I didn't get married until I was 40 (in 2001.) In the mid 1990s, it was noticeable that a lot of men were suddenly watching a lot of online videos of hardcore porn. I noticed in several boyfriends who watched a lot of porn that they didn't seem to be able to have what is now viewed as "vanilla" sex. Honestly, I cut off these relationships in part because of this. After this, I deliberately sought out a partner who hadn't watched a lot of porn and married him.

Porn can work in the opposite direction that men intend: they end up with less real sex.

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It would be a good idea to interview one who has studied sexual neuroscience, on the subject of the use of pornography. Someone with the educational background necessary to begin to answer some of the questions you're putting forward. Why not interview Dr. Debra Soh?

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Shame is a very good sexual turn on for a lot of people.

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Let's be brutally honest about one thing: Monogamy is not natural for our species, or at least not entirely so for most people as it falls on a spectrum. At best, it's a kind of social technology. Or more accurately, as history and anthropology has shown, there are really three kinds of monogamy: strict, lifelong, and universal. Pick two out of three, basically.

(That is true for BOTH genders, by the way. In fact, some studies suggest that women are even less suited to monogamy than men are.)

Porn is basically a giant workaround. And yet, those who seek to eradicate it are rarely (if ever) the same people who endorse even a fraction of the ideas in "Sex At Dawn" by Christopher Ryan and Cacilda Jetha. Quite the paradox.

That's not to say that porn itself doesn't have a dark side. It obviously does. But as the legendary Dr. Marty Klein has famously noted, whenever there is conflict that appears to be about porn, most of the time, it's not really about the porn. Usually it goes much deeper.

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I do not oppose sexually explicit videos or imagery between two consenting adults (husband/wife/significant other, etc.) However, I am very much opposed to commodifying, commercializing, and normalizing pornographic content.

In addition, porn, in my opinion, should be treated much like guns wherein if it is registered to you (you are the creator or “actor”) you are responsible for it. If someone walked up to your 11 or 12 year old child and whipped their dick out they would be arrested. Yet children are exposed to far worse online and everyone pretends it’s not happening or even worse it’s considered “normal.”

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Helpful and credible, thank you, Meghan.

Have you or any other anti-porn campaigners consulted anyone in sex addicts anonymous: https://saa-recovery.org? I reckon there is a wealth of relevant info and insight amongst the fellowship. But the Twelve Steps traditions tell SAA groups not to engage in any discourse about anything outside the fellowship. That is a lacuna and a missed opportunity, I think.

Separately, re: “But of course it isn’t only single, lonely men who use porn. Men with partners are avid users as well.” Hmm, you know the old joke? Q: What do you do if you want to stop having sex? A: Get married.

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