Impact of Pornography on the Relationship in a Pair
The recent studies indicate that traditional sex has lost ground and was replaced by sexual intercourse simultaneously with watching pornography. Moreover, the trend of substitution is observed in both men and women. Thus, 70 percent of men of the age of 18-34 years have resorted to pornography at least once a month. At the same time, experts in the field of sex are sounding the alarm: viewing of adult movies makes extremely negative impact on the relationship.
According to the research, 90 percent of couples have significantly aggravated sexual and interpersonal relationship problems as a result of watching pornography, namely, the availability of sex movie moves traditional sex to the background and makes the pornography industry more and more popular. However, watching of erotic films showed significant decrease in confidence of both men and women, as many are unable to replicate and reproduce seen «exploits» in the bedroom (Schultz, et al., 2007).
“Through the lens of a porn camera women aren’t called women, they’re called whores, ho’s, bittches, sluts and hookers” (Callaghan, 2011).
“This helps some people overcome guilt about sexual desire, but it makes many men feel that everyone else is getting more than they are. They don’t understand that porn is fantasy” – Castleman writes (Castleman, 2012).
Women also begin to develop a complex about their figures, which in turn negatively affects their sex life. It should be noted that 67 percent of women try to emulate the pornography star after watching a movie for adults, but their attempts are likely to bound to fail.
“Pornography is available in various forms: written, pornographic film, or video. It is published in magazines and books as well as online. In most cases visual porn includes models and performers, some of whom are well known for their fans and appear in dozens of photo” – Queen wrote (Queen).
Too frequent and prolonged exposure to pornography has negative impact on the job, as well as relationship of pairs.
The study, conducted by the American Academy of Family Law, indicated that about half of the couples turn to the lawyers for help in divorce. As a reason for the break they call the passion for pornography on the Internet (Schneider, 2010).
As a matter in point of fact, the BBC investigators are concerned about frequency of men’s watching the pornography. They interviewed more than 1,000 people aged between 18-24 years and found that on average they spend 2 hours a week watching pornography on the internet. While one in four admitted that he is concerned about his addiction.
They had causes for concern. So, among those who spend 1 hour a week on the adult content, every third complains of the failure of the deadline at work or missing an important meeting. However, the researchers noticed a trend – the more people watch porn, the more they talk about problems with performance. Among all the respondents there were 4% of those who spend more than 10 hours a week on the “blue movies”. Almost 80% of them complained about failure of work schedules and linked it with their unhealthy fascination.
When subjects were asked to estimate how pornography affects their relationships with the opposite sex, one third of them said that they had conflicts with their partners because of this. Women, who knew about such interests of their partners, felt upset, were making scandals, even decided to break relations. 70% from the group of study participants who were the most dependent on the porn, declared such problems. Moreover, a quarter of all the respondents and more than a half of the «at risk» group reported that have lost the desire to have sex after watching pornography.
To find out more details, like how watching of the “adult movies” affects the relationship in a pair, the researchers put questions to the women. The response was limited to: “He expects that I will behave in bed as well as an actress in the film!”. However, not all the women agreed to play the role of pornography star at home (Bridges, 2008).
Sex therapist Heather Wood explained that the people, who watch pornography, eventually cease to enjoy sex. “They are beginning to worry about themselves, experience feeling consumers of pornography, as a result they have all the more problems in the relationship”. As a result, many respondents expressed a desire to break away from such dependence (Laumann et al., 2004).
Psychologists and therapists say, “Women may disagree with pornographic fantasies for a while, but then sex can be so humiliating, rude and dangerous, that they no longer accept it”. Instead of talking about pornography with a psychologist or therapist, people often express their attitude by more anonymous means: on internet forums, polls, but they are unified and their answers are too far from the real situation.
“How can I get rid of the anger toward ex-boyfriend for his pornography addiction? His rejection of me sexually, made me feel unattractive. This is a betrayal”. This message was sent to the forum on the site of the Research Center of Family Medicine and Psychotherapy.
Another woman wrote about the pictures that her husband had left on the desktop, “...they have been portrayed a girl with huge breasts, bigger than I had ever seen. I feel unable to meet the woman of his dreams, perhaps, this is stupid to be so much upset about that?» (Shope, 2004).
But few people know that it is not easy to restore the lost interest in real sex due to the fact that the drive being backed up repeatedly by the Internet images is very difficult to be «returned» to the real world with all its flaws, smells and touches.
According to statistics, one-third of all the visits to psychologists were a result of pornography, due to the fact that the partners had lost interest in sex. Psychological research conducted in the U.S. in 2009 found that watching pornography by men leads to the greater underestimation of the actual physical appearance of women and reduces the interest to the real sex. Women also mentioned negative effects of pornography, including dissatisfaction with their own appearance and being forced to commit degrading acts by men (Bergner & 2010).
Norman Doidge, a Psychiatrist, investigated the effects of pornography on his patients, and results of this research were described in his book “The Brain Changes Itself”.
Doidge wrote about his patients, “They reported that they become difficult to get aroused by their partners, spouses or girlfriends, though they still consider them attractive. When I asked whether this can be related to pornography, they said that the first pornography helped them to be excited during sex, but over time, the patients began to see the opposite effect” (Doidge, 2007).
As Koerner notes, some men are at the level of 17-year-old teenager from psychological standpoint. However, their body does not comply with this age indicator. Thus, interval between erections is increasing. If a man is masturbating a few times a day, the woman is likely to face difficulties in intimate relations.
The expert has introduced a special concept of “Sexual Attention Deficit Disorder» (SADD). The same as people with Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), men suffering from SADD are easily distracted due to the fact that pornography is concentration of new and exciting things. And sex with a woman turns out to be not enough exciting (Kerner & Rinna, 2012).
Men often recognize that they are bored during sex. They want it to be over quickly. In the physiological sense, they can be raised, which cannot be said about psychological aspect. In this regard, Ian Kerner calls to abandon pornography, at least, for some time.
Men see the ideal partners, who will do anything they want on demand and the real partners who refuse to do so. Pornography incites the constantly looking for next girl and new forms of sexual experience, but this is not a relationship.
According to Godson and Riordan “… 10 per cent of USA males who use porn believe that they have developed compulsive behaviors, for the other 90 per cent, porn is uncomplicated sexual short cut” (Godson & Riordan, 2012).
The influence of pornography is manifested in various aspects of private life, sometimes in the unexpected ones: for example, guys expect the instant orgasm from their partners because women in pornography simulate it. Men often require women to moan. The reason for these requests is that women are doing so in the pornography video. Besides, it should be noted that there is the undercurrent teaching of young people that they should bring pleasure to women, but it actually causes them physical and psychological trauma (Shapiro & Kroeger, 1991).
Interesting are the studies that show that pornography can make a man happy for three minutes, but definitely will lead to lower self-esteem. The gulf between how others see us and how we perceive ourselves, can quickly turn into a spiral of self-loathing.
A 32-year-old R. said, “I became hypocritical, my girlfriend tells me that I am a great guy and would be a great father, she does not know what I'm going to work every morning to check for updates on sites displaying photos threesome” (Deloy, 2007).
Modern neurological research shows that pornography alters the brain chemistry (Zillmann & Bryant, 2008).
Pornography enters a trance. “Viewing erotic pictures for some time deprives the brain vitality. Such pictures are even stronger than the images of violence and catastrophe”. These conclusions were made by united group of psychologists and neuroscientists from several American institutions.
In the beginning of the study, researchers tried to find out how exactly the human brain responds to emotionally vivid visuals. The list had not only the pictures of erotic content, but also scenes of violence, natural disasters and even images of mouth-watering dishes. In the experiment the scientists showed to participants ‘calm’ pictures (images of architectural objects, landscapes, etc.) mixed with spine, and realized that brain reacted on the sexually colored images by most prolonged braking.
The majority of participants could not even clearly recall and describe whole series of subsequent images they had been shown after an erotic picture. Although, according to the sensors, the moment of direct trance lasted only a split second. Psychologist David Zald of Vanderbilt University (Tennessee), who participated in the research and came up with the name for this phenomenon - “blindness on emotional grounds”, suggested that the phenomenon has some inertia. This explains the fact that in reality a second, during which the brain slows down, is considerably delayed. Zald’s colleague, Steven Most of Yale University, compared the mechanism of this ‘blindness’ with a short circuit in the power supply (Zitzman, 2008).
It is difficult not do concern the question of “Like other aspects of our increasingly sedentary lifestyles, are we increasingly becoming “porn-potatoes”? (Fridman, 2012)
Watching pornography releases flows of substances and hormones of pleasure. Some scientists compare these changes with those occurring during drug use. The study of pornography addicts showed that the state of sick people is close to the withdrawal symptoms. Complete isolation from sexual images is necessary for rehabilitation of such patients (Shope, 2004).
If the frequent viewing of such images and masturbation does not cease, there will not be the opportunity for normal sexual intercourse. After the rest from pornography, people can recover the lost skills or relearn the real way to the approaches and touches. In working with addicted patients the turning point is when a person starts to see the real suffering and pain of the partner. After that there is the possibility of resumption of mutual intimacy.
Obviously, distribution of pornography leads to degradation and destruction of traditional family values. Pornography culture equates sex to love and intimacy and it is distorting the meaning of these terms. Pornography separates people and pushes them apart. Pornography is not a substitute for real relationship and real experience. Sexual desire is much deeper and bigger than the mechanical action. In order to understand the inner feelings, finally experience deep mutual pleasure with a partner, the relationship building elements should be chosen, focusing on the spiritual relationship, and then spiritual closeness and spiritual attraction will form the basis of relations of the pair.