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10 Ways to Begin Talking to Your Children About Sex & Porn

Last Updated: October 26, 2020

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Last we met, we left Zack and his father, Aaron, as they were about to have “the talk.” Before Aaron was ready to talk to his son about sex and porn, Aaron had to do some of his own work. This is very important—before any parent is able or willing to speak to their child about sex and porn, oftentimes, the parent needs to get their life and sexual baggage in order first. This is one of the main rules of leadership: “You can only take those you are leading as far as you have gone yourself.”

I believe parenting to be no different. Your child will be as awkward or as comfortable as you are when talking about sexuality and pornography.

Before you are even ready to talk to your child about sex and porn, you may want to consider some of the groundwork Aaron did to get to this moment.

  1. Be the parent you never had. The majority of parents like Aaron did not have parents who sat them down and spoke to them about sex—let alone pornography. In fact, if your parents did talk to you about sex, it might have been with the use of or porn magazine, image, or video. The first step is to make a decision that you are going to do a better job than your parents did. Next, you may also have to work on forgiving your parents for their failure, abuses, or neglects in teaching you about sexuality in a healthy manner.
  2. Start being assertive. Get over the lie that someone else is going to teach your child about sex. Now, your child might be taught by someone else. Common Core is more than happy to teach your child about sex; however, it may not be done in the way and manner in which you would approve. Love your child enough take the initiative, and you teach them.
  3. Educate yourself. Now that you have chosen to stop being passive, it can be intimidating to find what material is out there. Don’t panic! You don’t have to reinvent the wheel. My wife and I have used these materials with our own daughters, and I have recommended these to countless clients: Before I was Born (Carolyn Nystrom), The Story of Me, and What’s the Big Deal, and Facing the Facts, (Stan and Brenna Jones). Each of these are well written and age appropriate from ages 3-21. Read them for yourself to see if they are a wise choice for you and your child. Do your own research and find sex educational that fits your values. You can also be creative by writing or creating your own.
  4. Listen to wise counsel. There are good plumbers and bad plumbers who give good and bad advice. Begin to use your God-given gift of discernment. Don’t believe everything you read on social media. Pursue the truth with factual evidence-based data, Scripture, and common sense. Then make a decision that is wise for you and your child. What is wise for you might be foolish for the next family.
  5. Set a deadline. Without making deadlines for myself, I would never get things accomplished. As you become educated, knowing the facts and making sense of your values and God’s Word, begin to set a deadline, a time and place you are going to meet with your child.
  6. Stop making excuses. Stop making excuses as to why you have not protected yourself and your children with Internet protection, and have not been monitoring your child’s social media accounts, school accounts, e-mails, and texts.
  7. Start believing the truth. Stop believing the lies that if you talk to them about sex and porn, it is only going destroy their innocence. News flash: If your child has had any exposure to the media, such as TV, Internet, the Disney Channel, magazine racks, or billboards, that innocence was destroyed a long time ago. Another news flash: God made sex. Sex, as God designed, is a beautiful thing. It is the world that has made it dirty, ugly, and shameful.
  8. Get over your fears. Now that you have educated yourself, your fears are going to be much less than when you started this journey. You are going to have a new confidence. Understanding that God made sex, you can now begin to reclaim it, as God intended, for you and your child!
  9. Stop indulging in porn. All too often parents are addicted to pornography or involved in an affair. If this is you, get help as soon as you can. If it is a secret, it will eventually come out. What is private will eventually become public.
  10. Get past your own shame. You, your child, your marriage, and your future are worth fighting for. If shame is part of your story due to abuse, neglect, abandonment, rejection, or a struggle with porn or infidelity, talking to your children about sex and porn is almost impossible to do in a healthy manner. Your spouse and children know what they don’t know at a subconscious level.

Aaron has done his work and has done it well. He is now shame free from his past hurts and poor choices. Aaron now has what I call “Godfidence.” He has a head full of knowledge and a heart full of love and understanding to journey with his son and all his maleness today and in the days to come.


Cory SchortzmanCory M. Schortzman, MA, LPC, NCC, SRT, is the Executive Director of Transformed Hearts Counseling Center. Cory graduated from Doane College and is a Denver Seminary Post Graduate. He is a Licensed Professional Counselor in Colorado and Founder of SARA, the Sexual Addiction Recovery Association. He is a recovering sex addict and intimacy anorexic. Cory is a husband, father, speaker, author and therapist. He has been married since 1998 to his beautiful wife, Kerry, and lives in Colorado with their four daughters. He and Kerry have been seen on the CBS Early Show, Inside Edition, and ABC Good Morning America, Fox 21 News, and TLC/Discovery discussing the harm of sex addiction and the joys of recovery. He has been heard on radio stations in Michigan, Nebraska, Denver Colorado Springs and several internet radio programs.

  • Comments on: 10 Ways to Begin Talking to Your Children About Sex & Porn
    1. Kimberly Smith on

      I enjoyed reading your article however your reference to the Common Core is incorrect. I am a public school teacher and the Common Core is only for the areas of math and Language Arts. Sex Education does not fall under this umbrella.

      Reply
      • Ryan on

        @Kimberly Smith – Incorrect. Many states are making sex education part of the common core for their school systems. It’s often folded into language arts or science, and definitely proselytizes a worldview that encourages pornography usage and high-risk behaviors.

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