Pornography. It’s a nasty word. Most of us don’t like to talk about or think about it, much less teach our kids about it. It’s a plague of the worst kind, silently destroying families from the inside out, ensnaring good men (and women), and brutally enslaving teens and children in more than one way. Worldwide, pornography is a 4.9 billion dollar industry, and the United States is responsible for more than half that number. Every second, 28,258 people are viewing porn on the Internet, where there are approximately 24.6 million pornographic sites—many of which feature illegal child porn. Sure, it’s awful, you might say to yourself, but what can I do about it? I’m only one person.
I’ve heard it said: “The hand that rocks the cradle is the hand that rules the world.” Do we, as mothers, really believe that? Isn’t that why we do what we do? Because we believe we are making a difference? So, take it a step further. This year, during national White Ribbon Against Pornography (WRAP) week, which starts on the last Sunday of October, make it a goal to do something—big or small—about pornography. One small candle can light a blazing fire. Don’t underestimate your influence.
Admit it Mom: you have your finger on the pulse of the family. You know what’s going on. When there are boo-boos, you kiss them. When someone needs lunch, you make it. When there’s a tough math problem or hard piano piece, you help figure it out. You’re the confidant, the shoulder to cry on, the companion, the first line of defense, and sometimes the last resort. When it comes to porn, why should it be any different? You have so many roles to play; below are some tools to help. As hard as it was to choose just one (they are all sooo awesome!), I’ve highlighted an item in each category, so you can get a feel for what these resources have to offer.
Safety Kids, Vol. 3, Protect Their Minds Soundtrack & Coloring Book. I grew up with Safety Kids, and I LOVE this program! The soundtrack features a fun skit where a little children’s club gathers to discuss safety issues, and the program is broken up by catchy little songs that teach lessons about specific issues. A sing-along activity book is also available. Volume 3 addresses pornography in an age-appropriate manner for young children. It teaches kids simple rules like: 1) choose your friends carefully, 2) fill your life with good things, and 3) if a voice inside you tells you it’s bad, look away and turn it off.
Other resources for kids:
–Fight the New Drug (teens and young adults)
Morality in Media stepped up to be the national sponsor for WRAP Week from the very beginning, in 1987. But that’s not all they do! MIM has led the nation for decades in the quest to educate legislators and the general public about the harms of pornography. If you are looking for reviews on the latest filtration software, current news about national obscenity laws or want to get involved in some hands-on initiatives, this is a great place to start.
Other resources for families:
Sex Addicts Anonymous. SAA defines themselves as “a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength, and hope with each other so they may overcome their sexual addiction and help others recover from sexual addiction or dependency.” As you may guess by the name, it is actually a 12-step program adapted from Alcoholics Anonymous. Private meetings are available all over the U.S., Canada, and other countries. And if you can’t make it to a live meeting, they have web-based and teleconference groups as well.
Other resources for addicts:
Infographic on how pornography rewires your brain
For Female Addicts
Beggar’s Daughter. Many people believe that porn addiction is a “guy problem,” but that is a common misconception. In reality, one in every three addicts is female. So if you are a woman and you are struggling, don’t worry! You are NOT alone! There is help for you, too. Jessica Harris, founder of Beggar’s Daughter, is a sex addict herself, but she is also a fighter. She has chosen to dedicate her life to the cause: to come out of the shadows, share her story, and let women know there is hope.
Other resources for female addicts:
For Wives/Loved Ones of Addicts
The Togetherness Project is a nonreligious, nonpolitical one-day conference for women affected by the sex addiction of a loved one. “We are overcoming the shame and taboo and secretive nature of this big, ugly, brewing beast and we are stepping into light,” says Jacy Boyack, founder of the conference, “And this is the why The Togetherness Project was born: to create a place where we can come together and share our trials and our triumphs and our spirits as a sisterhood, face to face.” The conference will include professional speakers, classes, a yummy lunch/meet-and-greet session, and a sit-down dinner.
Other resources for wives and loved ones of addicts:
The Junkies Wives Club: Sex Addict Codies
A Special Project for 2013
Fundraiser for The Heart of the Matter—A Documentary Feature (ended on Oct. 5, midnight EST). This film is a faith-based initiative that has been in the works for about 18 months (originally under the title Shamed—visit the site to see some great clips and info). I’ve had the pleasure of working with the director, Jessica Mockett, and she is a remarkable lady! Just this September, the project has taken a huge swing into action, inviting Nathan Lee, a multi-Emmy award winning producer/director on board, changing the title to something more accessible, and launching an enormous fundraising campaign on Kickstarter to match a grant for $15K Sept. 18-Oct. 5. Even though the official fundraiser has ended, check out the project. It’s a great cause and will be instrumental in changing how Christians view pornography and sex addiction.
QUESTION: Does anyone in your household have an issue with pornography? If so, do you know where to go for help?
CHALLENGE: Make a goal to get yourself or your family involved with White Ribbon Against Pornography this year.
This article was also featured on Power of Moms.