• Georgia Grace

Is There Anything Positive About Porn?


Image via @harisfarsarakis



Porn. When has a four-letter word got us into so much trouble?


Pornography – i.e. the depiction of erotic behaviour to incite sexual excitement (Ty Mirriam-Webster) – has been part of our lives since the dawn of time. From 4,000 year old Babylonian depictions of anal sex to raunchy Greek ceramics, representations of intimacy and erotica were celebrated in many ancient cultures.


These days, porn takes a very different form (and a very different cultural significance). We can access it anywhere, anytime – with its digitisation affecting our relationships, our intimate acts and our bodies – for better and/or worse.


According to the Journal of Sex, only 12% of those who look at porn report adverse affects – in fact, most (90% people with penises and 79% people with vulvas) agree that pornography can enhance the pleasure of masturbation and increase overall arousal leading to a more fulfilling sexual experience. I find this interesting and surprising, as clients often identify that watching porn leads to unrealistic expectations of what sex is – the way it looks, sounds or feels, and can also impact sexual function. Here are a couple of observations from the frontline:


💦 Porn can affect sexual expectations: This is the big one. Mainstream porn is a performance, often the certain positions and duration of the act are not possible or pleasurable for people IRL. Porn is crafted with stimulation in mind – it is not a realistic sexual experience.


💦 Duration: I’ll often have clients in session who say they ejaculate prematurely as they can’t last for an hour. They don’t realise that lasting for 5-10 minutes is completely normal and healthy, they compare themselves to the actors on screen who last for over an hour - not realising, like all film sets, the actors have breaks.


💦 Penetration is not always orgasmic: Porn often depicts mind-blowing, leg trembling orgasms from penetration alone. Vaginal orgasm is often misconstrued as the “best” way for women to orgasm (read: the easiest for penises), but it’s often the most difficult for people with vulvas. We know that the majority of women/people with vulvas will need clitoral stimulation and the majority aren’t getting enough of it.


💦 Stimulation reliance: If you’re masturbating to the same stimulus, using the same hand, same position etc, when it comes to having sex in a different way, it may be more difficult to become aroused.


💦 Lacks clear consent and communication: Unlike healthy sexual experiences, porn often skips the fundamentals – consent, communication, contraception and protection are rarely represented or explained.


💦 It’s easily accessible for children and young minds who can’t distinguish the difference between real and performative sex. Porn becomes Sex Ed for many.


Having said all of this, there can be benefits when consumed ethically, mindfully and safely. Including:


🍆 It can be a great tool to learn how to have sex and to set realistic expectations of bodies (all the hairy, jiggly, fluidy, beautiful mess!).


🍆 It can be inspiring and sensual – showing you new ways to play with yourself or your partner.


🍆 It can inform your eroticism – exposing and exploring your fantasies in a safe and respectful environment.


I encourage you to take responsibility for how, when and why you consume ethical porn. To help you find the most diverse, sensual and respectful content, I've put together an Ethical Porn Check-List. Ch-ch-check it out.


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I live and work on the land of Gadigal people of the Eora nation, the traditional custodians of this land. I pay my respects to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elders past, present, and emerging. I acknowledge that it always was and always will be Aboriginal land.

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