5 Ways Pornography Affects a Father’s Relationship with His Daughter

Pornography Affects on a Daughter

Photo by BrianTuchalskiPhotography

Many people will claim that pornography is a victimless crime. “It’s not hurting anyone,” they say. “What a man does behind closed doors is his own prerogative.”

The problem with that belief though, is it couldn’t be further from the truth. Pornography hurts everyone involved, and the closer someone is to the user, the more likely they are to be deeply hurt.

One of the more common places where this can happen is the relationship between a dad and his little girl. For that reason, I think it’s important to consider five ways pornography use affects a father’s relationship with his daughter.

1. It will Cause Him to Pull Away from Her when She Needs Him Most

If a father is looking at porn, he will have a hard time offering appropriate loving affection to his daughter once she starts to mature physically. He will notice her looking more and more like the women he has been watching online, and misplaced shame will cause him to avoid hugging her because it just doesn’t feel right anymore.

Sadly, his daughter will notice this and begin to wonder why she’s no longer receiving affection from her father. This frequently leads girls to believe there is something wrong with them or, often times, to seek affection elsewhere (usually in the arms of a teenage boy who has noticed her physical changes as well).

2. It Hinders His Ability to Model a Loving Husband/Wife Relationship to Her

The shame that frequently comes from porn use will cause most men to become distant, isolated, and hidden. Rather than modeling how a husband should be pursuing his wife daily, he will be teaching his daughter to settle for a man who merely exists physically—but not emotionally—within the same house.

Furthermore, the percentage of divorce cases that site pornography use as major contributing factor is extremely high. This was the unfortunate end-result of my own addiction, which means my daughter is now growing up in two separate homes with two separate parents. She may have a wonderful example of a mom, and (hopefully) a great example of a dad, but our divorce has robbed her of the opportunity to observe how a mom and a dad can lovingly interact with one another.

3. It Communicates the Wrong Messages to Her about Beauty

There are countless stories of girls discovering porn on their dad’s computer and believing she must look and act like these women if she wants a man to notice her. These beliefs will often stay with her for many years, if not her entire life. But even if she never discovers the porn itself, she’s likely to notice other behaviors in her dad that often come with porn use:

  • Turning his head to watch a girl walk by in tight pants
  • Looking down the shirts of her friends
  • Paying more attention to the cheerleaders than the game itself

You see, when a man uses pornography, the way he views all women changes, and examples such as these become much more likely (and noticeable) in his life.

4. It Takes Him out of His Role as the Spiritual Leader and Protector of the Home

There are many views in the church regarding the presence of negative spiritual influences. The Bible makes it clear, however, these things not only exist, but they are actively seeking to harm us (see Ephesians 6:13, 1 Peter 5:8 . I personally experienced frequent nightmares and terrifying visions when I was in the grip of my addiction to pornography, but they stopped completely once I asked God to set me free from the bondage I had invited into my life. That was proof enough for me that there was something very real about the connection between spiritual forces and my porn addiction.

Now, I can’t say for sure whether a father’s use of porn will invite spiritual bondage into other members of his home. What I do know, though, is the risk is certainly not worth it. You wouldn’t invite a known criminal into your house, so why would you open the door to any other negative influences?

5. It Pulls the E-brake on His Walk with God

Ultimately, compulsive porn use will hinder a father’s relationship with God. This is not the result of God turning away from him because of his ongoing sin (Thankfully, God’s love is never dependent upon our behavior). It’s because the man has chosen to rely on his own power to manage his life and meet his needs.

Trying to manage and meet the needs in your life independently from God is exhausting. And, as a father, I can assure you that being an effective parent without God’s help is impossible. That’s why it’s vitally important to rely on Him for the wisdom and ability you will need to effectively guide your little girl into becoming a healthy woman. The role of a father is far too great to try to do on your own.


Fathers, I don’t tell you these things to make you feel guilty about looking at porn. I tell you them to help you recognize the full effect it may be having on those you love.

Don’t lose heart, though. There is hope. Freedom from pornography is available for those who seek it. The best part is that it’s not about learning to fight better or resist temptation more effectively. In fact, it has nothing to do with what you are capable of at all.

Freedom comes when you are given a new heart, with new desires. A heart that no longer desires porn because it’s found something so much greater. That, my friend, is true freedom…and that freedom can only come from Christ.

10 Lies Men Believe about Porn Preview

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are "affiliate links." This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

PLEASE NOTE: I reserve the right to delete comments that are snarky, offensive, or off-topic. If in doubt, read My Comments Policy.