This week, I've been thinking about all of the students who have come to me with their fears and anxieties around their use of porn over the years. It seems that so many people can get trapped in the porn rabbit hole of triggering dopamine and essentially using porn as a way to get lost or escape from reality.
However, there is the potential to use porn in more of a positive, life-affirming, life-supportive manner.
Porn exists. That’s a fact and a reality. We humans like to see other humans having sex.
The way I see it, porn is a form of human play and human play is essential to human wellbeing. If we can begin to take the morality of sex out of the equation and do as our cousins the bonobos do, and treat sex as more of play and bonding, then we have the chance to see the redemptive qualities of porn.
I have been super creative during the last few months and my use of porn naturally diminished by about 95%. But what I have noticed is that porn can be an amazing jumpstart to my sexual energy and allows me to continue to cultivate my sexual appetite and desire.
For me, porn has always been fun.
It’s a way of exploring things that I haven’t explored before. It’s a way of bonding with other people who are interested in the same ideas that I am and it’s a way of, as I said, jumpstarting my sexual energy and sexual creativity.
So imagine a world where we see porn as a part of life as opposed to an aberration of life, where we use porn as a way to alter mood, decrease depression and increase tolerance of sexual differences. Of course if you’re using porn all, it is impossible to not increase your tolerance of different sexual behaviors because this myriad of human behaviors is depicted even in the most normative porn sites.
So that is really the awesome thing about porn.
And what I’m about to say is just my own little theory. But I think the reason young people are growing up so sexually tolerant is because of porn. Porn has exposed them to ideas that we didn’t have access to when I was a kid. I personally had to get access to different ideas about sex through the Nixon administration’s huge book it produced on porn. It was a semi-scathing view of porn. For me however, it was my treasure trove of the different ways human beings get off. And it made me so happy because I realized that the things that I was interested in were not unusual.
My take away from the Nixon report was that, in fact, we have a diverse culture of humans and we have a diverse sexual appetite. And all of this is completely normal. So perhaps we should stop demonizing porn and openly consider including porn in our dialogue and in our field of sex play. Maybe porn is simply an expression of adult humans at play and play can be a positive thing to help with our moods - especially if it’s integrated into life – as opposed to something that must be used in secret and in hiding.
If porn is something that we use to escape our feelings and emotions – that we use to escape our feelings and our fears about reality – that may not be the best thing. And using porn as education is as ridiculous as tying to learn how to drive while by watching The Fast And The Furious 7.
However, by integrating porn into real life, by integrating it into the relationship conversation, by integrating it into our fun and our play and us it as a way to deepen our connection with our partners, in my experience porn has been only a positive thing.
Watching porn with our partners is a great method to explore different ideas and desires, that we could be open to exploring in real life – well that’s actually a super positive thing.
Maybe porn is not the problem, but rather our beliefs about it are.