When you approach individuals in the adult entertainment industry, whether they are actors, writers, directors, or distributors, and ask if pornography is a form of sex education, they assert that it is not.
Adult actor Avery Black eloquently expresses this viewpoint: "I don't think porn viewers think that what they see on the Internet is what 'sex' is supposed to look like. It's cinematic entertainment and suggesting that you can actually get sucked off by your best friend's wife or casually stand up for 69 on a Wednesday afternoon is like saying you're getting driver's education advice from the Fast and Furious series."
This response succinctly refutes the idea that porn is responsible for people's inappropriate sexual behavior. The key point is that individuals working in the porn industry put a tremendous amount of effort into creating content that inspires and generates revenue. It is wrong to accuse them of failing to provide sex education along with entertainment.
Consider the analogy of a blockbuster movie that combines action and driving lessons. Such a movie that combines both thrilling action and practical driving instruction may not attract as many viewers as a movie that focuses entirely on high-octane thrills. It's the explosions and daring stunts that grab the viewer's attention, not the intricacies of operating a manual transmission or executing a perfect parallel parking maneuver.
This analogy also applies to pornography. The primary purpose of pornography is arousal and fulfillment, not as a comprehensive guide to sex education.
However, this does not negate the fact that sexual ignorance can have serious consequences. While a sexual mistake may not cause unintentional harm to scores of people like a driving error, it can still lead to life-changing effects. Improperly using condoms or neglecting to use them can lead to unwanted pregnancies or sexually transmitted infections. Lack of understanding about consent can lead to sexual assault, causing physical and emotional trauma. Unwise experimentation with restraints or edge play, such as choking, can lead to injury, brain damage, and even death.
An in-depth understanding of all aspects of sex is essential to ensure that our sexual experiences become a source of pleasure, not pain, for ourselves and our partners. Sadly, quality sex education is often elusive, and if it is available at all, people do not receive it until long after they have already engaged in sexual activity.
In the absence of comprehensive sex education, pornography often becomes a substitute for many. While pornography may provide ideas about what sex is like, it is extremely inaccurate in its portrayal of what sex really looks like.
Differences Between Pornographic Content and Real-Life Sex After several years of sexual experience, pornographic content and real-life sex are distinctly different in many ways. In real life, sex is full of unscripted, bland moments that don't scream "sexy".
Yvette d'Entremont, a scientist, author, and co-host of the Two Girls One Mic: The Porncast podcast, notes, "I think most of us are smart enough to watch porn and know that that's not the way sex works. I think most of us are smart enough to watch pornography and know that it's not effective in a sexual way. Real sex involves your head banging against the headboard, a dog licking your ass, fumbling with condoms, and a 55-gallon bucket of anal lube."
However, many people who watch porn lack the perspective that comes with experience, and this can have an impact on them and their sexual partners, especially when they first make contact.
Without proper instruction, they may never learn other ways to have sex.
1. pornography was never intended for minors
Before the rise of Internet pornography, the sale of pornographic material was much more strictly regulated. Porn was often purchased, which made it easier to enforce age restrictions. Today, many people watch free pornography on popular video sites without having to pay for individual videos or subscriptions to specific producers. This makes it more difficult to prevent access by minors, as there are no in-person checks to verify the age of the viewer.
Sarah Valmont, chief copywriter for PornDiscounts.com, rightly points out that "the Internet is not a babysitter." She emphasizes that porn is not a sex-education curriculum, and that's not how it markets itself-it's about fantasy, but children, pre-pubescent kids, and teens may not be able to clearly recognize that adult fantasies aren't for them.
Angie Rowntree, founder and director of Sssh.com, emphasized that many minors access pornographic content despite the fact that minors are not the industry's target audience. This is a concern, especially because the content they easily find on free video sites can be problematic. These movies often feature unrealistic depictions of sex, body types, use misogynistic language, and lack a focus on female pleasure and consent.
2. minors are accessing pornographic content anyway
Because Internet pornography is so easily accessible, it's hard to imagine a future where young people with limited sexual experience don't have free access to bareback pornography. Unfortunately, statistics show that a large number of young people have viewed pornographic content before the age of 18, which is a worrying trend.
Porn director, writer and producer Erika Lust is particularly troubled by the fact that young people are viewing pornography before their first sexual experience without adequate sex education. This is concerning because much of the content they access on free video sites is questionable and promotes unhealthy attitudes and practices, including coercion.
Regardless of the type of content, it is clear that pornography is not intended to act as a model for sexual behavior; its primary goal is arousal and entertainment.
3. pornography is a powerful visual stimulus exposure to pornography is not a trivial matter
because viewing pornography can have a significant impact on an individual. From pornography addiction to pornography-induced problems such as erectile dysfunction, pornography is not a passive form of cultural consumption. It can profoundly affect desires, thoughts, and actions.
Ben Lawson, founder of Tantra Punk, argues that it's understandable that pornographic content is often more intense than real-life sex because it reflects the early fantasies of those for whom sex is primarily a fantasy. Pornography is deliberately unrealistic, designed to satisfy a strong desire for more exciting and exotic experiences that can be enjoyed indirectly through the screen.
Consuming such exaggerated sexual content can have consequences, especially when comparing it to real-life experiences. Lawson is concerned about the negative effects of marketing conditioning. It may lead people to settle for mundane, traditional sexual experiences while believing that the wild, pansexual and polyamorous scenarios depicted in pornography are unattainable.
Understanding that sex can be a personal, diverse experience can be challenging for those who have viewed pornography since they were teenagers.
4. limited access to sex education
With the average age at which Americans lose their virginity being 17 years old, many teens are becoming sexually active before they have access to comprehensive sex education resources. In addition, the rising cost of a college education often prevents adolescents from pursuing higher education, including college-level sex education programs.
Traditional sexuality education in schools focuses primarily on preventing pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections, or in many cases promotes abstinence. It often fails to provide a holistic understanding of sexual pleasure. In contrast, the Internet offers a wealth of high-quality pornographic content, which can overshadow lessons that ignore sexual pleasure.
It's easy to mistake pornographic content for educational resources when you have no other guidance. The popularity of Fifty Shades of Grey, a book and movie series containing questionable BDSM practices, demonstrates how such content can be mistakenly perceived as instructional.
Erika Lust advocates for better sex education, emphasizing the need for age-specific discussions about sex to address consent, communication,