Parents feel increasingly overwhelmed by the hyper-sexualized culture their children are growing up in, but most parents do not know that when their children access pornography online, they are exposed to brutal sex that depicts men as violent sexual predators and women as objects to be debased and dehumanized.
We aim to help parents build their children’s resistance and resilience to porn culture while promoting their healthy development. We are developing provide age-appropriate, culture competent, research-driven educational programs on:
- Hypersexualized media, pornography, and their harmful effects
- Harm prevention & response
- Healthy relationships & adolescent sexual health
- Community mobilization strategies toward systemic pornography harm prevention & response
At Culture Reframed, we understand how daunting it can be to raise kids in an environment that normalizes violent mainstream pornography and hypersexualized pop culture. That’s why we are bringing you the Culture Reframed Online Parents Program. This is a complete best practice toolkit to build knowledge and tools in parents so they can raise porn resilient kids. Sign up to be notified of when the Culture Reframed Online Parents Program becomes available.
Keep reading for helpful tips to have open conversations with your teens.
Key essentials to prepare teens for…
- Purpose of sex
- Myths of porn
- Body acceptance
- Defining ‘Empowerment’
Topics for Conversation
Regular communication with your teen is essential and underpins their ability to critically analyse porn culture. Some topics to get started include:
1. Pornography doesn’t represent “real sex.”
2. Porn can be disturbing and trigger a huge range of feelings: curiosity, confusion, disgust, arousal or guilt.
3. Often pornography is power imbalanced – control, domination, degradation and violence is usually directed at women.
4. Just because something is arousing or pleasurable doesn’t make it positive.
5. You can’t un-see pornography. Robs you of imagination.
6. Pornography usually doesn’t depict emotional intimacy. Great sex includes emotional intimacy, vulnerability, gentleness, love and sensuality – these qualities form a healthy committed adult relationship.
7. Women aren’t sexual objects or toys who exist to please men. Men aren’t sexual objects to be manipulated. Regardless of orientation, the same principals apply.
8. A beautiful, creative and sustainable sexual relationship is about both partners acknowledging their own needs and desires, as well as prioritizing their partners needs and desires.
Adapted from Liz Walker’s FREE eBook
Practical Prevention (Technology Suggestions)
There are a growing number of filtering and accountability software platforms to block access to online pornography. At Culture Reframed, we advise that filtering and monitoring apps should always be accompanied with open conversations with your teens, so that they develop their own ability to critically analyse porn and become porn resilient kids.
The above list was collated by Robert Weis for use with clients (click through to read Product Reviews as to why these platforms have been recommend). Others platforms to consider are:
Intervention: Warning Signs and Conversation
Your teen may already be struggling with pornography, so it’s important to identify the warning signs. These may include:
- Withdrawing from activities
- Shutting down computer / devices suddenly
- Change in other behaviours (anxiety, less conversational, depression, etc.)
- Long periods of time in the bathroom / shower
- Taking their phone into the toilet
- Change in language or demeanour
If you discover your teen is struggling, engage in calm and purposeful conversations so that communication channels will open rather than close.
- Listen without reacting
- Affirm feelings and answer questions
- Decide best course of action – together
- Options: Seek professional support, Accountability Mentor, Monitoring Software / technology intervention
- Regularly check in with and monitor how your teen is doing.
Online Resources to Support Teens Struggling with Pornography
The porn industry is calculated in how it targets children and young people to get hooked on pornography, so it’s important for your teen to know that they are not alone. Some of the platforms and online resources that may help are listed below.
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