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Don’t Listen to Cosmo — Porn is Not Ruining Your Relationship, Keeping Secrets Is [OPINION]

Girls Love Porn
Credit: My Grainy Webcam

You know that scene in ‘My Cousin Vinny’ when Vinny gets up to give his opening trial arguments and just points to the prosecutor and says “Everything that guy just said is bullsh*t,” and then sits back down? That’s how I really want to respond to Cosmopolitan Magazine’s assertion that pornography is damaging relationships, but that’s not very productive, is it? Let’s talk this out, baby.

I’ve never been a big fan of Cosmo, possibly because I started reading it when I was way too young, and should have still been reading things like Tiger Beat. But come on, what 9 year-old-girl wouldn’t pick up the Cosmo in the lobby of the nail salon, while mom gets a paraffin treatment?

By the time I was 10, I could definitely tell you 99 Ways to Drive Your Man Wild, despite having little to know idea what sex actually looked like, in person. I had no idea what the G-spot was, but I knew how to tell someone to find it. I guess it’s a little like people who “Read the Law” instead of going to law school, and then just take the Bar Exam. (Why do I keep talking about lawyers?) By the time I was 18 I started to disagree with a lot of it. Suddenly I had a sex life, and a lot of it began to read like an instruction manual from the 1960s about being “sexually empowered.” There were still so many rules, and so many things you could do wrong, or things you should hide. That seemed boring.

As years went by, I realized that sex was actually way more awesome than Cosmopolitan was letting on, mostly because there were way less rules about what was okay and what wasn’t. I stopped reading years ago. I don’t bother Cosmo, and Cosmo don’t bother me, until now; because now they’re messing with something I love: porn.

Girls Love Porn
Ryan Simmons

In a recent article, Cosmo makes the claim that an “overwhelming majority” of relationship therapists reported pornography as having a damaging effect on “modern relationships;” a term which should be your first clue to not listen to what they are saying, because shut up. 86% of the therapists surveyed said that they believed pornography to be a legitimate relationship issue, and 90% reported that they are seeing a growing number of couples who struggle with the issue. All therapists surveyed are active members of an online support community (that I made up to make fun of them) which you can find at:

www.Cranky-therapists-who-are-not-getting-laid-on-the-regular.biz

I don’t have a problem with people who don’t like porn — to each his/her own. My problem is that Cosmo is not addressing the root of the issue, and instead allowing us to place blame on outside forces. Porn is not the issue here; dishonesty is. Hiding watching porn from your partner is weird, because being in a relationship means connecting with the people you love and letting them get to know you. You and your love of casting couch videos.

Everyone I have ever dated seriously has watched porn, and knows that I watch it too. Sometimes we watch it together (which is super fun if you’ve never tried), and sometimes we watch it alone. I am someone who likes to have sex every day, but I am also not someone who desires the kind of relationship where you do every single thing in your life as a team, because that sounds like terrible, boring torture. I am attracted to people who have full lives, and fit me into them.

This means that sometimes when I want to bone, the person I am dating is not around. That’s when I date Tube8 for a couple of minutes. This does not damage my relationships because I include my partner, and sharing that information is a turn-on. See? Talking! It’s good for you!

I do believe porn addiction is real; you can be addicted to anything that feels good, duh. The line between indulgence and addiction is drawn when that indulgence begins to interfere with your ability to connect with people, and get your stuff done. Watching porn when your boo is not around does not count as addiction. Watching porn in the living room while she’s sleeping naked in your bed? Yeah look into that, for sure.

Perhaps most confusing, the article sites that 63% of the therapists surveyed said that adult videos “increase men’s expectations of sex with their partner,” making “vanilla” sex less desirable. The confusing parts about this are two-fold; their omission of the effect it has on women, and also that they think raised expectations are a bad thing. Yes, porn has definitely raised my expectation of sex, and made me uninterested in vanilla sex. You know what that has done? It has made my life way, way more awesome. 

Don’t listen to Cosmo, porn-shaming is lame. Here’s my patented 4-step process for having the best sex of your life:

Step 1: Talk to the people you have sex with about what you like, and share what turns you on.

Step 2: Listen to what turns them on.

Step 3: Do those things together.

Step 4: PROFIT!

Next: What City Watches the Most Porn?

 

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