020: The Harm of Negative Sexual Messaging – Cannon’s Part 1

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Podcast Description:

scott and mitzi cannon

Natasha Helfer Parker speaks with Scott and his wife in a 3-part, in-depth interview about their experience dealing with a porn disclosure in their marriage. Part 1 focuses mainly on the negative messaging that Scott received about the evils of pornography viewing & masturbation, and sexuality in general during his developmental years – and how this goes on to severely affect his self-identity, sense of self-worth, and mental health. He walks us through how these messages exacerbated an anxiety disorder, to the point that he became suicidal and was diagnosed and treated for Obsessive Compulsive Disorder at BYU. This interview furthers our understanding of how negative sexual messaging can affect many LDS members, validates the experiences of many who have interpreted the messaging in similar ways, challenges the current trend of using the addiction model within LDS circles, and highlights the importance of shifting much of the current dialogue and rhetoric towards sexual positivity as we go about the sexual education of our youth.

Does include content around suicidal and homicidal ideation he dealt with during his lowest mental state that may be difficult for some to hear.

Resources mentioned during podcast:

What Research Has to Say about Porn Viewing with Dr. Nicole Prause

Sexual Education for Adolescents with Al Vernacchio

BYU Counseling and Psychological Services

Other mentions:

Requiem for a Dream

Thank you to Jeff Meyers for the intro and Peter & Mary Danzig of Otter Creek Duo for the concluding bumper music.


Natasha Helfer Parker, LCMFT, CST, CSTS can be reached at natashaparker.org and runs an online practice, Symmetry Solutions, which focuses on helping families and individuals with faith concerns, sexuality and mental health. She hosts the Mormon Mental Health and Mormon Sex Info Podcasts, is the current past president of the Mormon Mental Health Association and runs a sex education program, Sex Talk with Natasha. She has over 20 years of experience working with primarily an LDS/Mormon clientele.

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