By Dannah Gresh, Founder of True Girl
I was speaking at a live event where I challenged the teen girls and their mothers to “confess your sins to each other . . .” so that they could experience healing (James 5:16). At the end of the event, the most innocent little redhead came up to me with a big smile. The baby-white skin on her cheeks was spotted with dainty freckles. She looked to be fourteen or fifteen. As she quickly approached me, her smile melted into uncontrollable tears that contorted her once life-giving smile into a haunted expression.
“I confessed something to my mom,” she blurted. “My sin is reading sexual stories online. I’m addicted and have been for two years.”
Two years! Was she twelve when she began reading erotica?
My mind wrestled with the tragedy of it as I held her and she wept in my arms.
I grieved that night. Lamenting with my friends, my heart entered into an entirely new place in this battle as I realized how young some of the victims can be.
Of course, most adult women who struggle—and plenty do—usually tell me that it started when they were young. Here’s the testimony of a young missionary and Christian leader:
I am single and erotica has ruined my life. I have been addicted for ten years and I am only twenty-five.
No one knows my struggle. No one knows that I have lived an isolated life because I have found more solace in fantasies aroused in my mind by erotica than in real relationships.
Erotica seems harmless because it’s just words on a page but it brands your mind, creates false expectations for future relationships. I can’t even maintain real relationships because I feel like a shallow pretender hiding one of the biggest parts of my life.
Erotica perpetuated my “need” for meeting people online because I didn’t know how to develop or maintain relationships with people outside of the screen. Eventually, I decided to take my online relationships into reality. Many of the stories I read portrayed rape or power-struggle situations as exciting. A “no” didn’t always mean “no” because, in the end, the girl always seemed to end up just fine. So when I met one of my first guys offline, I was thrust ever too quickly into a scenario I had read about but, unlike the stories, I didn’t end up fine. My “no” didn’t mean “no,” and I was sexually abused by a man who did the same things to me that I had read about in those erotic stories. But in my story, there wasn’t a happy ending.
The porn industry wants your child!
That may sound a bit extreme, but you should understand that it’s not an exaggeration. For years, the purveyors of pornography and erotica have been targeting tweens and teens with the intent of making them into consistent consumers. Graphic sexual content has been woven into mainstream music, television, and movies to such an extent that we’ve become desensitized. What would have been widely considered unacceptable just a few decades ago, can now be found as a part of the regular plot of popular video games and cartoons. The porn and erotica industry is trying to initiate life-long customers with their marketing. To do that, they need to start young.
Their efforts to target our kids in ten specific ways are paying off
The $13 billion sex entertainment industry is succeeding in their efforts to convert a generation. Research compiled by Covenant Eyes, reveals the following alarming statistics. 2,3
- 93% of boys and 62% of girls will be exposed to pornography before their 18 years of age 4
- The average child is first exposed at a staggering 11 years of age1
- 57% of teens don’t believe that pornography is bad for society5
- 57% percent of teens view pornography monthly6
Be prepared, not scared!
These statistics are serious, and you, as a parent, have a tough fight ahead of you, but True Girl and Born To Be Brave are here with you in the battle. We want to help you establish a firm victory for your children. The stakes are high and may even elicit a bit of fear. But, as God’s Word reminds us:
“For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” 2 TIM 1:7
Our webinar will empower you to protect your children from the devastating effects of pornography and erotica. You’ll discover the tactics of those who would do your children harm, and find peace of mind in strategies to outmaneuver them. We’ll help you be prepared, not scared.
Join Bob & Dannah Gresh, Dr. Juli Slattery, Karen Potter, and Rod Stoddard with Covenant Eyes, the pioneer in Internet Screen Accountability. As a parent, you’ll be empowered by learning:
- The top ten ways the porn industry targets children so you can block them.
- How to establish conversation-based accountability with your tweens and teens so you can train your children to make wise choices.
- How to recognize the signs that your child is using porn or erotica.
- What to do if your child is using porn.
- What the Bible says about sex – establish a solid biblical understanding of sex to inform your ongoing conversations with your children.
The panel will answer questions from the virtual audience, and a post-event digital Workshop Resource Kit will be made available to all who register for this online event. It includes free resources from the panelists and a list of ten resources that help you talk to your children about porn at any age.
Please join us for a donation of any amount.
(Even if that is $0. But we recommend $20 or more, if you are able to help partner with our ministry to provide more parenting workshops in the future.)