porn / Relationships

How Open Should Couples Be About Porn?

Over Shwarma last weekend with a couple of friends, the huz and I ended up discussing points of view on porn—in particular, how open or not we are with our significant others about XXX. I was the only gal at the table for most of dinner, which I always find enlightening. Here’s what came up:

One guy-friend expressed that he didn’t want to know whether his wife watched porn and didn’t care to share his own prerogatives with her. He felt that what one gets off to is an entirely private matter, case closed.

Another had discussed porn with his girlfriend, who’d flip-flopped on her feelings towards porn—from not liking it, to exploring some, back to not liking again. But while they’d discussed it, they’d never watched it together and he felt that watching, say, Squirting in Seattle should be a solo endeavor. To paraphrase, he said, “I think watching porn together is weird.” He also mentioned that porn had raised a certain amount of contention in his relationship because both he and his girlfriend felt that when he watched porn frequently, it affected his sexual behavior and made him want certain types of sex. (I didn’t probe him about what sort, lest he be made to feel uncomfortable or anyone lose their appetite for Baklava.)

Overall, both guys seemed to feel that porn encouraged objectification of women, and potentially even violence. I argued that I didn’t necessarily think so and shared how many of my negative perspectives on sexy flicks had changed through broadening my view of fantasy and discussing what I feel is actually objectifying or not with my man. Of course, our current level of disclosure is the hard-won product of a year’s worth of dinner conversations about orgies, which may not work for everyone. My takeaway from this chat (albeit with a random couple of guys I happen to know) is how difficult communication about porn between couples can be and how many negative feelings there are wrapped up in this topic for guys as well as girls.

To top off the night, a sixth entered our conversation—she’s a stylist and, oddly enough, had just come from a photo shoot featuring an uber-famous starlet. Stylist-friend brought up another matter altogether—the wellbeing of porn stars, in particular the physical repercussions of straddling very large cocks. And herein lies the rub (pun intended). As much as I can advocate for a world of happy, healthy purveyors of and participants in porn, I still don’t know how to reconcile certain real-life, porn practices. Why aren’t there unions for porn stars? What about condoms for Christ’s sakes? I find no simple answers to these ever-convoluted questions.

On the way over to The Short Stop on Sunset later that eve, the huz turned to me and said, “I love encouraging other couples to talk about porn.”

“Me too,” I said.

Who knew those words could ever make my heart flutter.

Check out this fabulous blog I just discovered for progressive views on sex and porn: http://www.charlieglickman.com/

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2 thoughts on “How Open Should Couples Be About Porn?

  1. …interesting conversation….although what is a turn on for a woman may not be for a man and vice versa…if youcan’t talk about porn with your parnter what does that say about the level of intimacy in the relationship?

    All humans have a need for erotica, whichis different than porn….

    ivonne

    • thanks for your comments, ivonne. i couldn’t agree more that talking about porn (and/or erotica) with your partner is an important part of intimacy 🙂

      emily

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