In my Human Sexuality class today, we watched a video about the effects of pornography. The video was moving and made me very sad and mad. People do not realize the effects of the porn industry, not just on adults, but on children too. Pornography starts a sexual addiction that was not there before, and it feeds one that is already there and makes it grow to even worse.
Statistics that are ever growing:
The total porn industry revenue for 2006 was $96 billion worldwide, $13.3 billion in the U.S. alone. And this number is ever increasing each year.
10% of adults admit to having a sexual addiction, 28% of those being women.
Over 70% of men between the ages of 18-34 visit a porn site in a typical month.
There is said to be over 20,000 images of child pornography posted online every single week.
About 20% of pornography on the Internet involves children.
Over 100,000 websites now offer illegal child pornography..
Also- 51% of pastors say that Internet porn is a possible temptation. And 37% say it is a current struggle.
57% of pastors say that addiction to porn is the most sexually damaging issue within their congregation as well.
47% of families say pornography is a problem within their home.
It was also said that the Internet was a significant factor in 2 out of 3 divorces in 2003, it is even more today.
9 out of 10 children between the ages of 8 and 16 have viewed Internet pornography.
It is also said that youth with more exposure to sexuality within the media were much more likely to have had sex between ages 14 and 16.
It is also said that 1 in 7 kids who use the Internet have been sexually solicited. 1 in 5 children between the ages of 10 and 17 receive unwanted sexual solicitations online. 76% of victims in Internet-initiated sexual exploitation cases were between the ages 13 and 15, and 75% were girls (safefamilies.org/stats).
The effects of pornography are progressive and addictive. Children, now having access to the Internet, are much more apt to being exposed to porn- and this threatens to make children victims of sexual violence. In the video I watched today in class, the main woman on this video was an ex-porn star. She did not see her life going this direction when she was young. But, she had been exposed to sex at a very young age. She was taken advantage of and molested at a very young age. She did not even know what sex was at that point, but knew that she felt dirty and ashamed. After this, she started having sex all the time, she was completely lost, confused and hurt. Her road down the path of entering the porn industry path did not start because it was what she had always wanted for herself, she had gotten swooped into sexual addiction at a very young age, all because a guy took advantage of her one night, and she could not control the situation or stop it.
Research says that the more porn an individual has access too, the higher risk they are to acting out what they see- and this could be in the area of sexual assault, rape, and child molestation.
According to a study, early exposure to porn is related to greater involvement in deviant sexual practice, such as rape. In a study of people convicted of child molestation, 77% of those that molested boys and 87% of those who molested girls admitted to have been habitually using porn.
Researchers also say that from being exposed to pornography can bring on the issue of sexual illnesses/diseases, unplanned pregnancies, and the onset of sexual addiction. “Sex without responsibility is acceptable and desirable.” Expressing sexuality without right responsibility will ultimately endanger children’s health.
In the U.S. alone, 1 in 4 sexually experienced teens acquire an STD every year. There has been research that says that guys who are exposed to a great deal of sexually explicit images or porn before the age of 14 are more sexually active, and engage in more varied types of sexual behaviors. 90% of male sex addicts, and 77% of female sex addicts say that pornography was significant to the onset of their addiction.
Children should never be exposed to pornography. Kids often times will imitate what they see, read or hear. There were study’s done that say that exposing children to pornography prompts them to sexually act out against younger, more vulnerable and small children.
Whether viewing pornography seems innocent and not damaging to you, exposing oneself to porn will shape their attitudes and values. Parents, and those that are not parents but hope to be parents one day, want to be the most caring and responsible parents that they can be. Ideally, parents want to instill their own personal values about relationships, sex, intimacy, love and marriage into their children. The Internet and the porn industry is educating children in a different way on these issues. “Just as thirty-second commercials can influence whether or not we choose one popular soft drink over another, exposure to pornography shapes our attitudes and values, and, often, our behavior (Hughes, 2001).”
Porn, as well as other sexually explicit images and messages, the media, all of these things have powerful effects, but wrong views on the education of sex and sexuality. Studies show that regular exposure to pornography has a dramatic effect on how adults view women, sexual abuse, sexual relationships and the topic of sex in general.
Researcher’s did a study on males that were exposed to porn for even as little as six weeks: and they said they developed a callousness toward women sexually, they began to question rape as not being a criminal offense anymore, they began to develop distorted views about sexuality in general, they began to develop a want for more violent types of pornography because normal sex did not satisfy them anymore, they began to devalue monogamy more, and they began to lack confidence in the union of marriage.
Adults and parents should want to protect the innocence and the purity of childhood. Adults should realize the effects of their actions. There is by no means a good reason to defend the porn industry. There is no research or studies that prove any positive effects from pornography. It itemizes women, it ruins the innocence and purity of children- that should be rightfully theirs to keep, it turns even the most respectable of men (and women too) into monsters.
The video we watched today in my class was full of a lot of interviews with ex-porn stars, ex-porn directors and producers… and they had nothing but regret for the things that they did, for the things they exposed themselves too. Even as they were in the porn industry, and filming pornographic films, they were not happy. It was because they were so unhappy that they were in that industry to begin with. They felt completely disgusting, de-humanized and regretful. Porn did not help any of these people gain help for the hurt in their lives, it only made it sting worse in the long run. Sexual addiction increases sexually related violence- an issue that would be non-existent if the media and our environment had it together when it came to the topic of sex, sexuality, sexually explicit images, etc…
In the video I watched today, they said “We have this vicious feedback between pornography and child abuse.” There needs to be a stop of the ability for absolutely anyone, at any time, being able to view and look up sexually explicit images and pornography. Anybody with access to WI-FI can look up just about anything they want to.
Anybody should want and desire a healthy and happy relationship with another. This is impossible when one is a sexual addict or exposing themselves to sexually explicit media. First of all- nobody wants to be compared to that naked man or woman on the screen- pornography and sexually explicit images bring with them insecurity. There is no way around it. Nobody wants to be compared with another. I, for one, do not want my husband comparing me with any other woman when we are married. I do not want to have any reason or temptation of feeling insecure. Secondly- I do not want to feel like I’m trying to live up to the way they did it on the screen. I don’t want normal, healthy sex within the union of marriage to seem boring or too generic. I want my sex life to be healthy, happy and satisfying, no matter what.
Looking for a healthy a long-lasting relationship that will bring happiness and no regret? Quit looking at porn (if you are), and focus more on making yourself right and able to be the best possible man or woman for that special somebody you hope to make yours one day. It is never gonna happen sitting in front of the screen looking at itemized, helpless, lonely, sad and confused naked people to try and fill your sexual void or need. Sorry for the bluntness- but you aren’t gonna find the love of your life, a man or woman in the computer screen (unless your into that whole online dating thing).
In my opinion, pornography, the porn industry, the media and images that create sexual addictions- there is no positive that comes out of it. Porn does not help your marriage, it does not fill the void you may be missing in your life, it doesn’t help your family problems disappear, it does not take away the loneliness you feel at night as you sit alone in your room, it does not prepare you to be a better man/woman for your next relationship- if anything, it destroys you more. I believe that sometimes people are screaming for help in all the wrong places. If you need help with an issue you are going through, seek help- don’t just mindlessly give yourself away to the Internet and porn- it’s not going to help anything ultimately.
I don’t know if anybody will read this that may be struggling with or viewing pornography and thinking “ah, it’s no big deal. Don’t go and try to make me feel bad about something that I think is fine.” I just want to know- do you honestly feel satisfied at the end of the night after you’re done viewing? Do you honestly not even feel the slightest bit dirty? Unsatisfied? That you benefited at all from viewing? That perhaps you may have been better off and felt less bad and less regret if you would have just not look at those sexually explicit images? Or have you perhaps become so de-sensitized to it at this point that you honestly can say you really don’t care anymore?
Ultimately, I think that anybody that struggles with sexual addiction should seek help. I also believe God can restore any circumstance. He can restore relationships, He can restore our body’s, He can make us clean- if we cling to Him, hand our issues over to Him, ask for forgiveness, and vow to change with His help.
“Therefore, if anyone is an Christ, he is a new creation, old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.” (2 Corinthians 5:17)
“But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.” (1 John 1:7)
“The eye is the lamp of the body ; so then if your eye is clear , your whole body will be full of light” (Matt. 6:22)
Just a lot of random thoughts and such that came to my heart (and stats) as I watched a video on the effects of pornography and sexual addiction in class today- take it or leave it 🙂