Em & Lo's RSS Feed Em & Lo's Daily Email Feed Be Our Facebook Friend! Follow Us on Twitter!

LEVI's on Amazon

Good Vibes Cupcake

Buy on Amazon Kindle!

Sandals on Amazon


Your Call: Is Getting Him on a Porn Diet Realistic?

Mon, Apr 22, 2013

Advice, Dear Em & Lo, Your Call

photo via Wiki Commons

We get a lot of advice questions coming in at EMandLO.com, but sadly, we just can’t answer them all. Which is why, once a week, we turn to you to decide how best to advise a reader. Make your call on the letter below by leaving your advice in the comments section. 

Submit Your Own Question to EMandLO.comTry Our New
*PRIVATE* Advice Service!

 

Dear Em & Lo,

Intellectually, I get porn and how it works for guys. I myself like the occasional erotica collection. But emotionally, I still can’t help but feel really bad when I stumble upon some of my live-in boyfriend’s “smut.” We have a sort of don’t ask, don’t tell policy regarding porn, but it’s hard to hide 100% of the time. Most days I can forget about it — a sort of forced denial — but when I really think about it, it just depresses me. Sometimes I wonder if it negatively affects our sex life: if I’m not in the mood, he turns to porn, he gets satisfied there, then doesn’t initiate sex with me, and he keeps not initiating sex with me because porn will always be in the mood. I just came across this Male Anti-Masturbation Movement thing via your site and can’t help but wonder if something like that might be good for our relationship — if he took a break from porn and focused on me, I’d feel better about the sex and not just feel like a porn substitute, which would make me want to have sex more. I’m not saying “ban all porn!” I’m just wondering if you agree that a porn diet might actually benefit our relationship…? And if so, how I should go about suggesting it…?

– Torn About Porn

What should T.A.P. do? Let her know in the comments section below.

MORE LIKE THIS ON EMandLO.com:

, , , ,

 

5 Responses to “Your Call: Is Getting Him on a Porn Diet Realistic?”

  1. m Says:

    It sounds like the issue here is not about the porn, it’s about you feeling like a “porn substitute”. Part of this is something you need to work out on your own. This may be because of how your partner treats you sexually (if so, that’s a sign to DTMFA), but let’s assume that’s not what’s going on here.
    There are several ways for you and your partner to work on this together.

    Just a “porn diet” I don’t think will work, because he will still watch porn and you will still feel bad about it, it might delay the problems you two are having but it won’t solve anything.

    These are some suggestions to try for a couple weeks and see if you feel more comfortable about porn. You should have a conversation with him now about what makes you feel bad when he watches porn. That way he can know that those are difficult points for you and help you feel more attractive/secure/whatever.

    I also recommend looking into feminist-created porn. It’s always a good thing to do (and may make the porn he’s watching a little more palatable for you)

    1. If the problem is you worry he would rather watch porn than have sex with you:
    He can watch porn all he wants, but only if he asks you if you’re in the mood first. And when you talk about porn he should remind you that it’s a poor substitute for the awesome sex he has with you.
    This only works if you won’t then feel pressured or bad if you say no and then he watches porn.
    There will be times when sex is too much but he still wants to watch something sexy – you either have to be okay with him asking if you mind him watching (you can discuss: either solo or with you) on occasion or him watching and promising to cover his tracks really well.

    2. If the problem is you don’t feel as sexy as the porn stars:
    He can watch porn but only with you. If you realize how sexy he finds you while he’s watching porn, you will not feel so threatened by it.
    If you pick this one, you should have a pre-discussed contingency plan if you get upset by the porn.

    3. If you just don’t feel ready for #1 or 2:
    Try out reading your erotica together

  2. J Says:

    I think you need to decide what is really causing the problems in your relationship. Is it the fact that he is watching too much porn or is it how you feel about porn? If he’s watching too much porn and it is affecting the way he has sex with you, then a porn diet may help. If it’s the way you feel about porn, it’s something you’re going to have to work on. Telling him to stop watching porn won’t change how you feel. So, do some soul searching and try to get to the root of the matter.

  3. hannah Says:

    Yeah, if he’s turning to porn instead of putting in the effort of interesting and arousing you, then that is definitely a problem. I’m not saying the solution is to give up porn altogether. I mean, maybe the solution is something that he needs to come up with himself, whatever that ends up being. But you have every right to clearly state the problem as you see it and how it makes you feel. Tell him that you feel like a porn substitute and he’s turning to that instead of putting in the effort with you, and ask him what he thinks could be done to change the situation. You definitely deserve better and I’m sure if he realized you felt that way, he’d try to be more considerate.

  4. ML Says:

    I’m a guy. I like porn. I like sex with my girlfriend MUCH more. There probably are some guys out there who would rather watch porn and wank than have hot sex with a real girl. There aren’t many.

    I am with the previous writers who said that you need to get to the heart of what is really going on. There are three possibilities as I see it:

    1. You are just insecure about porn and need to find a way to get over it. Unlike the other commenter, I don’t think that involves insisting on rules or magic words that your boyfriend will say that will make his watching porn OK with you. You need to find a way to believe that “When my boyfriend says he wants to have sex with me, then turns to porn when I say no” that really does mean what it appears to: that he wants to have sex with you and is turning to a substitute only when that isn’t available.

    2. Your boyfriend doesn’t do it for you, either because he’s not willing to put in the effort to be a good lover, or he just doesn’t do it for you, so you are not all that interested in having sex with him, so he turns to porn (and he may not try to have sex with you that often, because he doesn’t like being rejected). In this case you two are probably sexually incompatible and should call it a relationship.

    3. You just have different libidos, in which case, see #1. Seems to me if he has a higher libido than you, and is happy taking care of his own needs when you are interested, that’s a pretty good answer.

  5. misspiggy Says:

    I’m thinking mismatched libidos are an issue here. References are made to not being in the mood and if the guy changes his behaviour the LW might want sex more. Porn use and not wanting sex should be talked through separately. Maybe he uses porn more because he assumes requests for sex will be rejected. But wouldn’t it be better to agree ways and times that he can initiate sex without being rejected? Emily Nagoski on responsive desire may be worth taking a look at. Making someone feel they have to earn sex, rather than being wanted for themselves, will poison things in the long run.

    Even if the LW did want sex more, the boyfriend would have a perfect right to use porn for self-care, assuming he wasn’t neglecting her needs for sex, affection and time together. When I want to wind down after a stressful day I might read Pride and Prejudice and have a bit of a fantasy about Mr Darcy before I go to sleep. If my husband’s in a similar mood, he’ll look at boobs on the Internet. Having more sex may only replace part of the reason someone uses porn.

    If the type of porn isn’t the issue, it does seem that the LW needs to genuinely drop her objections. Alternatively, she could find a guy who is either puritanical (i.e. will completely hide his porn use) or is less interested in sex overall.


Leave a Reply