50 Shades of Magic Mike. Mommy Porn is No Better than Daddy Porn.

I read an article online last week titled something like, “Mommy Porn is No Better than Daddy Porn.” So often, and what has generally been true, is that it is mainly men who struggle with pornography. But more and more, new types of lust and pornography are coming out. Men are more visual than women, so they have visual pornography. But women, generally they’re more into reading and exploring their imaginations. Sexually-explicit “romance novels” directed towards women are nothing new, but they have been gaining much traction as of late. Apparently there is a new erotica series out called “50 Shades of Grey” that so many women are diving right into. Many think it is spicing up their marriage or sex-life. Or don’t equate it with what men do when they watch pornography. And then there is the new movie “Magic Mike” which is about a male stripper. Hordes of women are going to go see it to lust after Channing Tatum and Matthew McConaughey’s bodies. Not only that, but Universal has now also bought the film rights to the female-bondage erotica series “50 Shades of Grey,” so we can expect that erotica bondage pornography itself is not too far away from coming to the big screen. Channing Tatum has already said that he would like to play the main man role in this movie whenever it comes out.

So why are we as Christians, specifically you Christian ladies and women, rushing into the fray? Why are we so eager to go see “Magic Mike?” If it was your boyfriend or husband going to the movies to watch a movie and ogle female strippers called “Magic Maggie,” would you be as supportive?

As Christian men, when tempted with pornography, we have to remember that that woman you are lusting after is someones daughter, mother, sister, wife. And as Christians, we should treat it as such. We should turn from the temptation by thinking about your little sister all naked and raw up on the screen. Or your mother. Would you watch it then? And women, the same goes for you. If that was your boyfriend, husband, son, father…would you still be as ecstatic?

Lust is lust, no matter what form it comes in, and lust is sin. It troubles me seeing so many ‘Christian’ ladies so excited about these movies and novels, as much as it does to see how many men struggle with pornography. Why the double standard? Why is it okay for women to engage in these activities, but frowned upon when men do it? It should be frowned upon for everyone.

Pornography hurts. It hurts your culture. It hurts your spiritual life, thus hurting your soul and your salvation. It hurts our Lord and Savior. It hurts your relationships and marriage. It’s no wonder that a vast majority of couples where the man views pornography end in divorce. And now we’re on the verge of the same thing happening to our women. We need to take a stand.

I was inspired to write this post when I saw one of my best friends, who is now a pastor, repost an article on the topic. I don’t know where it came from, but here is what it said:

Unless you’ve been in hiding, you’ve heard of the phenom that is ‘mommy porn.’ Fifty Shades of Grey, by E. L. James, a BDSM erotic fiction trilogy, is rocking the book industry. Reaching number one on the New York Times Bestseller List and topping it for the last three months (largely by discreet e-book downloads), I walked past it in the grocery store two weeks ago. Even though it’s already banned in libraries in three states, women are reading it while they fill gas. According to The New York Times, moms ages 30-50 are using it to “revive their libidos.” 

ABC News provided this plotline summary of the trilogy:


“Anastasia Steele, 21, and a virginal college student, can’t say no to dashing 27-year-old Christian Grey, who insists she sign a contract that allows him to submit her to his every sadomasochistic whim. In their first sexual encounter, Grey unveils his silver tie and binds her wrists in knots, and Steele does as she is told. He is also fabulously rich, a telecommunications tycoon, and uses his wealth to take care of her like a pampered princess. “Ana,” as he calls her, willingly and excitedly agrees to spanking, whipping and gagging, with props like ice, rope, tape—a repertoire right out of a BDSM [bondage, discipline, dominance and submission] manual. Grey instructs her to call him, “sir” and sets rules on everything from her diet to her most intimate grooming routines.”


Until today I chose to keep my head in the sand, cover my eyes with a pillow, and put earmuffs over my ears. I just wanted it to go away. 

But today it hit me. Friends, it is NOT going anywhere. It will not blow over.

In fact, this is probably the beginning. There’s going to be an infiltration. An invasion of this book and its aftermath will soon impact marriages, friendships, communities, and businesses. You will be unable to avoid it. Fourteen-year-olds are going to secretly sneak into their mom’s room and read its pages. Pornography downloads and purchases will rise. Misogyny will heap burning coals on your sister, your cousin, and your best friend. Men (not all men) will take advantage of a reader’s newfound sexual confidence. Women will believe a loving sexual relationship involves rope, whips, and dominance. Forty-somethings will compromise, saying ‘a little fantasy doesn’t hurt anyone’ and perhaps even think, ‘this has actually helped my marriage’ (e.g., “I finally want to have sex again”). Images will seep into minds for the long haul, waiting until a weak moment where they can creep in and cause dissatisfaction, lust, or carnal selfishness. 

Already the book is having an impact. One of the top erotica publishers reported at the end of April a 250% increase in e-book sales. Sales of BDSM accessories and toys are spiking. Now that Universal Pictures has the movie rights, we can expect erotic fiction in the form of porn in movie theatres across the country. 

I am not trying to be dramatic. I’m simply saying we need to be prepared for what the British magazine, The Economist, says is sure to come: “the glut of mommy porn.”

From what I’ve read, people on the other side of the spectrum, people who practice BDSM, watch hard porn, and/or read erotic fiction, they claim this book is supposedly ‘not that bad.’ I wouldn’t know. What I do know is that millions upon millions of women are reading it, and millions more are talking about it. Millions of dollars are being poured into the erotic fiction industry, and millions of dollars are flooding the explicit sex market. This cart is rolling down the hill, and we don’t know how long it’s going to fly and all the damage it will do in the process. 

As a mother of three children, I’m likely raising my sons to be someone’s lover, husband, father, and best friend. My daughter too, is learning how to be her husband’s wife. And all around them are compromised, loosened sexual content. It’s on the TV, on the radio, in bookstores, on the baseball field and next to the Trident at the grocery store check out. A few months ago, when I was face-painting for our city, an 11-year-old asked to have ‘Sexy and I Know It’ etched on her cheek (goodbye unicorns). Turn on a baseball game and you’ll enjoy the not-so-pleasant duty of educating your child about Cialis.

Sex sells, and while we can take steps as parents to guard what comes into our homes, we cannot, unfortunately, completely isolate our children from the avid sexual images around them. 

Fifty is only going to make this worse. 

We need to be prepared.

The rulebook that navigates my life as a Jesus-follower is that of the Holy Bible. For most of my readers, you too also have that compass. Yet I understand there are many people who do not live their life under that constitution, and I have many amazing friends who are of no faith or of a different faith. I must be ready to take a stand in this conversation. We (you and me) must be wise, educated, and engaged to speak into the movement, and we need to have more than Bible verses under our belt. We need to be able to discuss, dialogue, and challenge our culture as to why we think these books and what they stand for negatively impact our communities. We need to be able to explain why this book is not good for the soul, why it will harm your marriage instead of help it, why a carnal pleasure for a moment is not worth the lasting psychological harm.

The following is a great article on the topic by a blogger named Melissa Jenna. I highly encourage you to check it out:

This is a post that will not make me any friends, and will alienate some of my existing friends, and generally make me look like a complete stick-in-the-mud. Do people still say that? Stick-in-the-mud? How about killjoy/spoilsport/wet-blanket, etc? You get what I mean.

Explanation

The only reason I’m writing this at all is because I feel compelled to do so. I’m not sure if you ever had this feeling, but sometimes there are words that I need to write, only I don’t want to write them. So I push them deep down, underneath all of the other words I actually want to write, and beneath my mental-list of chores and errands, so far down that I think they basically don’t exist anymore. But that’s never the case. Something always causes them to spring back up, and this will continue happening until I sit down and write the words out. Then I can move on with my life. That’s what this is.

“Mommy Porn”

“50 Shades of Grey” is an erotic novel, and “Magic Mike” is a movie about male strippers, and both are very, very popular with women right now. In fact, they’re being called “Mommy Porn.” (I won’t go into more detail, because there is enough about them both on the Internet already.) I can’t check Twitter or Facebook without reading another enthusiastic update about both of them. Seems like every woman I know is into one of those works, or both. I am not surprised that both of these works are being celebrated so openly; there are so many equivalent works that are aimed at men that garner major public attention that I’m actually surprised it took women this long to get their own “thing.” I am surprised, though, at how completely accepting Christian culture is to both of these works. I’ve read a few dozen different updates from Christian women regarding “50 Shades” and “Magic Mike,” and the verdict? They love them. I mean they really looooove them. They can’t stop talking about them.

(Quick, like a bandaid:) This is not okay.

Christian women need to reject both of these works, and instead, use our voices in support of what is good, right and true. It is our responsibility, as daughters of the Heavenly King, to remain set-apart from the poisons of our culture, to rebuke temptation, and to celebrate and honor righteousness.

Some Scriptural Support

“Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.” 1 Peter 5:8

If your enemy thinks he can snare you with something as “acceptable” as 50 Shades or Magic Mike, you better believe he will take advantage. Don’t let the culture’s acceptance and celebration of these works confuse you, or put you off your guard.

“Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is —his good, pleasing and perfect will.” Romans 12:1-9

(Emphasis my own.) Do not conform to the patterns of this world. In other words, just because everyone else is reading it/watching it, that doesn’t make it acceptable.

“The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are healthy, your whole body will be full of light. But if your eyes are unhealthy, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light within you is darkness, how great is that darkness!” Matthew 6:22-23

Is what you’re putting in front of your eyes healthy? Is what you’re putting into your imagination healthy?

Put Yourself in His Shoes

To gain another perspective, imagine your husband (or father/brother/church leader) going around bragging about how much he loved reading last month’s Playboy magazine, or rallying all of his guy friends to go see “Magic Meghan” for the third time. If our husbands were drooling over a movie about female strippers, we would be livid. It wouldn’t be tolerated. Church leaders would be publicly denouncing men’s sudden acceptance of pornography and erotic films. (Why aren’t church leaders publicly denouncing 50 Shades or Magic Mike, by the way?)

Make Good Decisions

If you’re a Christian woman, and you’re reading this, know that I am not judging you. (I own 50 Shades myself. I bought it before I knew what it was, on the recommendation of a friend, and after reading some pages and discovering that it’s pornography, I cast it aside.) We all have poor judgement sometimes, and leave ourselves open to temptation. But we can also use our agency to make good decisions. Like throwing 50 Shades away (don’t re-gift it!), and not going to see Magic Mike. (Or if you’ve already seen it, stop encouraging all of your friends to go see it.)
Rather than causing each other to stumble by putting our sisters in the path of temptation, what if we decided to use our voices to celebrate our marriages? Or the marriages of your friends and family? What if we championed healthy relationships?

Taking Things Up a Notch

(This next paragraph talks about sex a little bit, so stop reading if you don’t want to read about sex.)
What if we invested our time and energy into spicing things up in our bedrooms? Rather than spending $12 on that movie, or the book, why not save the money, and instead, wear something sexy to bed, just because? And what if all the time that you would have spent reading 50 Shades, you instead spent making love to your husband? (Though probably not all in one day…unless you’re, like, training for a marathon.) We can definitely kick things up a notch without resorting to reading pornography, or lusting after celebrity-strippers.

Non-Christian Perspective

It is not okay to sexually objectify people. Just because evidently this summer we’re all about objectifying men, that doesn’t make it okay. It’s not like there’s a scale, and all these years, it’s been heavy on the objectification-of-women side, and we need to balance it out by objectifying men now. It doesn’t work that way. The only way we “balance the scale” is by quitting objectifying anyone, and leaving the scale empty. Oh, and that saying “you are what you eat?” I’d say the same thing goes for media: you are what you consume. Pornography is unhealthy. There, I said it.

Do I win some kind of prize for being the least popular person on the Internet for this? Like I’ve said: I did not want to write this. Please be nice to me in the comments, because if you know me at all, you know that this is totally out of character for me. I don’t preach at people…well, ever. I’m just glad these words are out so I can finally write the things I want to write.

http://melissajenna.com/2012/06/30/50-shades-of-magic-mike-in-which-i-am-very-uncool/

Ask me anything. 

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