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For Better or Porn

We’ve heard of the stages of relationships. We’ve see them played out in love stories, romantic novels, rom coms, and sitcoms: boy meets girl, boy loses girl, boy gets girl back, happy ever after (unless you watch Titanic). We’ve heard of the usual romantic relationship killers: cheating, finance, poor communication and according to past studies, porn. Yes, your google searches on private mode and mystery pile of wet tissues and towels in the bathroom may be the reason your boyfriend/ girlfriend has been more antsy than usual in your relationship. However that does not seem to stop the 81 million daily average visits to Pornhub in 2017 (and I’m sure not every one of those visits are by the classic stereotypical lonely sex perverts we grew to imagine). I would know because I sure as hell am part of that 81 mil. Sexually explicit material via print, video, online, telephone and now virtual (the beauty of technology) has been around long before this article and will be around long after this article. It also can heavily influence the quality of a romantic relationship. For instance, a study accumulating online blogs and posts from women regarding their partner’s porn use found women showing dissatisfaction with their relationship, with themselves and with their negative image of their partner. Another study found a relationship between porn use by men and dissatisfaction in their relationship as well.

However as stigmas circulating the use of porn and conversations about sex dwindle and the accessibility of porn increases, the conversation and use of porn could change as well. For individual use, porn is cathartic, stress relieving, sexually gratifying (duh), and, for some, a primary way of learning about ones body sexually. In relationships, porn could be the jumpstart for intimate bonds between lovers depending on the stage of the relationship.

Every site has a different set of stages of relationships but eharmony.com summarized them well into 3: romantic love, realistic love and mature love. I will go as far as to prelude with single love.

1. Single Love

“we decided that we are gonna find our individual, internal, private separate joy and then we were gonna present ourselves to the relationship and to each other already happy” Will Smith

The former Man in Black said it best. You cannot love someone else fully and healthily without loving yourself. This extends to any relationship, romantic and not. This extends to the bedroom (or couch, or car, or bathroom…you get the point). Just because your partner may know your favorite Netflix show does not mean he or she will instinctively know your fantasies. That same person definitely won’t know them unless you know them. The beauty of porn is it is a relatively (because we know big brother government is always watching) private means of self exploration.

My porn suggestion for this stage in a relationship is hentai which was actually the 2nd most searched term in Pornhub in 2017. One, you feel up to date with the current anime craze. Two, hentai is incredibly diverse. Because it is animated, the characters fulfill any and all of the craziest fantasies and fetishes. There’s everything from romantic, sensual lesbian to monster to tentacle. It is a great genre for learning your likes and limits and psychologically why they are what they are (because things can get uncomfortably crazy with hentai). Single love is the time to test the sexual waters without judgement from a significant other or love interest, so learn. Also, you can bring what you’ve learned into your next relationship.

2. Romantic Love

“A thousand kisses from you is never too much” Luther Vandross

The initial sexual attraction, the butterflies, the borderline obsession (because 50 Messages in one’s dm is never enough, right?) fall under this stage. Your partner can do no wrong in your eyes and the need for more physical interactions are high. It is likely porn watching, particularly for women, will decrease at this stage because one relies on their partner more for sexual gratification. This is the stage where you want to learn everything about your love to see if they are a great fit for you and in your life. You likely know they’re favorite artist, clothing designer, and pizza topping. You might as well add favorite porn star to the list (and if they are big porn watchers, they will have a favorite porn star) and share some favorite videos. You may discover that if your partner likes Asian brunettes and you’re an Asian brunette, he or she may have a type that you just happen to fit or they find you specifically really hot or both. You may find you have favorite celebrities in common. You like Keeping Up with The Kardashians and your partner contributes to the over 100 million video views of Kim Kardashian on Pornhub in 2017, match made in heaven. Regardless, now is a time to share known fantasies and likes and dislikes. Communication, empathy and open mindedness is key. Not everyone likes things placed in them anally, so discuss where sexual limits lie, but don’t be so quick to judge either.

3. Realistic Love

“I don’t care who you are, where you’re from, what you did as long as you love me.” Backstreet Boys

Eharmony.com states, “It is most often in this stage that people get stuck. Idealization of your partner diminishes and you begin to see who your partner really is — and they begin to see you. All your flaws are exposed to each other and it is here when couples start really being challenged in the relationship.” This is why single love becomes important. Because the rose colored glasses are off, insecurities and doubts will likely arise on both ends. You need to acknowledge and appreciate your flaws while simultaneously finding out what you can or should change about yourself and your habits for the sake of the relationship. Compromise and give and take will be important throughout this stage. Your partner may never get on board with some of your porn preferences (fisting is seriously unappealing for me), or porn watching altogether. However, you may find common ground with some preferences. You may like lesbian, your partner prefers straight, how about a two girls and one guy threesome video. You would not be alone since threesome also made the list of most searched terms in Pornhub in 2017. Knowing yourself and your values are just as important as knowing your partner and their values. This pertains to your porn and overall sex life too. If you have a problem with your partner speak up and/or find professional help. Just don’t immediately run to your laptop and watch the first Skin Diamond video you see to distract you from your relational issues.

4. Mature Love

“I’ll be loving you long time.” Mariah Carey

This stage is the type of love that’s described as “safe, satisfying and passionate” by eharmony.com. You know virtually everything about your partner. I would suggest watching Rick and Morty porn and Fidget porn. One, I love Rick and Morty. Two, now may be a time to learn some new interests for yourself and for the relationship. By no means do you need to give up that Milf jail scene that you’ve watched repeatedly, just add a random gym video to your repertoire. Porn trends are constantly changing and can aid in taking you and your partner out of any slumps if you feel your porn viewing or sex life is too routine. In fact, depending on your comfort level and trust with your partner, join the YouPorn and RedTube contributors and make your own video. Reenact some of those fantasies you’ve shared or try some new moves and toys.

Every relationship is different and every porn viewer is unique. Communication is important throughout every stage of a relationship and can influence a couples’ dynamic. Porn can be a tool used to strengthen or destroy a relationship. Like anything else used for satisfaction, porn can be an addictive drug. Articles like this one that you’ve so kindly read to the end aid in facilitating conversations that delve deeper into the nuances of porn and it’s fit in society.

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If you are interested in working with me on a design project, want to learn more about my novel, SPRINT DREAMS, or just want to learn more about my story, feel free to check out my resumé or email me.

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