How The Internet Made Kinky Sex Mainstream And Healthy

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Kink is the new status quo.

The other day, I was sitting at a fast food restaurant, eavesdropping on the two elderly women in the booth next to me. They were discussing whether or not a man they knew had a foot fetish.

That conversation had me smiling all day.

Why? Because it proves that kinky sex has worked itself into the mainstream consciousness in a big way, and I think that’s wonderful. And we have the internet to thank for it.

We are all the better if everyone knows what kink is, and that it's okay to be a little kinky.

When I was a kid, I had no idea what kink was. My opinions on sex were totally formed by whatever I could see in a Hollywood movie or a weather-beaten Playboy that some older kid left in the woods.

Those vehicles told me that sex was something between a man and a woman. It involved getting naked, the man was on top, the woman bared her breasts, and, when things got particularly interesting, you’d cut to a shot of wind blowing through some curtains or a train going through a tunnel.

In my youth, sex felt taboo and illicit, but, in reality, it was pretty damn vanilla.

But then the internet happened. Suddenly, the entire world had almost every possible sexual predilection available at their fingertips. Online porn is so ubiquitous, so easy to encounter, that it just became a part of life.

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I fully understand that there is still a lot of horrific, vile, destructive porn on the web and I don’t support it at all. I’m just saying that, when the internet turned pornography into society’s nosy next-door neighbor, it normalized it to a certain extent.

We became aware of what kinky things were out there in the world — new and kinky ways to have sex that never would’ve appeared in Playboy — and they just worked their way into the fabric of society.

We now live in a post-kink world.

There are pistachio commercials on TV that feature dominatrixes. Strap-ons and pegging have become go-to comedy punchlines in sitcoms and movies. Old ladies in hamburger restaurants know about foot fetishes and (if I heard them right) shrimping.

In our current society, a woman can turn her online erotic fan fiction into a BDSM novel that becomes a huge international best-seller, starting a whole 50 Shades of Grey media franchise that involves movies, merchandising, and spin-off sex toys.

This is our normal now.

I’m not saying that kinks don’t exist anymore. If anything, the internet had allowed kinky sexual preferences to become even more varied and specific.

But the core idea of sexual kink has completely become integrated with how we view sex right now. If you ask someone to talk about what sex involves in our world today, there is a very decent chance that their definition might include things like sex toys, dominance and submission, multiple partners, role-playing, or fetish play.

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Thanks to the internet, the mainstream can’t pretend that vanilla is the only flavor of sex anymore. Any of us can spent 15 seconds on our phone and have access to 31 flavors (and beyond) of sexual kinks that I never could’ve imagined in my youth.

And I think that’s amazing. While the internet can be a dark and scary place, it has shone a light on kinky sex and dragged it kicking and screaming into the mainstream. Old ladies now gossip about foot fetishes and normal, everyday people have the ability to reconsider their own sexual identities now knowing that there are SO many options out there for them to choose from.

Maybe they’re into latex corsets or maybe they just love watching people smoking. But, whatever they’re into, they know that there is a huge community of people out there just like them — and their kink will probably be a punchline on next week’s Big Bang Theory anyway, so there’s nothing to be ashamed of.

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