6 ways to shield your tween from porn

Get ahead of your child’s access to porn and prevent them from suffering from misinformation now!

Kids-6-ways-to-shield-your-tween-from-porn

There is a growing prevalence of pornography amongst our young’uns – a staggering 91 per cent of secondary school boys and 35 per cent of secondary school girls have been exposed to adult material.

          Of those numbers, more than half of the boys intentionally searched for it on the net, while close to half of the girls surveyed stumbled on it. More distressingly, they are getting exposed at a younger age too — 48 per cent of boys during their upper primary years, 67 per cent of girls in lower secondary.

These statistics support the need to start educating your child about sex early. Chong Ee Jay, manager at Touch Cyber Wellness — the non-profit group behind the survey — says, “Have quality conversations to talk about dressing, sex appeal and the ‘birds and the bees’. It is often a taboo topic but we need to start talking about it, or else children would take reference from the media, friends and online personalities!” 

Hershey Regaya, programme manager at Family Life Society, agrees, adding, “Parents should seriously take the role of being the primary sexual educator to their children.”

Both Chong and Regaya share their takes on how you can get ahead of your tweens surfing habits to steer them from the unsavoury, and shield them from sexual miseducation online:

1) Use teachable moments to spark conversations

It can be really awkward to start talking about “the birds and the bees” out of the blue.

          Regaya says to use suitable newspaper articles or stories on the evening news to get the ball rolling: Remember to keep an open mind and allow room for an honest discussion and make sure you are really hearing the views and perspectives of your child.

          Chong also reminds you to be confident in engaging them in a frank discussion about sex and sexuality, avoid the appearance of being shy or sheepish.

“Ensure they keep well within sight when they are surfing the web and step in once you see them viewing explicit material — stop and explain why it’s unsuitable.”

2) Teach them how to navigate the web

When should you expose your child to the Internet? “As early as you can manage but no later than school exposure,” said Chong.

          As it is impossible to continuously prevent your little one from being exposed to explicit material online, surf the web WITH them or at least be nearby — within visual distance — when your children are using the web. Chong adds, “If you see them stumble onto explicit material — it can be provocative adverts with sexual innuendos or their friends sharing inappropriate content on social media — step in immediately and stop the viewing and explain why the content is not suitable.”

3) Web filters should help too

Ask your internet service provider about any web-filtering features. Chong notes that these are often value-added services (thus might cost parents more) that will help you keep a watchful eye in the long run.

          Otherwise, third party software like anti-virus and internet security applications can block access to unsavoury web content too.  

Is your tween’s “friend” asking them to GNOC or TDTM? Click more to find out what that means…