I'm the parent of a sixteen year old. We all use one computer in the family room. I was clearing out the temporary Internet files yesterday to make more space and I found links to pornographic sites. They're not overtly graphic or smutty, most are repositories for videos and pictures of various nude scenes in movies. There are disclaimers on these sites for no one under eighteen to enter.
He's a great kid. He does well in school and is responsible with the freedoms he's given. I'm worried about this though. I don't know how to bring it up with him. Your article on what constitutes pornography was good up to a point. It described porn in its various forms, but not how to talk to teens who are looking it up (it was briefly mentioned at the beginning of the article, but not after that).
I don't know how to handle this. What should I do?
What specifically are your concerns about your son looking up porn?
That it presents an unwholesome or unrealistic view of human sexuality? That it's presenting him with things he's not yet ready to be exposed to? That it's simply not appropriate use of a family computer?
It would be fair to tell him that you're aware of what he's been doing, and mention why it bothers you. If he's curious, as a lot of teens are, now would be a great time to present him with a reference book on sexuality you feel comfortable with (or just show him this site!), and talk to him about the general issue, and how it relates to him. That'd be a great time to point out that porn isn't really the best way to learn about sex, and your computer just isn't an okay place to access it. Conversations like that can be awkward, but it's a lot better to know a parent's supportive, caring, and out to educate than to have the topic ignored entirely.
------------------ Milke, with an L, Mrs BD to you, RATS, TMNTP, MF, CWCD, WAOTA
Your son is not the only teenage boy to look at porn. Many, MANY boys do, to masterbate, it`s totally normal, I mean, if you`re against it, then that`s your right, whatever suits your fancy, but personally I look at porn, and I don`t see what the big deal is, I mean, I know it doesn`t portray sex in a correct manor, if your worried about that, make sure to let him know, give him this site, but don`t punish him for his actions... he`s probably just curious
Posts: 23 | From: WI, USA | Registered: May 2004
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Before I say anything at all about this topic, let me be sure to say THIS IS JUST MY PERSONAL OPINION, not Scarleteen's or even what most people consider to be true.
For me personally (I'm a girl) I think looking at porn is wrong. I'm in a very committed sexual relationship, and I feel like being sexual with anyone other than Ty is betraying him, even if it's just some model on a page. When you're intimate with someone, even just by looking at a picture of a complete stranger, you give part of yourself to them. Why would I want to do something that would take part of me away from the person that means the most to me? I mean, I don't want images of other guys popping into my head when I'm making love to him. For me, it's basically a matter of difference and respect for myself and Ty that keeps me from looking at pictures of naked guys in a sexual way. Just to be clear, I have no problem with nudity in general, just when it's sexualized in a way that doesn’t include Ty. Also, when you look at graphic material, you can never completely erase it from your memory. You can throw away magazines and clear logs, but you can't just run your head through the washer and call it good. Besides that, my feelings are that most pornography portrays and unrealistic image of sex. Not everyone is 5'2, 98lbs, and blonde. It also never shows the downsides to sex, like unintended pregnancies or STD/STI's. All I'm saying is that maybe we as a country have become very jaded about what sex was designed to be - an expression of love between one man and one woman.
As for your son, have you asked him WHY he was looking this material? I think a frank discussion is in order. Just be sure that you see what he has to say before you go off the deep end. For all you know, he's researching an art project for school, lol.
When I read your post, I was getting a message from you that you don't want to offend anyone, but do feel strongly about porn.
I have been impressed with other posts you have made, you seem like a smart person to me. But I did think that some of what you said in this one could rub some people up the wrong way, even though you said you didn't want to do that.
I'm a psychology student, and am thinking about becoming a therapist. I've done a short course in counselling skills, and I've become very interested in trying to use non-judgmental language - I find it helps me get more responses from others.
quote:Originally posted by nmcowgirl87: For me personally (I'm a girl) I think looking at porn is wrong.
With this statement at the beginning of your post I thought you were more or less non-judgmental, because you started out by saying "for me personally"
But later I found this judgmental:
quote:"what sex was designed to be - an expression of love between one man and one woman"
but then you qualify that statement with
quote:Ya'll are welcome to berate me for being intolerant and Christian, but those are my beliefs, and it's what works for me. And yes, I know I narrow-mindedly said sex should be between a man and a woman, but that's just what I believe
Maybe I'm going to sound judgmental about being non-judgmental here!! But what I'm trying to say is that you can state your beliefs, and say that you believe that strongly without saying anything else is "wrong". I'm actually quite conservative in some of my own behaviour, and find some people's choices hard to understand, but I also try to remember "who am I to judge". I mean, how would you feel if someone said that christians who are sexually actvive outside marriage are "not real christians"? (I don't think this, for the record)
Just some ideas if you really don't want to offend anyone. When I was growing up my family used "black and white" language a lot, implying there is one right answer. I found that I was alienating people because I had learned this from them, so it's something I've thought about a lot. I think since I started using non-judgmental language more, my thoughts followed suit too, and I can now separate how I want to live from my feelings about others choices, and make a little more space in my mental scheme of things for those who are not like me.
But don't get me wrong, I think it takes courage to stand up for what you believe in, like you just did .
------------------ Londongirl University Student
[This message has been edited by Londongirl (edited 06-01-2004).]
An important reminder, however: per the guidelines in the user registration agreement here, discriminatory statements and/or bigotry really are NOT allowed here, and I don't want them here. Scarleteen is an inclusive site.
So, if you want to believe that there is one select group of people sex was "designed" for and that you have some way of knowing that without question, that is your prerogotive. But please don't post it here again, as it is both hurtful and discriminatory to many people here, including myself, and because that's no more acceptable to air here than stating sex or partnership is designed for only a given race, class or creed.
I don't think you should have much to worry about, unless you see this as a constant problem.
I, myself, and looked up porn on various occassions, but like Milke said above, mostly out of curiousity. In no way does it mean that I'm suddenly going to start showing real interest in these things, and even get some obscene occupation in something like that.
Considering my sexual situation, I feel fairly deprived, and sometimes a little visual stimulation gets me through my 'times of need'.
However, if I had a son, and he ended up looking up porn at almost a constant rate, over months (or longer), then I would probably grow concerned.
However, this is just a 16-year-old's ten cents. (Because my two cents are free.)
------------------ ~Ketzicle "You may not know for sure where you are going, and may never reach the places you were heading for, but you'll eventually end up somewhere better than you'd planned."
Like people have said, if you choose to confront him about this, ask him why...
But can I offer a reason that hasn't been made?? Maybe it's less of an interest in sex and "getting off" to material that he's not really allowed to access (being under 18)- but simply a morbid interest to find out what the big fuss is about... It'd be hard to tell by temp. files alone, but being that porn is really easy to surf from site to site he just continues to find more interesting things, but without any real intent or conviction to continue.
You son is 16 he is not a baby anymore!!!!!!! He is just exploreing the sexual world!! You dhould get him a book about sex for older teens!! So he can learn about the different parts of the female
Posts: 2 | From: Pa | Registered: Jul 2004
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