Why Women Prefer Men Who Don’t Watch Porn

Robert Jensen, author of Getting Off:  Pornography and the End of Masculinity, writes about how pornography is eroding authenticity in relationships and damaging both men and women.  In his opinion, the industry of pornography often makes the theme of subordination of women and cruelty to women arousing.

Dr. Jensen’s book contains searing, graphic examples of abused women who were exploited, raped, and abused but could not remove these scenes from various websites after reporting these incidents. Jensen’s greater point about pornography is that graphic, sexually-themed violence against women shouldn’t be easily dismissed by anyone, and when it is, this shows a growing lack of empathy in society.

Dr. Jensen teaches  at The University of Texas and sometimes encounters undergraduate students who believe he is out of touch with the reality of dating today.  In response, Jensen poses a scenario to the women in his class, asking them to imagine being asked out by two guys. “The men are equivalent in all criteria that matter to you–sense of humor, intelligence, looks–and the only clear difference is that one regularly masturbates to online pornography and one never looks at it. Who would you rather go out with?”

The female students cringe when they realize that they really would prefer a man who doesn’t watch porn to one that does.  However, these students often feel that the use of pornography is all too common and that they don’t have many options of men who don’t use it. I hope that more and more men opt out of using it for a number of reasons.

Men who don’t watch porn are better in bed.

They seem to enjoy sex in a more honest, present way.  They have fewer issues with erectile dysfunction, and they are able to pick up on her subtle hints rather than relying on particular scenes they have witnessed. Men who don’t watch porn are more in touch with what really turns most women on—making out, kissing, petting, eye contact, going down on her, touching her, being tender and loving with her.

There’s a reason why players are good in bed—they have a lot of experience with real women, not with watching women (who are often treated in dehumanizing ways) in online pornographic scenarios.  If young men learn to imitate scenes from pornography, they do not learn that the best way to please a woman is to be generous, kind, loving, sensual, aware, empathetic, emotionally supportive, appreciative, and present.  They do not learn how to adapt to women’s differing needs in the bedroom.

Men who don’t watch porn are more authentic about their sexual desires.

They know themselves better, and their very energy has a more innocent feel to it. People don’t like to admit that they are energetically sensitive, but we all are.  Women walk by men at work who are porn addicts, and pick up energetically on this knowledge. Sometimes, women are a little grossed out by the guy’s energy, but other times they realize this man has sex on the forefront of his mind and may not have good boundaries. If they like him, they realize that he is easy to manipulate because of his weakness, but they also have trouble trusting him to be faithful if they start a relationship with him.

True intimacy is found through sharing thoughts, feelings, and one’s past.  It is found through emotional support and intellectual understanding.   Perhaps the best way to have amazing sex is to really get to know someone’s mind and what excites them. Pornography reduces people to their body parts, but true emotional intimacy opens up worlds of connection between two people.

Men who don’t watch porn are more creative about sex.

Sometimes, a great night with a partner is unexpected and wild. Maybe the two of you make love outdoors or in the car.  You do something spontaneous and unexpected.  You create a memory that is your own movie and unlike anything a pornographer has shot.

I know that many couples like to watch porn together as a way to spice up their sex lives, and my main caution would be to make sure that what you are watching does not contain images of trafficked women, children, or even men.  Women are often subjected to violence and coercion in the making of pornography, and pornography is a big factor in the underground sex slavery industry.  

Much of pornography is trafficked and abusive to women.

Most women entering the field of pornography are desperate for money, and do not fully know what they will be subjected to over time in the industry.  Do your own research though, and bring greater awareness to the act of consuming pornography.  In most scenes, women are presented as dehumanized, sexual objects who enjoy humiliation, pain, and rape.

All human beings deserve the opposite of this kind of treatment.  We deserve dignity, pleasure, and the choice to decline sexual advances.  Awareness alone is enough to begin the process of changing this habit.  There are several great articles on this blog about quitting the use of pornography.

Basically, if you consume pornography you are creating a greater demand for it.  Ran Gavrieli’s TED Talk discusses how many young women are being taught through pornography that sexual desire means being loved, and these young women are often shamed in the digital environment by young men they have dated. This leads to depression and sometimes suicide for these young women.

According to Gavrieli, porn is not an embodiment of freedom of speech; rather, it is embodiment of sex exploitation working side by side with sex slavery, raping, pimping, and solicitation.  For every one porn star with a book contract or production company, there are hundreds of thousands of women and girls who do not survive.  Drugs, STDs, suicide, and murder are common causes of death in the industry.

Pornography isn’t the cause of rape, stalking, and sexual abuse, but there is a normalizing of these behaviors in many pornographic scenes which could contribute to a lack of impulse control in some men.  The reality is that these types of traumatizing moments are sanity engulfing and terrifying for women and girls years after the actual event.

What men should be learning is how to support a girlfriend, partner, or wife who has survived sexual abuse, stalking, rape, or violence, not getting off to images of these types of scenarios.  Sexual violence is statistically  common for women, so it is important for men to know how to support a lover, friend, girlfriend or wife who is a survivor of sexual violence.

Men who watch porn damage their own intimate relationships.

Women can’t help feeling that they are “not enough” when a man chooses images on a screen over them. Women feel as if their body is compared to the often surgically enhanced bodies on the screens. Our bodies often don’t seem like the gift of great love and a vehicle for soulful connection; our bodies seem to us as if they are not good enough if they do not resemble the women online who our partners use for masturbation.  Additionally, the secrecy and lack of connection is one of the main reasons women are damaged by partners who consume pornography.

There are countless studies and research about how many failed relationships and failed marriages cite pornography as one of the reasons for the downfall of the relationship. Although pornography might be an uncomfortable topic, it is one that should be thoroughly examined in every sex ed class and human sexuality class.

Porn addiction is a common problem, and I hope that more people might consider disconnecting and getting more in touch with themselves and their beloved.

 

Tricia Barker

Tricia Barker experienced a profound near-death experience during her senior year of college, and this experience guided her to teach overseas, in public schools, and at the college level. National Geographic and A&E’s I Survived: Beyond and Back covered Tricia’s story. Currently, Tricia teaches English and Creative Writing at a beautiful community college in Fort Worth, Texas. Tricia’s memoir in-progress, Healed, chronicles the moment of her accident, her near-death experience, and other moments of trauma that affect many women. The book focuses on being of service to the world as one way to heal from trauma. Tricia’s poetry has been featured in The Binnacle, The Paterson Literary Review, and The Midwest Quarterly.

8 Comments
  1. Reply
    Raymond August 8, 2017 at 10:17 am

    Searing post here, Tricia. I loved reading every moment of this 🙂

    • Reply Tricia Barker
      Tricia Barker August 8, 2017 at 7:55 pm

      Thank you! Dr. Jensen visited one of the college campuses where I taught English, and it was so encouraging to see young men and women think about this issue seriously.

      • Reply
        Raymond August 8, 2017 at 8:49 pm

        I’m usually laughed out of the room or shirked off by my male peers when I talk about it. I’ve taken to giving answers when asked now. I’m very tired of being ridiculed for what I believe is very unhealthy.

        • Tricia Barker
          Tricia Barker August 9, 2017 at 3:28 pm

          You are a pioneer. Good for you for at least trying to talk about the issue with other men. I know women get quickly labeled as “man haters” for bringing up this topic and other topics, but men also face ridicule. I find it mind-blowing that the people trying to bring awareness, health, connection, and education to others get attacked. I remember Robert Jensen talking about all the Texas men who wanted to start fights, verbal and otherwise, with him for his beliefs.

        • Raymond August 9, 2017 at 11:04 pm

          We do, it’s annoying, and it’s mainly in the face of other mens insecurities. If men actually sat and read, tested, and finally realised that if you treat sex like an enjoyable experience, rather than all about the orgasm – I’ve literally had 3 orgasms one after the other before. Train your willy well, chuck porn and objectivism and treat the one you love like a godess in the bedroom 🙂

  2. Reply
    TheChattyIntrovert August 8, 2017 at 2:01 pm

    makes sense. I’d be cringing if I knew the guy I liked watched porn all the time. I’d be constantly wondering what is so appealing about it and why he’d bother with little old me if he likes what he’s seeing on screen so much (and then I’d be wondering if he was going to try and manipulate me into being like one of the women on there–no thank you!)

    • Reply Tricia Barker
      Tricia Barker August 8, 2017 at 2:49 pm

      Thanks for your comment. I’ve heard Dr. Jensen speak with college students, and it is encouraging that education can open the minds of young men and women to this issue. I was especially encouraged to see young men raise their hands and ask Dr. Jensen about how they can basically treat women with more dignity while living in this culture.

      • Reply
        TheChattyIntrovert August 8, 2017 at 3:21 pm

        Ooh, that made me have a good day, seeing that they asked about that in front of everyone. Smart people. Hugs and have a good one.

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