Unless you’ve been living under a rock for that last 20 years, you likely know that the internet is full of pornography. But does exposure to porn hurt your relationships? Although there are conflicting results and plenty of questionable science on this topic (see here for an example), a new study suggests that watching porn may indeed impact certain aspects of relationship quality.1 Specifically, the researchers examined whether exposure to pornographic videos (i.e., the kind of thing you’re most likely to come across on the internet) increases people’s perception of relationship alternatives (read more about alternatives here), which negatively affects relationship quality.
Entries in pornography (7)
Obviously, many variables affect the decision to have or not have sexual intercourse (e.g., Are you in the “mood?” Did you have a romantic dinner? Did he remember the flowers?). Although most people probably don’t think the outcome of a political election is especially romantic, or has much effect on their libidos, recent research suggests that political elections could influence your sex life!
How are adolescent boys learning about sex these days? By pointing, clicking, and streaming through a seemingly endless supply of Internet pornography. That’s right…online porn is now the default form of sex education for a growing number of young boys because they simply are not getting the information they need elsewhere. Personally, I find this prospect kind of scary. I mean, do you really want your son to learn everything he knows about sex from watching Ron Jeremy?
Advertisements for products “guaranteed” to add inches to men’s penises are everywhere, from awesomely bad late-night infomercials hosted by Ron Jeremy to annoying Internet pop-up ads for “natural male enhancement.” The sheer number of such ads and the millions of dollars men spend on penile enlargement products each year suggest that lots of guys are worried that their genitals aren’t big enough. But is “small penis syndrome” (yes, this is a real thing)1 as widespread as the popular media would lead us to believe? And does size really even matter that much to men or to women?
I am a female. I am NOT attracted to other females. However, female porn/ girl-girl action/ breasts... all these things turn me on. When I watch porn, I prefer watching girls to men, it excites me and turns me on. While watching porn I enjoy fantasizing about it being me with another girl, but in real life those thoughts don't even cross my mind. I just don't get it! Help me, oh wise sages. I am curious to know if you have insight on this phenomenon.
Your experience is not at all unusual. Nude images of females are much more prevalent in society than naked pictures of males, which impacts the viewing experience of pornography for women in very different ways than for men.
Ever since the invention of pornography, politicians and the public alike have expressed concerns about the potential negative effects that porn has on those who view it. In particular, many people worry that exposure to porn is destructive to people’s romantic and sexual relationships. This concern was seemingly validated by a recent study reporting that Playboy magazine was the “cause” of up to 25% of all divorces that occurred in the United States in the 1960s and 70s. Could this really be the case? Is exposure to porn destroying our love lives?
One of the things we like to do here at Science of Relationships is to let you know when we see relationship “mis-information” being pushed out there in media-land. Here’s a good one!
Recently, a major national newspaper contacted us for our views on an op-ed piece written by Kimberly Sayer-Giles, who recently was named one of the top 20 “Advice Gurus” by Good Morning America (ABC News).
The article, Romance Novels Can Be As Addictive As Pornography, makes some profound claims and got a few of us lusting to answer back!