Kerry Lifeline

Pornography and Teenagers

CounsellingWe now know that young people are first viewing pornography as early as 11 years of age and exposure to this material at a young age can be a confusing and disturbing experience for a child. We also know from research that parents, when given the skills, are the best people to impart sex education to their children. However, most would also say that they need assistance in their role as sex educators. Parents might find the following facts useful in addressing the issue of internet pornography with their teenager.

– In REALITY Internet pornography is highly highly addictive. It is known as the ‘crack cocaine’ of sex addiction
– The more one watches porn, the more the brain will wire itself to associate with that activity – in REALITY you will want what you see on the screen in front of you!
– The REALITY is that we now have younger men presenting with sexual dysfunction due to over use of pornography.
– It’s important to remember that porn is a movie; it is fantasy; it is not REALITY. Many young lads are worried about living up to what they are viewing!
– Boys and girls often express a dissatisfaction and anxiety with their physical appearance because of pornography. A lot of surgical enhancement goes on in the porn industry and in REALITY our bodies are very different!
– 99.9% of pornography is made by men for men. Some young people tell us that they ‘get ideas’ about sexual experimentation from pornography!
– We hear first-hand about the confusion young people have around consent – e.g. ‘..well a person might say no and not really mean it…’. In REALITY ‘NO’ means ‘NO’.
– Women are objectified in pornography. In REALITY women are people with feelings and with boundaries!
– There is no intimacy or love in pornography. In fact pornography is about disconnection. In REALITY relationships are about connection and start hours, days or weeks before sex. Sex is not purely a physical activity happening in an emotional vaccum as we see in pornography!.

Gardai are concerned about the prolific use of pornographic sites on the internet and the ease at which they can be accessed by young people. They highlight the increase in sex crimes in Ireland – stating that ”Each time a young fella looks at these sites he sees all kinds of sexual activity and expects that this is what’s going to happen with girls. Girls are also being groomed into this behaviour’

This is worrying information for any parent – next week we will discuss how you can approach this topic with your teen?

SouthWest Counselling Centre Killarney provides affordable professional counselling. Kerry LifeLine provides FREE counselling and support to anyone feeling suicidal or bereaved through suicide. To make an appointment call 064 6636416.
SouthWest Counselling Centre is a not-for-profit organization. All funds raised through fundraising go directly to service provision.