BlogFighter Spotlight

Matilda’s Story: Why I Brought the Porn Kills Movement to My College Campus

By August 23, 2019 No Comments

Many people contact Fight the New Drug to share their personal stories about how porn has affected their life or the life of a loved one. We consider these personal accounts very valuable because, while the science and research is powerful within its own right, personal accounts from real people seem to really hit home about the damage that pornography does to real lives.

My name is Matilda Zoker. I am attending the University of Wisconsin-River Falls.

My story started when a close friend of mine silently struggled with porn, but was too embarrassed to seek the help that she needed because of the fear that people might judge her. When she confided in me, I started searching for websites that might have resources to help her. That was when I came across “Fight the New Drug.”

Inspired by the numerous stories of the effect of porn on people through addiction and objectifying people, I decided to create a group on campus where students could feel safe and have a support system if they were dealing with anything porn-related. This support system encourages the idea of being able to openly speak about the negative effect of porn in a safe space that encourages dialogue and conversation.

What did my friends think?

When I first thought about the idea of having an open discussion about porn on campus, I brought the subject to my friends, asking them what their opinions were on porn. The reactions from my female and male friends were totally opposite of each other! The females were more open to the idea of a discussion group, while the males frowned upon it. The guys made comments like, “Who talks about porn?,” and “Porn is to be watched not to be talked about.”

From that experience, I was able to understand the different effects porn was having on my male friends due to the social norms of males being more open about porn with their male friends compared to their female friends.

Related: How To Talk About Porn’s Harms Without Sounding Like A Jerk

Seeing how my close friends reacted to the idea of discussing porn, I decided to involve more people and get a better view of their stance on porn. So I set out for some answers.

I sparked conversations with students in the cafeteria, library, and my dorm about what they thought about porn. It really shocked some people! Bringing up a topic like porn isn’t a normal subject because it considered a taboo, right? So, I decided to make my approach less aggressive and more thought-provoking. I introduced the idea by inviting students to an open conversation about porn with questions like, “Do you think porn is good or bad for you?” The majority of the people I approached showed up to the meeting, some didn’t because they felt uncomfortable, and that’s okay.

Conversation Blueprint

Opening up with strangers

During the first open conversation about porn, I opened up about my experience with porn which helped the other students to feel more comfortable with answering and expressing their own experience with porn. This helped me with how to get people to be open about porn and how to also navigate difficult questions in a larger group.

Related: 10 Things To Avoid Saying To Someone Struggling To Give Up Porn

Knowing what I do now, my advice for future Fighters is to respect people and their opinions. When approaching people you must take into consideration the other person’s cultural background, gender, and what is socially expected of them due to their identity. Also, my advice would be to take risks and talk to people, because it’s so worth it!

-M.

Your turn

How cool is that? While Fight the New Drug does not have official on-campus organizations, we love to see stories like this that show how Fighters can bring the movement to their campus in their own way.

Related: 3 Reasons Why People Who Watch Porn Are Not “Bad” People

If you’re looking for a way to bring the movement to your community or campus, consider setting up a screening of our three-part documentary series, Brain, Heart, World. Or, you can show it to your family and friend group. We guarantee it’ll be a great way to spark conversations about this important topic in a shame-free way.

Keep the conversation going, and you’ll continue to make a difference.

Brain Heart World

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