5 Sure-Fire Ways to Motivate Your Son to Use Pornography

Before I get into five sure-fire ways to motivate your son to use pornography, let me establish two important points. First, no parents want their child to become involved in porn. We all can agree. The problem for many of us is we don’t understand the insidious allurement of pornography and how our behavior, though unintentional, can help shape a child to crave something that can lead him into a lifetime of slavery.


Second, porn for a man isn’t primarily about the physicality of a woman. A woman’s appearance is an external magnet for the eye to enjoy, but the greater problem for the man are his insatiable mental cravings. Porn is first and foremost about the theater of the mind, where the young male can enter into his virtual world and be king for a day—or, in this case, king for a few minutes—as he satiates his mind with the risk-free intrigue of the cyber conquest.

And in most cases, the porn addict’s allurement began in the theater of his mind while he was a child. This is a consistent pattern I’ve seen in counseling.

You’ll see in my five sure-fire ways to motivate your child to use porn how any child can be in porn training without his parents realizing it.

1. Non-Romantic Marriage

The Christian home should be a sexual home. God declared sex good, and his first couple wasn’t ashamed of their unique sexualities. Only when sin entered their world did people became giggly about sex.

The non-romantic marriage communicates certain people aren’t porn-worthy. Before your mouth completely hits the floor, let me explain.

A major characteristic of the porn-trained mind is how some people are worthy to be lusted after and others aren’t. There’s no question about what kind of woman is porn-worthy. There is not a woman in America who doesn’t know, which is why many of them obsess over how they look, how much they weigh, and what they wear.

A husband who won’t romantically pursue his wife is sending a message to his kids that she’s not worthy of being pursued. She doesn’t fit the criteria. In addition, when children’s minds are filled with sensual TV commercials and movies, they begin to sense the kind of beauty worthy of their gaze. Our children need to be taught about real beauty as seen in the relationship between their dads and moms.

The husband highlights real beauty by pursuing his wife in the home. Children need to see some marital romantic affection, such as hugging and kissing. Holding hands, dancing in the living room, hugging for long periods of time, and smooching in front of the kids are beautiful examples of who and what is worthy of a man’s love.

2. Instant Gratification

The spoiled child who’s given everything he wants is a perfect candidate for porn training. Too many of our kids rarely hear the word no. They’re generally given the desires of their heart. And then, desires have become expectations.

We’d all agree porn is exponentially easier to access today than even 20 years ago. If a child expects someone to meet his selfish desires, it won’t be hard for him to be allured by porn.

  • The spoiled child gets what he wants when he wants it with no regard for right or wrong.
  • The porn addict gets what he wants when he wants it with no regard for right or wrong.

Instant gratification in a child breeds instant gratification in adults.

3. Non-Communicative Couples

One of the common complaints I hear from couples in marriage counseling centers on lack of communication. They hardly talk to each other. If they do, it’s usually about family events, mutual transactions, and marital business.

This is a perfect setup for the porn trainee, since viewing porn has nothing to do with verbal communication. Porn is about visually enjoying women in order to feed the mind. Who needs to talk?

The heart of porn use is privatized self-centeredness. The heart of the non-communicative couple is self-centeredness. It’s two people married to each other but living in their own private worlds. A man who doesn’t talk to his wife is sending a loud message—she is not worthy of his words.

Nothing devalues a woman more than pornography. The female is objectified only for the purpose of being used in a slavish way to satisfy the mind of a man. There’s no communication in this scenario.

Husbands, your children need to see the value you give your wife by giving her some of your best words throughout your day. I’m not talking about words that satisfy the family schedule or the financial budget. I’m talking about words that build up, cherish, nourish, and adore her. Show the value you place on the bride you married. Let her be exalted in the minds of your children.

4. No Consequences for Actions

There’s a parallel action to giving kids whatever they want: giving little to no consequences for their actions.

A child who doesn’t have to pay for what he’s done wrong will learn how to get away with anything. This, too, is a major mark of porn addiction. It gives the addict false confidence in a risk-free virtual environment.

Children must have a comprehensive view of love, which means they must be appropriately disciplined when they do wrong (Heb. 12:6). The spoiled child who suffers little consequences will have a low regard for rules and authority.

Porn has no rules and low risk. It doesn’t take much to enter the porn world. It’s not like robbing a bank—which makes porn’s allurement all the more appealing. A child who knows he can get away with things is easy prey for the tentacles of pornography.

5. Critical Community in the Home

Is your home a critical community? Or is there more encouragement, praise, affirmation, and love?

The porn world is a refuge for escape. It’s a risk-free haven where the addict can be in control while satisfying his weary mind. And no place will affect his mind more than what goes on inside his home. If the home isn’t a refuge of encouragement, then your child will be tempted to find refuge in other places.

Porn is one of the easiest places to get lost in the moment. It gives a satisfying power you won’t experience in his real world. A man can go into his momentary addiction and seize the moment with no fear whatsoever of being condemned, judged, criticized, or disappointed. He must only tweak his conscience in order to feed his habit.

Once his conscience is appropriately hardened, he’s home free (or so it seems). The best antidote for this kind of twisted thinking is to create a culture of encouragement in his home.

Porn-Trained Kid

Porn training doesn’t happen by volition. It happens by default if parents aren’t attuned to the kind of home they’ve created.

But the good news for the humble person is that he can examine his mind and behavior and, by the empowering grace of God, be changed. No one is beyond the redemption of Jesus.

Parents, strive to implement the changes listed under each of these five points. Then plan on being surprised by God. His Word is true, and he gives favor to the humble (James 4:6).

Editor’s note: This article originally appeared, in longer form, at RickThomas.net and the Covenant Eyes blog.

  • http://flamingfundamentalist.blogspot.com Curt Day

    THere is a missing way here. That way is to teach your son that his primary function in society is to consume rather than provide. That way, consumption will always be on his mind while caring for what others go through will be a fleeting thought at best. And the more consuming things is on his mind, the more he will have to deal with the temptation of consuming the wrong things.

    • Daniel Dorrer

      I agree with everything wholeheartedly especially point 1 and and 5. But @Curt Day out of experience and even if you look at statistics girls struggle with this too. Maybe not as frequent and obvious but that’s something we should teach all of our kids regardless of gender.

      • http://www.harvestusa.org Ellen Dykas

        Thanks Daniel…yes its so true! I see this weekly in my ministry with Harvest USA.

      • http://flamingfundamentalist.blogspot.com Curt Day

        No disagreement with you on my part. I was simply commenting on the note as it was written. And my point is that when consumption defines our lives, we, regardless of gender, will struggle more against sins like pornography than when providing for others defines our lives.

      • http://gayandevangelical.wordpress.com David

        Point 5 is, for me, the most important component of why I found porn attractive when I was in high school.

  • KC

    As one very familiar with that battle, and thanks be to God having seen much growth, this article is dead-on. Thanks so much!

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  • Stacy

    I agree with Daniel. I think the points made in here are excellent, but it’s always a little bit discouraging to see writings/teachings about pornography only addressing men, as though women are completely immune from this struggle. It just perpetuates the culture in which Christian women feel they have no avenue to bring up their struggles in this area, because no one bothers to ask them about it or to acknowledge that this is a reality for many women.

    • Leigh Ann

      I understand and agree that it should be addressed to both genders, but I believe it’s true that men and women can get involved with porn for very different reasons. They are both feeding their lust, yes, but because the motivations can be quite different for women–which is what the article is addressing–the advice for marriages/parents of daughters would vary for them.

      • Rem

        This is just anecdotal but as a woman who struggles with porn, I found this list to be incredibly helpful. All of this applied to the family I grew up in (in the negative) and are things that I plan to remedy with my own young daughter. Were there other factors in my involvement with porn? Yes but this list is a great start for our family as it applies to a lot of what led me to porn.

  • http://www.harvestusa.org Ellen Dykas

    Great thoughts…thanks for posting this! My only ‘regret’ is that you didn’t include daughters! So many young girls, and women, are struggling with pornography as well and they need help, discipleship and grace applied to them too.

  • http://twitter.com/jcchurch James

    “You have no idea. Ready normal people?”


  • Anonymous

    I have to say these principles do not apply in all circumstances. As one who struggles with pornography, I still was exposed to all the above mentioned points. I grew up in a loving Christian home. You cant say I do XY&Z because of my up bringing or lack there of. You do XY&Z because of the way your heart responds to those circumstances. At the end of the day its a heart condition.

    • Basher

      In the end, yes. Just like someone can become an alcoholic without a family history of alcoholism, or even growing up in a home where no alcohol was allowed.

      However, these things (along with a whole host of others) can make it that much easier for kids to become porn users. The things we can control, we’re responsible for; there are certainly other factors that are out of our control though.

  • mom of 4

    Pornography is a choice. I agree with the article but there is always more to it. My son dabbled in porn for a while, and he was raised in a loving Christian home. My husband and I always show physical affection towards one another, we don’t watch movies with gratuitous sex, and we talk openly and honestly. My son was at a friends house and they went online without parental permission or supervision. That’s all it took. One click of the mouse, one instant of curiosity. It never became an addiction but we dealt with the situation promptly. He received counseling and consequences for his actions. That was many years ago. He is now a Bible college graduate and dating a lovely Christian woman.

  • marshall

    Exactaly what is this based on? solid research?? Most kids get into porn in their teens, when hormones are kicking in and interest in the other sex is budding.

  • Jessica B

    I really wish that someone would write an article for women on this subject. I’ve been struggling with pornography use since I was 9 years old, and I’m completely miserable. There just isn’t any help for me, clergy and friends in the church just don’t feel comfortable talking to women about this at all. So we are pretty much all alone. Somebody above said that women have different reasons for looking at porn, and maybe that is true for many women. But I’m a very visual person, and i get enjoyment from porn in much the same way men do.

    ive just given up. im so sick of this.

    • rob

      Jessica I am praying that you get someone to talk to. I am so sorry that your local community hasn’t provided avenues for you to be served in this area. I wish there was something or someone I could recommend to serve you but perhaps someone else reading this blog can offer some resources that make much of the hope we have in Jesus no matter what sins we are struggling with.

    • Ellen Dykas

      don’t give up! Check out these websites for starters: Beggar’s Daughter and Whole Women Ministries. Our ministry, Harvest USA also has resources to help WOMEN as well as men who are wrestling with sin of a sexual nature. http://www.harvestusa.org

    • Matt

      You have to fight. You cannot give sin an entrance. Get rid of your phone, even your computer if you need to. Get a filter like Covenant Eyes or Safe Eyes and let someone have access to it to keep you accountable. You have to confess and be open about your problem. If you leave that little opening for you to do it, you will. You have to love God more than your sin.

      A great ministry is Pure Life Ministries. I think they are the place to go to when you can’t go any further. Also, the book “At the Altar of Sexual Idolatry” is a great, honest read. They will counsel you and even do an in-house rehab (for lack of a better word) all based on the Gospel.

      God Bless Jessica. From someone who knows.

    • Alien & Stranger

      Jessica, I was also inadvertently ensnared by pornography (very mild stuff in those days) when I was a child. When I was subsequently taught about “how babies are made”, I realised pornography was wrong and I was fine until I met the man who eventually became my husband. He re-introduced me to pornography. My values were totally off-kilter and later I tried to stop, especially when I started a family and realised I didn’t want any porn in the house, so I told my husband not to bring any home. However, this didn’t stop the porn in my head. I was only set free on the day when the Holy Spirit brought me under conviction of my sins, as he brought revelation of who Jesus Christ is and what he did for me, so that I repented and unconditionally gave my life to Jesus Christ, asking him to save me and be Lord of my life. I was completely set free and had an aversion to porn after that. There was still other baggage in my life, and each of my breakthroughs has come when I’ve repented (if necessary) and completely relinquished whatever the problem was to the Lord. I believe that repentance and surrender are key, along with keeping one’s eyes on the Lord and walking closely with him.
      With any temptation to which one is vulnerable, even a box of chocolates(!), the more you think about it, the more you are tempted – it becomes an obsession. When one focuses on something else, then that stronghold is broken. However, while this can keep us from falling prey to temptation, it doesn’t deal with the root, whereas I believe Jesus came to set us completely free.
      You may find (if you don’t know already) that there are some ancillary issues involved with your addiction, from which the Lord needs to heal you. I pray you allow the Lord to reveal what the roots are and that he shines his light of truth on them, and heals and sets you free.
      I’m no counsellor, but I hope recounting my experience is helpful to you.

  • Royce

    What is a “Christian trainer.” It brings to mind a guy in a cage with a whistle, a whip, and a gun with docile lions trained to do tricks.

    “A husband who won’t romantically pursue his wife is sending a message to his kids that she’s not worthy of being pursued.”

    What happens when a husband “pursues” but his advances are repeatedly rejected? Articles like the one above seem very simplistic to me. Many men, and women, are trapped in sex-starved marriages – with no “PDAs” in front of the children.

    “It’s about feeling attractive, feeling masculine/feminine, and feeling whole as a person. It’s about being in love. It’s about a feeling of oneness. But since people with low sexual desire aren’t hungering for a sexual connection, they’re not overly empathetic to their spouses’ feelings and do little to make significant changes in their relationships.

    “Eventually, feelings of rejection become increasingly difficult to manage. Sadness turns to anger. Those yearning for more physical closeness vacillate between being distant and unpleasant. And although these behaviors are merely symptoms of underlying hurt, people with low sexual desire don’t perceive their spouses’ behavior quite so benevolently. Empathy is in short supply. Arguments about sex, or the lack of it, become the norm.

    “Blame-slinging disagreements add to the already icy distance between spouses. Then, like a runaway train, it’s not long before their bitterness and animosity collide head-on with every other aspect of their relationship. Nothing seems right anymore.

    “Does any of this sound familiar to you? Have you felt starved for a better sexual relationship with your spouse? Are you desperately yearning to be touched, held, fondled and caressed? Have your pleas for closeness and more sexual connection fallen upon deaf ears? Do you tell yourself that your spouse will never understand your sexual needs? Do you sometimes feel defeated, times when you’ve considered divorce or satisfying your needs for sexuality and intimacy outside your marriage?” — Michelle Weiner-Davis, Ph.D., “The Sex-Starved Marriage”

    With all due respect to Rick Thomas, his one-size-fits-all approach might do a lot of good in manysituations – but for an awful lot of couples, that approach leads to frustration, resentment, shame and guilt. And children do view porn. If your son attends a public school he will inevitably be exposed to it at some point. To imply that somehow a parent, having done all he or she could do, is to blame, is so damaging and pointless.

    • anonymous

      Maybe you shouldn’t send your son to public school.

  • FatherOf4

    One issue not mentioned in this list is teaching your son or daughter nakedness = sex. There is a natural curiosity about those whose genitalia doesn’t match our own, yet the only place to see them is in pornography or text books. This presents a false ideal of both genders for the viewer.

  • Anonymous2

    While the bolded points are all things that can be detrimental to family life, I must agree with the growing list of commenters objecting that these factors cannot adequately explain porn addiction among Christians. I would even go beyond Royce in saying that Rick Thomas’s “one-size-fits-all approach” is detrimental (despite its utility in some situations)…because by re-enforcing a mistaken view of the factors that lead to pornography usage among Christians, it perpetuates a troubling status quo.

    “in most cases, the porn addict’s allurement began in the theater of his mind while he was a child. This is a consistent pattern I’ve seen in counseling.” Well, duh. I suspect that nearly every person will have memories of “allurement” that began in childhood. But why assume that therefore the problem is with the parents? Even if there are problems with the parental environment (which I would assert, supported by the growing list of commenters to this article, that in many cases there aren’t), correlation does not prove causation.

    But if we are going to examine environmental factors, why not look first at the prevalence of unfiltered internet access? If a family’s cable TV plan had adult channels openly viewable, and each child had a tv with access to those channels in their room which they could watch any time of day or night, and subsequently the children became stuck in cycles of viewing and using porn, would we be asking whether mom and dad were affectionate enough at home? Or would we be explaining to mom and dad that they vastly underestimated how harmful having open access to those channels can be to their children? I should say the latter.

    Rather than bringing home flowers a few more times a year or “smooching in front of the kids” (both commendable, to be sure…but akin to bandaids on bubonic plague), parents would be better off understanding the problem: how the internet changes the game in terms of access to porn as compared with the past, how investing in accountability software such as Covenant Eyes for use by the whole family is vital, and how every parent needs to have a conversation with their kids about pornography being a trap and filtering/accountability software being a commendable lifestyle choice for a disciple of Jesus Christ.

    I conclude with a plea to Mr. Thomas (who if I’m not mistaken is a practicing Biblical counselor): we need Christian approaches to pornography usage which focus on treating the issue in its totality. As long as Christian approaches to porn assume that “if all is right and good in a Christian’s life and upbringing, then porn should not be a temptation,” porn will continue to be the silent spiritual killer that it currently is.

    Many thanks to the Covenant Eyes team for their ongoing efforts to create a tool which helps those who have faced up to this problem in their own lives and for whom accountability is a vital piece of their healing process.

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  • JohnM

    I’m afraid I don’t quite buy this. Your son doesn’t need to be specially motivated to “use pornography” he just needs to be male and have it available. Some people may be more inclined to indulge in in it than others, by reason of temperament or by reason of cultivated habit, but there is hardly any man who couldn’t understand the appeal. I can’t speak so much for women, but I do note that some of them do cite it as a problem for them as well. The fact is our definition of pornographic is too narrow in the first place. If it isn’t the “hard core” stuff on the internet it’s the “soft core” on TV, in books/magazines, it’s the real live women you see, not so much dressed, around you all the time. Or the ones you see more modestly dressed. Men everywhere all the time are inclined to lust after women. No, indulgence is not inevitable, but it’s not as if we need to ask “How did it come to this?”.

  • Simon

    I got addicted to porn mainly because I was permitted to watch skimpy girls in tv and film when I was really young and then allowed to watch pretty much anything before I hit my teen years. And I’ll tell you, it was the “PG” skimpy stuff that did the most damage, not the full on nudity and sex later on. I was already acclimatised into list before I hit 10 years old.

    The number of Christians who I hear discussing watching all sorts of filth in tv and film, the most recent example being The Wolf of Wall Street, it makes me shake my head in pity. When Christians call this entertainment, its no wonder the church is filled with as much porn as the church of unbelief.

    Women, if you get a boyfriend and he is willing to watch girls in skimpy clothing or bikinis in entertainment, ditch him and find someone with principles, biblical ones! If he will watch these things in your presence, who knows what he will be willing to view in secret.

  • Chris

    Hi Rick

    Just wanted to say thank you so much for this article. Really appreciate it, my wife and I are to have our first child, a son, this year, and its great to look at everything my wife and I can do to help him have a God-image view of women, one which I never had growing up, among others here,

    I also looked at porn while I was a teenager. It was never discussed in my household, though mum and dad were very romantic etc. I think communication from parents to kids is one of the biggest needs.

    When sin issues are public in the family, there can be accountability and healing. When they are secret, Satan triumphs.

    I would also agree with anonymous2 above, that also knowing how to ban these things is a must,

    My favourite program is x3watch, countless friends have it, myself included, and it has freed me from the possibility of looking at pornography for 6 years now, praise God!

    Thanks again for taking the time to write on such a subject,

    Yours in Christ,

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  • JRDM

    Those things in the list aren’t good things, but I don’t see where it follows that any of this necessarily drives teens to looking at porn. Also, parents can still do *all* of the right things in regards to this list and still get offspring that look at porn.

  • Joel

    Excellent points, but what about our duty as parents to be praying without ceasing for our children? I think that needs to be included…

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  • http://standingonthetable.wordpress.com/ Kelley

    Great points! I am glad to see this issue getting some mainstream attention. Here’s a post that I wrote from a mother’s perspective about trying to be proactive as I raise my four sons: http://standingonthetable.wordpress.com/2014/02/05/behind-closed-doors/

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