The Negative Consequences Of Pornography

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Pornography is harmful to relationships, deceptive because it gives unrealistic expectations, and addictive in and of itself. Although it is viewed by many as normal and natural, pornography is dangerous, and more dangerous for adolescents because of their brains’ physical immaturity. Increased normality of pornography and easier access has made it more present than ever. Many view pornography as a normal and natural behavior, however pornography is harmful to relationships, deceptive because it gives unrealistic expectations of sex and sexuality, and is addictive. All of these threats posed by pornography are increased during adolescence, a time where the brain is easily malleable and impressionable.
Throughout the 20th century, exposure to
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Michael Flood studied the multifaceted consequences of pornography on children and adolescents in his article The Harms of Pornography Exposure Among Children and Young People in 2009. The study acknowledges that children and adolescents are naturally sexually curious and ought to be educated at an age-appropriate level. However, as children and adolescents are denied proper and adequate education regarding sex and sexuality, they often turn to the internet and therefore pornography. Pornography, though sexual in nature, is a harmful tool for sex education for many reasons. One extremely harmful result of pornography is the perception of women and girls. Numerous studies have shown that sexual media and pornography influence women and girls to see themselves as sexual objects. They determine their worth in terms of physical beauty subject to the judgment and valuation of others (APA 2010). By placing the value of their identity on being sexually acceptable to others, these women and girls are likely to find themselves in unhealthy and possibly abusive relationships. Pornography encourages this through depicting sexist and hostile behavior towards women. These images are likely to validate adolescents’ unhealthy and sexist perceptions of sex and relationships (Flood 2009). This validation of unhealthy self-perceptions harms women and girls by creating outrageous and unmatchable standards and by promoting the idea that a woman’s value is based on her sexuality. Viewing these behaviors harms men and boys as well by forming unrealistic and extremely sexualized ideals of who women are and should be. One study correlates frequent usage of pornography among adolescents with negative changes in their disposition, including, “diminished trust in intimate partners, the abandonment of

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