Expert Blog Compelling advice, stories, and thought-provoking perspectives straight from YourTango's lineup of Experts to you

Porn Is Happening..

Sex

Porn exists for a reason. Instead of trying to justify or nullify it, let us take a realistic look.

Porn is happening. Porn is everywhere. Porn can be light and for fun, or porn can be a multi billion dollar profit for some and detrimentally expensive for others. So, I'd like to start off this by saying that pornography in and of itself is not a ‘bad’ thing. We have preconceived notions about porn being something bad. Men feel guilty about it. Women feel threatened by it. And it exists for a reason right? It wouldn't be such a gi-normous industry if people didn't love it. But gosh darnit, if too many people weren't basing their understanding of real life sex based on a bunch of sexy actors and actresses faking it. 

I want to talk a little bit about why porn is good, and why porn is bad. At the core, I believe that everything in moderation is the best format to follow. And a little bit of porn should be fine, as long as it’s not interfering with your sex life, social life, finances, job, relationship, family, responsibilities and so on. (Read: Most mental health professionals will in fact determine whether or not something is considered an addiction, or if someone is addicted based on the aforementioned variables of responsibilities. If something is being affected, such as any or all of job, relationship, family, money, chances are the individual has a problem or addiction, and will likely be treated as such by the mental health professional.)

So, with that said, we are long overdue to begin to wonder how the internet’s biggest industry Porn, which continues to infiltrate our relationships, our sex lives, our bedrooms, not to mention the lives of teenagers, who have the highest porn viewing statistics, and so much more continues to thrive, when it seems to have so many negative connotations? How can 63 million viewers be so wrong*? As a sex educator, I feel that a lot of it has to do with our attitudes about sex. Naturally, when we don’t feel comfortable talking about something, that we already feel we know so little about, and ill-equipped to talk about, read: yes, I am talking about Sex, its presence, in a highly graphic manner is going to intrigue us. Hence we are enticed to watch such movies and videos. But on the flipside, the messages we were sent growing up about masturbation, sex and nudity, and the silence we were fed when it came to anal sex, girl-on-girl or man-on-man sex, group sex or orgies, and sodomy may also lead to anxiety about what we see, which can lead to the on the better end, aforementioned feelings of guilt, and full blown addictions on the worst-case-scenario end. And these pornographic movies are not based in reality.

But still for many porn is still a healthy viable option. For example, for couples, porn can be a positive thing. Porn can be an igniter, a sexual interest peaker, initiator, instigator, something to shake things up, or make things more exciting. Couples who use it may do so as they might use sex toys, erotic stories, trips to the adult store and more to keep life in the bedroom more exciting. Porn can be an effective addition to role-playing and fantasy play, to erotic storytelling or just plain and simply getting the mind out of the doldrums of the day to day life and bringing some excitement at the end of the day.

For singles, men and women alike, porn can be a welcome helper at the end of a long day, filling in when imagination takes a nose dive for those busy career types who’s brain is fried at the end of the day, who haven’t had a sexual partner in weeks and are in need of an outlet of the sexual sort.

Yes, for many, porn is simply a nice, quick, available outlet made even more handy and accessible by the throes of our current technology to help give us a boost when imagination is running dry. Yet, for many, porn can become a debilitating, life threatening addiction, draining one’s bank account, depleting one’s self worth and self esteem, breaking up relationships, friendships, families, jobs and ultimately life. Those mental health professionals who work with sex and porn addicts, on the other hand, may not see it like I do. The addiction model doesn’t necessarily recognize that a little porn here and there may be good for you sometimes and that it may be okay.

Throw in the fact that most porn is degrading, not just to women, but to men too. Porn depicts people in one facet only, horny and animalistic, with rock hard sexy bodies and nothing but lust on their minds. It depletes anyone and everyone involved of their intelligence. And, in many cases, it is simply hard pressed to imagine that even a little porn is okay, that porn in moderation is good. If moderate porn watching is the gateway drug, then porn addiction is just a slippery slope away.

For couples involved in this, it can be very painful. Too often, women hear that they need to lighten up about their husband’s porn use, but when one partner is viewing porn and then lying about it, or denying how much or how often they are using or viewing it, then it is something that maybe should not be taken lightly. Because of its accessibility, be honest with yourself. If you feel concerned about your partner’s porn use, having a heart to heart with your loved one can shed lots of light.

Get educated – it may just be that bringing the conversation to the forefront and open up new avenues to a fun sex life. But also, use your intuition, get educated on porn, and don’t do anything you don’t want to do. Then make a decision. If this is something you can live with, if you’ve made a compromise and things seem to be fine, or is this something you cannot live with, something that has the signs of escalation? If you and your partner are not seeing eye-to-eye about the porn use, it’s best to seek the help of a professional. Go with your gut and don’t let this potentially light and fun activity turn into a slippery slope.

This article was originally published at . Reprinted with permission from the author.

From our Partners

Explore YourTango

MOST POPULAR