I work very hard and am attending college to obtain my degree in the Human Service field. Writing makes me feel alive and gives me the opportunity to touch those whom I would not be able to otherwise. Last but not least, I have been blessed with two amazing daughters who love me completely and support my dreams. Feel free to contact me with questions, concerns or feedback.
When you hear the word "institution"
what is the first thought that comes to mind? Is it more in the
direction of positive or negative?
When I think of institution, I recall a conversation with a Great Aunt years ago. About 50 years ago my Aunt gave birth to a daughter with down syndrome. The doctors and nurses at that time had very different ideas regarding children who were "different" . They stated that the best care for my cousin would be to eventually allow her to be raised in an institution. Fortunately, my Aunt and Uncle disagreed and raised their daughter on their own. She is one of the most loving and kind persons you would ever meet. She is very active, holds a job and has a boyfriend as well.
Today, regarding the word institution, we now associate it with something which should be a very positive experience. The Institution of Marriage. I am sure you have heard of it used in that way, correct?
Marriage today is quite different than 50 years ago. Divorce was a curse word, at least in the Catholic Church. Men worked and women stayed home. Oh how times have changed. More likely than not, most children will have numerous step parents and siblings as well. It is more common than not to be divorced and multiple marriages are on the rise. Dissolution is not prejudice. It hits every race, age and sex. We have now opened the doors and the word marriage has a completely new definition. Instead of this union being approved between a man and a woman, it is now open for everyone regardless of sexual orientation. It almost appears that if you STAY married for more than 10 years, you are a rarity. Marriage extinction is on the rise and soon enough we will be at a 75% divorce rate for all persons.
What has changed something which was the core of our society? Can we pinpoint an exact point in time when this institution became so very negative?
I believe one item has not only changed the world for the better, but has also contributed to the destruction of marriage and relationships in general.
This one item, and yes, please quote me on this, would be the one and only Internet. Before you object, let me tell you why. Years ago, what were the only sources of adult entertainment? Does Playboy ring a bell? How about Pee Wee Herman in an adult theater? Do the words "porn shop" sound familiar? Yes, let's take a look at how most adults viewed entertainment. If you wanted to purchase an adult magazine, normally a man or woman would have to walk into a store. Embarrassing? Well, maybe. I am sure Mister or Misses thought twice before walking into their local Seven-Eleven. I mean, God forbid if your local pastor or priest catch you in the act, right? Worse yet, how about your own mother or father? Sure, you could sign up for a subscription, but still, someone would find out. Your wife, the postman, your neighbor. Men and women were so much more discerning when it came to allowing that type of material within their home.
Today, you can view any type of pornography within the comfort of your own home. It is a multi-billion dollar industry. You no longer have to walk to the drugstore. I mean, why would you? Now you can sneak out of your room in the middle of the night. With a few clicks of the mouse and keyboard, you are allowed to view whatever your heart desires at any given moment. Certain websites are dedicated to assisting married men and women to have intimate encounters with other married or single individuals. It is becoming more popular as time goes on. Although we can ask who, what, where, when and why, we only need one answer: demand.
If there was not a demand, there would not be a need. Unfortunately, innocent victims, ie: spouses and loved ones, are blindsided on a daily basis. Although we expect others to follow a golden rule, it appears as if the internet is an exception to the rule. We hear how innocently it begins. Man or woman views pornography on the internet. It is stimulating. Either they are honest with their spouse or they are not. Maybe they view it together. Regardless of how it begins, it always ends the same way. The minute you open your relationship, to the internet, a 3rd party, etc, you are asking for trouble. If you state that it is just to add excitement to a "stalemate", you are dead wrong. Even if your spouse initially agrees, chances are, they are doing it to make you happy. It is not the desire of a man or a woman who truly loves their spouse to share them with another person, place or thing. Intimacy is the one and only gift you are allowed to share with your spouse, and it should be honored.
I think the only way to salvage a relationship which may go in the direction of pornography is to remove the internet from the home. "Remove it from the home?", you ask. Alright, this may be a bit drastic. I think it's possible there may be a few simple solutions to this growing trend. The first and easiest solution would be to place your computer in a public place in your home. How about a corner in the living room, kitchen or a place frequented by all throughout the day? Secondly, installing a block on any adult sites would not only benefit the wandering eyes of adults, but those of your children as well. A third solution would be a family contract for all to sign. This contract would be an agreement between everyone in the home that the computer will be used appropriately at all times. The fourth and final solution may be drastic. If you suspect your spouse is entertaining undesirable sites, I suggest initially asking a straightforward question. Go ahead and ask your spouse if they are viewing adult websites. Yes, you have the right to an honest relationship. If you do not receive a favorable response, and you continue to suspect your loved one is being dishonest, feel free to put a program on your computer which will track all internet activity, including your own.
I believe the internet has tainted intimacy and encouraged us to be dishonest and unfaithful. It is time we rid ourselves of temptation and get back to what is important. It is time to stop allowing others to get rich off of our indiscretions. How about focusing on the person you chose to be there "until death do you part" and rekindle the flame.
If you have not used the internet for inappropriate use, KUDOS to you! That is awesome. If you are considering it, please follow the steps above to avoid hurting your spouse. If you are now viewing inappropriate images on a regular basis, with or without your spouse's knowledge, please reconsider and try to stop before it gets out of hand. It is very similar to a drug. You will always require more and more to get that high. And, the sad fact is, with online pornography, there are so many disturbing images that you almost "have" to look. After awhile, those initial images become "boring" and you need a little extra to suffice.
Lastly, I am not here to judge. I have known others whose marriage ended due to this growing trend. I have heard first hand the pain it has caused to others I love. I know this article is going to open a coffee can of worms, but I thought it was worthwhile. I look forward to your comments.
UNTIL NEXT TIME!