This post is going to ask you to look at yourself. Your choices. Your intentions. It might be uncomfortable. It might change your life.
I have spent hours… more like days… pouring over research about how relationships can be destroyed by pornography. I frequently reference the non-profit organization Fight The New Drug in my social media outlets, and I rep the movement every chance I get with their shirts and stickers. I have been very personally effected by this issue and I believe in the message they are trying to get out there. Its science. I can spout facts about the detriments of pornographic images on the brain and what it does to the viewer emotionally. I can speak to how porn use impacts society. And I can completely put aside my own experience with it to talk about the black and white scientific facts. And this is all great but…
You see, the way our society works, we find something "super awesome," and then, once its been mass consumed for years, we then begin to see, and consequently study, the effects that “super awesome” thing had on society - on the consumers. Remember that morning sickness medication that caused like 7,000+ serious birth defects? Yeah - kept people from throwing up during the first trimester of pregnancy. Promise of that relief sent women running to the drug store and fairly quickly, those no-longer puking mothers were holding infants with deformed limbs… No one knew how bad it would hurt in the long run. Our society thrives on immediate gratification… but didn’t Newton (in his Third Law) teach us that every action has a reaction? Right, this isn’t physics, but the premise is the same. Every choice has a consequence. Watch porn, deal with its effects. They exist. And sadly, just as science didn’t catch Thalidomide’s propensity toward birth defects BEFORE thousands of women consumed it, science is just now catching the ill effects of pornography on its consumers. And y’all, porn sites receive more regular traffic than Amazon, Netflix, and Twitter COMBINED each month. That’s a lot of traffic…. more importantly, that’s a lot of PEOPLE consuming.
Some of the Facts from the Research
- Frequency of porn use correlates with depression, anxiety, stress and social problems.
- Watching porn literally shrinks grey matter in the brain that oversees cognitive function.
- People who watch porn are significantly less satisfied with sex than those who do not consume pornography.
- Exposure to pornography (violent or not) increases behavioral aggression including violent fantasies and actual violent assaults.
I look at all this and I think, wow…. am I doing everything I can to educate those around me of the importance of this issue? Am I going to address it in my home in such a way that it is not shamed, but communicated effectively so my son, his friends, whomever may be in my life and in my home can know how big this issue is and how critical it is not to invite in this drug? All I can say is that is my goal.
And then I realized y’all… we need to sit down and discuss what PORN is. There is a general idea, right? Everyone understands the porn cites and the dirty magazines, but I don’t mean just the stuff that comes up with a sexualized google search. I mean even in our daily life.
Pornography is defined as erotic or sensual behavior or material intended to cause sexual excitement.
I think back to my high school and college years and the clothes I wore on occasion, the looks I hoped to get, and the pictures I took with friends and shared with others. We were “kids” but we weren’t doing “kid” things. We were hyper sexualizing ourselves and in this age of technology and social media, those care free choices of a junior high or high school student suddenly become soft porn images on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. That girl that wants that boy’s attention now gets asked for it in “pic” form over snapchat because… why not? Sex is everywhere for free on the internet so isn’t it a compliment to be asked for a nude? The lie that “if he’s looking at pictures of me, then maybe he won’t use porn” begins to circulate. And why is it common place for teenagers to be posting pictures of themselves barely dressed in suggestive poses simply to get more “likes”? This is just another way pornography has effected our society and we have to undo it. We need to explain to everyone, teenagers and adults alike, that posting “sensual material or behaviors” of THEMSELVES "intended for sexual excitement” IS PORNOGRAPHY. Posing sexy so someone will think its hot and putting it on the internet = porn. Pornography destroys relationships. Pornography increases negative attitudes toward women. Pornography literally changes your brain. And posting sexy photos of yourself to entice another is inviting porn into his or her life. What is your intention? Remember those facts I mentioned? Those effects of pornography aren’t permanent, but they are altering and just as drugs can be addictive, so can pornography. Stop the cycle. Repair the damage. Fight The New Drug.
Facts, definitions, and images/shirts from Fight the New Drug.
***For more information on the effects of pornography, please visit Fight The New Drug. And no... I don't work for them. I just believe in the research.