Power Over Pornography


Chopping off hand: One way to stop your child from watching pornography. Here’s a better (and less violent) way.

Did you hear about the Indian man who chopped off his son’s hand over the son’s pornography watching? Last week in Hyderabad India, a butcher, Mohammad Qayyum Qureshi, caught his 18-year-old son watching pornography. When he tried to take the phone away, his son bit his father’s hand and left the house.

When he returned later, Qayyum chopped off his son’s hand with a butcher knife. The son was rushed to the hospital and the father was arrested. Doctors doubt the son’s hand can be saved.

To state the obvious, there are better ways to help your children overcome a pornography problem.

Research shows that roughly 49% of college males first encounter pornography before the age of 13.[i]  With so many of our youth and children being exposed to pornography, what is a parent to do?

While all parents should take steps to safeguard their children from viewing pornography, it is almost impossible to do so completely successfully in today’s culture. Dallin H Oaks stated, “A primary reason for the growing problem of pornography is that in today’s world, words and images with sexual content and influences are everywhere: they can be found in movies, TV programs, social media, text messages, phone apps, advertisements, books, music, and everyday conversations. As a result, it is inevitable that all of us are being exposed to sexualized messages on a regular basis.”[ii]

One of the goals of successful parents is to have their children make wise choices in the absence of direct parental intervention. To accomplish this goal, parents need to teach their children ways to deal with the inevitable temptation to view pornography so that when the temptation hits and parents aren’t around, children make wise choices.

The steps I would take now to teach my children how to successfully handle a pornography temptation are:

  1. Know the consequences of porn viewing. Children are more reluctant to satisfy curiosity if they know the harm that can result. There are numerous academic and religious studies that point out the harmful consequences of pornography. Share them with your children.
  2. Accept pornography viewing temptations as a normal part of life. Children should feel no shame if they are tempted to view pornography. Our power to create life is one of God’s greatest gifts to us so naturally it will be a gift that we get tempted to misuse.
  3. Be mindful of every temptation. When tempted, children should notice the temptation and acknowledge it their minds. By being mindful they are less likely to respond without thinking through the consequences.
  4. Actively choose. When children know they have a choice and are taught the true consquences of their choice, they are more likely to choose wisely than to react to short-term stimuli.

So, if you’re concerned about your child’s exposure to pornography, let them keep their hands. Show them how to meet the porn-viewing temptation that they will inevitably encounter.

My book, Power Over Pornography, details the preceding steps and how to teach them. Although the book is not directed at youth, its message of how to effectively deal with pornography temptations is. You can purchase the book on Amazon or can get one shipped to you for free (small shipping and handling cost) at freebook.poweroverpornography.com.

[i] Chyng Sun, Ana Bridges, Jennifer Johnson, and Matt Ezzell, “Pornography and the Male Sexual Script: An Analysis of Consumption and Sexual Relations,” Archives of Sexual Behavior 45, no. 4 (May, 2016): 983–94.

[ii] https://www.lds.org/ensign/2015/10/recovering-from-the-trap-of-pornography?lang=eng

Leave a Comment