5 Ways to Keep Porn Our of Your Home

Although there is no surefire way to keep the effects of  pornography completely out of your home, there are several actions you can take to inoculate yourself and your children. As you might in any emergency situation, we can use a triage approach to dealing with porn.

 

1. Get a reliable filter for your computer and mobile devices.

This is the first line of defense. I use K-9 Web Protection. It’s free and has thus far been very reliable for our home and mobile devices. It blocks websites in more than 70 categories, including pornography, gambling, drugs, violence/hate/racism, malware/spyware, and phishing. There are many other internet filters to choose from that are reasonably priced. (Click this link for more information: http://stoppornculture.org/2014/02/09/7-parental-control-programs-to-make-computers-safer-for-children/)

 

2. Reflect on how porn culture is affecting your life.

Review the television shows, commercials, and movies you and your family watch. Listen carefully to the lyrics of songs you and your children are listening to. What books and magazines are your family members reading? What themes, language and attitudes—misogynist, racist, or otherwise dehumanizing–are prominent in these elements of pop culture?  Do your children’s clothing, toys, and games (including video games) reflect a sexuality that is too mature for them? Are your young children concerned about dieting, wearing make-up, or conforming to narrow gender stereotypes?

 

3. Create an environment in your home that reflects your values and beliefs.

Teach by example: your choices will be reflected in your children’s choices. If you have something to hide, chances are, your kids do too. You need to make thoughtful judgments about what to allow in your home, while also taking every opportunity to open up discussions with your child about what s/he is seeing or hearing. Some suggestions for approaching these discussions can be found toward the end of our SPC slideshow “Who Wants to Be a Porn Star“.  This is a conversation that will probably have to be revisited several times as your child gets older and becomes interested in different media or devices.

 

4. Begin and continue a dialogue about healthy sexuality.

Gone are the days of one “sex talk” with your children. Expectations, societal norms, and technology are all changing so fast that it is expedient to revisit healthy sexuality many times in your child’s developing years.  Beginning at an early age, discuss proper dress that cover private areas and ‘good touch’ ‘bad touch,’ standards. As your children get older they will need to  know more specifics about anatomy, what bodily and emotional changes will accompany puberty, and the different challenges faced by boys and girls.  Other important discussions should include holding hands, kissing, masturbation, healthy relationships, abusive relationships, love, sexual intimacy, birth control, sexually transmitted diseases, and the dangers of pornography.

 

5. Monitor your children.

Trusting your children is important, and so is checking up on them. In keeping an open, communicative relationship with your children, it is important to know where they are spending their time online. Who are their friends on Facebook or Twitter? Whom are they texting and calling? Which sites hold their attention the longest? Check their history or caches often and know where to look when these have been erased.  Learn the ins and outs of your computer and smart phones. There are dozens of tutorials online that will assist Apple and PC users to understand their computer and mobile devices to the fullest. When you do find something that is not in line with your beliefs, do not use shame or guilt to make an impact or create change. Instead, discuss your concerns rationally and calmly.