The Porn Cri­sis That Isn’t

A small num­ber of adults—roughly 11 per­cent of men and 3 per­cent of women—con­sid­er them­selves some­what addict­ed to porn, even though a num­ber of sci­en­tists dis­pute whether addic­tion” is an appro­pri­ate label for watch­ing lots of porn. Believ­ing that porn is moral­ly bad” is strong­ly cor­re­lat­ed with feel­ing like you have an addic­tion to pornog­ra­phy, regard­less of how much porn you actu­al­ly watch. The best pre­dic­tor of self-per­ceived sex­u­al-use prob­lems, like pornog­ra­phy addic­tion, is high lev­els of reli­gios­i­ty,” says Bryant Paul, a media pro­fes­sor at Indi­ana Uni­ver­si­ty and a fac­ul­ty affil­i­ate of the Kin­sey Insti­tute, which stud­ies human sexuality.

I grew up in a cult with very strict rules about pornog­ra­phy. I thought porn was harm­ful, dis­gust­ing, and a rab­bit hole that led to sex­u­al devian­cy. What’s fas­ci­nat­ing is that I hard­ly ever watched porn back then, and yet each time I did, it absolute­ly tor­ment­ed me. The guilt. The shame. I thought I had a problem.

Fun­ni­ly enough, porn is now a reg­u­lar part of my sex life, and yet it doesn’t have a detri­men­tal effect in my life or on my partners.

That being said, I think the arti­cle brings up excel­lent points when talk­ing about its access to chil­dren. What I would’ve giv­en to have com­pre­hen­sive sex edu­ca­tion and sex-pos­i­tive con­ver­sa­tions grow­ing up!

Instead of incor­rect­ly label­ing porn a health cri­sis,” I’d love to see bet­ter wages and safer con­di­tions for sex work­ers. We need more inclu­sive sex edu­ca­tion that not only talks about safe­ty, but plea­sure and gay sex as well. Final­ly, par­ents need to embrace sex pos­i­tiv­i­ty. These beliefs that vil­lainize sex are the real thing that caus­es harm in people.