Pornography

XXX

Tonight, my pastor, who’s background is in youth ministry, looked me in the eyes and told me that porn is a guy’s issue.

Back story:

This evening, I went to dinner at my pastor’s house. While his wife was upstairs putting the kids to bed, he filled me and the other couple who was in attendance about the youth conference that he and an associate pastor at the church are planning for next summer. He was really excited about a certain speaker who had just agreed to come and speak on sexuality. This man has done research on how pornography affects the brain and how it changes our perception of intimacy. He is going to do a session, just for the guys, about sexuality and pornography. The following day, he will be doing a session for all the youth regarding general sexuality. After telling us this, my pastor looked at me and said, “I guess he could do a session just for the girls, but porn is really just a guy’s issue.”

Now, I don’t know what your opinion is on this matter, but here’s mine: porn is just as much a girl’s issue as it is a guy’s issue. 

I know that my pastor had no idea that he was looking at a woman who had been addicted to porn for 8 years beginning at age 11. Part of me wonders if that would even change his perception of the issue. Maybe I would just be an anomaly to him.

And maybe it’s true that porn was more of a guys issue in previous generations, but today 1 in 3 people who view porn online are women. This number has been growing over the past few years!

Even beyond this, the assumption that porn is only a guy’s issue bothers me because it makes 2 big assumptions (among others):

  1. A girl’s sexual nature is “innocent”
  2. A girl isn’t as visual as a guy

It has these 2 big consequences (among others):

  1. Shames and isolates girls as they internalize the belief that no other girl struggles with porn
  2. Causes confusion as girls feel as though they are wired more like males

I may get into those ideas further at a later date, but for now I’ll leave it at that.

Porn runs rampant in our society today. I stumbled upon it accidentally on our home computer as a child. I know of junior high students whose friends have shown it to them while they were hanging out. Porn has to be dealt with not only by individual families, but also in community. I know that this is an issue that invokes a lot of shame, but the more we keep it a secret the more it eats individuals alive and tears families apart.

The point is that porn is an issue for males and females– I would argue equally so. The longer we go on with the mindset that this is only a guy’s issue, the longer we ignore all the girls that are silently struggling with this in isolation.

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2 thoughts on “XXX

  1. I couldn’t agree more. The idea that porn is only an issue for males is absurd. On top of your post above, I’d also say that porn is a girls/women’s issue because of the hideous ways in which mainstream porn treats and objectifies women. It teaches boys and men to view women with sexualised disrespect. I have no idea how porn teaches girls and women to view themselves? And men for that matter? It would be really interesting to hear your account of that – how porn made you feel about being a woman and how it made you view boys and men? I guess it depends on the kind of porn that is watched… Anyway, great post. And thanks for your long reply to my last long comment.

    • Thanks for adding that point! I can definitely write a post about how porn affects girls’ and women’s views of themselves and men- or at least how it affected my view. I would agree that the type of porn one watches can have a huge affect on that.

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