Pornography and Sexual Behavior

“Do you watch porn?” the question that makes everyone smile but not everyone answers the truth.

With the boom of internet access, pornography has become highly accessible and cheaper for the people all around the world. Only in the USA 9 out of 10 men and 1 out of 3 women watches porn. Researches done by Robert Weiss PhD, LCSW (2019) showed that 25% search requests on internet is about porn which is about 68 million requests per day. It also included that the most popular day of the week to watch porn is Sunday whereas Thanksgiving is the most popular day in a year. Globally, porn is a $97 billion industry, according to Kassia Wosick, assistant professor of sociology at New Mexico State University. At present, around $10 and $12 billion of the total comes only from the United States. Increased access to online pornography and its effect on the feelings and behavior of the viewers is a matter of debate. Pornography is also regarded as a source of sex information and students learn about the mechanics of sex from pornography, according to Q Li and MR Davey (1996).

A study done by Rogala and Tyde´n (2002) in an casualty clinic for family planning and testing for sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) in Stockholm, Sweden showed that 4 out of 5 women, (80.3%) believed that pornography effected people’s sexual behavior, while 31.6% of them who had consumed pornography said that they had been influenced themselves. The result exposed that almost everyone (94.4%) had experienced oral sex and 47% had anal intercourse with their partner. There are reports of confrontational effect of pornography on relationships and sexual enjoyment. For example, a common objection from young heterosexual women is being pressured or expected to do things that their male partners had seen in pornography (such as anal sex or ejaculation on the female’s face) (Crabbe & Corlett, 2011). Researches also suggested that excessive use of pornography among men can lead to a dependence on pornography to have sexual arousal and loss of pleasure during sex with the partner (Bridges et al. 2014). In case of the effect of pornography on the young population, it is believed that it has significant influence on the sexual and emotional development of the young generation. A survey carried away among university students who watches porn with an average age of 19.8 years in Lille, France by Bulot et al. (2015) revealed that the students questioned have had an average of 4 sex partners. Men are more interested to look for casual partners than woman (12% vs 3.4%) and in case of their sexual practices, 97% of them have practiced vaginal penetration, 23% anal penetration and 80% of them have tried oral sex. On the other hand higher number of men have experimented sexual relationship with multiple partners than women (6.1% vs 3.4%).

Now if we consider sexual violence and it’s relation with pornography, with respect to antiwomen beliefs and attitudes, it has been found that exposure to violent pornography encourages men’s tendencies to have imaginations about raping a woman (Malamuth, 1981) also it’s increases men’s belief that some women secretly desires to get raped by men (Malamuth & Check, 1981). On the contrary, in Japan even with the extensive growth in availability of pornography to children, not only there was a reduction in sex crimes with teenagers as victims, but the quantity of juvenile offenders also declined considerably (Diamond & Uchiyama, 1999)

So it can be concluded that watching pornography is very common in current society, but its influence on sexual behavior and well-being remains ambiguous. The existing evidences recommends that pornography does affect our behavior, sometimes in difficult means. However, it is also showed that for some people, watching pornography has no adversative effects and may has positive result.

References:

  1. Bulot, C., Leurent, B. and Collier, F., 2015. Pornography sexual behaviour and risk behaviour at university. Sexologies24(4), pp.e78-e83.
  2. Malamuth, N.M., 1981. Rape proclivity among males. Journal of social issues37(4), pp.138-157.
  3. Malamuth, N.M. and Check, J.V., 1985. The effects of aggressive pornography on beliefs in rape myths: Individual differences. Journal of Research in Personality19(3), pp.299-320.
  4. Sun, C., Bridges, A., Johnson, J.A. and Ezzell, M.B., 2016. Pornography and the male sexual script: An analysis of consumption and sexual relations. Archives of sexual behavior45(4), pp.983-994.
  5. Crabbe, M. and Corlett, D., 2011. Eroticising inequality: Technology, pornography and young people. Redress20(1), p.11.
  6. Li, Q. and Davey, M.R., 1996. Pornography as a source of sex information for college students in fraternities and sororities. Journal of Health Education27(3), pp.165-169.
  7. https://blogs.psychcentral.com/sex/2013/05/the-prevalence-of-porn/
  8. https://www.nbcnews.com/business/business-news/things-are-looking-americas-porn-industry-n289431
  9. Rogala, C. and Tydén, T., 2003. Does pornography influence young women’s sexual behavior? Women’s Health Issues13(1), pp.39-43.
  10. Diamond, M. and Uchiyama, A., 1999. Pornography, rape, and sex crimes in Japan. International Journal of Law and Psychiatry.

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