Porn Can Be Healthy For You If…

…you do your best to follow these three rules.
Lots of people watch porn. Perhaps you watch it from time to time too? If so, here are three ways you can try and ensure you go about it in a healthy and respectful manner. 

Ok. Ok. We all do it. Well, if not all, then at least a whole lot of us do it. And on a fairly frequent basis too.

Yup, WE WATCH PORN.

And you know what? That’s ok.

But why are we all so afraid to admit it?

Well, there’s no hiding it, porn has a bad rep. And in a lot of ways, rightfully so.

A lot of the porn out there – especially the stuff you find on free hosting websites – is exploitative, rubbish, and often abusive in nature. A study carried out last year found that 41% – almost half – of the porn on these websites contain violence against women and girls.

Pretty grim, right?

BUT porn doesn’t have to be this way. Porn can have a positive influence on you, embracing your sexual fantasies and desires in a way that doesn’t have a detrimental impact on your life, or the lives of those you to choose to roll around with.

To help you develop a healthy relationship with porn, try and keep these 3 questions in mind while you’re a) picking what you’re going to watch; and b) while you’re watching it:

Does the porn I watch promote healthy body image?

Are the porn actors that you are watching really representative of the way we look? Or are they feeding an unrealistic idea of what both men and women should look like, twisting the way that we look at ourselves in the mirror and the way we look at those we desire?

The quality marker of sex should be healthy relationships, not how photoshopped we can make ourselves look.

Does the porn I watch represent reality?

In a word, NO. Don’t be fooled by the ‘amateur’ style of pornography – it’s not real. It’s also not a learning tool for sex and shouldn’t be treated as one.

So, what is it then? Essentially, it’s space for fantasy – and fantasies vary greatly between different people. So, while you’re watching porn don’t think that you have to have a certain body type, make a certain noise, pull a certain pose, act a certain way in bed, or last a certain amount of time in bed.

We’re all different and so will be every sexual experience you ever had. Great, no?!

The only sexual reality you’ll ever really know is your own sexual reality, so focus on doing things that don’t make you feel uncomfortable, or that don’t make other people you’re with feel uncomfortable. The more you explore what you like, and what you don’t like, the more likely you are to find out what really makes you tick.

Does the porn I watch promote gender equality?

Porn is not known for its equal treatment of genders, and it can often represent certain groups in a negative way. We’re talking about degrading and violent behaviour, and the power dynamic in sexual encounters.

Sex is meant to be enjoyed by both men and women. YUP, you heard it here first* (*I hope that’s not true), but women enjoy sex too. One way to support this if you’re watching porn is to seek out high-quality – and yes, that means paid for – content that is created by women. It’s out there, so do some research.

Behaviour in the bedroom impacts behaviour outside the bedroom and vice versa, so think about things such as gender stereotypes and gender roles while you’re watching. And as always, remember that consent is EVERYTHING.

I know what you’re thinking: we’ve provided you with more questions than answers, right? Maybe so, but asking questions is an important place to start in building a healthy relationship with porn. And so too is thinkuknow.

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