As well as the experts, professionals and organisations, we have also been amongst the community interviewing for our documentary. One thing that I was told in a room of teenagers was how the consensus seems to be that teens are sad they are missing out on the hand-holding part of relationships. That there seems to be this expectation of hyper sexualisation and porn-style "relationships" that is putting pressure on them.
To me, this is where we need to step up our game. Online pornography is not going away any time soon and high percentages of our teens are using porn sex as sex education. Porn is not teaching intimacy, healthy body image and expectations, respect, negation and consent. There are no drawn out story lines anymore. Just wham, bam and not even a thank you mam!
We need to educate ourselves and be comfortable enough to broach this topic with our teens, not to shame them for watching online porn, but rather to educate them on healthy sexuality and how porn today's genres on mainstream online porn are not that. Teens are high risk as parts of their brain shut down to work on new parts being formed as they come into adulthood. At this time, we are their brakes, we are the voice of reason and experience and we need to be mindful of we tackle this topic with them :)