Tag Archives: Pornography

People Are Not For Sale

By Angela Tooley

It was a few years ago when I first heard the term – sex trafficking.

What? People taken and used as sex slaves?  Modern day slavery in a country that outlawed slavery over 150 years ago?

Sadly, this is the horribly true reality.

How did this happen?  What are the conditions that allow such a monster to exist?  Well let’s just start with the Super Bowl. A “market” drives demand for prostitutes every year in each Super Bowl city. For this reason,

January is Human Trafficking Awareness Month.

As I’m learning more it is heart breaking to me that children and adults are trafficked for sexual exploitation and forced labor. It happens through the means of force, abduction, fraud or coercion. It is indeed modern-day slavery as criminals profit from controlling and dehumanizing human beings. This trafficking exists in every corner of our country and throughout the world.

So how does pornography play a part in sex trafficking? The links between pornography and sex trafficking are undeniable.

  • Pornography is used as a “tool” to train young children and women so that they will “know” what to do in performing sex acts.
  • Pornography users often seek to act out what they have viewed in porn.
  • Pimps are operating more and more online as it becomes easier to connect with potential buyers and to remain anonymous. Most social media sites including Facebook and Snapchat as well as classified ad sites like Craigslist and the infamous Backpage have become “virtual brothels” where one can quickly find prostituted women and children to engage in sex acts.
  • As addictions to pornography increase, users seek more and more disturbing and violent material.
  • Porn users do not and cannot distinguish between trafficked women, prostitutes, and porn stars. [1]

All of these things fuel pornography and in turn fuel the global sex trade by driving demand into mainstream society. One should never ever think that viewing pornography is harmless.

Pornography is prostitution on screen.

The onscreen image is a human being, someone who is a daughter or son, a sister or brother. There is no excuse to allow trafficking to exist because

PEOPLE ARE NOT FOR SALE.

[1] The National Center on Sexual Exploitation. (2011, April 19). Talking Points: Porn & Trafficking. Retrieved from Porn Harms Research: http://pornharmsresearch.com/2011/04/trafficking/

Six Things To NEVER Do If Your Child Looks At Porn

If you discover your child is looking at pornography:

  1. DO NOT PANIC

This moment is not about you. Put your feelings (i.e. fear, anger, disappointment, etc.) aside and focus on your child. Show your child that you love, support, understand, and want to help. Unfortunately, porn is common among teens. One study found that 93% of boys and 62% of girls were exposed to pornography before age 18. (1)

  1. DO NOT IGNORE

As an adult, I learned that my parent’s knew I was looking at their pornography. They never mentioned it to me because “boys will be boys.” Oh how I wish they had helped me. I suffered under this addiction for thirty-five years!

  1. DO NOT ASK FOR (OR EXPECT) A CONFESSION

Only 22% of adults confessed when confronted by their spouse even with evidence. (2) Do you think your child or teenager is more likely to confess than these adults?

Instead of asking “Did you …?”, say “I discovered …” in a matter of fact tone. Remember we set aside feelings of fear, anger, and disappointment?

  1. DO NOT INTERROGATE

Avoid asking “why”. Use concrete questions: When did this start? How often have you looked at porn in the last month? How do you access the pornography? What can I do to help you stop?

Then Listen. Validate their feelings even if positive. “I could see how that would be exciting for you.” Validation just means you understand not necessarily agree.

  1. DO NOT MAINTAIN THE STATUS QUO

Your child’s promise to never do it again is not enough. Believe their sincerity but don’t believe in their self-control. Do whatever you can to block your child’s access to porn. You don’t let the alcoholic keep going to the bar.

  1. DO NOT GO IT ALONE

Remember that fear, anger and disappointment you set aside? You need someone to express your feelings. Your child likely needs the same support. Call us (972-342-0753 or 214-415-4555) or email us here at Noble Choices. This is our specialty. We want to help.

(1) Chlara, S., Wolak, J., & Finkelhor, D. (2008). The nature and dynamics of Internet pornography exposure for youth. CyberPsychology and Behavior, 691-693.

(2) Steffens, B., & Means, M. (2010). Your Sexually Addicted Spouse. Far Hills, NJ: New Horizon Press.

Eight Reasons Sexual Harassment is not Reported

By Angela Tooley

I’ve always loved Rosie the Riveter. Rosie represents the empowerment of women in the World War II work force. She is tough and ready to meet the challenge of that time.

Today females are being challenged to find empowerment in another arena – defending themselves from sexual harassment. Harassing behavior exists from bullying to physical violation. Decades ago numerous costly lawsuits changed the workplace and gave young women like myself a voice to speak against such harassment.

I wonder what has changed?

Why does it seem like that females are defenseless against this dehumanizing attack?

  1. Pornography normalizes this behavior by the perpetrator.
  2. Pornography normalizes the acceptance and the conformity of the victims.
  3. Women feel they have to put up with this to advance their careers due to the glass ceiling of unequal pay and/or opportunities as men.
  4. Women want to avoid embarrassment.
  5. Women do not want to jeopardize their reputation.
  6. Women don’t think anyone will believe them.
  7. Women don’t believe it will do any good.
  8. Women, especially young ladies who have grown up with pornography may not have ever realized that they can so no to unwanted advances.

Those who have already come forward have been truly brave. Those who still need to come forward will need support.

For anyone reading this who has been a victim, and for anyone who feels like it is too late to be helped; we pray for you every day. There is help and hope, and we would love to share that with you.

For anyone who has been the perpetrator, there is help and hope for you, too.

The daily revelations of inappropriate sexual behavior have been stunning: entertainers, executives, politicians, journalists, teachers, and clergy. Sadly, I expect the revelations to continue and to eventually hit too close to our homes.

How will you respond?

Men and women, we are all empowered to say NO and to end any acceptance of these kinds of inappropriate behaviors.

Noble Choices stands with you as we:

  • educate about today’s pornography culture
  • empower youth to do the right thing
  • foster safe environments
  • provide recovery resources

This is for all of us.

We can do it!

Eight Factors Common in Childhoods of Sex Addicts

I am a huge baseball fan and the postseason is great. Last year in the 10th inning of the decisive game of the World Series, Chicago Cub Ben Zobrist drove in the winning run.

Was this just about an opportunity? Or was this path set much earlier: the Houston Astros who first drafted him? His high school coach who convinced him to try out? His whiffle ball games with his friends at age 8?

It was the opportunity AND the path.

What about a person struggling with pornography? Is it just about an opportunity? Or is it about a path that had been set many years before? Again, the answer is both.

Patrick Carnes lists eight factors common in families of sex addicts.

  1. Addiction.

This can be alcohol, gambling, nicotine, eating, drugs, sex, or pornography. Often it is a combination.

  1. Secrets.

This “elephant in the living room” is having a huge impact on life but everyone pretends it is not there.

  1. Rigid and authoritarian.

There is only one way to do things. There is no give and take.

  1. Sex-negativity.

Sex is always negative, dirty, bad, sinful, or nasty.

  1. Sexual duplicity.

Parents do not live up to their standards about sex. There are affairs, pornography, sexting, etc.

  1. Little intimacy.

Family members are disengaged. There is little sharing of feelings or vulnerability.

  1. Neglect.

This could be capital N neglect: sexual, physical, emotional abuse or a lack of food, shelter, clothes, or safety. It could be little n neglect: lack of attention, empathy, or love.

  1. Compartmentalization.

People act one way in one situation and something totally different in another. There is an overreaction or under-response to life’s problems.

Are any of these factors present in your home? King Solomon wrote in Proverbs 22:6, “Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it.” Apparently, that is true negatively and positively.

Carnes, P. (2015). Facing the Shadow: Starting Sexual and Relationship Recovery (Third ed.). Carefree, AZ: Gentle Path Press.

Topkin, M. (2009, July 13). Tampa Bay Rays’ Ben Zobrist has taken a surprising path to today’s All-Star Game. Retrieved from Tampa Bay Times: http://www.tampabay.com/sports/baseball/rays/tampa-bay-rays-ben-zobrist-has-taken-a-surprising-path-to-todays-all-star/1018198

Study on Porn Use

A recent study shows that porn use is worse than we thought. And we thought it was pretty bad.

The Barna Group surveyed a representative sample of U.S. adults.

Men age 18 to 30 who viewed pornography more than once a month was 75%!

It wasn’t much better for men age 31 to 49 which was 59%.

Viewing porn more than monthly was relatively the same across all income levels and education levels and specifically was:

  • 69% of Hispanic men
  • 64% of Black men
  • 49% of White men
  • 56% of non-Christian men
  • 52% of Christian men
  • 62% of non-married men
  • 40% of married men

Roughly 1 out of every 5 men either said they were addicted to pornography or were unsure.

Particularly alarming was the rate of women using pornography.

While less than 10% of women over 30 view pornography more than once a month, for women 18 to 30 it was 34%!

Income and education levels also had little differences among the rate women viewed porn more than once a month. Specifically:

  • 14% of White women
  • 12% of Hispanic women
  • 7% of Black women
  • 22% of non-Christian women
  • 10% of Christian woman

However, there is a problem among married women.

  • 19% of married women view porn more than once a month
  • compared to only 10% of non-married women.

Where do you fit in this study?

Maybe you only view pornography a few times a year or even less. Before you think you don’t have a problem, let me tell you that was the rate of my porn use. It still caused me great pain. I never could quit until I started admitting I had a problem and got help. Please do the same. The freedom and restoration of your sexuality is worth the work. Call me at 972-342-0753 or email me. I can help.

As a parent, teacher, or youth worker, what are you doing about this problem among our young adults?

Just this month, I have had three churches and one school pull back from having my pornography presentation because of resistance from their parents about addressing this topic. Their fear is that if we talk about it, the students will become more curious and therefore more likely to try it. There is not a single study that shows addressing sexual issues with young people increases their likelihood to engage in that activity. Call me at 972-342-0753 or email me or submit our online scheduling form. Let’s protect our youth.

2014 ProvenMen.org Pornography Addiction Survey (conducted by Barna Group). The survey results are located at www.provenmen.org/2014pornsurvey/pornography-use-and-addiction.

R.E.S.T. to Avoid Pornography

Young Couple at Beach at Dusk --- Image by © Royalty-Free/CorbisMy battle with pornography began in the third grade. It is a battle I still fight every day.

Every day? The rest of my life? It sounds exhausting, doesn’t it?

My Lord Jesus Christ gives me hope.

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” – Matthew 11:28

Sounds great, but how does that work?

“Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation.” – Mark 14:38

Notice that first word? Watch. It wasn’t just prayer. I am also to watch so that I will not fall into temptation.

Now every day in prayer, I watch for temptation. Since my desire is for Jesus’ REST, I use the word “R.E.S.T” as an acronym to help me watch.

R is for relationships. Is there anything in any of my relationships that is a problem? Wife, daughter, mother, boss, co-workers, friends, customers, etc. Any strife that disturbs my REST? The strife doesn’t have the slightest connection to pornography. However, I may turn to porn to feel better (temporarily!) instead of turning to God.

E is for emotions. Do I have any strong emotions disturbing my REST? Depression, anger, disappointment, disillusionment, anxiety, hurt, nervousness can motivate a turn to porn. I have also learned that strong positive feelings of accomplishment, excitement, and even happiness can lead me to porn as a “reward.”

S is for spiritually. How am I doing with God? Am I surrendering the battle to Him? Am I having my daily prayer time? Am I in the place of servant and He in the place of Lord? If not, I will fail in the battle against porn. He doesn’t fail.

T is for tired. Am I getting enough sleep? How am I doing physically? Hungry? Sick? Hurting? Nervous Jitters? Physical ailments disturb my REST and can take my focus off of God and allow me to turn to pornography.

Fighting pornography every day is a weary and burdensome task. Watch and pray to Jesus. He gives REST.

Are you a Hypocritical Parent?

Finger PointWhen I was two years old, a drunk driver swerved and hit our car head-on. My parents and my injuries were so severe that my grandparents were told my dad and I would not likely live through the night.

None of us were wearing seat belts. We were lucky to survive.

Every memory I have of my dad driving us in the car anywhere is his “obsession” with making sure we all had on our seat belts.

Was my dad a hypocritical parent?

I mean he didn’t wear a seat belt when he was younger. What right did he have to force his children to do something that he wasn’t even able to do when he grew up?!!

This logic is absurd, isn’t it? My dad was now acutely aware of the risks of not wearing a seat belt. He loved his family so much that he would do everything to protect us.

Change the topic from seat belts to sexual activity or pornography or drinking or drug use. The logic of the hypocritical parent is still absurd.

Yet it is one of the top reasons I hear from parents as to why they don’t address these issues: “I can’t ask my children to do what I was unable to do myself.” I am glad my dad didn’t have that problem with demanding that I wear a seat belt.

You should not have that problem either. If you love your kids, do everything to protect them even if it means being a hypocritical parent.

In reality, asking your children not to make the poor choices you made does not make you a hypocrite. It makes you a good parent.

Cyber Rape

Speak UpAt age 23, Holly had a new boyfriend.

When Holly moved away for grad school, they dated long-distance. “To keep the intimacy alive” she sent him naked photos and a personal sexual video.

However after three years, it ran its course and they had a “normal breakup.”

Several months later, Holly’s naked photos were all over the internet with her full name, email address, job title, where she worked, and other details.

“My stomach just dropped and I felt ill.” Holly worked to remove the photos but they kept coming up on more and more sites.

Then it got worse. She received an email with her photos. “Get in touch concerning your pictures. There’s also a nice video. Have [they] seen them? It’s 8:15 where you are. You have until 8:37 to reply. Then I start the distribution.” The email listed the email addresses of Holly’s co-workers and boss.

Holly did not respond. The photos were emailed to her boss and co-workers and went viral within three days. Her boss called her in to explain. Holly eventually quit her job.

Now three years after the break up, “I felt like the only thing I could do was part from that identity that had been completely defamed.” She legally changed her name to Holly from her birth name.

Six months later she was going to present her doctoral thesis at a conference. Her naked photos appeared on the web with her new name and with the date, time and location of the conference. “They said something like why don’t you go check her out and see if she’ll have sex with you for money.”

Fearing for her safety, Holly backed out of the conference and went to the police. Since she was over 18 and voluntarily gave the pictures and video, there wasn’t anything they could do.

Holly didn’t give up. She went to her state attorney’s office who took her case. Holly, now age 29, became the first person to sue an ex for their distribution of revenge pornography. “It is really cyber rape. It’s just another way of exploiting women.”

(Jacobs, H. (2013, September 8). A Message From Our Founder, Dr. Holly Jacobs. Retrieved from End Revenge Porn: http://www.endrevengeporn.org/?p=422)
(Miller, M. E. (2013, May 9). Miami Student Holly Jacobs Fights Revenge Porn. Retrieved from Miami New Times News: http://www.miaminewtimes.com/2013-05-09/news/revenge-porn-miami-holly-jacobs/full/)

What Accountability Looks Like

Men discussionAccountability partners are a great help in the fight against pornography.

James 5:16: “Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.”

However, many people are surprised that their confessing to and praying for each other is not always bringing the healing. Well, confessing is a bit more than just saying “I looked at porn last Tuesday.”

When I managed a staff of employees and something went wrong, I led them through an examination of the process that led to the mistake. We then determined if we needed a new way of doing things to avoid the mistake in the future.

Accountability is the same way. Identify the series of steps that led to the sin. James 1:14-15 explains this process. I’ll number the steps so you see them clearly.

“Each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own
1. evil desire and
2. enticed. Then, after
3. desire has conceived, it gives birth to
4. sin; and sin, when it is
5. full-grown, gives birth to
6. death.”

Covenant Eyes has produced a wonderful resource called “Christian Accountability: A Discussion Guide.” This list of over thirty questions includes the following.

1. On a scale of 1 (HELP!) to 9 (Stable), rate the following:

  • I have actively avoided known triggers of sexual temptation or titillation.
  • My time with technology or media has not displaced time with God, family, friends, work, or my neighbors.
  • I am resting completely in what Christ has done for me-not obsessing about my own failures nor putting stock in my own performance.

2. When it comes to my habitual sins, is there a time of day, a place, a person, or a mood that tends to open the door to more tempting situations?

Covenant Eyes. (2013, April 5). Christian Accountability: A Discussion Guide. Retrieved from Accountability Questions: Discussion Guide For Accountability Partners : http://www.covenanteyes.com/lemonade/wp-content/uploads/2010/06/Christian-Accountability-Discussion-Guide.pdf

Interest in Sex is Dropping

I have written several times how pornography is bad for your sex life. It can cause loss of sexual performance. It can cause lack of satisfaction with sex even with the most attractive partners. It can even lead to preferring pornography over real sex with a person.

Now we are starting to see these effects on a much wider scale. Recent studies are showing that interest in sex across the population of two countries is dropping.

Great Britain showed a 25% drop in the sex rates of people aged 16-44 than the same age group just ten years earlier. One of the most commonly reported sexual problems was simply, “Lack of interest in sex.” The study’s authors list the following reasons for this drop in sexual activity:

  • online pornography,
  • modern technology: Twitter, Facebook, email,
  • worry about jobs,
  • worry about money.

A series of studies in Japan reveals an even worse loss of interest in sex. 45% of women and over 25% of men aged 16-24 “were not interested in or despised sexual contact”. 61% of unmarried men and 49% of women aged 18-34 were not in any kind of romantic relationship, 10% more than five years earlier. 33% of people under 30 had never dated at all.

People explained their attitudes with

  • “don’t see the point of love.”
  • “don’t believe it can lead anywhere.”
  • “Relationships have become too hard.”

Many are turning to easy or instant gratification, in the form of online porn, virtual-reality “girlfriends”, anime cartoons. Or else they’re opting out altogether and replacing love and sex with other urban pastimes.

American rock star, John Mayer, shows we’re likely not far behind Great Britain and Japan when he said,

“I equate sex with tension. Once I have to deal with someone else’s desires, I cut and run. I mean, I have unbelievable [sex] alone. They’re always the best. They always end the way I want them to end. This is my problem now: Rather than meet somebody new, I would rather go home and replay the … experiences I’ve already had. …I’m more comfortable in my imagination than I am in actual human discovery.”

(Haworth, A. (2013, October 19). Why have young people in Japan stopped having sex? The Observer. Retrieved from http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/oct/20/young-people-japan-stopped-having-sex)
(Mercer, C. H., Tanton, C., Prah, P., Erens, B., Sonnenberg, P., Clifton, S., . . . Johnson, A. M. (2013, November 30). Changes in sexual attitudes and lifestyles in Britain through the life course and over time: findings from the National Surveys of Sexual Attitudes and Lifestyles (Natsal). The Lancet, 382(9907), 1781-1794. doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(13)62035-8)
(Triggle, N. (2013, November 26). Modern life ‘turning people off sex’. Retrieved from BBC News: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-25094142)