Want to talk with an Adult/Whānau
About Porn?
Hey there! Talking to an adult or whānau about porn can feel awkward 😬 so it’s great you’re keen to give it a go.

Believe it or not, most adults care about young people and are up for an honest convo, so it might be easier than you think – it just comes down to some planning 😉. Here’s some info that might help out… And big respect for giving it a go 👍🏽

TIPS & TOOLSseeing-porn-glasses

Here’s our top tips for starting the convo…

  • Ka pū te ruha, ka hao te rangatahi (As the old net withers another is remade)

    You might be the first in your whānau to be brave enough to talk about porn. Don’t let this put you off – make sure you have some support if you need it (sister, cousin, friend, aunty) and remember this is an important korereo for New Zealand rangatahi.

    Starting the convo can help you and your whānau keep safer and more supported online.

    Up next: Choose your person...
  • Choose your person

    First up, decide who you feel safest to talk to. It can feel super weird talking about this stuff with a parent or wider whānau – but they often care about what’s going on and are up for a convo.

    It’s important to start with a safe person though – so if this isn’t your parents, try a wider whānau member like a cousin, aunty or older sibling.

    If this doesn’t feel safe for you, try someone more removed like a school counsellor, coach or teacher that you 100% trust.

    Up next: Culture or faith...
  • Culture or faith

    If you’re from a faith or culture where porn is a big no-no, talking about it with your folks can be tricky.

    Try talking with someone you trust in your wider whānau or faith community first like a cousin or youth group leader. They can support you and together you can decide whether talking to your parents is a good idea.

    Up next: Give them a heads up...
  • Give them a heads up

    Don’t just drop the convo on them like a bomb. Some pre-warning before deep diving into a ‘porn’ convo will really help.

    Try preparing them in advance (face to face or in a text)… “Hey, this is awkward, but I want to talk with you about porn and some other stuff. It’s real hard to talk about, and I need you to listen and not judge…?”

    Up next: School-up...
  • Ask them to school-up

    Heaps of adults aren’t schooled up on 2020 porn – and to be honest, they’re less likely to flip out if they know what it’s like for young people online. So, the more prepared they are, the better the convo will go.

    Ask them to do their homework in advance…. “Hey – I’d love it if you could check out some NZ resources for parents before we talk as I think it will really help..……”

    Click HERE for the resources.

    Up next: Choose your place...
  • Choose your place

    Choose somewhere you feel safe or isn’t awkward – if that’s possible 😊. For example, in the car when you’re not looking at each other, walking the dog, or over dinner at your Grandma’s (jokes).

    Don’t rush and allow a good 15 mins.

    Up next: Have the korero...
  • Korero kanohi ki te kanohi (Have the korero face to face)

    Be straight up. Sugar coating what’s going on can make it worse if you end up not telling the full truth.

    It can also help to say it all at once, e.g. “Someone asked me to send them a naked photo, I felt pressured, but I wanted to fit in. They’ve shared it around the school and I don’t know what to do.” Phew.

    Up next: Be chill...
  • Be chill

    Newsflash, adults aren’t perfect…they might freak out at first (hopefully not!), especially if it’s the first time they’ve talked about porn. That’s okay. So, be chill about their first response – go easy on them.

    If emotions are high, reschedule for another time.

    Up next: Damage control...
  • Damage control

    If you’re worried your parents will be angry or upset, talk about ‘a friend’: “One of my friends is struggling with porn, do you think they should tell their parents?”

    Or if they do have a bit of a meltdown, let them know you wanted to be honest. “I’m sorry you’re angry. I didn’t have to tell you – but I thought you would want me to be honest.”LGBTIQ+ peeps

    Up next: LGBTIQ+ peeps...
  • LGBTIQ+ peeps

    Sometimes when you are working out your sexual or gender identity talking to your parents might feel unsafe.

    If you’re not ready for this yet, try talking with a trusted adult or the pros HERE

    Up next: Safety comes first...
  • Safety comes first

    The biggest priority is you. If you think this convo may lead to anger or even violence, talk with another adult first.

    If you do think it’s safe, ask someone to be there with you if you talk to your parents.

    Up next: Ka pū te ruha...

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You might be the first in your whānau to be brave enough to talk about porn – but don’t let this put you off 👍🏽
Schooling up the oldies
Here’s a couple of great links for you to send to your parents/whānau to watch so they can get informed before any convo.
Most porn was pretty low-key before the internet. There were actual storylines, romance and bodies were more normal (different sizes) – like they actually had pubic hair.

“The majority, specifically boys, stumble upon porn at an early age. We’re talking primary school… or early high school. At that age, there’s really no one to talk to – and that’s the struggle.”
male, 17 yrs, OFLC survey

Porn in the dark age (pre-Internet)

Want to know what porn was like in your parent’s day and how it’s different to what’s online today 🤔?

There were three main differences:

  •  Amount 
    Playboy and Penthouse were the two biggest mags. Playboy had its most subscribers in 1972 … a whooping 7.6 million per year. Pornhub alone gets 115 million a day. There wasn’t much video either – in 1984 there were 400 porn videos made in the US, last year there were 6.8 million uploads, just to Pornhub.
  •  Access 
    To read or watch porn you used to rock up to a video store or dairy, show them your ID card (18+), and then spend a week’s pocket money buying a porn mag or hiring a porn video. Most families only had one device to watch it on… a big TV in the lounge, so yeah, privacy was a problem! Now it’s on your phone 24/7 – and free.
  •  Content 
    A lot of porn was pretty low key before the internet, there were actual storylines, romance and bodies were more normal (different sizes) – like they actually had pubic hair 😵. In general, it was more like ‘real-life’ sex compared to porn today.
Playboy had its most subscribers in 1972… 7.6 million per year. Pornhub alone gets 115 million a day. Wow.

“It’s hard to admit you have a porn problem or to even say that it’s involved in your life. People want out of it so bad but it’s hard to find a normal way to say it to parents or anyone. It’s embarrassing and you feel like you have betrayed yourself and everything your mum and dad have brought you up to be.”
Anon youth, TLP Survey 2020


Want to talk with an adult
or your whanau about porn?

Want to talk with an adult or your whanau about porn?

Know it’s okay to have questions about porn?

Young kiwis share their own questions and experiences around porn.

What Young People Want From Whānau

This is a great clip with young New Zealanders thoughts on online porn, and what they wish adults knew. Send this to the adults you know.

Why We Need To Talk About Porn

Jo Robertson does a fantastic TEDx for kiwi parents on why we need to talk about porn. Show it to all the adults in your life 😊.

Keep it Real Online

NZ campaign on keeping it real.   

What’s The Biggest Lie You Ever told Your Mum?

Funny clip where kids tell their mums the biggest lie they’ve ever said – and it’s not so bad.

What’s The Biggest Lie You Ever told Your Dad?

Funny clip where kids tell dads the worst thing they’ve ever done – and it’s not so bad.

Here’s some seriously good clips you can send to whanau or an adult so they’re chill when you talk to them. And watch the funny clips where kids tell their parents the biggest lies they ever told – and hey, it’s not so bad!


What’s up?

Whatsup helps young people with heaps of issues like dating, sex, porn, bullying or anxiety. Confidential online chat: 3 -10pm. Freephone counsellors 12-11pm weekdays and 3-11pm on weekends.

Freephone: 0800WHATSUP


24/7 free service designed just for youth. You can call or text to talk about big or small stuff.

Anonymous online chat 7-10pm.
Freephone: 0800 376 633
Text: 234

Aunty Dee

Awesome wellbeing tool that helps you work through any type of problem by guiding you through a series of questions that help you come up with ideas, solutions and connections to the right support.