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Protecting Our Children

White Ribbon Week Helps Protect Children


By JoAnn Hamilton
March 13, 2006

White Ribbon Week is an event designed to help young children learn become aware that they can choose to walk away from inappropriate language, pictures or stories. They need to protect what enters their mind. This program encourages children to tell their parents when they have any kind of a negative experience. Teens can become more aware of the quickness of pornography addiction and the d if ficulty this can create.  


White Ribbon Week is sponsored by Citizens for Families. It is scheduled for February and March each year. It can be done by the Parent Teacher Association or any group of parents coordinating with the school.


The purpose of White Ribbon Week is to increase public awareness of the harm done by exposure to pornography. The average teen does not understand that looking at sexual swimsuit pictures and lingerie ads can quickly spur an addiction to pornography that is d if ficult to control. With the mindset of "boys will be boys," teens and older children are curious, so they search for more, perhaps on the Internet. They need to understand that, according to Dr. Rick Hawks, addiction can occur with a single exposure of Internet pornography. Sometimes it takes two weeks. According to Paula Houston, former Utah pornography ombudsman, if someone is involved seven hours a week for three consecutive months, they likely are addicted. Many counselors say it is much faster than that.


And how does it start? Often, it starts with exposure to sexually explicit swimsuit or lingerie images. These images are so common in advertising, on television and in movies that most parents shrug and say that it is not affecting their good students. After all, their home is a healthy one.  


Psychologists say that it is wonderful that they have a healthy home, but their children are vulnerable. No adult saw as a child what your children are seeing. And is it affecting them? It is. Most ecclesiastical leaders are afraid of the vast numbers of youth and young adults who have huge problems. Yes, with treatment, they can get help and live good lives, but without it, many marriages will suffer, homes will be broken up, children will be abused, etc.  


Among the materials offered by Citizens for Families is a Checklist for Parents and Grandparents. This is on the web site, www.strengthenthefamily.net , in the White Ribbon Week materials.  


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