Helping Young Children Deal With Porn

Photo courtesy of http://cmcforum.com/

Photo courtesy of http://cmcforum.com/

Came across this great post over on Brian Dollar’s blog about helping children (yes children, NOT teens) deal with pornography. Here’s a clip. Head over to Brian’s blog to read the rest:

I received a tough email from a ministry friend this week.  It said, “I found out Sunday night that an 11 year old girl from my children’s church is addicted to porn. I am totally shocked because she seemed so quiet and shy, I would like to know how to approach her and minister to her.”

Unfortunately, this is a situation that happens more often than we would like to admit.  With the literal explosion of technology (including hand-held mobile devices) in the world of kids in the last five years, children are being exposed (sometimes even accidentally through pop-ups and spam links) to pornography at a very young age.

As Kids Ministry Leaders, it is our responsibility to help parents be prepared for the most likely inevitable moment when their child is exposed to pornography.  It can be devastating to both child and parent.  Some things to keep in mind:

1)  DON’T overreact!
Don’t scream and yell at your child.  They are living in a hyper-sexualized world!  They are being fed a lie every day by society that sex is supposed to be dirty, twisted, and prevalent in their lives.  Is it any wonder that they are drawn to this?  Rather than overreact, have the conversation with them.  Ask questions like “Why do you think your parents don’t want you to view that sort of stuff?”  “What kind of damage do you think it can do to your mind and your heart?”  “Do you think viewing that sort of stuff is pleasing to God or part of His plan for your life?”.  By freaking out, you will cause your child to shut down rather than open up.

2)  Talk about GOD’S design for sex
Sexual urges are not abnormal.  Kids are not “weird” because they were lured into pornography.  God created us as sexual beings.  It wasn’t some sort of accident.  He has a plan for us to enjoy sex in the context of marriage.  He wants us to be wise about our own sexuality and control those urges just as we do other urges (hunger, anger, passion, etc.).  With God’s help, we can grow to become strong men and women who enjoy healthy sexuality as married couples.

Have you every talked to a child about pornography? What are some tips you’d recommend to have this kind of talk in a loving way?

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