A Counselor Speaks on Children, Teens, and Pornography—Part 3

By: Bev S

My child has already stumbled upon a pornographic site, what should I do?

Praise God if your child told you this him/herself.  That tells me that you already have open lines of communication that you need to continue building upon.  Let’s think through the possibility of your child coming to you with a statement that will greatly upset you:

  • Remember that sexual abuse can occur without physical touch.  The brain is the most important organ that responds to sexual stimulation.
  • Keep your voice controlled.  Do not let your child make the mistake of thinking you are angry with him/her for seeing something inappropriate on the internet.  If you become angry or tearful, your child will assume that s/he has upset you instead of understanding that the internet predator is the one you are upset with.
  • Gently, and with love, try to ascertain exactly what your child or teen viewed.  Because of the many years of experience I have had counseling children, even those as young as 3 or 4 seem to know internally that this thing they have seen is wrong.  Understanding that they might not know what words to use to describe what they saw, try to determine if it was body parts, the sex act, heterosexual sex, homosexual sex or bestiality.  Was it violent?   If nightmares, bed wetting (small children),  sleep cycle disturbances or eating disorders begin (older children and teens) you will probably need help from your house church, your pastor, member care, a youth/child-focused minister or a counseling center.  Please don’t be afraid or ashamed to seek the help of people who love you and your family.  Prayer is the best cover you can place over your family at this time.  You are doing battle with the Enemy.
  • Install a filter (best to do that today) and a covenant eyes program on your home commuters.  Your child does not have the right to privacy on the Internet.
  • Often a child’s exposure to pornography can trigger memories in one or both parents that are difficult and unsettling.  If this happens in your home, please realize that you cannot shoulder all these burdens alone.  Family therapy might be helpful.  And let the Body of believers around you help you.
  • Begin a Scriptural, cognitive sex education program in your home.  The Bible is the best source of instructions on this subject that I know of, but I have also included a list of books that relate to sex education in this issue.  The book of Proverbs, Christ’s relationship with His bride, the Ten Commandments, the loving sexual relationship of a husband and wife—all of these things work together to teach children the sanctity of sex in the marriage relationship.

Let those who love the LORD hate evil,

for He guards the lives of His faithful ones,

and delivers them from the hand of the wicked.

Ps. 97:10

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