Home Daily Buzz Your Son or Daughter Just Looked at Porn… Now What?

Your Son or Daughter Just Looked at Porn… Now What?

So, your son or daughter recently looked at pornography and you found out. What do you do now?

Well, your action plan could affect the course of his or her life—for a long, long time. It’s no small thing. Porn and porn addiction has ruined countless lives. What begins as a stolen glance, if unchecked, can swell into an avalanche of sin that crushes lives, families, churches and communities.

That’s what porn does. It destroys lives a little over a long time and then all at once.

This isn’t meant to scare you, but to remind you that the situation is serious. As a parent and a leader, you need to have an action plan to both prevent, discuss and confront the dangers of porn with your kids.

Here are seven things to consider if (or, more likely, when) that conversation happens.

1. Talk about it right then.

Don’t just pass it off, ignore it, or worse, act like it’s a macho thing to do and inadvertently encourage it. Sit down, right then, and talk about it together. Don’t overreact, don’t go crazy, just have a conversation about how it happened and what he or she saw. Ask for the details.

2. Discuss the why.

Instead of reacting with outrage or disappointment dig a little deeper and ask the why questions. Why did they confess? Why didn’t they? Why did they view porn? You could find out it was accidental or you may dig up some deeper issues about what’s really going on with your son or daughter. Then, discuss their motivation for viewing pornography—including the steps leading up to it and how they felt when they saw it and how they feel now.

3. Hit the Gospel.

It’s important to bring up the Gospel and talk about it early in the conversation. How? Explain to them that their sins are covered in Christ—that God looks at them and sees Jesus and his work on the cross and his resurrection. God still cares, listens and loves them deeply no matter what they’ve done, but the right response to sin is always repentance. You can also talk about the fact that as sons and daughters of the King we’re called to turn from anything that might hurt our relationship with Jesus. This is real life stuff. Also, one caution, don’t Bible-shame. You’re disappointed, I get it, but this is not a time to throw out Bible verses to make your son or daughter feel worse. Point to the positive aspects of forgiveness, grace and the Holy Spirit’s power to move us in a God-ward direction.

4. Talk about safeguards.

Find the entry points in their lives where porn might creep in: smart phone, tablet, T.V., laptop, etc. Discuss a clear action plan to help safeguard their hearts and their eyes. You might consider downloading a filtering app like Mobicip or Covenant Eyes. These apps block (for the most part) porn-related content and they give you the ability to monitor the activity on their devices. Discuss appropriate times to use devices. If your son or daughter goes to bed with their phone or laptop that could be a dangerous thing. Talk about it and set some smart boundaries. One note: just because you add some software doesn’t mean the issue is over. Which leads me to the next point.

5. Follow up.

One conversation and a filtering app isn’t the end. Not even close. Make sure and talk about what your son or daughter sees—both online and off—often. Check into their history, discuss their online habits and create an open dialogue about the dangers of porn. Do what you can to create a safe environment for you kids to discuss, confess and ask questions. Don’t shut it down after one conversation—that could do more damage than good by making them feel alone, ashamed and disconnected.

6. Don’t make it weird.

OK, talking about porn with your son or daughter is weird in itself, right? But you don’t have to make it any weirder than it already is. Talk about the specifics openly and confidently. The more clear, open and constructive you are the better.

7. Pray.

I mention this last, but it’s really something you should start doing before the conversation ever begins. Pray on your own for guidance, pray together and pray consistently. Don’t underestimate the power of prayer to protect your kids from the dangers of porn. It’s our best weapon. Use it.

These tips deal with the immediate conversation, but there are also many things you can do to prepare and protect your kids from the dangers of porn before it strikes. Here are a few valuable resources.

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brian@churchleaders.com'
Brian is a writer and editor from Ohio. He works with creative and innovative people to discover the top stories, resources and trends to equip and inspire the Church.