Shocking new figures reveal that one in ten 12 to 13-year-olds believe they may be addicted to pornography, and 12 per cent admit to having made or taken part in a sexually explicit video.
Results of a survey released today by the NSPCC’s ChildLine show that a fifth of 700 12-13-year olds polled also said they had been exposed to pornographic images that they found shocking or upsetting.
“Young people are turning to the internet to learn about sex and relationships. We know that are frequently stumbling across porn, often unintentionally, and they are telling us very clearly that this is having a damaging and upsetting effect on them,” said Dame Esther Rantzen, the founder of ChildLine.
”Girls in particular have said they feel like they have to look and behave like porn stars to be liked by boys.
”We absolutely have to talk to young people about sex, love, respect and consent as soon as we feel they are ready, to ensure that they gain a proper perspective between real life relationships and the fantasy world of porn.”
Director of ChildLine, Peter Liver, also stressed the importance of talking openly about pornography with young people. He said we risk failing thousands of children, for whom watching porn is “part of everyday life”, if we don’t.
“Our poll shows that one in five 12 to 13-year-olds thinks that watching porn is normal behaviour,” he said.
“They tell ChildLine that watching porn is making them feel depressed, giving them body image issues, and making them feel pressured to engage in sexual acts they’re not ready for…Across society, we need to remove the embarrassment and shame that exists around talking about porn.”
“To help young people understand how to deal with the reality of our digital world we have to try and remove the embarrassment and shame that exists around talking about porn in their lives,” Head of ChildLine service, Sue Minto, added.
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SOURCE: Christian Today