The destructive impact of pornography on our children and families is difficult to hear but cannot be ignored. The average age of first Internet exposure to pornography is 11 years of age. Eighty percent of 15-17 year olds have had multiple hard-core exposures to these sights. Ninety percent of 8-16 year olds have viewed pornography online usually while doing homework. The porn industry knows to target our children and they do this by setting up websites that have names of cartoons that are often misspelled. This automatically takes the child to a website that has very graphic images.
Pornography is a chemical addiction. When a man’s eyes lock on to a graphic image of this nature dopamine is released. When dopamine mixes with testosterone it results in an adrenaline rush, similar to a drug addict’s high. Norepinephrine sends a message to the nervous system, the spinal cord and reproductive organs. All of this leads to anxiety and excitement that can only be released in a way that is harmful to the person and contrary to our Faith. If this happens than oxytocin is released connecting the person to the object giving pleasure. Properly used, this reaction is a gift for a man and woman to connect in the marital act as they renew the Sacrament of marriage, but pornography trades this beauty for a lie.
Through programs that understand both the scientific, psychological and spiritual aspects of recovery there is hope and help for entire families. Please look at the websites below for help and remember the power and grace of the Sacrament of Confession.
Websites for helping people deal with addictions to pornography: