This Just In: Men Watch Porn (An Antithetical)

By Kim Saeed | Contemplating No Contact

Sep 28

One of my favorite sites, The Good Men Project, featured an article a couple of days ago titled, “This Just In:  Men Watch Porn”

My first reaction was, “Well, no duh.  This has been a societal issue for decades now.  You’d have to be a caveman living on Tristan da Cunha in the South Atlantic Ocean to not know that.”

All joking aside, I typically enjoy the articles published on Goodmenproject.com because they encourage men to stand up and be, well…men.  Decent, honest, and compassionate men.

But when I saw the article about which I write today, it gave me pause.

It’s yet another article of thousands bent on normalizing porn viewing.  While watching porn in itself isn’t really my beef, it generally doesn’t have a place inside of committed relationships unless it’s something that each party has agreed upon beforehand.

Ms.  Arianna Jaret’s article, which is jet-packed with numbers from clinical studies, included the following statements

“The numbers seem large enough to me to normalize porn viewing, as well as to make the notion of porn as a cause of sex addiction a non-starter.”

and

“In plain English, men don’t watch porn because they are sex addicts. Men watch porn because they are genetically wired to do so.
And guess what? Women kinda like it too.”

While those statements may have poll- and study-based data to substantiate her claims, so do studies highlighting the very real effects of porn-watching inside of committed relationships when one partner discovers the other taking part in it.

Further, she included this statement to strengthen her argument:

The American Psychological Association (APA) made a decision not to recognize sex addiction in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th Edition: DSM-V. 

Neither is codependency listed in the DSM-V, but it is a very real condition, nonetheless.

Below, I offer my counter (which I posted in the comments section under the article and am waiting for it to be approved):

Religion aside- I am a relationship coach and many of the people I work with have partners who engage in watching porn.

Unless the couple watches it together or have made an agreement between themselves that watching porn alone is okay, then typically, watching porn inside of a relationship only leads to feelings of betrayal, not to mention the frustration of the person whose partner isn’t there for them sexually because they’re getting their own sexual urges satisfied through watching porn and masturbating.

(And let us not ignore the very real issue of human sex trafficking.)

In the same way it was suggested that all the written material saying watching porn is bad is what MAKES it bad, the same goes for saying it’s okay.  I would bet that some of your readers who’ve been caught watching porn are showing this particular article to their hurt partner and exclaiming, “See honey, almost everyone does it” and trying to justify their porn habit.

Additionally, men who watch porn on a regular basis are at risk of developing porn-induced erectile dysfunction, which makes it difficult for them to maintain an erection when they are in the company of a flesh-and-blood woman (or same-sex partner).  Women who masturbate and use sex toys also develop a form of this, but it’s not as difficult for them to engage in the act of sex because they can perform whether aroused or not.

We can find all sorts of evidence claiming that watching porn doesn’t cause problems, isn’t addictive, there’s nothing wrong with it, and what’s the big deal, anyway?  But usually, such evidence is sought out by those who want to continue watching porn after their partner has disclosed that they don’t agree with it and/or is hurt by it – which then typically motivates the betrayed partner to find evidence pointing to why porn IS bad.

We can find evidence to support either argument.

Whether watching porn is okay is specific to each relationship.  If it’s something you have to hide, then you shouldn’t be doing it – sex or otherwise.  Anything else only leads to the breakdown of intimacy, trust, and connection.

This is an area that both parties should get out in the open before getting into a long-term, committed relationship and why it’s important to be honest about it before committing to someone.

If someone is watching porn to satisfy their sexual urges at the cost of their relationship, then they should consider whether or not they really need to be in a relationship.  On the flip side, if one discovers their partner has a porn habit and shows no signs of stopping, then they might want to consider whether or not staying in the relationship is worth it.

Humans are genetically wired to do many things, but that doesn’t mean we should always give in to our primal urges.  That’s why we, as a race, have evolved to develop foresight, empathy, and self-control.

Does that mean masturbation is wrong?  That’s up to us as individuals to decide.  Does it mean porn is wrong? That depends upon the context and whether watching it is hurting someone else.

And for those who still support the clandestine viewing of porn and masturbation inside of a committed relationship, what should your betrayed and frustrated partner be allowed to do to have their own needs satisfied ?  What if they don’t want to watch porn and, instead, prefer sex with a real human?  Should they be allowed to take a partner for such matters – and what’s the difference in the big scheme of things?

It IS something we’re genetically wired for, after all.

Copyright © 2015 Kim Saeed. All Rights Reserved

Healing from narcissistic abuse?  Join the Let Me Reach Facebook Community!

Let Me Reach Coaching and Mentoring Services:

I provide confidential coaching to help both men and women work through their relationship issues via telephone, Skype chat, and Facetime Audio. Please visit my Coaching page for more details.

Your Healing Toolkit

Jpg_healing_toolbox_rs_for_ck

Join thousands of others who are getting weekly updates, healing tips, and empowered living advice - and receive instant access to:

The Beginner's Healing Toolkit! Start healing from Narcissistic Abuse now!

Powered by ConvertKit

Leave a Comment:

(26) comments

mbjuliet October 1, 2015

When my husband and I went to counseling he vehemently denied a porn addiction. The cookies

Reply
mbjuliet October 1, 2015

Perfect!Sent from Yahoo Ma

Reply
HitTheNailOnTheHead September 29, 2015

I LOVE YOU KIM SAEED, YOU HIT THE NAIL ON THE HEAD. Every head.

Reply
    Kim Saeed September 30, 2015

    Thank you, HTNONTH! 🙂

    Reply
Michele Private September 29, 2015

Great post!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Date: Mon, 28 Sep 2015 16:28:40 +0000 To: shel10755@hotmail.com

Reply
Ellebelle2015 September 29, 2015

I think porn gives the wrong idea about what a woman likes or how she reacts. I noticed in my relationship after 30 years that he was watchign porn and his behaviour changed. It started after he stopped working. so don’t tell me that watching porn couldn’t be addictive. What about sides like “daddy loves his daughter”? Altough the woman actrice ia an addult than the site is suggesting something different. I found things like this in his internet history.
i have a granddaughter at that time of four years old. This was one of the main reasons I left my narcistsic partner.

Reply
mullguy September 28, 2015

Watching porn inside of a committed relationship is a form of cheating no different than if a women searches for the emotional support that is missing in a relationship. While we are on the subject going to a Gentleman’s Club aka strip joint fits in the same category.

Reply
Shiboriii September 28, 2015

This about porn… tells all the truths nobody wants to hear. Thanks so much for this topic ! https://youtu.be/gRJ_QfP2mhU

Reply
Mia September 28, 2015

Excellent article. I totally agree with you. When I’ve been in mature relationships on occasion together we have watched porn. Like the first five minutes only. Then I noticed that certain kinds of men live off porn. It is usually men with u satisfied partners at home. Men who will weaken to hooking up for sex from a picture in an ad they see. To them its their privilege as men to behave this way . They never see that it’s their addiction to porn which is geared for men to get off to and isn’t at all what women want to be doing sexually with their husbands or partners…. Men get themselves into a mess of trouble this way. They say they want intimacy. But hooking up with a person advertised as “always open” isn’t gonna get you to your goal. You’ll get off but left feeling the need to find more to conquer. Watching porn puts a lot of pressure on women.

I feel I’m not bad at giving my man what he needs to get off and like it. In this relationship now over as of last week he was very selfish. I was becoming more and more resentful of him and his attitude. I could tell I was becoming less interested in him. He too spoiled to work at making me happy. But right before I cut him lose to find someone else to support him and put up with his demeaning ways my man had the nerve or perhaps was that stupid to know boredom when it next to him. Here he is thinking he is right in telling me about some chick n a porn and I should watch it. I didn’t watch it. I later watched it and her style was very close to mine. I wondered why he couldn’t just ask me why I’m not ripping his clothes off. He loves that but I just couldn’t do that to someone who didn’t care at all about my needs. I think porn watching is done mostly by guys who are pretty clueless and emotionally handicapped. I don’t think porn is bad. I think people hurting others and using porn to do the hurting are losers. Mean bullies. If porn suddenly was a female pass time n not a mans. You would see a huge shift in what people do in por. If a man is smart he would watch porn geared for women and study the skills nessessary to having a woman experiencing multiple orgasms. That’s a man who cares. That’s using the ole noggin. And that guy can call me. I’ll be happy to assist him in the fine tuning. NOTE: no two women are alike. What works with one may or may not work with the next women. So watch several female friendly movies.

Reply
anon September 28, 2015

Amen, Kim. We ARE “wired” aka “feel” like doing lots of things that are bad for us and those we are close to…but that has never made it right! For the love of God, this is the message of the entire Bible…the war against the flesh and dying to those bad choices and picking healthy choices. WTF is wrong with this society where everything is okay…such a slippery slope and where does that slope eventually lead?…I know, right at hell’s door! Thanks and blessings to all who believe in making healthy choices for themselves and all of humanity…we need more of that type of person in this world. What other hope do we or our children really have? 🙂

Reply
    Kim Saeed September 28, 2015

    Spot on, Anon. Imagine this scenario: I’m sorry Suzie ransacked your office and slit your tires after you fired her, but hey, she was just acting on her natural human impulses, so no worries!

    Reply
      anon September 28, 2015

      Exactly, Kim. Grrr…today I am feeling very angry/depressed about this kind of thinking. It closely mirrors that “there are no victims” crap that many people spew. Yes, I agree that we need to be more aware of narcs and their ilk (once we realize they exist) but when one person plays by the rules of a healthy relationship and the other doesn’t there is simply no way they are both equally to blame. Only one person followed their selfish feelings while the other tried to live with more ethical choices. I have a client who owes me over $3K and is avoiding paying me. Now that I acknowledge he is being scummy, I will do no further work for him. However, it is ‘normal’ in doing contract work to do the work first and get paid after. Maybe it shouldn’t be normal, but that is another discussion. Most contractors trust that the client will pay you and most clients do. So, should I have known he wouldn’t because it is natural human impulse to not pay? Am I not a victim because I should have know that this particular client wouldn’t pay somehow when he presents initially exactly like all other clients have? In this case of porn, I supposed the person who was hurt by their partners porn addiction was somehow not a victim and somehow should have known all along that their partner partook in this? What if they didn’t even start the porn watching til way into the relationship? Is the ‘victim’ not a victim cuz he/she should have know that one day the partner would do this? Such a crazy way of thinking. What ever happened to right and wrong and basic human decency and morality? Call me a black and white thinker and I’ll proudly take that title. Grey is like fog and fog is where 25-car pileups happen, know what I’m saying? 😉 Ugh, off my soapbox now, lol.

      Reply
Joyce M. Short September 28, 2015

Most partners who object to porn do so for personal reasons. It might make them feel betrayed. Some will feel deprived of intimacy because their partner is experiencing sex with the fantasy on the screen in their stead. My objection to porn is a bit different……

The entire porn industry dehumanizes and objectifies women. On these videos, the woman is reduced to nothing more than a sex object. And I’d have serious problems with a sexual partner who supports that mindset.

So while people get stimulated, big time, by watching lurid videos with graphic, degrading details. what’s it saying about their sense of sex as a commodity, and their sex partner as an object?

And btw- guess what’s also missing from DSM…. psychopath and sociopath! Sex addiction is just as real as alcoholism or gambling addiction. Sex stirs up the chemistry in our brains, and yes, just like alcohol can become addictive, the swirling oxytocin resulting from sex can become addictive as well.

Reply
    Mia September 28, 2015

    Excellent article. I totally agree with you. When I’ve been in mature relationships on occasion together we have watched porn. Like the first five minutes only. Then I noticed that certain kinds of men live off porn. It is usually men with u satisfied partners at home. Men who will weaken to hooking up for sex from a picture in an ad they see. To them its their privilege as men to behave this way . They never see that it’s their addiction to porn which is geared for men to get off to and isn’t at all what women want to be doing sexually with their husbands or partners…. Men get themselves into a mess of trouble this way. They say they want intimacy. But hooking up with a person advertised as “always open” isn’t gonna get you to your goal. You’ll get off but left feeling the need to find more to conquer. Watching porn puts a lot of pressure on women.

    I feel I’m not bad at giving my man what he needs to get off and like it. In this relationship now over as of last week he was very selfish. I was becoming more and more resentful of him and his attitude. I could tell I was becoming less interested in him. He too spoiled to work at making me happy. But right before I cut him lose to find someone else to support him and put up with his demeaning ways my man had the nerve or perhaps was that stupid to know boredom when it next to him. Here he is thinking he is right in telling me about some chick n a porn and I should watch it. I didn’t watch it. I later watched it and her style was very close to mine. I wondered why he couldn’t just ask me why I’m not ripping his clothes off. He loves that but I just couldn’t do that to someone who didn’t care at all about my needs. I think porn watching is done mostly by guys who are pretty clueless and emotionally handicapped. I don’t think porn is bad. I think people hurting others and using porn to do the hurting are losers. Mean bullies. If porn suddenly was a female pass time n not a mans. You would see a huge shift in what people do in por. If a man is smart he would watch porn geared for women and study the skills nessessary to having a woman experiencing multiple orgasms. That’s a man who cares. That’s using the ole noggin. And that guy can call me. I’ll be happy to assist him in the fine tuning. NOTE: no two women are alike. What works with one may or may not work with the next women. So watch several female friendly movies.

    Joyce you are so on it. I just read what you wrote. Yes. And that’s the real problem. Porn is seen as the go to to gain skills but it never touches what women are needing from men in reality in the bedroom. We are all intimacy starved. Performance is now the pressure in the bedroom for women. Where’s the man making the woman feel beautiful and special, and taking his time to relax her and kiss her and appreciate what is before him? Where’s her needs being met a priority. We all know or should know a man who is that kind and thoughtful is a man a woman will live forever and do anything for. That’s how you want a woman to give to you. It’s the best thing ever and no one these days knows about that!!!!

    Reply
    Mia September 28, 2015

    Damnit sorry about typos this is a tiny phone I’m using.

    Reply
Carrie Reimer September 28, 2015

This is a common problem with relationships with a narcissist and one that I hear almost daily on my blog also. Your views of the problem parrell mine in many ways. It is a personal choice.
I have had relationships where the man enjoyed porn and strippers and it never bothered me because I never felt I was competing for his attention and it was not a daily or even monthly thing. It was a “night out with the guys” thing and I went to the strippers with him on occasion and in my younger days i enjoyed my own “girls night out”. Some of my friends were not as liberal as I was and would get very upset if their partner even bought a Playboy mag.
I have always felt that if it is a problem for the other person then there has to be a decision made. If there is anything one partner does that the other one is totally against, there is a choice to be made, the person doing the offending act has to decide to give it up or walk away and if they can’t give it up; it is up to the other person to accept it or walk away.
To me it would be a simple and easy choice, the relationship would win over porn any day and if it didn’t I would know the relationship was in serious trouble.
The thing with narcissists or sociopaths, psychopaths, anti social, (what are they being called these days?) the victim keeps thinking they are normal and expect a normal reaction from them and if they don’t get it, they read into it what they want instead of taking it at face value and walking away.
I don’t think “porn” is the problem, no more than alcohol is the problem; it is who is indulging that is the problem and the people who refuse to accept the facts and walk away. I think it is the lying and hiding it that makes it so wrong. If you are THAT hooked on porn that you would prefer to sit up all night looking at a computer screen when you have a red blooded woman in a negligee laying in the bed next door crying because she want you to come to bed; you have a problem and the woman in the negligee needs to stop crying and pack her bags because no amount of explaining or seducing is going to fix it.

Reply
safirefalcon September 28, 2015

Your comment is there. I just read the article and then some comments including yours. I agree with what you say in the comment completely.

The other things I noticed is that the author seemed to cherry pick whatever agreed with what she thinks. Speaking outside of relationships and the watching of porn, as far as addiction goes, there would be a line. Where that is I don’t know. But if someone feels a need, doesn’t think of much else and goes right home after work to watch porn and masturbate, then I’d say it’s a problem.

There’s a good comment there by a man near the top who had a really good argument against porn and stating that porn addiction is indeed real.

The article was actually kinda silly. Because to me when I see people writing stuff like this and then referring to certain studies, my thinking is that it really doesn’t prove much.

Just because so and so says it’s ok, doesn’t make it true. Doctors, scientists and researchers are wrong all the time. And as you said, you can find an argument to prove any point from either side.

Looking deeper into the whole thing on an individual and couple basis, since there can be so many factors, is important. I also got the impression that maybe she minimizes the feelings of her female clients when they have a problem with their stbx watching porn.

Reply
Remembertoforget September 28, 2015

Well said Kim! Amen

Reply
Anonymous September 28, 2015

Well said Kim! Amen.

Reply
    Kim Saeed September 28, 2015

    Thanks, Anon!

    Reply
Catherine Moyet September 28, 2015

I am so with you on this one. If they do it when you are not around and in a clandestine fashion then obviously they feel it is something they have to hide. What is natural about that? If your partner feels that it is his “right” than why not be open about it. It is just a perfect example of the lies that a toxic relationship breeds. I do believe that frequently watching porn is a symptom of sex addiction, especially when they are engaging in this behavior behind your back instead of discussing/inviting you to partake in their “pastime/leisure” behavior with them. Complete emotional detachment from the person they claim to love. In my case, it was my ex’s addiction to gay porn that he was hiding that made me say no thanks. That was a lie within a lie. Lie’s destroy people and their self worth, not just relationships.

Reply
    Kim Saeed September 28, 2015

    Great insight, Catherine – it’s really the lies and betrayal that are so damaging. Thank you for stopping by and sharing your insightful thoughts 🙂

    Reply
      Anonymous September 28, 2015

      Ian Kerner Ph.D. Says in one of his books and I paraphrase, that the problem with porn and masturbation is that its sole purpose it to reach orgasm as quickly as possible. He says it short circuits the brain, especially men’s brains. He likens porn and masturbation to fast food. It’s good but not very often because ultimately fast food is not good for you. You cheat yourself out of healthy nutrition and the pleasure of a gourmet meal. Again I paraphrased.
      My ex-husband was addicted to porn, was a peeping tom, had erection problems and the violence in the porn that he watch escalated. What I’ve never understood is that these men all have mothers and some have wives, sisters and daughters. How can they support something that so obviously places women in a role to be abused and used? We have two daughters and he never could answer the question how would he feel if his daughters became porn stars. Your response was spot on.

      Reply
        Kim Saeed September 28, 2015

        Thank you for your informative comment, Anon.

        Men are typically able to compartmentalize these matters, unlike women (in general). That’s why they are able to participate in and justify sexual activities and have no real concern about moral matters regarding such. (Again, that’s a general statement. Not all men do that).

        Granted, there are men (and women) who are truly remorseful about activities and habits such as the ones you mentioned, but they are few. A large segment of people who engage in such decadence truly feel they are entitled to behave that way and don’t really care what their partner feels about it.

        Thank you for stopping by and commenting! I’ll check into Dr. Kerner’s book 🙂

        Reply
Mary Raub September 28, 2015

Well said, and so very true! Thanks for your logic. Hopefully it will help some relationships out there.

Reply
    Kim Saeed September 28, 2015

    Thanks, Mary!

    Reply
Add Your Reply

Leave a Comment: