Women & Pornography

Do Christian Women Really Watch Porn?

Do Christian Women Watch Porn

Do Christian Women Watch Porn

The first sizable speaking event I had was a conference in Canada in December 2010.  I remember telling one of the male speakers my topic.

“I talk about women struggling with pornography.”

There was a bit of a pause- you could probably call it awkward.  “Hmmmm… well that’s interesting.  That’s usually a men’s topic.”

“Exactly.”

As I prepared to present at the Set Free Summit, I was reminded of the fact that some people still don’t “get it.”  When I mention my topic, the responses are mixed, but one thing they have in common is confusion.

Really?  Do Christian women really watch porn?

The simple answer is “yes.”

But that would also be the shortest blog post I have ever written, so we all know this isn’t going to end there.

The problem with the question is that it is loaded. It isn’t just a simple yes or no question.  There are questions within the question.

What kind of woman does that?

Can she really love Jesus?

Is it really “porn” or just “fantasy?”

Ok, but they don’t watch as much as men, right?

Why?!

When someone asks “Do Christian women really struggle with pornography?”  They are asking more for an explanation than an answer.

Statistically, yes, Christian women watch pornography.  In fact (brace yourself), only 13% of self-identified Christian women say they never watch porn.  Here’s the study.   That means that 87% of Christian women at some point have watched porn.

If you add up all of the percentages, 10% watch porn several times a month or more frequently (1% watch it several times a day).  According to the same study, married women are more likely to watch porn than single women, which pulls the rug out from under the whole “Marriage will solve my problem” theory.

But this means, we have a big problem.

While the general Christian populace is still debating whether there really are women who struggle with pornography, there are plenty of women who are really struggling with pornography.

And 99.9% of those women think they’re alone (that’s not an official study statistic).  Which means, there’s a problem.  The numbers are not adding up.

It’s time for us to stop wondering if they really do and accept the fact that yes, Christian women do watch porn, just like Christian men watch porn, just like non-Christian women watch porn.

The reasons why?  Well, there aren’t any special ones.  Some might try to make the argument that women are more emotional.  So, women don’t really watch “real” pornography.  Women, they think, are more into fantasy and erotica.  Remember 50 Shades of Gray?  That’s the kind of ‘pornography’ we consider to be women’s pornography.

But women do more than just leaf through the pages of poorly-written novels.  They also log on to porn sites and watch hard-core material.

Yes, even Christian women.

For some, that may call into question the sincerity of the woman’s faith.  “If she really loves Jesus, she wouldn’t be doing this.”  While I disagree with the theology of that approach, I will say, regardless of what you believe, be consistent.  If a woman who watches porn “doesn’t love Jesus” in your opinion, then a man watching porn also “does not love Jesus.”

That’s not usually the case.  A man’s struggle is often attributed to a combination of how men are “visually wired” and a sex-saturated society that contributes to it.

It’s that inconsistency– women get judged while men get explained– that is the root of so much shame.

That is the source of the silence many women find themselves trapped in.  Nobody talks about it.  Nobody talks about the pastor’s wife who watches porn.  The female worship leader, the college RA, the Bible study leader, the babysitter…

It is unexpected, unheard of, untraditional even.  If we don’t acknowledge it, it won’t exist, right?  Maybe if we keep quiet, it will just go away.  How often has that actually worked?

Can we just call it what it is?  We are all sinners, and porn is a sin.  It is not a special gender-specific super sin.   

We have this idea that it is “normal” for men to struggle and yet abnormal for women to struggle.  It is true that fewer women struggle, but the fact remains, women do.  We need to stop trying to figure it out and just start having the conversation.  Start talking about the fact that Christian women struggle with pornography and start figuring out how to help.

When we open up the conversation about sin, we open up the conversation to grace.

The answer to “Do Christian Women Really Watch Pornography?” is “yes.”  Now, how do you plan on helping them?

Not sure where to start?  Head over to the Resource page for some great materials.
Pick up a copy of my book.
Ready to start the conversation? Let me know!

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