Men’s compulsive pornography use has led to increasing numbers seeking treatment, reported the Evening Standard:
One Harley Street clinic has reported a 100 per cent rise in referrals in the past six years. The rise is partly blamed on the volume of high-speed streaming sites that offer hardcore content.
Harley Street psychotherapist Rob Watt, who managed the Priory’s addiction treatment programme, warned that a generation of teenage boys faced difficulty forming healthy relationships if their developing brains were exposed to such endless free porn.
Experts describe the neurological processes in porn users, including teenage boys:
Mr Watt said:
“Sex addicts presenting today are unrecognisable to clients presenting 10 years ago. We are increasingly seeing more people presenting with a compulsive behaviour on pornography and, in the younger generation, this is becoming more pronounced. With porn, you can find bigger, better, faster, harder consistently."
"Dopamine is the neurochemical of desire and you might as well be on coke, having one line and not putting it down until the bag’s finished. There’s a tolerance level that develops — in other words, what did it for you yesterday doesn’t do it today, and there’s some pretty dark stuff going on out there.”
Psychologists are also concerned that, in the adolescent brain, when an “arousal template” is ingrained, porn users will struggle to maintain future relationships and treat partners respectfully. Mr Watt said this developmental immaturity led youngsters to become “emotionally illiterate and socially inept”.
“Well you see what is happening in porn and you almost get worried about other peoples relationships and it puts me off having any future relationships as it is very male dominated and not romantic or trusting - or promoting good relationships.” - states a thirteen-year-old girl.
According to new research, concern around young people’s pornography viewing in the UK is warranted, particularly as the majority of boys who watch online porn believe it presents sex in a realistic and accurate light.
Published by Middlesex University, the study of 1001 children and young people found that of those who had seen online pornography, 94% had been exposed to it by fourteen years of age. Disturbingly, many of these report having seen pornographic images by chance via ‘pop-up’ adverts rather than having sought them out intentionally. In fact, children and young people were as likely to see pornography by chance via a ‘pop up’ as they were by intentionally searching for it or having someone show it to them.
The study revealed that of those who had viewed pornography, 53% of boys and 39% of girls said they believed it presented a realistic depiction of sex.
Dr Elena Martellozzo explains,
“If boys believe that online pornography provides a realistic view of sexual relationships, then this may lead to inappropriate expectations of girls and women. Girls too may feel pressured to live up to these unrealistic, and perhaps non-consensual, interpretations of sex. This is clearly not positive for developing future healthy relationships.”
According to the research, boys in particular expressed a desire to imitate some of the behaviours they had seen in pornography. Of the 13- to 14-year-olds who responded to this question, 39% wanted to model the behaviour they had seen. Similarly, 21% of 11- to 12-year-olds wanted this too.
Further concerns were raised by girls apprehensive about the way pornography could influence boys’ perceptions of girls and their expectations surrounding relationships and sex.
“It can make a boy not look for love, just look for sex, and it can pressure us girls to act and look and behave in a certain way before we might be ready for it,” said one 13-year-old girl.
“It teaches people about sex and what it is like to have it - but I think it teaches people a fake understanding of sex. What we see on these videos isn’t what actually happens in real life,” said a 14-year-old girl.
Importantly, 48% of respondents whose teachers had talked to them about online pornography agreed that “sexual activities should be safe for everyone involved”. In contrast, agreement with this statement drops to only 37% among those whose teachers had not talked to them about online pornography.
The findings of this study suggest that sex and relationship education has the potential to help young people better understand the importance of respectful and consensual relationships. But this too must be done with care.
Chief executive of the NSPCC, Peter Wanlesssaid,
“Exposing children to porn at a young age before they are equipped to cope with it can be extremely damaging. Industry and government need to take more responsibility to ensure that young people are protected. Age-appropriate sex and relationship education in schools, dealing with issues such as online pornography and children sending indecent images, are crucial.”
About the Author: Violeta Buljubasic detests pornography and anything that resembles it. Cognisant of its devastating consequences, she believes that porn and the raunch culture from which it stems are symptoms of a ubiquitous ill that has removed sex and sexuality from their original design. Moved by the work of Collective Shout, Fight the New Drug, and NCOSE, Violeta hopes to be part of the solution to this insidious problem.
Online child safety advocate Rachel Downie says parents are unaware of about 80 per cent of what their teen engages in on the internet at home.
Ms Downie, a former teacher, told ABC she had surveyed more than 20,000 students over the last five years, asking "what's something you do on the internet at home that you know you're not allowed to do?"
The results were concerning, with teens viewing violent real-life content, such as fights, muggings and pornography that looks non-consensual.
Photo by Rachel Downie
Ms Downie said 51 per cent of children, mostly boys, had viewed pornography or other illicit material, while one-fifth of respondents admitted to bullying, trolling and stalking for fun.
For some behaviours, the children themselves were screaming out for stronger regulation.
She said parents were often unaware of how far "down the spiral kids are".
"After every presentation, and it's usually with mums, they want to come chat to me afterwards about the fact that their 12, 13, 14-year-old son is addicted to pornography.
Ms Downie said it is a confusing, unchartered time for parents, exacerbated by the demands of school and society for children to be technologically savvy.
"What we're doing is 'ping, you're 12 here's your phone', 'ping you're 13, here's your own computer' and it's happening much earlier.
Ms Downie went on to give advice to parents on what they can do:
Ultimately, Ms Downie said adequate parental supervision and keeping conversations open is the key to tackling the issue.
"If you're not checking you wouldn't know, and it's not good enough anymore to say 'hey my 12-year-old daughter is a great kid, I really trust her'.
"I'm certainly not an advocate for banning everything because that's not the world we live in, but I am a very strong advocate for your need to know what they're doing.
"It's about being a grown-up and being the boss and getting your techno power back and saying, 'look we're going to set some boundaries around this stuff at home'."
Ms Downie said having those conversations with children and teens was crucial to building helping young people cope in the real and emotional online world.
Opening those lines of communication and setting boundaries should be done earlier, than later.
*Warning- this blog post contains graphic descriptions of violence in pornography*Read more
OPINION: Psychologists here say we're in the middle of a porn crisis.
Just last year an Australian study found 100 percent of boys surveyed were exposed to porn, and 85 percent said they viewed it daily or weekly.
In the US, six states are declaring pornography a public health crisis. Even The New York Times is calling on officials to ban it.
But while it's easy to tell the government they should be doing something, this is one of those issues where actually, it's what you do that counts.
I want to talk about pornography.
- Explicit porn being promoted on Instagram
- How to talk to your kids about porn
- Is free pornography destroying our brains?
Except, it's sort of an awkward topic, particularly on TV when kids might be watching, so I've come up with a solution.
For the next couple of minutes instead of the word 'porn', I’m going to say the word 'corn'. Just tell your children we're talking about corn.
When I was young, you never saw corn. Maybe some kid would bring his dad's corn to school and you’d pass it round, but it was pretty tame. Some of them were still wearing their husks.
Now as you probably know, corn is everywhere. You don’t even have to buy it from a dairy, you just open your laptop or phone and it’s there ready to go.
As a guy it's tempting and easy - like grabbing a cold beer out of the fridge. But it's this easiness that I want to talk about tonight.
Next time you start typing "cornhub" into your address bar, take a moment and remember this.
You are slowly destroying your own ability to have normal sex with another normal human.
Here's what clinical psychologist Dr Mark Thorpe, who deals with this stuff all the time, said.
"We are in the middle of a crisis. There is an extreme amount of sexual problems with young men under 25 - and that manifests as erectile dysfunction; delayed ejaculation; diminished libido with real life partners, not screen; and an avoidance of genuine relationships."
That's right, every time you go online to get off, you're making your own corncob look more like this.
Yep, that thing in the top left corner. Photo credit: The Project
The more corn you consume, the harder corn you're going to need.
Here's Dr Thorpe again: "The brain and internet porn are geared towards it, so there is the natural tendency to slide into more and more difficult things.
"It's a bit like what you mentioned with drugs, you need greater hits you need greater variety so it goes more and more into aggressive, difficult, punitive content."
These are real people in these videos.
Somebody's daughter, someone's sister. Some of them do a good job of looking like this is their first-choice career, but don't kid yourself.
At least admit that by using corn we're effectively helping a huge corporate to make women and girls do things they don't really want to do, so that men like us will feel good for a few seconds.
Take some ownership of what this is doing to New Zealand kids.
It is estimated 88 percent of online pornography is violent. By supporting this industry we're supporting our latest form of sex education, where boys learn that slapping, choking and hurting their girlfriends is a form of intimacy, and girls grow up thinking they're meant to act like the women in the videos because that's the only sex they've ever seen.
If hearing this stuff makes you want to make a change, I've been working with Dr Thorpe on a set of tips to move on from porn.
It's on The Project's Facebook page. If you're worried about it showing up in your history, just turn on your private browser first… pretty sure you know how that works.
And look, I'm not going to tell you what to do when the curtains are closed. But I am asking you not to consume pornography with your eyes wide shut.
The internet is messing with us in ways we'll never fully understand, but finding another way to get yourself in the mood is one huge thing you can do to have a positive impact on yourself, your relationship and on your children.
Jesse Mulligan is a presenter on The Project
Read full article here.
Twenty Victorian men arrested over child exploitation material depicting torture of children and newborn babies
***"Trigger warning: child exploitation''Read more
For #MeToo to truly be a reckoning for male sexual entitlement and cultural norms of sexual harassment, abuse and assault, we need to talk about porn.
In fact, it seems rather extraordinary that pornography hasn't figured much in the current #MeToo moment. We've heard a lot about how pop culture shapes harmful sexual scripts, but ignoring the role of porn in shaping pop culture is faintly ridiculous.
Pornography is ubiquitous. While more than three-quarters of Australian men report having watched pornography in the last year, younger cohorts are even more likely to consume pornographic material and use it habitually - on either a daily or weekly basis.
The increasing accessibility and acceptability of pornography have been mutually reinforcing.
A smart phone is now the dominant way in which (mostly male) consumers access online porn, thus moving pornographic content from the private realm of the home to virtually anywhere in the public sphere - including workplaces.
The workplace connection is more than mere speculation. Many online porn sites show their traffic is highest during standard working hours, suggesting access to pornography while at the office is relatively unremarkable. Which reminds me of an aside made by a sports journalist, some years ago, about a fellow colleague in the press box:
"tabbing between his match report and a constant stream of hardcore pornography ... The thing that initially staggered me was the sheer audacity of it, that the presence of both female and male colleagues, who were sitting metres away with clear views of his screen, hadn't been enough to deter him and that he felt perfectly comfortable doing it in full view. Welcome to Blokesworld."
The #MeToo movement has shown that we are quite capable of understanding the way movies, music and the mainstream media are implicated in shaping social norms of sex and sexuality. If we can manage this, then surely we can understand that the material most men masturbate to also deserves scrutiny.
So, for all the men who have been asking what they can do in light of #MeToo, here's a place start: stop linking your sexual arousal to women's sexual subordination. Stop watching porn.
In the end, the porn industry is concerned with profits, not our kids
pic: Scythers via Getty Images
A French pornography performer has taken to Twitter to slam parents for failing to teach their children about sex. After receiving messages of a sexual nature from boys as young as twelve, Nikita Belluci wrote,
“I’m getting sick of educating your kids. There is a complete lack of teaching and prevention, and it’s not our job to educate your kids.”
“Reflect on what your kids are doing in private, and the consequences of that.”
When asked if the porn industry had a responsibility to depict healthy sexual relationships, Jeremy, who has been barred from the Adult Video News awardsafter multiple rape allegations, disagreed.
“I like what you’re saying, but what would you do? It’s not my call to tell a filmmaker ‘you can’t do this, you can’t do this, none of this’...you know, like, who are we to do that?” Jeremy concluded with a message to parents, “Watch your goddamn kids.”
Jeremy got one thing right - mainstream pornography is not where one might find healthy or positive approaches to sexuality. Rather, porn is a “distortion of respect-based sexuality” and a poor educational tool, one that routinely fails to depict consent, safe sexual practices or mutually pleasurable sexual experiences.
As Meghan Donevan put it in ‘Freedom Fallacy: The Limits of Liberal Feminism’, pornography
“portrays sex as an encounter predicated on submission and domination…in a fantasy world where women are always ready for sex, enjoy all types of sexual activity, including aggressive and degrading acts.”
Despite this, pornography has become the primary means of sexual education for young people, with porn serving as the introduction to intimacy for many children, and parents reporting feeling powerless to stop it.
While parents certainly have a responsibility to be engaged and to monitor their children’s internet access, it’s hardly a fair fight. Parents are going up against a massive almost $100 billion industry, one that has successfully embedded its product into mainstream culture. Media, advertising and popular culture have become increasingly pornified, Playboy is a global empire and porn performers are household names. Billboards for sex industry venues including strip clubs and brothels are positioned outside schools and government owned public buses are emblazoned with ads for live-streamed sex shows. Parents need to be vigilant, yes, but it’s impossible for parents alone to counter the dominant messages of a porn culture.
The porn industry also aggressively markets its product to children in a number of ways. These include studying children’s common keystroke errors in order to direct them to porn sites, and making pornography based on children’s favourite cartoon characters. The industry has also opposed measures like age verification on pornographic websites that could limit children’s exposure - and impinge on their profits.
According to the porn industry, when children and young people are harmed by their product- and they are- this is merely due to parental neglect, and not the dehumanising and abusive content they consistently churn out. Based on this logic, it is parents, not pornographers, who are responsible for pornography’s harmful impacts on kids.
In deflecting responsibility for harm to parents, the porn industry can continue unimpeded, releasing content like “punished teen”, “extreme teen humiliation” and “crying teen gangbang”, all categories found on Pornhub, the largest porn site on the Internet. The only problem with pornography premised on the humiliation, cruelty and abuse of women for men’s pleasure, then, is that children are accessing material intended for adults.
Performer Belluci rightly condemned the inappropriate behaviour from boys as young as twelve who approached her for nude photos and sexual favours. But where do twelve-year-olds learn to relate to women in this way? Where do they learn that they are entitled to women’s bodies, and that women exist for their sexual use and enjoyment? What industry grooms and shapes young people’s sexual expectations, attitudes and behaviours in this way?
This very disrespect of women is sanctioned in pornography. In porn, it is considered appropriate for men to view women in terms of male sexual gratification- that’s the point. But the porn industry can’t have it both ways. The sexually harassing and abusive treatment of women that is endemic to mainstream pornography can’t be unacceptable in the ‘real world’ and simultaneously endorsed when it takes place on a porn set. The abuse and degradation of women is either a barrier to women’s rights and humanity, or it isn’t.
In the end, the porn industry is concerned with profits, not our kids.
We were recently contacted by one of our supporters, author and freelance writer Jas Rawlinson, who had concerns about content she had come across online. Seek.com, which promotes itself as Australia’s no. 1 jobs, employment, career and recruitment site, was hosting ads calling for ‘male models’ with no experience required, with the promise of making up to $900 per hour. Jas did some digging, and found some disturbing content and information.
Jas recounted what she found in a blog post at www.thoughtsfromjas.com:
It was August last year when I first came across a ‘models wanted’ advert, offering extreme amounts of money to teen boys/young men for – you guessed it – no required experience.
Jumping onto the advertiser’s website (let’s call them ‘SS’), I noticed there was – unsurprisingly- a real lack of information about who their company were and what they offered. Likewise, their social media also showed little information, with barely any engagement or followers – so I decided to do a reverse Google image search of the teen boys featured on their page.
In barely any time at all, I was lead to another social media account with the exact same images – only this time, the young boys were advertised with terms such as ‘youthful’, ‘fresh faced’, ‘milky skin’ and ‘twink’ (a gay slang word that refers to slender, underdeveloped young men with ‘little to no body hair’).
Digging further online, I discovered that not only was the ABN of ‘SS’ also connected to gay pornographic services, but that the images used on Facebook were censored versions of the real photographs – which featured older men performing sexual services on the young men.
When the ad popped up again this month, I was told by SEEK’s Customer Service Fraud and Compliance Analyst, Sarah Grigg, to contact the ACCC instead. Only when I mentioned that the police had been notified – along with the Office of the eSafety Commissioner and organisations such as Childwise – did they then change their tune – eventually, removing the ad.
However, the fight to prevent ads of this nature being uploaded continues, as I again found the ad listed only a few days later (after reporting it again, the ad was swiftly removed). SEEK have vowed to try to do more to prevent this business from getting around their systems in the future, but it has to be said – why did they allow a gay pornographic service to falsely advertise to teenage boys in the first place?
There are millions of online sites where people can seek, or sell, sexual services. Teen boys should not be being targeted on a mainstream employment website.
Have you noticed advertisements of this nature on SEEK? Email [email protected] to let them know.
“The pornographers did a kind of stealth attack on our culture, hijacking our sexuality and then selling it back to us, often in forms that look very little like sex but a lot like cruelty. The only solution to this is a movement that is fierce in its critique of sexual exploitation and steadfast in its determination to fight for what is rightfully ours.”
-Dr Gail Dines.
Culture Reframed, founded by Gail Dines, has come up with a program to help parents talk about porn with their tween-age children. The Culture Reframed Parents Program currently offers three free online courses that are short and self-paced, equipping parents with the knowledge and tools to support and guide their children.
From the ‘Parents of Tweens’ course content:
“Research indicates that just over 40% of young people view pornography on their phones, with just over 50% streaming or downloading it on computers. Many parents feel overwhelmed by this and want to know, ‘What can I do to help my child?’”
“The Culture Reframed Parents Program is designed to help you have age-appropriate, nuanced, and compassionate conversations with your child. It will give you the skills to establish in your young person a grounded understanding of sexuality based on boundaries, respect and trust.”
The program includes 12 Step-By-Step Modules, scripted conversations, specialist videos along with a range of recommended resources. Areas covered in the course include information on how to teach boundaries, consent and privacy, managing technology, how to lead discussions skilfully and what to actually say.
You can follow Culture Reframed on Facebook to stay up to date on their great work in this space.