Why Watching Porn Was Just What I Needed To Be More Honest In The Bedroom

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Conventional wisdom holds that porn ruins sex. A simple Google search reveals that most literature supports this view. The reasons range from porn extracting intimacy by reducing people to body parts to porn making sex boring. The justifications vary, but the bottom line remains: Porn ruins the bedroom.

I'm a 32-year-old woman, and I want to offer a different take. Porn not only doesn't ruin sex for me, but it also enhances it. I say this not for the sake of being a contrarian. I say this to speak to those who believe porn ruins sex and to those who may secretly hold the opposite view, even if they're too coy to admit it.

Simply put, porn has made me a more creative sexual partner. It has liberated me from certain bedroom taboos and lifted the patriarchal veil. Yes, a considerable amount of porn depicts women in submissive and comprising positions. There's also porn that depicts the opposite, of women in positions of power dictating what happens. There's a part of me that doesn't want to fetishize power transfers, but guess what? There's a part of me that does, and I love it.

Porn has also helped me learn about the guys I've dated and myself in the process. I'll share a brief anecdote. I once dated a guy. Let's call him Steve.* I say "date" for lack of a more casual word.

We were having sex with one another with the complete, mutual understanding that it would never evolve into anything serious. The sex in the beginning was a solid seven out of 10. It was good, but nothing to write home about.

One night, Steve and I decided to get a little adventurous and watch porn together. It was illuminating. I learned more about his sexual desires in those five minutes than I did at any point previous.

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Erotic imagery stimulates a certain part of the brain, fostering intimacy and connection. As psychologist David Schnarch explains, “Erotica, as well as couples' own masturbatory fantasies, can be useful tools for helping them develop as adults." It ends up revealing you and your partners' deepest sexual wishes. Wielding this knowledge, I proceeded to have some of the best sex of my life with Steve after watching porn. It's what I like to call "enlightened sex."

Now, I want to be clear that I'm speaking purely about casual sex with men. I am not suggesting that porn can't have destabilizing effects on serious relationships and marriages. Porn addiction, for instance, is a well-documented affliction that has negative consequences for the addicted and their marriages. These are tragic situations, and I by no means want to minimize them. I merely want to say that porn enhances sexual creativity.

This creativity carries over from the bedroom into other facets of life. For instance, when tasked with throwing a party for a friend, it inspired me to coordinate a jello wrestling tournament. Porn spurred me to think that nakedness could be incorporated into an event for adults. I was right; the party was a hit.

When people think of who watches porn, the typical image is a man in a room with Vaseline and tissues masturbating ferociously comes to mind. The preference in porn may vary, but the scene remains the same. While there's obvious truth to this, the reality of porn viewing is more complex. A study found that one out of three women watch porn at least once a week.

Yes, guys, women like porn, too. We are similarly stimulated by it, and for many of us, it inculcates sexual creativity. For those of us who may not be well studied in the ways of Kama Sutra and other sex disciplines, porn is a valuable instructor and can help improve your sex life. It sure did for me.

*Name has been changed.