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Reader Question: Is watching porn together okay?Is watching porn together as a couple okay if you’re both consenting adults?

Every Monday I like to post a Reader Question and take a stab at answering it! But first, something quick:

I spent this weekend updating my blog! I changed the design, and made it much easier to browse past posts! Just click on the menus above and you’ll find all the categories of the blogs and snippets of posts. There are still some bugs I’m working out (especially on the mobile end), but I’m getting there! I hope you like it!

Now, on with the question of the day: When I do my Girl Talk, my one night event at churches where I talk about marriage and sex, I invariably get a variation of this question:

My husband and I like to watch porn together. If we’re both consenting, and he’s not watching it in secret, is it okay?

So today, let’s look at that one.

Watching Porn Together will hurt your marriage--4 reasons you should stay away!

Before we get into my argument, I’d just like to point out that even if you are consenting, you are inviting a third (or fourth, or fifth) person into your bedroom with you. That IS adultery. And you’re watching people do stuff together which they shouldn’t be doing (I’m pretty sure they’re not married). And even if they were, to deliberately be exhibitionist is simply not right. And now you’re getting aroused by someone other than your spouse, which is also wrong.

But I know that, if you’re asking the question, you may not agree with me that watching porn together really IS bad. So here are four other reasons that you should steer clear of porn:

1. You May Be Consenting–but Are The “Porn Stars”?

You and your husband may be consenting, but pornography doesn’t just involve the people watching. There’s also the people who make the porn. And even if you decide to only go on “nice” sites where there’s just sex between two people, and “nothing weird”, how do you know those people are consenting?

It’s widely known that drugs are rampant in the porn industry. Drug addiction is huge. And that’s often the reason that people make porn–to support their habit.

That’s not consent.

Porn also heavily uses trafficked women. How do you know you’re not feeding that?

And finally, “revenge porn” is a huge problem. When people break up, their ex leaks the sex tape. In many cases you’re watching something that another individual never meant to be made public. There’s too much risk involved to be hurting others.

Watching porn together may sound exciting--but it will wreck your sex life. Click To Tweet

2. Watching Porn Together Will Hurt Your Chances of Feeling Truly Intimate

I’ve talked before about how one of the major problems with pornography is that it trains your brain to be aroused by an image or a fantasy rather than a person.

Then sex stops being about intimacy and emotional and spiritual closeness and starts being only about the body–you’re almost using each other rather than loving each other. Studies (including one that I did when writing The Good Girl’s Guide to Great Sex) have repeatedly found that women who enjoy sex the most and who are most likely to reach orgasm are those who feel the most intimate–not those who stretch their sexual boundaries the most or watch pornography or use sex toys.

In fact, the more you watch porn, the more you start to need porn to get aroused. And it’s so hard to get those images out of your head.

To read more about this, check out my post on the Top 10 Negative Effects of Porn, or check out Covenant Eyes’ ebook Your Brain on Porn.

3. Watching Porn Together Will Send Your Sexual Desires in a Strange Direction

Pornography does not center around “normal” sexual activity between two people–you know, having sex in one of the basic positions. It tends to focus on other things that are more “camera intense”. I mean, let’s face it, having sex in the missionary position is not easily photographic. Positions where the guy is more dominant are much easier to photograph and make it exciting. And other sex acts are easier to photograph, too.

So watching porn really does increase our desire for certain sexual practices. Here are two examples: anal sex tended to be thought of as perverse, fringe, and something only homosexuals do until the last 10-12 years, when internet porn became big. Now it’s commonplace, and many couples want to do it (and many women feel pressured by their husbands to do it).

I tend to be one who believes the more positions, the better! But I stop here. That’s just not safe. The anus is not the same as a vagina; it’s intended to let stuff out, not let stuff in, and if you repeatedly stretch it like that, it’s simply unwise and unhealthy. The walls of the anus are so much thinner than the vagina, too, making it so much easier to spread diseases.

Here’s another instance: 15 years ago it was unheard of to completely shave “down there”–you know, the whole Brazilian wax. Now it’s become quite common. And the reason is the porn industry, since in porn any pubic hair on women is frowned upon. So it’s changing our standards of beauty. But do you know why they completely shave? So that they look more like little girls. That’s right–it’s all tied into the desire for pre-pubescent girls. It’s wrapped up in child porn!  (I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with trimming hair or getting rid of some hair so oral sex, for instance, it’s easier. But getting rid of everything–even the stuff that isn’t in the way? The reason it started being a ‘thing’ is because of the sexualization of children).

4. By Watching Porn You Feed an Evil Industry

No one starts out thinking, “I’d like to watch a child being raped live over the internet“. Yet all too many people eventually wander into that part of the web. And how do they get there? They start watching “regular” porn, and then it stops giving them the same high or the same excitement, and so they look for more. And they keep going down and down and down that road until they end up with child porn.

Obviously not everyone who watches porn will watch child porn, but pretty much everyone who watches child porn started out with regular porn. And those children are being raped. They are being abused. In many cases, they are being killed. Some of it is happening here in North America, but there is a whole industry of it in Cambodia and Thailand where little children are used like this.

Even if you never go down this road, you feed and support the demand for an industry which takes others down that road.

If the internet porn industry wasn’t there, the child porn industry wouldn’t be there. By others supporting internet porn and talking about how “it’s no big deal”, we end up fueling the desire for truly evil stuff.

It’s like in areas where marijuana has been legalized. It was thought this would make the drug problem better, since marijuana could be regulated. But marijuana is a gateway drug; once you use it, it’s easier to start harder drugs. Well, “normal” porn is a gateway to the other stuff. Once we use it, it’s easier to go to the stuff that is truly awful, where violence against women is part of the excitement or where children are involved.

When we support the gateway, we make that gateway bigger. And then it’s easier for more people to go through that gateway.

Is Watching Porn Together okay--if you both consent? 4 reasons you should steer clear! Click To Tweet

That’s why I believe watching porn is always wrong. It doesn’t matter if you’re both consenting; it will wreck your intimacy and it fuels something evil.

I was really saddened recently when I heard that a Christian sex author that I know and that I used to respect has been saying in interviews that watching porn together is okay. I’m not sure how this author can ever make such a pronouncement. We need to take a strong stand against this. If you want to heat up your sex life, there’s so much more you can do that is healthy and that will grow your intimacy–not take away from it.

31 Days to Great SexRead my book 31 Days to Great Sex together–it’s filled with challenges for new positions and how to spice things up, if that’s what you need (as well as lots of challenges on how to get more affectionate, how to flirt, and lots of other things!)

But please, don’t watch porn. That’s a door you just don’t want to open.

Let me know in the comments: have you had experience with porn wrecking your relationship or your ability to feel intimate?

UPDATE: I changed this post from its original to stress more than it IS adultery. I’ve always believed that, but I wanted to try to use more persuasive arguments first. I now think I should have stressed that more in the beginning, so I’ve amended it!

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