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Does Porn Hurt Relationships?

An unscientific new survey says it does. But experts argue that it can actually help.

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That isn’t to say that Kerner doesn’t encounter men who feel that they have a porn problem, but he says it’s wrong “to extrapolate their experiences onto all men and see it as some kind of epidemic or paradigm shift in how we’re approaching sex.” Contrary to what he identifies as “the worry that men are going to prefer crazy porn sex to real sex,” Kerner says “the vast majority of men I speak to would much rather have sex with a live person than with pornography and, if anything, get a little bored of porn.”

Using porn as a conversation starter, a mutual turn-on or novel inspiration is one thing; turning to it as the ultimate authority on sex is another.  Charlie Glickman, a sexuality educator, compares learning to have sex from porn like learning to drive from action movies. He says the real problem is that people need “better relationship education.” He says, “Even before porn was widely available, do you think people in the 50s and 60s were having highly satisfying sex? What they had was largely ignorance,” says Glickman. “People have not had satisfying sexual relationships for a lot of reasons for a long, long time.”

 

Tracy Clark-Flory is a staff writer at Salon. Follow @tracyclarkflory on Twitter and Facebook.

 
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