While Kim Kardashian is unable to contain herself in her endorsement of the highly controversial film adaptation of the book Fifty Shades of Grey, health experts are warning parents of the dangers of allowing the film’s explicit bondage, domination, and sadomasochistic (BDSM) sexual violence to seep into what is considered “acceptable” in American culture.
Dr. Miriam Grossman, a child and adolescent psychiatrist, has been publishing weekly installments of her official “Parent Survival Guide to Fifty Shades of Grey” on her blog as the film approaches its release this Valentine’s Day weekend.
“Don’t underestimate the impact of the hard sell on your kids,” Grossman warns parents. “Even if they don’t see the film, they are absorbing its toxic message, and need your wisdom and guidance.”
In a telephone interview with Breitbart News, Grossman observed that the “images of bondage, the ties and ropes, are everywhere we look. Children can absorb these messages and ideas.”
“It’s difficult to overstate the dangers,” she continues. “Fifty Shades of Grey teaches your daughter that pain and humiliation are erotic, and your son, that girls want a man who will control and intimidate them.”
Girls night watching a private screening of Fifty Shades of Grey!!!!!! OMG it's sooooo good!!!!!
— Kim Kardashian West (@KimKardashian) February 4, 2015
The “hard sell” is evident even at family big box store Target, which is reportedly selling “Fifty Shades of Grey Sex Toys” right next to children’s toothbrushes.
And the “dangers” are not lost on domestic violence activists, who are urging both a boycott of the film and that money that would have been spent on movie tickets is donated to shelters for victims of domestic violence.
Real women “don’t end up like Anastasia; they often end up in a women’s shelter, on the run for years, or dead,” said the National Center on Sexual Exploitation, one of the sponsors of the #50DollarsNot50Shades campaign to raise funds for domestic violence programs.
“It’s sad that we are at a point in our culture at which I feel a responsibility to speak up about this and give parents advice about how to protect their kids from this,” Grossman said. “The whole idea of romanticizing emotional and sexual abuse in an intimate relationship is overwhelming,” she continued. “Even if people don’t see the movie, it trickles down in our culture.”
Grossman, the author of Unprotected: A Campus Psychiatrist Reveals How Political Correctness in her Profession Endangers Every Student, especially observes that some who have been given authority in our culture are introducing young people to the concept that “anything whatsoever is okay between consenting adults.”
A recent video exposé series (see above) by pro-life organization Live Action illustrates Grossman’s point. The organization exposed a Planned Parenthood counselor who–citing the book Fifty Shades of Grey–told an undercover investigator she believed to be 15 years old, “[A]nything within the sexual world is normal as long as it’s consensual,” and that if her sex partner “wants to try something that … is gonna cause you harm or pain, and you’re okay with that, that’s a completely different thing than [sic] if he wants to try something to do that you’re not okay with[.]”
“It’s faulty logic–that every decision a person makes that is not coerced is okay,” Grossman explained. “It’s being framed as a ‘personal choice,’ but the ultimate goal here is sexual freedom–not sexual health.”
“The title of the book and the film says it all,” Grossman added. “There is no black and white; it’s all ‘grey,’ and everything is relative, while nothing is clear.”
“When it comes to abuse, humiliation, and battering, they’d like us to believe there is no black and white–just ‘grey,’” she said.
Despite her assessment that the movie is a “dark cloud,” Grossman states the release of the film has its “silver lining.”
“It gives parents the opportunity to discuss with their sons and daughters the big differences between healthy versus unhealthy relationships,” she said. “It’s actually a plus for parents to show some anxiety when discussing these issues with their kids because then they know this is ‘something big.’”
“’My parents must really love me and think this is important,’ kids will understand, when their parents approach them on these issues,” Grossman added.
“The world is really upside down in many ways, and the message kids are getting on college campuses is the glamorization of this abusive form of sex,” she said.
The American College of Pediatricians is also expressing concern about the influence of Fifty Shades and similar media on children and the culture, and “urges parents to be ever more vigilant and to teach their children to be discriminating about the media they view.”
“A prime example is the soon-to-be-released film Fifty Shades of Grey,” the College continues in a press release, adding that the sexual relationship depicted between the movie’s two main characters asserts “the normalization of dating violence, intimate partner violence (IPV) and the romanticizing of bondage, submission and sadomasochism (BDSM).”
Observing that the adolescent brain is not yet fully developed, leaving teens more vulnerable to suggestions and open to risk-taking behaviors, the College adds:
They are also more easily addicted to drugs, alcohol, sexual activity and other behaviors which stimulate the “reward center” of the brain as compared to adults. For these reasons, adolescents need parents to correct the dangerous messages about alcohol, sex and violence in Fifty Shades of Grey. Specifically, adolescents need to know that regardless of the intentions of the individuals involved, sexual activity biochemically bonds a woman and a man. Consequently, sexual activity, like drugs and alcohol, impairs critical thinking and decision making. Finally, and most importantly, adolescents must be told in no uncertain terms that verbal, emotional, physical and sexual violence is never acceptable. Healthy relationships are characterized by warmth, open communication, respect and mutuality. One of the most powerful deterrents to adolescent sexual activity, drug and alcohol use is the firm communication of parental expectations to their children.
“[I]t is imperative parents ‘immunize’ their children and adolescents against the toxic messages in this series of novels and film,” the pediatricians assert.