We live in a world where around 30% of the internet is made up of explicit videos, images and literature. Otherwise known as porn. Generally the idea is you watch/read about people having sex, and that’s fine but there are a lot of issues caused by porn that affect our everyday lives.
Being exposed to porn
Porn was created for adults, and it should just be them who are viewing it. However 93% of boys and 62% of girls are exposed to porn before they are 18 and one third of 14-16 year olds had first seen sexual images online when they were 10 or younger. The average age a boy first sees porn in this day and age is 11, that’s year 6 in the UK schools system, and 1/3 of boys age 13 admit to viewing porn regularly. Porn is easy for children to find as 81% of those polled in an online survey viewed porn online at home, and 63% could access it easily on their phones.
The reason it is so dangerous to expose children to online pornography is that it is VERY graphic and displays things that aren’t normal sexual acts. This will influence their minds and it’s dangerous to bring them up like that. Here are some pretty grim statistics for you:
- 39% of boys and 23% of girls have viewed porn involving bondage
- 32% of boys and 18% of girls have viewed porn involving bestiality
- 13% of boys and 10% of girls have viewed porn that involved rape
- 15% of boys and 9% of girls have viewed child pornography
These are the things we’re exposing them too. Children will grow up in a world where they think bestiality is normal. Everyone is into different things, but the statistics that bother me the most are rape and child pornography. I’ll talk about child pornography later as part of the “abuse and exploitation” section of this post. But rape, rape is a serious issue that affects peoples lives in horrible ways. In England and Wales 85,000 women and 12,000 men are raped each year! That’s roughly 11 rapes (of adults only) an hour. These figures disgust me. What I find interesting about this is that approximately 90% of those who are raped know the perpetrator prior to the offence. I’m not saying this is always the case, and I really do not want to offend ANYBODY, but I think we could relate this to the figures about children that viewed porn involving rape. All I’m saying is, it is possible that children grow up with rape porn and see that as normal, not a criminal offence. So later in life they wouldn’t feel as much disgust and shame about sexually abusing or raping someone. That may not be the case at all, but it is interesting to think about.
Another thing that I find interesting to think about is that less women rape people, than men. One in five women between the ages of 16-59 have experienced some kind of sexual violence since the age of 16. Bearing that in mind and the fact men watch more porn than women, it may suggest that porn influences them and that it may be the reason why. Again please note that I am just giving you things to think about and none of these ideas are factual just my own mind at work.
Abuse and exploitation in the porn industry
A lot goes on behind the scenes of porn. Let’s go back to the issue of child porn from earlier. Child pornography is disgusting. When searching “child exploitation in pornography” so I could get more information for you, all that came up were porn sites with videos listed under this title. Whilst I am aware that not all porn videos labelled “teen”, actually have children in, a fair few do. So my one bit of advice for that is simply avoid anything with the word “teen” in the title. Because essentially if you watch a porn video with a child in it, you are paying someone to exploit a CHILD. Women (and children) are exploited everyday for the porn/sex industry. Whether it be they are forced into situations they are not comfortable with or happy to be in, like the WORLD FAMOUS Linda Lovelace, or pushing women to their emotional and physical limits.
Porn has changed since it first came about. It is no longer people having fun, real sex. It has dramatically changed to show, what the industry believe are men’s fantasies, and what are slowly becoming them.
The affects of porn
A highly regarded academic, Gail Dines shared her thoughts on pornography. She has written many books to educate people about porn and what is is really like. “We are now bringing up a generation of boys on cruel, violent porn,” she says, “and given what we know about how images affect people, this is going to have a profound influence on their sexuality, behaviour and attitudes towards women.”
So what affects does this have on you? Dines talks about her opinion of how men change, “I have found that the earlier men use porn,” says Dines, “the more likely they are to have trouble developing close, intimate relationships with real women. Some of these men prefer porn to sex with an actual human being. They are bewildered, even angry, when real women don’t want or enjoy porn sex.”
For women, it affects their body image and also reduces them to sexual objects, here to please men.
Porn is not reality
What most children or teenagers fail to realise is that porn isn’t real. Porn does not show how real people have sex, not many girls enjoy gagging on your penis, or having cum on their face. Before anyone watches porn, it is vital they realise that porn stars are just actors, like Chris Hemsworth isn’t actually Thor. If you can wrap your head around this there isn’t really much of a problem with you watching normal non-abusive porn.
Porn affects the body image of both men and women. For men, it shows that if you don’t have an 8 inch penis you’re too small, and you need a six-pack and muscular arms for a girl to like you. Furthermore porn shows men unrealistic images of women possibly every day. This means they may have unrealistic expectations of women in their relationships. Women in porn are more often than not, enhanced in some way. Like Photoshop or cosmetic surgery.
For women, it is them trying to live up to these standards. Eating disorders are so, SO common. Things like anorexia nervosa, and bulimia. These are TERRIBLE things! Also girls are constantly depressed and put down because they don’t have big, perky, round boobs. And you know what? Most porn stars do not have them either, they’re fake! Also the amount of girls that get consultations for labiaplastys is shocking. A labiaplasty is a cosmetic surgery operation that alters the appearance of your labia (lips of your vagina) to look more perfect. Women in porn mostly have a perfect looking vagina. But vaginas are likes snowflakes, no two are the same. Everyone looks different and they shouldn’t be insecure about that.
Like most things in life, you can get addicted to porn. To maintain a healthy relationship with porn, just think about how often you are viewing it and introduce self-control if you think you are going overboard. Do not let porn disrupt your life and you should be fine, but as soon as you stop doing things you normally do because of porn, like stopping seeing your friends or doing school work, you need to get help.
All in all, porn is not necessarily a bad thing when used correctly by adults. But you have to be wary of what you are looking at and supporting. Stay away from anything marked “teen” or “child”. If you are a parent, please install safe browsing on all devices accessible by your children! It is so easy to stumble across something by accident online or they may even be looking for it. But you can probably decide when your child is mature enough to view porn. I hope this post was informative and people are more aware of the effects of porn.
Have a great day! Xx