Science

Teens Who Watch Porn Are Likely To Become Sexual Predators

By Christie Abagon , Nov 25, 2016 01:17 AM EST
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Pornography affects teenagers' mental behavior.  A new study conducted by Melbourne University shows that young people who have sexually abused other kids have porn to blame for their aggressive behavior. 

Fourteen kids, aged between 11 and 14, were interviewed about why they abused other children.  Some of them told researchers that their abusive behavior may have been reduced or eliminated if they have not watched porn. 

Kids Who Watch Porn Want To Act Out What They See

Watching porn at an early age normalized the behavior, investigators said.  Other kids say that watching porn is a daily routine and that they just use their mobile phones to watch.  Gemma McKibbin, lead author said: "They would watch pornography and act out what they had seen on a little cousin, niece or sister." 

Some of the participants of the study said that their family supported their porn-watching and in some cases watched it with them.  "The access that young people are having to pornography, as well as our collective 'turning a blind eye,' is akin to a kind of cultural grooming of children," Ms McKibbin added.

Porn Is The 'Final Straw' For Some Teens

For some kids, viewing porn is a way to get out of the miserable occurrences in their life.  In some cases, porn was the "final straw" for kids struggling to deal with puberty, a tough upbringing that included family violence, neglect or bullying.  "It was like there were difficult things in their lives and porn was the final straw - the thing that sparked the action," Ms McKibbin said.

Sex Education Should Be Introduced Early, Authors Suggest

Sex education does not usually come until high school.  Researchers say it must be introduced early.  "Pornography can't be seen as the sole responsibility of parents or schools because it has gone way beyond that.  We probably need to engage directly with the pornography industry and the telecommunications industry.  Consistent, protective sex education needed to be introduced as soon as children started school, if not before," the lead author concluded.

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