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A while back, I found this great TED Talk about pornography. I was listening to it with ear buds in, and I pulled them out so often to quote things at Andy that he finally said, "Just start it over and let me hear the whole thing."
It really is that good.
And that scary.
One of the main things I took away was the story of researchers who wanted to study how the use of internet pornography is impacting relationships for young people today. Turned out they couldn't do the study.
They couldn't find a control group.
They couldn't find a control group, people.
The researchers could not find a group of young men who had not been significantly exposed to pornography.
Lest we think that this is just a bunch of secular crazy people, and this isn't reality in the Christian world, let me quote you this one stat from Covenant Eyes, where you'll find some of the best, most extensive resources for Christians living with the internet:
85% of all young men are looking at pornography on a regular basis (monthly, weekly, or more often).
Now, before some of you start thanking God that you only have daughters, think about this:
Who exactly do you think your daughters are going to date and marry?
And how, exactly, are young women going to cope with that reality?
So we have this phenomenon of internet pornography that's hugely impacting our kids--and a whole heapin' helpin' of the adults, too, since pornography is a factor in 50% of divorces.
And I think that we are seriously lagging in our ability to cope with it.
Here are some of the reasons why I think we're not dealing with reality very well in this area:
- Porn is a guy thing. Even though women are increasingly viewing pornography, men are still 543% more likely to view it.
- The moms of this world grew up before the internet. We aren't drawn to it like our husbands and sons are, so we're just a bit blind to the problem. AND:
- The moms of this world are the ones who see problems in the family, bring them up, and work to resolve them. Whether this is nature or nurture or some malicious combination of the two, this is just the way the world works.
- The shame is huge. Men are ashamed. Women are ashamed. Kids are ashamed. And the first thing we do, as human beings, when we're ashamed, is run and hide. Which makes it worse.
I feel like I hammer on the porn thing a good bit here on the blog, but this is why: I want all my mom-friends to roll into full momma-bear mode on this thing so we can help our kids, our husbands, and ourselves.
I want younger women to know where to look for help, resources, and encouragement.
And I want men to know that they are loved and supported in this battle, rather than feeling isolated, alone, and ashamed.
I really do think all of that is possible. Not easy, but possible.
Before I say anything else, though, I'd like to hear from YOU, ladies, so I know where to target my posts.
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(If you haven't read the story about the impact of pornography on our marriage, and the way God has worked to redeem, start here.)