12 Popular Slang Words Every Parent Should Know

by Claudine Gallacher, MA

12 Popular Slang Words Every Parent Should KnowConnecting with kids through slang?

Do you feel out of touch with the rising generation? Parents often feel their kids speak a different language, and kids often complain that their parents don’t understand them.  One great way to connect with your kids is to talk to them about their slang, the new words created or reinvented by their age group.

(And although I am talking about teens here, even younger kids who may not text on cell phones yet still use and know slang terms you may want to understand.)

How many of these words (common in IM, texting, and Instagram) do you know? I sat down with my daughter and got a few surprises! (Had no idea what “thirsty” has come to mean! See below!) More importantly, it was a great way to show that I want to stay in touch with her world.

Try it! You might enjoy a fun conversation as your kids teach you how to use “on fleak” correctly. Just don’t embarrass them by trying to use the new terms in front of their friends!mom son didn't know that

 

12 Popular slang terms my daughter taught me

I’m sure there are more than these 12 that are relevant to kids. And they may differ between geographical locations. For me, learning slang terms is important because they make up a part of my kids’ language and give me glimpses into their world.

  • bae(s): The person or people who you put Before Anyone Else. Can be used to post, “miss you bae!” or “with the baes” (beside a group picture).
  • OOTD:  Outfit of the Day. Can be used alongside a picture of yourself.
  • BB:  Baby. Put it at the end of a message.  “Love the shoes, bb.”
  • MCM: Man Crush Monday Can be used on any Monday with a hashtag to announce which guy (celebrity or otherwise) you are dreaming about.  “RPattz is still my bae #MCM”
  • WCW: Woman Crush Wednesday. The guy version of MCM.  “My #WCW Emma Watson.”
  • TBT : Throwback Thursday. Can be used anytime to reminisce (like when posting old pictures).
  • dat [fill in the blank] doe:  dat means that and doe means though.  “dat hair doe” could be posted next to a picture of anyone having a bad hair day or anyone whose hair is annoying
  • turn up: To get ready to party/let loose/go wild. “My house. Tonight. We gonna turn up!”
  • ship: To approve of a romantic relationship. “I ship Zac and Sara!  Perfect together!”
  • YAASSS: Yes (with excitement)! For example: Seahawks to the Superbowl! YAAAAASSSS!” (Sorry Pats fans! I’m a native Washingtonian!)
  • can’t even – can’t stand it “That person is so annoying. I CAN’T EVEN!”
  • on fleak:  on point/just right/in the zone  “My hair is on fleak today.”

Portrait of a surprised Asian woman pointing at her touch screen tablet.Warning: One common word that has been sexualized by teens

Most parents use the word “thirsty” when they need a drink of water.  However, among the younger generation, “thirsty” has shifted to mean someone who is desperate/eager for sex.

My teenage daughter tells me that boys in her class snicker when their naive (to slang) teacher makes a comment about needing to fill up her water bottle because she is thirsty.

Keeping up with slang

If you want to stay current on modern slang, you can always look up words in on online slang dictionary. Or, better yet, you can talk to young people. Language is always in a constant state of reinvention and if we want to continue to understand our youth, we must not only be their teachers, but be willing to learn from them as well.

What slang terms have you learned from your kids? How important is it to keep current with their language?

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Reducing Access to Porn: 5 Essential Questions Every Parent Should Ask

by Gail Poyner, PhD

Reducing Access to PornWhen parents discover that their child has been viewing pornography, it can feel devastating. That’s completely understandable. As a psychologist who treats adults and children who are struggling with pornography, parents almost universally ask, “What do I do?” My answer is the same every time: PREVENT ACCESS!

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Gail Poyner, PhD, Licensed Psychologist

The longer a child continues to view pornography, the more entrenched it becomes in their mind, so the first step is to prevent further access to it as much as possible. I recommend a simple but useful way to start what will be only the first step in attempting to keep a child from viewing pornography.

I call it the “who, what, where, when and why” approach. I recommend that parents lovingly and calmly question their child to find out the following information.

The 5 W’s of Porn Access

Who: Is there someone who exposed the child to pornography? If this person can be identified (very often it’s a friend), it’s important to intervene in their time together, as well as alert a parent or caregiver who may have influence over that person.

Two boys watching smartphone photosWhat: On what device is the child accessing pornography? It is essential that this be determined. Most kids access porn on handheld devices—like iPads or smartphones. However, many view it from laptops, video games, PC’s, television and movies (DVD’s). It’s absolutely necessary for parents to restrict any access to pornography. Continued access only strengthens the hold porn has over its victim. Make sure you have strong passwords on all mobile devices, computers and video games.

Where: At what location is the child accessing porn? Is it at home, a friend’s house, at school, the library? Discovering where the child is being exposed to pornography is essential to stopping their access to it.

Mother Catches Daughter Using Tablet Computer When Meant To Be StudyingWhen: Knowing when a child is viewing porn is, once again, essential to precluding access. Is it at night when everyone is sleeping? Is it during the summertime when children may be alone all day (studies show a huge increase in porn use during that time). Is it after school? Is it during a sleepover when the kids are unsupervised?

young boy thinkingWhy: There are many answers to this question, but children aren’t likely to know them. Here are a few whys:

  • Children are curious and they don’t have the skill to reject porn when they see it.
  • Peer pressure—kids may not understand how to say no to a friend who is exposing them to it. (For help on teaching kids courage, read this.)
  • Distraction from negative emotions—most adults report feeling drawn to porn when they feel bored, lonely, angry, stressed, or even tired.

The list can stretch pretty long, but helping a child understand some of the most common “whys” can help them deal with the triggers that often set the stage for porn use.

In our book Good Pictures Bad Pictures: Porn-Proofing Today’s Young Kids, we teach kids about the feeling brain and themom daughter reading GPBP thinking brain. A child’s thinking brain is immature and this makes it harder for kids to control their impulsive behavior. One of the parent’s roles is to act as the child’s thinking brain to protect them from life-altering dangers. Access to porn is one of those dangers.

Preventing access is just the first step, but it’s a powerful and necessary one in helping a child avoid the very real trap of pornography. Beyond using filters on devices and on the Wi-Fi at home, wise parents will find out the who, what, where, when and why of their child’s access to pornography and do as much as possible to cut off access to it.

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“My Porn Addiction Started at Age 10″ Ten Tips from a Father in Recovery

by Kristen A. Jenson

ten tips from a father in recovery

“If you could go back in time and give your 10-year-old self some advice, what would you say?” That’s the question I posed to Brad, a recovering porn addict who I met at a speaking engagement last fall. Brad was happy to do this interview, and as a father and recovering porn addict, has lots of great advice for parents. (Don’t miss his top ten tips after the interview!)

Kristen: Brad, tell me how you first encountered pornography?

Brad: I was introduced to porn by my older brother’s friend—he brought over magazines that he had taken from his dad’s stash. We kept them hidden, and I could go and look anytime I wanted. All kids have curiosity. I wanted to see how a girl’s body was different from mine, and when I did the hormonal response in my body started to kick in. I was only ten years old. I had no idea I was becoming addicted, although I knew what I was doing was wrong.

Kristen: So how did your addiction escalate to the Internet?

Looking at Computer MonitorBrad: My dad was a techie kind of guy and we had an early home computer. He got us hooked up to the Internet and I found that I could access pornography from our computer. My parents started using passwords, but they were easy to figure out. It became a problem because I didn’t have a block in place. There weren’t a lot of “protect your kids from porn” messages back then. I don’t think my parents realized how smart we were. I always went to church with them and was a popular kid—I don’t think they ever suspected I had a problem.

Kristen: So when did you realize you had a problem?

Brad: Well, I’d binge on porn and then I’d use my will power to stop. But even after staying sober for a year, I would fall back into it. I kept up this pattern even after I got married. It wasn’t until I finally admitted that I was an addict that I was able to begin fixing this problem.

Kristen: And when did that happen?

Brad: Before I explain that, you have to realize that all along a big part of my self-image was that I was a good Christian who always attended church. I had confessed before, but never suffered any big consequences. I truly was trying to overcome this, but even after setting up an extremely painful consequence for slipping up (telling my wife to take my precious kids and leave me if I ever looked again), I did slip up. At the time I went in to confess to my church leader, I had just started working with the youth—something I really enjoyed doing. But as soon as I opened up about my problem, I was released from that position. Other important privileges were taken away from me, and it felt like a kick in the teeth. It was humiliating because my entire congregation knew something was wrong. But I needed that. It made me realize that I truly was an addict that needed outside help.

Kristen: How did you get help?

Brad: I started attending a 12-step addiction recovery program for pornography and sex addicts. I’d known about these programs, but I always thought they were for hard core addicts, and I didn’t think I was at level. But the great thing is that since entering that program, I haven’t messed up once.

Kristen: What helps you to stay in recovery?

Brad: Firewalls. I had to put firewalls in place. It’s really amazing how well they work. house on fireOne morning I woke up and saw that the house behind us had caught fire. It started in the garage and burned so hot that it melted the cars! However, the blazing hot fire did not breach the firewall between the garage and the house. I went over and looked at the sheetrock. It wasn’t any thicker than the regular sheetrock, but it was made of fire-proof material. That got me started thinking about things we can do to build firewalls.

For example, locking the phone is the biggest thing, so I can’t get to the Internet. That’s how I usually slipped up was on my smartphone. Now my wife has the passcode to the Internet. It’s very inconvenient because I’m a business consultant and I use my phone a lot. But locking it up has made a huge difference. I also never use my phone or go on the Internet after 10 pm. I just know that when I’m tired, I’m weak. When I’m tempted, I use a delay tactic. I make myself wait for 15 minutes.

I’ve learned that I had to identify my boundaries and build firewalls so I wouldn’t go anywhere close to pornography.

Kristen: If you could go back in time and give your 10-year-old self some advice, what would you say?

dad son stairsBrad: Wow, that’s a tough one. I think I’d tell that little boy to take a good, hard look at where he was headed and really think about the man he wanted to become. I’d tell myself about the years of heartache he might suffer as a result of looking at pornography. I’d explain the brain science behind addiction like you do in your book. I would tell him that he can be so much more if he’ll keep pornography out of his life.

Kristen: Other than the Internet, what else did you give up to get into recovery?

Brad: My 26 gigs of music that I’d been collecting all my life. I love music and I’m a musician. In high school, I was a really good break dancer, too. (And I mean, really good!) But I came to realize that this music weakened me. It was a trigger so I deleted it. In the end, being sober was worth it.

Kristen: Is there anything else that helped you to fight your porn addiction?

teen girl with boyBrad: One of the things that stuck with me and gave me strength to fight was the understanding of how human sex trafficking is linked to pornography. I never paid for pornography—there’s so much out there for free!—but I supported it by viewing it. This made me feel so ashamed and the realization that I was contributing to this problem really helped to fortify my resolve to beat it.

Kristen: Any final words of advice for parents?

Brad: I want to tell them two things: First, take this very seriously and do everything you can to protect your kids. My parents taught me to stay away from smoking and drugs. They said that I would be tempted and pressured by my peers, but that I had to make my decision before the moment of temptation hit me. I think that same message can be applied to pornography and taught to kids so they are prepared.

Second, I want parents to know that if their kids are into porn, there is hope that they can overcome this addiction to lust (because that’s what it is). At one time I thought I was doomed to take this addiction to my grave, but although I still struggle, it is possible to learn to deal with addiction and come out the winner.

Here’s some more hard-earned wisdom from Brad.

 A Porn Addict’s Advice for Parents

  1. Don’t underestimate kids or the pull of porn. Kids are smarter than you think. And pornography is more enticing to kids than you believe. Take access to the Internet very seriously.
  2. Empower with brain science. From a very young age, kids need to be taught about the neurological dangers of pornography. Books like Good Pictures Bad Pictures: Porn-Proofing Today’s Young Kids can be very helpful in explaining to kids that although looking at pornography does have an effect on their brain, they can learn powerful ways to protect themselves with the CAN DO Plan.
  3. worried boyAnalyze and then act to replace porn. Kids who are involved in porn need to figure out why they are using it. What are their triggers? Does conflict with friends or family members trigger porn use? Loneliness? Negative feelings? Find out those things and begin working on them. Just remember, when you take porn away, some other stress response needs to take its place.
  4. The power of music and video games. For some kids music can lead to a greater involvement with pornography. The lyrics and beat can add fuel to the fire. For others, it’s video games. Discover what weakens their resolve to quit using and plan ways to eliminate them.
  5. Find out your child’s portals to porn. You must be willing to do anything and everything to cut off access if your child has been viewing Internet pornography.
  6. Explain the link between porn and human sex trafficking. The young women in pornography are often the horribly abused victims of sex-trafficking. By the time kids are 10 or 11 they can begin to understand this concept.
  7. Get real. In order to get into recovery, a person has to first and finally admit that they are an addict. If your child keeps getting pulled back into using pornography, it’s possible that an addiction has been developed. The sooner this reality is addressed the better chances are for recovery.
  8. Understand that an addicted brain does not consider consequences. Fear of punishment or loss cannot keep a person sober. The addicted brain doesn’t work that way. It goes directly to the addiction, bypassing the part of the brain that considers consequences. That is the very nature of an addiction.
  9. To get and stay in recovery, addicts can put up firewalls. Parents can use thishouse on fire same idea to keep kids safe from pornography. Lock phones (from Internet access), put strong passwords on all mobile devices and change them often. Understand that kids can gain access to the Internet via all sorts of apps.
  10. Go sign up for Fortify. Parents with kids under 13 who are involved in pornography can sign up for Fortify—an online recovery program from Fight the New Drug—and work the program with them. The program was created for teens, so parents may have to explain a few things, but it’s a very affordable first-line option (and free for teens up to age 20). The programs includes 50 videos, a Battle Tracker calendar and loads of other amazing features.

Whew! I think this is one of the longest articles I’ve posted. If you’re still with me, give yourself a pat on the back for endurance! I hope you’ve learned something valuable to help your kids decide to keep pornography out of their life.

Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter @PornProofKids. Thanks!

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Good Pictures Bad Pictures includes an easy to remember CAN DO Plan™ for kids to use when they see pornography. Subscribe to our PornProof Kids blog and get this free printable poster to reinforce the skills your kids need. Click here to subscribe.

Kids & Porn: How to Prepare, Prevent and Protect

by Kristen A. Jenson

kids and porn how to prepare prevent protectCan you prepare kids to reject porn? Can you prevent them from seeing it? How can you protect them from what may be a full-blown, life-long addiction?

As I’ve been traveling around the country speaking and attending conferences, I’ve found that not everyone agrees on what these terms mean when it comes to kids and pornography.

  • Kristen at End Exploitation Summit 2014 croppedFor example, one (excellent) speaker said that she never talked about prevention because no child could be prevented from seeing pornography.
  • Another leader said that parents cannot protect kids from pornography, they can only prepare them to reject it.
  • And when I asked several moms how they felt about the words prepare and protect, the word protect won hands down. Moms definitely want to protect their kids!

But I think we need to do all three! Here’s my take on how to prepare, prevent and protect when it comes to kids and pornography.

Prepare

mom reading to kids 2Preparing kids starts early. Teaching young kids that there are good pictures and bad pictures and giving kids a plan of action (like our CAN DO Plan in Good Pictures Bad Picturesto reject the bad ones is huge! A prepared kid is an empowered kid. A prepared kid knows not to let their eyes linger (and the brain science behind why they need to close their eyes). A prepared kids knows to tell a trusted adult, thus reducing the secrecy and shame that can fuel a porn addiction.

Preparation is not just about warning kids about pornography, but also about teaching healthy attitudes about sex and giving kids good information in age-appropriate doses.

Prevent

Two boys watching smartphone photosCan you prevent your kids from ever seeing pornography? Not unless they’re physically unable to see. And even then they can hear pornographic lyrics and dialogue. But you can prevent as much exposure as possible with filters, passwords, and family rules and practices. You can work with your kids to show them why preventing pornographic images from entering their brains is so important.

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Copyrighted illustration from Good Pictures Bad Pictures

But what about preventing addiction? Though we cannot prevent all exposure to pornography, we can teach our kids the cognitive skills to prevent those images from taking hold of their brains. Of course, ultimately they have to be persuaded to reject porn, but I believe that if a child is prepared, they can choose to prevent themselves from acquiring an addiction.

Protect

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Copyrighted illustration from Good Pictures Bad Pictures

When you insist that your kids learn how to swim, are you protecting them from drowning? I think so. You may not be there in every dangerous water situation, but their skills in the water and knowledge of the rules will definitely make them safer.

It’s the same with pornography. Are you going to be there in every situation to defend them from the evil porn industry? No, but if you’ve taught your kids about their two brains and how they can use their thinking brain to stay in charge, I believe their ability to protect themselves skyrockets.

Prepare, prevent and protect—all three are important in the fight to keep our kids safe from pornography. What do you think?

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Good Pictures Bad Pictures includes an easy to remember CAN DO Plan™ for kids to use when they see pornography. Subscribe to our PornProof Kids blog and get this free printable poster to reinforce the skills your kids need. Click here to subscribe.

“Look Mommy! That’s Pornography!” How a 5 year old sparked a grocery store chain to cover up Cosmo

Serious girl pointing aside; isolated on the white background

by Kristen A. Jenson

Happy New Year! I hope you’re feeling more empowered against pornography today than you were a year ago!

May I share some success stories from 2014 with you? (Among them is how a 5 year old sparked a major reduction in soft core porn in her city’s grocery stores and how our book played a part!)

1. Good Pictures Bad Pictures is a #1 Best Seller!

You’ve helped get the word out about Good Pictures Bad Pictures and it has regularly been #1 in all of three of its categories on Amazon (and has been getting more and more attention online with great reviews in newspapers and blogs). Thank you!!!GPBPKindleCoverInternal

For me, this is personal. Every copy means that another family has a comfortable resource for talking to their kids about pornography and a plan to empower those kids to reject it. This realization makes me cry happy tears!

(And now it’s available on Kindle! If you’ve purchased a print version, get the Kindle version for only $0.99 for a limited time.)

2. Kids are speaking up!

They are using the CAN DO Plan to name pornography when they see it—and that is motivating their parents to make a difference. In fact, one mom who read Good Pictures Bad Pictures to her 5 year-old daughter is the reason that a major grocery store chain in the Midwest (Hy-Vee) is going to move and cover all Cosmopolitan magazines to keep them out of easy sight of kids. (Keep reading!)

3. The anti-porn movement is gaining energy!

Dawn Hawkins

Dawn Hawkins, Executive Director of PornHarms.org

Here’s proof that we are making a difference. This amazing story was shared by Dawn Hawkins, the executive director of Morality in Media/PornHarms.com in a recent letter to supporters.

Father Sean Kilcawley attended our Summit. He directs many efforts in Nebraska to help those struggling with pornography and also the partners of those who struggle. He met Kristen Jenson at our summit. She wrote a book, Good Pictures Bad Pictures, for parents to read with their kids and she regularly educates adults on how to address these issues with children.

When Father Kilcawley learned about this incredible tool, he brought it back to NE where he suggested to his supporters that they get this book and read it with their kids. One woman…did just this. After reading the book with her 5-year-old, the little girl pointed to Cosmopolitan Magazine in the checkout line of the local Hyvee grocery store and identified that it was pornography. (HOW GREAT THAT THIS LITTLE GIRL COULD DO THAT!)

The mom realized that she had to do something about it. She took it to the manager to complain and she wrote a letter to the corporate headquarters. A little while later, the VP of Hyvee called her personally and told her that the stores in her city would be moving and covering all Cosmo magazines out of easy sight of young children. VICTORY!!!

Dawn Hawkins makes the point that as we work together as a coalition, miracles are happening. I can’t tell you how excited I was to find out that Good Pictures Bad Pictures helped a 5 year old girl to spark this positive change.

Epiphany–kids can and will play a part!

As we teach kids to reject pornography (and all sexual exploitation), THEY will help spark the changes that need to happen. Our kids will call for more accountability so that we act to clean up the public landscape of magazine covers, billboards and TV commercials. They will complain about online porn in video games and on YouTube and in the app stores.

Copyrighted illustration from Good Pictures Bad Pictures

Copyrighted illustration from Good Pictures Bad Pictures

I’m not saying that they have the responsibility to do this work, but when kids point out pornography, the adults (including the vice presidents of grocery store chains) will start to listen and respond.

I know that 2015 will bring many more victories as we work diligently to inform parents and empower kids to reject pornography.

What can you do to help? Share PornProof Kids and help others get informed and empowered! Like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter @PornProofKids and share our posts on Pinterest. Thank you!

3 Secrets to Porn-Immune Kids

Kristen Jenson:

Last April this post went viral. In just a few days, it was viewed over 150,000 times! Helping kids to build an immunity to pornography is an important part of parenting in the digital age. Here’s our gift to proactive parents everywhere–three simple ways to inoculate your kids against porn.

Originally posted on PornProof Kids™:

How do you immunize kids against porn? How do you porn-proof them so your kids stay safe online?

It’s no different than the many other dangers you train your kids to deal with–first you warn them, but then you’ve got to practice “what you preach” so they can react appropriately when they are exposed.

It’s kind of like a fire drill. First you teach them about the potential for danger; then you teach them how to get out of the house safely.

Beyond Warning

puzzled momXSmall I believe that warning them is a great first step, and a boatload of kudosto you proactive parents who open a dialogue with your kids about pornography.

But may I suggest that you don’t stop there?

Arm your kids with a warning, and then follow up with the skills they need to protect their brains. It’s like building any kind of immunity–first you need the knowledge about good…

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Top 5 Ways to Give Kids the Gift of Courage

by Kristen A. Jenson

Gift of CourageWhat does courage have to do with porn-proofing kids? Lots! Ultimately, after all we do as parents, our  kids will need the courage to reject pornography while their peers may be seeking it out. (You may be interested to know that the root of the word courage is the Latin word for heart–cor. To have heart. To take heart.)

What is courage?

Courage is a fundamental, foundational value. C.S. Lewis observed in The Screwtape Letters that, “Courage is not simply one of the virtues, but the form of every virtue at the testing point.” He later points out that even Pilate was merciful to Jesus until it became risky.

Think about it—it often takes courage to be kind to an underdog or apologize when you’ve messed up. It takes courage to be different. It takes courage to defend your beliefs, protect your rights or speak out against exploitation. I have a plaque in my office that reads “Speak the truth even if your voice shakes.” (It was given to me by Dawn Hawkins, Executive Director of PornHarms, who knows what it means to courageously speak the truth against the porn industry.)

speak the truthSo how do we help our kids make the courageous decisions that will keep them free peer pressure, pornography or addiction?

Five ideas that can help your kids become courageous

1. Define: Explain what courage is and why it’s important to be courageous. Here’s my definition: “Courage is the ability to act even when you fear the consequences.” Author Linda Eyre defines courage as doing the right thing even when it’s hard (and even when other kids call you “chicken”!). Maybe your family can come up with your own definition.

2. Empathize: Let you kids know that you understand that it takes courage to protect their brain from pornography when other kids are looking at it. It may take courage to come and tell you if they’ve seen it accidentally, or to report that a friend or family member exposed them to it. This helps kids realize that it’s normal for some things to be difficult. Everyone has fears and being courageous can be hard. All the more reason to…

3. Praise: When your kids do anything to overcome fears, praise them. Tell them how proud you are of their courageous actions.

4. Recognize: Point out courage in others. When you see a story of someone exhibiting courage, help your kids to recognize it. Especially share stories of family members or ancestors who have been courageous. (Read more about the value of telling family stories for a child’s mental health and well-being.)

5. Model: Finally, and maybe most importantly, model courageous behavior yourself.  And don’t be shy in pointing it out to your kids. Have you overcome fears in order to pursue your goals, defend your convictions, protect your brain, or help someone else?

For more ideas about instilling courage in kids, read this.

Is courage like a muscle?

I’m not sure I want to admit how scary it’s been to publish and promote Good Pictures Bad Pictures this past year. To begin with, I  taped a promo video for the book—definitely scary! And for the first time in my life, I was interviewed on radio shows, asked to speak on webinars, and even presented at a national conference. Yikes!

There have been times when I’ve moaned, “How did I get myself into this?”

But here’s what I’ve discovered: The more courage I muster, the more confidence I develop.

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Copyrighted illustration from the book Good Pictures Bad Pictures: Porn-Proofing Today’s Young Kids

Maybe courage is like a muscle—the more you use it, the stronger it gets!

What have you taught your kids about courage? Do they understand how courage can protect their brain from pornography?

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Note: PornProof Kids will be taking a break during the holidays and re-posting some of our most popular articles. But we’ve got a ton of new information and support for you planned for the New Year!

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