Pornography can be a challenging subject to discuss with your 7-year-old who has just stumbled across it for the first time. My husband and I have one small son, and we know that it is impossible to shelter him from everything as he grows up. So, I’ve put together an article that may help you talk to your 7-year-old about pornography.
So, how do you talk to a 7-year-old who saw pornography? 7-year-olds often don’t understand the pornographic material they may have stumbled across, so talking to them about healthy sexual relationships and the harm of pornographic material soon after can really help them understand and avoid it. It is important to address the issue in a calm manner so that your child doesn’t feel that he or she has done something wrong.
Depending on your relationship with your child and your own personal level of comfort in talking about the subject, talking about pornography can be difficult. Being a mother myself, I have done a lot of research on this subject and put together a list of steps and topics that will help guide you through talking to your 7-year-old.
Start Talking Long Before it Happens
Keeping up a healthy conversation over the years about sex, relationships, and media will help your child understand and recognize the consequences of pornography. My son is only 10-months-old right now, but my husband and I have already started talking about how we are going to teach him about sex as he grows up.
Your child will naturally be curious about those things. Children, especially 7-year-olds, are full of questions as they learn about and analyze the world around them. Talking about sex long before they become teenagers is a great way to help them understand their growing bodies.
I know, it can be really scary to find out that your little 7-year-old son or daughter has viewed pornographic material, but if you panic… you could send the wrong message to your child.
Take time to sit down and talk to your child about these topics. My husband is always telling me how he wants to make sure our children understand that he is comfortable talking with them about questions they have as they grow up.
If you are able to sit down with your 7-year-old before they have viewed pornographic material and talk with them about this issue, your child will build trust and confidence in the fact that they can talk to you if soemthing comes up.
If your 7-year-old has already stumbled across pornography, don’t worry. It’s never too late to start the conversation and then continue it as they grow.
How You Should React to Your Child
Like I mentioned above, children are extremely impressionable, and your attitude when you learn that they have seen pornography can make a big difference on the way they react to it if they stumble across it again in the future.
So, try to remain calm. I know, it can be really scary to find out that your little 7-year-old son or daughter has viewed pornographic material, but if you panic or start raising your voice and becoming upset, you could send the wrong message to your child. Make sure you wait to have your talk when you feel calm and rational enough to teach your child and help them feel secure and loved.
Understanding the Situation First
Your child might be confused or upset by what they saw, so it’s important to let them talk to you about how they feel and what they saw. Listening will help you know how to talk to your child later and let you know what concerns you should address.
It is also important to learn how your child stumbled across the pornography, so you can help them learn how to avoid it in the future.
Remember that listening is key here. You want to build the trust I talked about in the first section, and listening will help your son or daughter build that trust in you so they feel comfortable talking to you later.
You might also consider waiting till you can prepare what you want to talk about with your 7-year-old about instead of just jumping right in to a lecture. This will help you fully address and answer their concerns.
Talking to Your Child About Pornography
I understand that not everyone will want to talk about sex and pornography in the same way that my husband and I plan to talk to our children someday, but here are some basic guidelines for starting the conversation:
- Make sure your child knows she or he isn’t in trouble
- Explain what they saw and let them ask questions
- Explain that pornography does not depict normal healthy relationships that bring happiness
- Make sure your child has no more questions
This is a really rough list of how to deal with pornography, but you are the parent and you know what is best for your child. There are so many wonderful resources out there to help you teach your child on a level that is appropriate for them. This is a really good Australian website about talking to your 7-year-old about pornography.
Make a Plan
This is a really important step because it encourages your 7-year-old to be proactive in preventing pornography in the home. Help your child understand that pornography can be harmful and that avoiding it will help them live a happier life.
This is something you can personalize with your child and continue to improve upon as they get older. Let your 7-year-old make suggestions as to how they can prevent pornography in the home. Letting them choose to not view pornography will help them avoid it in the future.
Be sure to let your 7-year-old know that you are always there to talk to them if they see pornography again. Also, talking to them about other questions they have about their bodies or relationships will help them to feel like they can continue to come to you for future guidance.
I’m no expert at talking about pornography to young children, but I know that is so important that parents learn how to talk to their children about this issue at a young age, so they will be better prepared to address it in the future.
How do I control what my kids can access on the internet? There are several different programs and filters that you can install in your computers and other devices that will help block explicit content from your child. most of these filters will require you to purchase or pay for a subscription of some kind.
When should I teach my 7-year-old about sex? The best way to help your child learn about healthy sexual relationships as they grow is to talk to them frequently about sex and sexual content they might stumble across. It is up to you to determine what things you feel are appropriate to talk with your child about based on their age. 7-year-olds often don’t understand the mechanics of sex and will find it confusing, so teach them about it at a level that is appropriate for their understanding.
How can I teach my child about internet safety? You can teach your child internet safety by sitting down with them and discussing how to use websites and what is safe to search. You can also put guidelines in place to help them navigate the internet. Internet safety is an important topic in today’s technological society and should be discussed with your children.