talking to your parents about it. It makes sense to me that if she's embarrassed, she might be seeking education from some less-than-ideal sources in an effort to learn without having to have a tough conversation with you guys.

 

I'm wondering what kind of conversations you've had with her regarding sex and her body? Is that something that you feel comfortable talking to her about, and are those conversations in line with the values you're working to promote in your home? I understand that as faith is very important to both you and your daughter, sex could mean very different things for your family whether it's within or outside of marriage, which I totally understand. Do you think there is a difference between exploring sexual content because of curiosity about how bodies work and what marriage will be like, and exploring it for sheer gratification, or in other contexts which might go against your faith?

Contributor

Re: Teen watching porn

My 16-y-o son recently came to me and said "Mum I need to talk to you about something serious".  He was watching porn from Youtube and feeling like it was an addiction. We had the talk.And believe me, it was excruciating! There I was, nodding sagely, all the time thinking "Eww! Stop talking! La-la-la-la-la don't want to hear!"

 

Anyway, brief list of what we covered:

  • It's natural to be curious about sex
  • Masturbation is a normal thingy.
  • Lots of people experiment with erotica
  • It's not OK to watch anything which degrades another person
  • Bestiality is not OK
  • Under no circumstances are you to pay to visit a sex site.
  • Yes I have read the studies where people after repeated exposure to porn can only be aroused by porn but I think when you get a girlfriend and become sexually active your attitude to porn may or may not change.
  • I am proud of you that you recognise the potential for a problem and feel safe enough to talk to me about it.

 

AAAAAGGGHHHHHHHH

Prolific scribe

Re: Teen watching porn

@Sbaussie I am glad to hear your daughter has the support and guidance of other people who share her faith, it sounds to me like she's exploring a response to the issue she's encountered and finding her answer.

 

People develop sexuality at a relatively inconvenient time, our brains are undertaking the most significant re-wiring and and development since the language development period of our early childhood; right when érōs appears for the first time.

 

Of course the two changes are inextricably linked! Whether we evolved or were made, érōs is as much a part of being human as agápē.

 

What guidance does your faith have for you? 

Founding member

Re: Teen watching porn

Hi Kas-RO,

 

I'm sure curiosity is probably a big part of this - though I wonder where curiosity ends and unhelpfulness begins. In my mind there's only so much curiosity (or so many things that can be done from curiosity) that are helpful. Two years of reading sex scenes might no longer be helpful and might have moved into an unhelpful addiction that locks her out of the best for her future.

In this way I think you're right that conversations about her body and sex (and maybe some more reading material that's a bit more realistic ;-)) could be helpful.

 

Does anyone here have suggestions about how to go about these...'uncomfortable discussions'? And anything to give her to read?

She knows 'where babies come from' and all the sex ed stuff that is more for younger age groups, I'm more thinking about materials that help her work through what she's feeling and what to do with these feelings, and as Kas-Ro wrote, 'how bodies work', what marriage is like.

 

As Christians, faith is very important to us and I wouldn't want to confuse her with a message that doesn't fit within that context of believing God has an incredible love for her that overrides what others think about sex before marriage - she of course is completely free to make her mind up but there's a difference between allowing that to happen and encouraging her to ignore what we believe through what we give her to read.

 

Still chewing,

Sbaussie

Founding member

Re: Teen watching porn

Hi @Mitzi,

 

Still smiling at the thought of you

 

"nodding sagely, all the time thinking "Eww! Stop talking! La-la-la-la-la don't want to hear!"

 

Good on you for listening. In my situation there's things I'd feel comfortable saying to my daughter & others I wouldn't.

 

I guess I'm heavily affected by my own experience (who isn't?!) where an addiction to porn tore me apart for several years. I haven't talked about it with my daughter although that day will come, but encouraging her to look at porn in any form isn't something I'll be doing.

Yes, I was sexually active at the time (in a loving marriage of many years) but the impact it had on that sex life, on my ongoing thought life, my relationship with others, my faith, and the difficulty I had restoring a healthy normality when I faced these things has convinced me it's just not something I'd want anyone else to go through - letalone my own daughter.

 

Hope that makes sense,

Sbaussie

Founding member

Re: Teen watching porn

Good question @Ben-RO,

 

As I mentioned in another post, as Christians, faith is very important to us and I wouldn't want to confuse her with a message that doesn't fit within that context of believing God has an incredible love for her that overrides what others think about sex before marriage.

 

I also believe God made us as sexual beings (let's be honest - nearly everyone alive is because someone had sex!) and for it to be an incredible experience and part of a committed marriage. But we discover this érōs in the same way as agápē - through relationship with others (hearing their stories, loving and being loved, getting disappointed etc), through self-discovery, through prayer.

I believe God's put boundaries for all parts of life - for example we don't murder or steal because that's outside the right boundaries, and an excessive expression of sexuality (such as sexual intercourse) outside of marriage is outside that boundary.

 

I know her youth leaders also believe this which is helpful because despite being able to write it I'm not sure how to discuss it with her.

 

Hmmmm,

Sbaussie

Contributor

Re: Teen watching porn

I'm really grateful for your frank discussion @Sbaussie - even though I was laughing at my own awkwardness it is a bit frightening - hoping I'm giving my son the right advice. He actually pointed me towards a site devoted to dealing with the problem and said he has found help just hearing from others with similar habits. from "Your Brain on Porn". My addiction was food and cigarettes so I do understand the craving and feelings of being powerless. Been off the cigs for over a year after many 3-week false starts and I'm seeing a psychologist to deal with long-standing (over)eating disorder.

 

All the best to you, I wish I had the answers but I don't. Just know I'm cheering for you! 

Founding member

Re: Teen watching porn

Yeah, it's often struck me that almost all of us have unhealthy habits of one sort or another - some are more socially acceptable than others, most have consequences (wish I was addicted to carrots!!), but I'm hoping I can help my daughter stay away from as many as possible. Good on you @Mitzi for facing up to yours, and it sounds like your son has realised his might have consequences too and he's wanting to follow your example and face up to them.

Contributor

Re: Teen watching porn

Thanks so much @Sbaussie for updating us, and all your thoughtful ideas on the topic. As @Mitzi explained so well - this is an uncomfortable topic but so important, and common!

Cheers guys Smiley Happy