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The first thing that went through my mind was: “Is this really what sex is?” I knew then that I wanted to put off having to do it myself for as long as possible.”In the end, Jacie decided that at 18 she needed to get her first time out of the way.
Some were one-night stands, others were friends I occasionally had sex with.‘It was soulless and they were either into weird stuff they’d seen online, and expected me to be happy to play along or they were completely uninterested in making sex enjoyable for me. I think I deserve better than that.’And Katherine is far from alone in making the connection between pornography and the subversion of traditional loving relationships among our young. author, TV host and public speaker agreed, asserting to the same audience that pornography would eventually kill off, ‘marriage, female sexuality, female libido and finally sex itself,’ due to the way it breaks the connection between desire and love.Today’s young people are growing up learning about the mechanics of lovemaking not through clumsy teenage fumblings with an equally inexperienced partner, but via an endless and easily accessed stream of online porn that at best is unrealistic — and at its brutal worst is disturbing, violent and utterly demeaning towards women.Research by the NSPCC last year revealed that 39 per cent of boys aged between 14 and 17 routinely watch porn, regularly exposing them to the message that sex is something men do to women, and if they don’t like it, well, too bad.But she made the decision to go celibate two years ago, after yet another meaningless sexual encounter that left her feeling worthless and used.Nowadays, she is committed to a new dating rule: sex will remain off the agenda until she is in a long-term, loving relationship.I’m pressing reset on the kind of casual, empty sex that only leaves you feeling used and worthless.’Sex educator Liz Walker, author of Not For Kids!
Protecting Kids Online, believes Katherine and Jacie represent the tip of the iceberg when it comes to young women turning away from sex.‘The only winners when it comes to pornography are the people making money out of it as an industry,’ she says.‘And that’s a message we need to get across to children at an early age in their classrooms.‘I’m so tired of hearing a politically correct approach to pornography that tries to normalise every sort of sexual behaviour as being okay.‘We can’t be politically correct when it comes to violent and abusive mainstream pornography because it’s actually destroying our kids’ understanding of sex and relationships.‘We need to teach young people that hardcore pornography is violent, it’s objectifying and it’s not in any way conducive to a loving relationship or gender equality.‘Not only are young people growing up in a hyper-sexed porn culture, they often miss out on learning skills to develop loving relationships.
Katherine Mooney considers herself a typical 25-year-old.
She has lots of friends, an active social life, a job she enjoys, and goes on many dates with plenty of eligible young men.
‘I felt like the oldest virgin in town, and so I just did it at the next opportunity with a boy I’d known for a while.‘It was an empty experience, afterwards I felt nothing but regret.
Since then I’ve had four sexual partners, but nothing long-term and nothing special.‘Becoming celibate is my way of giving myself the opportunity to experience that the next time I have sex — for it to be an act of love with someone who truly cares about me.
Last year former Baywatch actress Pamela Anderson spoke at the Oxford Union of the numbing affect she believes porn has on intimacy, and of her fears that the warped online depictions of sex lead to sexual violence against women. For Katherine, abstaining from sex until she meets someone she actually wants to have an intimate relationship with seemed her only option after she went home with a man — a friend of a friend — who terrified her with his bedroom demands.‘I had to say no, not once but three times, to having something done to me that would have left me in pain and feeling horribly abused,’ she explains.