4/22/13
Your Call: Is Getting Him on a Porn Diet Realistic?

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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. 

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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.

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


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misspiggy
2 years 9 months ago

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… Read more »

ML
2 years 9 months ago

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… Read more »

hannah
2 years 9 months ago

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… Read more »

J
2 years 9 months ago

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.

m
2 years 9 months ago

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… Read more »

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