The Trouble with Porn: It’s Not What You Think

Posted in   The MamaSutra   on  September 27, 2017 by  Lanae minutes remaining

Porn (aka adult film) manages to be one topic of human sexual behavior that gets people worked up – and not always in the “sexy” way. The topic even splits the experts into factions. To top it all off, some people think porn will unequivocally hurt your sexuality; I’m not one of those people.

There is a LOT of porn out there, and I’ll admit, not all of it is quality porn. In my opinion, our American culture doesn’t have the porn problem it thinks it does…but it does have an education problem.

America as a whole does a terrible job around sex education. Take into consideration that only 24 states in the United States require public schools teach sex education. Only 20 states (EDIT: As of 01-March-2020, now 22 states) require that the education be “medically, factually or technically accurate.” Inadequate sex education affects teens because they’re looking for answers when the education we do provide is failing them. Where do they go? The internet. They find porn without learning any context or gaining any media literacy about what they are seeing. Then teens grow into adulthood and retain messed up ideas about sexual behaviors based on the unfiltered porn they have seen. The important points to remember about Porn are:

  1. it is not real
  2. it is someone else’s fantasy
  3. once you view it, it can’t be unseen
  4. it is produced like any other film. (i.e., the director yells “cut” and stops shooting once a man’s penis loses its erection. Then they start shooting again once the boner comes back, thus perpetuating the idea that a man’s penis must be rock hard, 12 inches long, and go all night)
  5. and generally, it’s not good to use as education (some exceptions below).

To say all adult film is “bad” is a pretty broad stroke to paint. I believe it depends on the adult content you choose.

If you know where to look, you can find good adult film content out there, even some that may be able to help you to understand your own sexuality or turn-ons better. Finding a sex coach [like me] to curate that experience with you can be extremely helpful. There is plenty of good content that one can choose that can enhance your sexuality and expand your horizons if that’s what you wish. I’m all for helping people find their enthusiastic YES and get medically, factually, and technically accurate personalized education.

I’ll give you a few examples of some of what I have seen that I like (note* links are NSFW). Say you’re looking for some how-to’s on navigating your first threesome – jessica drake’s Guide to Wicked Sex covers advantages and pitfalls of an MFF (one man, two women) experience and includes an interview with a real-life couple. Nina Hartley also has two guides for MFF and MMF configurations. As for the filmmakers themselves, Erika Lust is just one example of a great director of adult film; her films are artistic and cinematic. I think her films have a level of quality viewers aren’t used to seeing in their porn. Sex Ed powerhouse Tristan Taormino has many different businesses that touch on this topic, and she does great work – I have her “Chemistry” Vol.2 and her “VividEd expert guide to anal pleasure for men” in my personal collection. Cindy Gallop has created “Make Love Not Porn” to feature real-life couples having sex. These are amazing women who have put together amazing sex- and pleasure-affirming work.

If you’re troubled by the images of adult film, but you are still interested in the idea of adult content, try erotica. The written word requires you to utilize your imagination to come up with the images that go along with the storyline (That’s one reason why “Fifty Shades of Gray” was so popular).

Porn and adult content doesn’t have to be intimidating. I once equated finding the “right” porn for you with shopping for shoes – Think of me as a go-to resource to help you wade through what is available out there.

I hope this helps. If you want to work together, contact me through my website at www.themamasutra.net.

xxoo,
Dr. Lanae

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About the Author Lanae

Dr. Lanae St.John is a Diplomate of the American Board of Sexology and certified sex coach with a background in sexology and a passion for helping people improve their sexual health and relationships. She is the author of "Read Me: A Parental Primer for "The Talk"" and the upcoming "You Are the One: How stopping the search and looking inside will lead you to your romantic destiny," and is committed to staying up-to-date on the latest research and trends in the field. Dr. St.John aims to share her knowledge and expertise in a relatable and approachable way through her blog on themamasutra.com.

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