Porn’s Influence on Our Children

I believe that marriages are often made messier by the “messes” our children become involved in. So I want to arm parents with helpful information regarding this issue.

The information I will be sharing is from Josh McDowell’s Just1ClickAway.org

Dr. Jill Manning, author of What’s the Big Deal about Pornography? testified before a U.S. Senate sub-committee on the harms of pornography. There she cited numerous effects that have been documented on children and adolescents when directly exposed to pornography. Some of the effects include:

  • Lasting negative or traumatic emotional responses
  • Earlier onset of first sexual involvement
  • Increased risk for developing sexual compulsion and addictive behavior
  • Increased risk of gaining an incorrect and out-of-context view of sex
  • The objectification of another human being for selfish sexual gratification

McDowell points out …

The irony is that many Christian adults tend to think none of their kids are involved sexually, while their own kids think everyone else is “doing it.”

McDowell shares a couple other examples of the pervasiveness of this disconnect between parents and children …

The mother of a 12-year-old recently visited school to have lunch with her child. To her amazement, the conversation around the table of her child’s friends was “oral sex.”

At a prominent evangelical Baptist church, a mother approached me just before I was to give a three-hour Bare Facts seminar to about 1,500 students on a Monday morning.  “Josh, you have to talk about oral sex! she exclaimed quite forcefully. My instant reply was, “Why?She went on to explain that at this church they have two classes for 11-year-olds. Since she has an 11-year-old daughter, she teaches one of the classes. “Friday night (this was Monday morning) I had a party at my house for my daughter’s class. Thirteen kids showed up, seven boys and six girls, including her daughter. “About 8:00 p.m. the phone rang. It was noisy and the music was loud, so I went upstairs to take the call. About 15 minutes later I came back downstairs thinking, ‘It sure is quiet.’ Then to my amazement, I saw the seven boys lined up with their pants dropped and the girls, including my own daughter, on their knees having oral sex with the boys. They are all 11-years-old, from my church, and one was my very own daughter!”

Allow me to share more of McDowell’s startling statistics …

  • Internet has surpassed TV as the media choice for kids.
  • In 1998 – 14 million pornographic webpages                                     In 2006 – 420 million pornographic webpages
  • 90% of all 8 to 16 year olds have viewed pornography. (London School of Economics 2002)
  • 80% of all 15 to 17 year olds have been exposed to hardcore pornography.
  • A new study of US Department of Education found that 27% of 4 – 6 year olds are on the web, and of that number, 35% go to pornography websites.
  • 91% of first time exposure by a teen was during activities such as research for school project or surfing the web for other information.
  • 62% of parents are unaware that their children have accessed objectionable websites. (Yankelovich Partners Study 1999)
  • 12 – 17 year olds are the largest consumer of Internet pornography. (Freedombeginshere.com church leaders intelligence report 2010)
  • NBC news report 50% of all access to Internet is now on handheld devices.
  • 4 out of 10 teens post sexually suggestive messages daily.

Most Common Ways Pornography is Accidentally Reached:

  1. Web pop-ups
  2. Misrepresented links
  3. Misspelled URL’s
  4. Auto links in email

To arm yourself with more knowledge, check out Josh McDowell’s book, Bare Facts that will help you and your teen deal with this very important and complex topic.

And if you’d like a free PDF copy of Josh McDowell’s research, then click on: Just1ClickAway.

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  • Kim Hall

    What very sad times we live in where such young children are being exposed to such inappropriate information and images. It is a daily, uphill battle for parents to fight the culture of sexualizing children at increasingly younger ages, and also the attitude of “everyone’s doing it”, or “it’s no big deal, it’s not really sex, it’s only oral sex.” Yikes.

    Thanks for bringing more light to this dark and destructive topic.

  • Meghan Carver

    Those statistics are terrifying! But thank you for tackling the topic. Definitely, more parents need to be aware.

  • kendalprivette

    amen, sister. vigilance and knowledge are weapons. we have two boys and have had to deal with this. not something i like to talk about a lot…. great post, beth.

  • JosephPote

    Scary stat’s. Thanks for addressing such a difficult topic.

  • messymarriage

    I was blown away when I saw Josh McDowell present this info at a conference. I knew I needed to share all that he freely provided. I just hope that parents realize how important this issue is for their own children. Thanks for stopping by, Kim!

  • messymarriage

    Yes, I was shocked when I first heard them, so I knew that others would be as well. I have three boys and this is an important issue to tackle. I’m so glad they don’t resist us with the measures and conversations we’ve had with them. Thanks so much for stopping by, Meghan!

  • messymarriage

    Yeah, I’m not crazy about talking about it, but I feel like it’s America’s dirty little secret and our kids deserve our vigilance. Thanks so much for coming by and weighing in, Kendal!

  • messymarriage

    Yes, it is scary. I just pray that we can make a difference in our children’s lives. Thanks so much for stopping by, Joe!

  • Ugh. These are such sad numbers but we can’t turn our face away just because it’s ugly. Sigh. Thank God for those (like you!) who are speaking up about it and sharing what we need to be doing.

  • messymarriage

    Satan is having a heyday with this issue in our country and world. It’s just so sad. Thanks for stopping by and weighing in, Lisa. I always appreciate it!

  • It’s an heartbreaking topic. I was probably still playing with dolls at 11. We do need to be proactive and bring awareness to the church and beyond.

  • messymarriage

    Our world has changed so rapidly with the advent of the internet. It is both a blessing and a curse. But you are right, Pamela, we have an opportunity to deal with this as long as we face it head on and don’t run the other way when we feel it is too awkward a subject. Thanks so much for coming by!

  • Ro elliott

    thanks for this…we don’t need to be blind to this truth…blessings to you.

  • Oh, my goodness. This just leaves me trembling. As a mother of two boys–who are somewhat socially immature–I just struggle with this. I don’t want to be that clueless parent. Thank you for this. Going to go check out more info.