So often, the well-meaning Christian argument comes out like, “Porn is bad because…. you know, God,” which — while I agree in a way — simply isn’t the best argument when you’re talking with people who don’t invite God into their lives.
A better argument for society in general? Science. Real life testimonials. Photos of people living the opposite kind of life and feeling free and happy because of it. And so I would invite you to spend a few clicks on the coolest campaign I’ve seen in a long time, Fight the New Drug.
This site shares 1) photos of normal, attractive people standing up for real love, 2) the science behind what porn does to relationships, the brain, and society, and 3) touchingly honest testimonials of people who use(d) porn and didn’t realize the downsides, as well as encouraging articles for rethinking the use for teens and adults. No evangelical “Y’all’ll go ta Haiiilllllll for it!” No “Do whatever makes you happy, even if it completely derails your emotional wellbeing, because you’re free to do whatever you want.” Just real life and real consequences in an uplifting package.
Awesome Swag for Awesome Love
FTND also spares no expense on absolutely awesome graphic design and share-friendly images that make you feel awesome. And the swag? I would literally LOVE any of these t-shirts, especially the red one (bday gifts anybody? Men’s XL for me, Med. for JHubbs).
All of FTND’s photography features both dudes and ladies repping the movement. There was even a mother/son photo that made my heart swell up a bit. Because while women can certainly be addicted to porn (no one’s immune from emotional disassociation), being anti-porn is usually a female stereotype. I have crazy amounts of respect (and tiny crushes) for men willing to stand up for the women in their lives by standing up for FTND. (And honestly? It would help your dating life like crazy! Respect is pretty hot!).
The Next Generation: Porn-Free?
FTND inspires me on so many levels. First, on the level of someone who had a relationship that was incredibly negatively affected by porn use. Second, as someone who taught high school students and was super, uber concerned by the images and videos my male students were exposed to and would talk about.
So, seeing this photo, of a class of 15+ teenage boys saying they’re open to the idea that porn is a bad choice? Completely inspiring.
Now, I don’t think that posing for a photo (surrounded by plenty of peer pressure, I’m sure) makes a kid immune to the societal pressure to watch porn or “be a man who naturally needs pornography,” but I do think this is a great step towards equalizing the conversation.
TV thinks porn is normal. Movies think porn is normal. Many people I’ve met in my life think porn is normal (and even healthy). But I disagree, and if we’re all entitled to our opinion, it’s nice to see some people sharing mine.
My favorite part of all of this? It’s a judgement-free zone. Obviously porn is a thing because so many people think they need it (and like it). Or maybe they got into it at a young age at the encouragement of friends or family, or fell into it because of abuse. People who are into porn need sympathy and support, not anger and judgement. Enter: FTND’s Fortify program to help people sort out what’s going on in their lives that they’re choosing porn over love.
If you or someone in your family is struggling with this (or maybe even watching porn and thinking it’s totally healthy), I encourage you to check the site out to see if you could be happier living a different way. You might improve or save your relationship. You might reach a new level of emotional connection and satisfaction. And you may make the world a happier, safer place for real love.