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By Stephen de Wit

You come home from work early.  You wake up to get a drink of water.  You are using his laptop.  And you find out he is cheating on you, not with another woman, but with porn!  Your brain kicks into overdrive. I am not good enough, he does not think I am sexy, I do not satisfy him sexually, he is a pervert, he is addicted to porn! STOP!  Over the years many women have approached me with this concern.  I do my best to listen to their fears and insecurities and provide them with reassurances and some tools to move forward.

The most common question is why?  I love this question as it is impossible for me to answer.  Many people come to me as a sexologist and ask me questions about their partner.  News flash, your partner is not here so I cannot tell you why he watches porn, wants to spank you, likes dressing up a chicken before you have sex, sucks your toes etc.  What I can do is help you understand how it impacts you.  Sex is a unique expression of oneself it can change with each partner and with each experience.  Let me pull from my professional and personal experience of why men watch porn when in relationships, in an effort to normalize it and make it easier to for you to talk to him about it.

1)  It is a private fantasy, different from his current sexual reality.  Please note, I did not say better but different.  You know that thing that you think about when you are alone bringing yourself pleasure – ya that one – well he has just found his online.

2)  It is faster and takes less energy.  There is nothing wrong with this, it’s just a reality of our busy lives.  He knows what he wants, when he wants it and the pressure, pace and presence of mind to take him where he wants to go.

3)  He is curious.  With the proliferation online porn there is vast access to different ways people express themselves sexually.  He may want to know what it looks like and possibly, if you don’t make him wrong for it, share his curiosity with you.

4)  Just for the sheer physical release of it.  There is no emotional, psychological, spiritual connection.  And there are no pressures or expectations from a partner.

Do not get me wrong I am not saying that all porn is good.  Like all things there is bad porn and good porn but that lies in the eyes of the beholder.  Sure the “Porn Prophecies” as I like to call them, be better, bigger, longer, harder, tighter, fitter with a hyper focus on spectacular genital friction can skew our expectation of ourselves and others.  However, the vast majority of porn is of consenting, enthusiastic people doing things they really enjoy.  And if you like it and it turns you on great!

So what do you do?  Get curious!  Seek to understand why your partner watches porn before you seek to have your partner understand how that makes you feel.  You will be surprised at how developing an understanding of your partner’s motivation can change the way you feel.  Most often it will have less to do with you and more to do with them.  If you care about your partner wouldn’t it be a good thing to know more about them?

Get good at having awkward and uncomfortable conversations.  You know that lump you get in your throat, stomach or heart when you think about having that conversation with your partner. Yep, that one right there, well go with it.  Try, “Honey, I love it when you get turned on.  I noticed that you were looking at some interesting sites, would you be willing to talk with me about it?” And see where that goes.

Be forewarned, you may or may not like what you hear or see.  However, you will have a better understanding of your partner, yourself and your relationship.  And hey you might even find something that you like.  Do a Google search on female friendly porn on your own.  I am not sure what that is as what turns one woman on will be completely different from the next but it is a start.  I also recommend for those drawn more to the written erotic word Literotica http://literotica.com/stories/index.php.

So relax, porn can be a healthy part of your partner’s relationship with themself, your relationship with yourself and your relationship with each other.  It is finding what works for you.  Remember, there is no right way, no wrong way, just your way.  And hey it’s ok!

Stephen de Wit

Dr. Stephen de Wit is a Toronto sexologist and sexual communications coach. Stephen is on a one man mission to ensure that everyone lives the sexually empowered existence they want.  He has completed his Doctorate of Human Sexuality and focuses his energy on keynotes, workshops, seminars, writing and media appearances always with a fun, interactive, high impact approach.  For more information visit www.drdewit.com.

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