Attention Christie Brinkley: Avoid Relationship Advice from the Valley Advocate

Earlier this month, Christie Brinkley’s divorce from husband Peter Cook was widely discussed in the media. Mr. Cook’s porn use became a matter of debate. One columnist for New York Magazine claimed it was immaterial, common practice, and not a big deal. We agree it’s common practice, but it is material and it is a big deal.

First, a quick review of media accounts of the divorce:

The Huffington Post: “Brinkley Trial Begins: $3,000 A Month on Porn, Ex Details Affair” (7/2/08)
Brinkley and Cook presented a portrait of contentment on the Hamptons
social circuit. But behind the scenes, they relied on porn as a
precursor to intimacy during the last half of their marriage, Cook
said. He acknowledged spending about $3,000 a month on pornographic Web
sites in 2005…

When [Brinkley’s daughter Alexa Ray Joel’s] lengthy shower caused a leak in the kitchen below in 2003,
Cook stormed into the bathroom and demanded she mop up immediately,
Joel testified. When she got downstairs wearing only a towel, he pushed
her head into a bucket and yelled, “You clean this up!” she said.

TMZ: “Brinkley’s Ex — A Real Jerk Off” (7/2/08)
Cook, who broke down crying after getting grilled on the stand today by
the supermodel’s lawyer, admitted he masturbated in front of a web cam
and frequented escort, porn and swinger sites, all while married to

Times Online: “Model Christie Brinkley humiliates ‘swinger’ spouse in divorce court” (7/4/08)
Cook, Brinkley’s fourth husband, was forced to admit under oath that he was a
gold member of an internet swinger site who habitually spent $3,000 (£1,500)
a month on online pornography. “I prefer young fit girls,” he wrote in his
website profile.

Mr Cook, an architect, admitted that he had sex about a dozen times in his
home and office with Diana Bianchi after hiring the policeman’s
stepdaughter, then 18, with a view to having an affair. “He asked me how I
would feel if he told me he was attracted to me,” Ms Bianchi told the court.
“I was a bit taken aback, but I really wasn’t against it.” She said Mr Cook
gave her $15,000 to buy a new car, hiding some of the money under a rock
near his home. In the end, he paid her $300,000 “hush money” fearing that
she might file a sex harassment suit.

In this story, we see porn, infidelity, exploitation, abuse, and the end of a marriage, all frequent traveling companions. Many partners of porn-using men feel distressed, and rightly so, even though our pornified culture says they should feel liberated. Some of them seek guidance from advice columnists. What’s frustrating is when this advice is bad, often claiming that the partner is part of the problem. Here, for example, is the lead item from the Ask Isadora column in the 6/5/08 Valley Advocate:

Q: My significant other masturbates to porn on the computer. I understand that he may need sex more often than I do and I’m sure that he loves only me, but I am still uncomfortable that he does this. Is this my problem or is it his?

A: If his solo sex practices are causing difficulty between you and you’re both in the same relationship, then you both have the problem, don’t you think? I think what you’re asking is “who’s right here?,” something no sensible advice giver would venture to decide. It would help to look at the beliefs and assumptions that underlie your discomfort. Do you see masturbation as something a grown man should not be doing or something a man in a sexual and romantic relationship shouldn’t need to do? In both cases, statistics are not in your favor, since most men, single or couples indulge in solo sex. Do you feel he is taking something away from you by spending sexual energy elsewhere? By your own statement his libido is higher than yours. Do you feel one down by comparing yourself to his fantasy images or imagine that he is doing that? Does his sitting at the computer masturbating take time away from you? Would you be less upset if you didn’t know what he did in private? I always recommend self-talk before bringing up a touchy matter with the other person. If you can tell him that you feel left out when he goes to the computer and closes the door or that you’re afraid he finds the women he looks at more attractive than he does you, then the two of you can do some constructive problem solving by addressing your specific issue. Just saying you feel uncomfortable about his masturbation practices leaves the only possible solutions as (1) he needs to stop or (2) you need to get over it. No happy compromise in that.

Halting the porn sounds good to us. Here is better advice from other columnists…

Derek Johnson is a Certified Mental Health Professional and Certified
Addiction Professional. Here he answers a question submitted by Ashley
to All Experts, a website in the About group.

Date: 3/19/2007
Subject: porn
i am 15 years old and i have a bf that is 19…in the past year or so,
i have noticed that he has been watching alot of porn…every time i
catch it on his computer we get into a huge argument and i really hate
it. he doesnt feel bad about it at all while im makeing a huge fuss out
of it because i feel as if he is looking at other women because i am
not good enough. he tells me its not like that at all, that it is just
a quick way to get his urge over with…should i be upset or just let
him continue to do it and let myself get hurt?

porn has become something that is more and more accepted in the world
today. Men, and some women, think it is something to be thought of as
“normal” and acceptable and even healthy!
Nothing could be further from the truth… Porn is as addictive as some
drugs. This is because an orgasm releases the exact same chemicals in
the pleasure center of the brain that heroin does… [Porn] causes them
to see women as objects for their personal gratification and not as
beautiful creations to be loved. Often the man wants the woman to act
out what he sees in the movies.
You are responding as almost all women do that email me on this
subject. Women internalize the man viewing porn as if there was
something wrong with them. It is not true. You are fine… You appear
wise by not wanting this in your life. I would be highly cautious
having a relationship [with] this man if porn has been such a part of
his life… You do not want to marry a porn addict and then suffer the
consequences for years to come.


Cary Tennis is Salon’s advice columnist. The key harm of porn, he
argues, is that it saps users of their motivation to build human
connections. Cary’s critique is also relevant to “sex work” in general.
Even if it’s entirely consensual, it’s still problematic to have your
sexual needs met by ‘vendors’ instead of a true partner. Some excerpts
from “Porn in theory, porn in practice”:

Apr. 11, 2007 | Dear Cary,

know it’s common to look at porn. And I like it, too (though I wouldn’t
say it’s part of my regular routine). But for some reason, I have this
primitive and unenlightened hope somewhere in my subconscious that my
boyfriend is only turned on by me. Am I deceiving myself by considering
myself open-minded? Am I really a Victorian?…

Vicky Victorian

Dear Vicky Victorian,

I have gotten many, many letters from women over the last year or two with questions similar to yours…

you approve of porn in theory or not, its effect will be to displace
you. Like crack, it tends to take over, to push out other hungers that
tend to nurture the human community by making us dependent on one
another. Since we are dependent on each other we must be civil and
loving. If we are not dependent on each other then we needn’t be civil
and loving. We needn’t have community and family. That is the way in
which any drug breaks down family and community by isolating its user.
Porn isolates its users also, meeting their needs outside the social
compact. The social compact becomes a commercial compact between
anonymous people, while those in the actual human community are
relegated to bystander status. It introduces a third party into the
erotic economy of a relationship…

See also:

Young New Yorkers Talk about Porn’s Effect on their Relationships (explicit language)
Jill was in love. It was the late nineties, she was a sophomore at a
competitive state university, and she found herself smitten with Kyle,
a junior with a confident strut who also happened to be the editor of
the school newspaper, which won him instant parental approval. By the
end of that year, they were a serious couple. Jill knew that she had
discovered not only true love but, to put it bluntly, great sex as

So when, after a year, she learned that Kyle spent quite a bit
of time looking at pornography—first online, then, eventually, on
videos too—she wasn’t immediately put off, despite being a psychology
major who seriously questioned the morality of porn. “I was the kind of
girlfriend who was up for anything sexually,” says Jill, who is 25, has
hazel eyes, and works in PR. “When we were having sex, he’d call me his
porn star, and I thought that was hot.”

In time, this changed. Kyle would sometimes e-mail her links
to sites “he thought were really hot,” which made Jill more than a
little uncomfortable. Sometimes, she’d drop by his house for a surprise
visit and he’d have already “exhausted himself” with the computer…

They have since broken up, and have stopped talking. “He was a lot more
innocent when he was younger,” she says. “He was looking for love and
companionship. Now he just wants a good lay. I’m sure he’s looking for
some huge-breasted, tight-assed bitch…”
These days, she feels “very jaded about love and sex,” but every so
often, she finds her cynicism dissolving… “I think it will be really
rare, and hopefully it will happen, that I can meet a guy who will be
happy with only me.”

Video Presentation: A Content Analysis of 50 of Today’s Top Selling Porn Films (explicit language)
Bridges: “…in couples research we know that couples, even couples who
fight a lot, as long as there’s a lot of good in the relationship,
about five times more good than bad, they actually do pretty well.

than 10% of the videos showed any kind of a positive act, and that
included kissing… caressing happened maybe twice. Something like a
verbal compliment, ‘Gosh, you look pretty’, not, ‘Slut bitch, come over
here,’ that happened maybe five times in the 304 scenes. So we have a
ratio of positive to negative behaviors of 1 to 9, which is not a
sustainable, happy relationship.”

The Impact of Internet Pornography on Marriage and the Family: A Review of the Research
to data from the General Social Survey in 2000 (N = 531), people who
report being happily married are 61 percent less likely to report using
Internet pornography compared to those who also used the Internet and
who had completed the General Social Survey in 2000…

following observations were made by [the 350 attendees of the November
2002 meeting of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers] polled
with regard to why the Internet had played a role in divorces that
year…56 percent of the divorce cases involved one party having an
obsessive interest in pornographic websites…

Whitty (2003)
also found that both men and women perceive online sexual activity as
an act of betrayal that is as authentic and real as offline acts and
that Internet pornography use correlated significantly with emotional
infidelity (N = 1,117; 468 males and 649 females)…

Porn Use Correlates with Infidelity, Prostitution, Aggression, Rape-Supportive Beliefs
In 2002, researchers reported in Journal of Sex & Marital Therapy their findings from analyzing a sample of 100 personal letters
posted to 4 different Internet message boards by spouses, fiancés, and
girlfriends of men perceived to be heavily involved in pornography. The
sample was taken between November 1999 and September 2000. “Analysis of
women’s letters posted online revealed two themes regarding pornography
consumption and its impact on sexual desire. First, many of the women
believed they were no longer sexually attractive to their partners and
this was the reason why sexual relations had diminished. Secondly, in
relationships where sexual relations had continued despite the
partner’s pornography use, women believed they were viewed more as
sexual objects than real people in the relationship…”

In 2004, researchers…reported in Social Science Quarterly that “Individuals who have had an extramarital affair are 3.18 times more likely to have used Internet pornography than individuals who did not have affairs.”

Survey: Faithfulness is the No. 1 Key to Making a Marriage Work (explicit language)
On July 1, the Pew Research Center released a detailed survey
about American attitudes towards marriage and childraising. What
particularly caught our eye was what the public believes is key to
making a marriage work–faithfulness tops the charts, with over 90% saying it’s “very important to a successful marriage”.

“Spousal Use of Pornography and Its Clinical Significance for Asian-American Women”
Many female participants in the study by Bridges et al. (2003) noted a
diminution in their partner’s sexual desire for them and believed that
their partners had come to prefer the pornographic models to them…
They reported a decline in the intimacy of their relationship, a
diminished sense of their partner’s commitment to them, strong feelings
that their partners failed utterly to respect them or understand their
emotional distress concerning the pornography, and lastly, a sense that
they were living a shameful lie by presenting themselves to others as a
loving and committed couple… More often than not, the woman blames
herself for losing her partner to his pornographic interest. She
believes that if she were a ‘good’ enough woman, she would have been
able to keep her husband’s attentions and affections and her loss would
never have occurred…

Gail Dines Presents: Pornography and Pop Culture (explicit)
51min:00sec – Porn puts countless scenarios into men’s heads

Example Website:

Fuck The Nanny

Fuck the Nanny Shayla
“nanny asking for an advance? then she better start sucking dick!”

Fuck The Nanny Tegan
“a great way to get back at your boyfriend – fuck the man you nanny for”

what does pornography do? What pornography does, most importantly, is
it puts lots of little scenarios in men’s heads, so that wherever you
are you can activate that particular sexual scenario…

interaction between a woman and a man in pornography, and between women
and women, mind you, is sexual, as in, when you’ve got a nanny, ’cause
you can fuck the nanny, you can fuck the secretary [website:
secretaryporn], you can fuck the maid [website: Maid Bangers], you can
fuck the nurse [website: Nurse Hardcore], you can fuck the teacher
[website: Teacher Galleries], or the student [website: NAUGHTY Book
Worms, ‘Making The Grade. OUR WAY’].

“Would any of you students like to go into a professor’s office for a seminar after he’s just jerked off to this?”

Now on Sale at The Swirlies (explicit) Movies that promote infidelity, despair, call women “sluts” and “whores”
This DVD features a story-driven title
that mixes drama with hardcore sex. Wonderland tells the story of a man
obsessed with his stepdaughter’s friend when she visits during
Christmas break. Gary sacrifices everything in his traditional suburban
existence for a single moment of ecstasy with a femme fatale.

Deviant Housewives
In this world nothing lasts
forever and it looks like Kelly Erikson’s husband Van needs some space.
Kelly decides to invite all her friends going thru the same problems to
stay and support each other. But all of Kelly’s friends have an empty
void in their lives they need filled and it’s from a younger man!

Now Showing at The War on Relationships (explicit)
Screw My Wife 32: And Make Her Sweat Like A Pig
Letting somebody else screw your wife means more TV time for you! Oh and make her sweat like a pig please!

Screw My Wife Please #35 – She’s So Naughty
go to all of the hassle of foreplay and having to make love to your
wife when you can sit back watch some porn studs nail your wife and
jerk off to your heart’s content!

Screw My Wife 40
card is cute. Flowers are thoughtful. Dinner is appreciated. Diamonds
are forever. Getting a porn star to fuck your wife will get you a month
without having to cuddle! The 4th Anniversary Edition is here! Enjoy!

Screw My Wife Please #43 – She Likes Her Ass Slapped
Forget marriage counseling. Just let a porn stud fuck your wife and she will forget about you never moving the lawn!

Screw My Wife Please #47
Why break a sweat fucking your wife when one of our porn stars can do it better! She gets what she needs.

The Psychology of Porn for Men
Morgan’s experience of counselling men addicted to porn has convinced
him that “the more time you spend in this fantasy world, the more
difficult it becomes to make the transition to reality. Just like
drugs, pornography provides a quick fix, a masturbatory universe people
can get stuck in. This can result in their not being able to involve
anyone else…”

in Minneapolis: “Pornography in the home is insidious. Girls pick up
the message, they act it out, they don’t know why they feel suicidal
and crazy.”

One example, for instance, was a young girl. By the age of four, she saw her parents sitting on the couch together reading pornographic magazines. When she tried to go join them, they were laughing and happy. She said it was the only time she saw her father’s eyes light up. He felt alive. When she would try to read, they said no, no, which was confusing because they seemed happy reading this. By five years old, this young woman, at that time a young girl, would bring boys from the neighborhood, draw off her clothes the way she had seen in the magazines, and let herself be abused sexually. This is by five years old. This woman has gone through a great deal of work. She was alcoholic, very ill. She is now a student. She is now working through these things in therapy and is recovering, but she had never herself made the connection to the pornography. All she felt about herself [was], she was crazy, she was sick. How at five years old could I have been doing this? Pornography in the home is insidious. Girls pick up the message, they act it out, they don’t know why they feel suicidal and crazy. I have seen this many, many times.

Another example I would like to share with you was a little boy I worked with whose father was preoccupied with pornography and had a house full of it. The little boy was known at school as the kisser. He would jump at girls, grab them, and kiss them. He was already developing an abuser mentality by the age of six. This happens to children, again, without them knowing it. He wanted to be like his father. This is what his father liked. He was doing what every child will do. It models for children that sexuality has power and that women are basically pieces of meat.

A third example was in a very abusive violent family where the father had read a great deal of pornography. It was kept in his room and the children knew it was there. He beat his children a lot, his daughters particularly. The girls used to sneak in when the parents were gone, read the pornography. They became addicted to it. It was their only escape, as it had been their father’s escape. The woman that reported it–today at thirty–is addicted to pornography, has yet to have intimate sexual relationships or free herself from the connection of silence and sexuality…

I believe a lot of battering of young girls has to do with sexual feelings, much of what comes every time in families where there was pornography. The father feels sexual towards his daughter, wants to repress that, and instead of taking responsibility for his addiction, which is out of control, beats his daughter. It is connected many times. I have had fathers open up to this when they come to family therapy and talk about it…

in Minneapolis: Pornography contributes to women’s masochism, chronic
depression, anxiety and lowered self-esteem; porn’s false promises to

Letter of Phyllis Chesler, Ph.D.
Based on fourteen years of clinical research and clinical practice,
(1969-Present, 1983), I have found that pornography significantly adds
to women’s psychological stress…

In my professional opinion, pornography, together with certain other
practices, contributes to women’s masochism, chronic depression,
anxiety and lowered self-esteem. For example, most women continually
compare themselves with tyrannizing images of beauty. Pornographic
images and expectations then turns what they feel about themselves,
into a deeper self-hatred, and into greater attempts to please men, in
order to be loved, in order to avoid being seen as truly “ugly”…

In my professional opinion, what women learn from observing pornography
directly, or from relating to men who observe pornography directly, is
tolerance for physical, sexual and emotional abuse at male hands. This,
in turn, leads to the suppression of anger, and its consequent
self-destructive behavior among women.

Testimony in Massachusetts: The Lasting Impact of Growing Up in a
Porn-Filled Home

The Science Behind Pornography Addiction
Children who have porn-viewing fathers complain that when he looks at
them it feels “creepy”. The parental gaze has now become the “porn
gaze”. The child of the porn user finds that everything is now about

Testimony in Minneapolis: Porn and the Death Spiral of a Marriage
would have incredible arguments with each other. I would tell him I
loved him, I only wanted to love him, I wanted to be a good wife, I
wanted our marriage to work, but I didn’t want to be with these other
people. It was he I wanted to be with, and no one else. He told me if I
loved him I would do this. And that, as I could see from the things
that he read me in the magazines initially, a lot of times women didn’t
like it, but if I tried it enough I would probably like it, and I would
learn to like it. And he would read me stories where women learned to
like it.

Laurie Hall, An Affair of the Mind
Over the years, I’ve spoken with other women who have had similar
experiences. They tried extra hard to be attractive to their husbands;
but the year-after-year battering of constant comparisons with other
women and the continual attack on their desirability as a sexual
partner wounded their spirits to such a point that they gave up and
became the exact opposite of the firm, gorgeous, beautifully made-up
women their husbands kept trying to force them to become. Ironic, isn’t
it, how pornography creates the exact opposite in real life of what it
promises in fantasy life?

Influence of Porn on Sex Practices: Dispatches from the Field
(explicit language)

Whynotshesaid: I find it interesting that the porn
lovers I’ve had sex with have all ranged from mediocre to terrible when
it came to sex, but that the one guy I’ve been with (my current BF) who
never watched porn is also the one who rocks my fucking world, so to

I know there is a connection there. I’m sure it has
something to do with what I call the Richard Christie effect (cast
member from the Howard Stern show). That dude refused to have sex with
real women, instead choosing to jack off to porn (because real women
were gross). Yet when it came time to talk about sex, Richard Christie
was all up in the conversation talking about how “women like that”
because he saw it in porn.

Thinking real women are gross + thinking that porn actresses actually get off in their movies = BAD AT SEX.

…Taking care of business with porn was never as satisfying as doing
the real thing. I could go days between the real thing and be perfectly
happy. With porn, I felt like I had to take care of business twice a

Sarahmc: Men are so focussed on what’s happening in
porn, they are no longer able to get hot over the living, breathing
woman right in front of them. Porn has completely skewed men’s
expectations of sex, of women, of relationships…

It scares me to realize that a lot of guys want to fuck you ’cause they hate you, not ’cause they think you’re sexy…

ex-husband loved to talk about how he wanted to fuck his hot young
female coworkers that annoyed him, like it was some sort of punishment
or something.

It always made me wonder what he thought about sex with me.

Again, I think that it is no surprise that the hottest sex of my life happens with a guy who has no interest in porn…

Yidvicious: The issue isn’t whether some women do or
do not like anal, being come on, etc., and it’s not even whether those
things are intrinsically fucked up or degrading. The issue is that guys
now feel entitled to all these things straight off the bat — and that, undoubtedly, is the influence of porn…

Trixie from Toronto: …It is the sense of entitlement
and the dismay displayed by some of the men I have heard about —
including one I briefly dated — when you aren’t a ready to look and
behave like a porn star right off the bat. It’s fucked up. It’s like
sex as performance art…

Trixiebelden: …My issue with porn, or rather, the
guys who watch it, is when you get downright addicted to the point
where you can barely have sex at all. Not so long ago I dated that guy.
We had sex to completion on the first date and he wasn’t able to keep
it up for any length of time for the following three months. He refused
to discuss it for any length of time and man, I was so happy to have
sex again when we broke up.

Dulcinea: …I
don’t want to feel like a poor substitute for porn. More importantly, I
can’t get off feeling like a poor substitute for porn. The idea that
porn is what sex aspires to, rather than the other way round, is deep
in my head, and I think it’s deeper in the heads of most of the men I

Spicevicious: …i remember being made to
feel like i was crazy and frumpy because i would not dress like a
stripper, nor would i agree to have a threesome with an ex’s stripper
crush. he even went so far as to take me to an art gallery where
pictures of her pleasuring herself were on prominent display…

Kataroo_kangaroo: HOLY CRAP ITS NOT JUST ME. I started
dating a 34 year old man, and if it’s not “dirty fucking” then, well,
it’s nothing. I mean, seriously, what about, um, intimacy? I’m glad I’m
not the only one experiencing this phenom.

Hugo Schwyzer Reviews “Getting Off” by Robert Jensen
A great many men look at porn and don’t rape women. But “not-raping” is hardly proof that porn is harmless.
There are many ways in which pornography can damage our sexuality short
of turning men into rapists. The discomfort and bewilderment of the
girl who sent me that note, wondering why her boyfriend (who,
in her own words, was otherwise a “good guy”) would even want to come
on her face, makes this case with heartbreaking and stomach-churning
effectiveness. The answer to the “why” is that he’s seen facials in
porn. He might accept “no” for an answer, or he might just keep nagging
until she gives in and lets him ejaculate on her face. She won’t be
raped in the legal sense, of course, but she’ll be learning a bitter
lesson about male sexuality and her own value that she didn’t have to

A Review of Pornified: How Pornography Is Damaging Our Lives, Our Relationships, and Our Families
of Paul’s interview subjects said porn use made them more judgmental of
their real-life sex partners. One thrice-divorced 34-year-old subject,
who had been watching porn since age 10, said that he would break up
with any woman who wouldn’t give him the kind of pleasure he saw men
getting in porn films. If the woman takes too long to reach orgasm, or
doesn’t enjoy swallowing semen, she’s history. (pp.92-93) Other young
men said they wanted their girlfriends to be “slutty” and submissive.

I Was a ‘Self-Esteem Vampire’: A Woman’s Journey Out of Watching Porn (explicit language)
I asked myself honestly, what was I getting out of porn? The answer surprised me. It terrified me. It shamed me…

I was getting a sense of power from watching the humiliation and degradation of the women on the screen…

…my husband began to ask me to do the same things for him that the
porn star was doing. What could I say then? I mean, after all, I was
watching the same damn thing he was and he knew it. If I didn’t do
those things then I would have to admit to myself that they were
degrading and I’d see the paradox, I’d see the holes in my illusion.
I’d be forced to see that I wouldn’t want those things done to ME, and
yet I wanted to see them done to other people.

So I did them. I did them and I tried to pretend that I liked them…
Soon however, I began to see JUST how horrible it felt to have cum on
my face. Just how terrible I felt when he called me a ‘whore’ and a
‘slut’. I realized that when he asked me, “Do you like that you little
whore?” and I moaned “Yes, fuck me harder” that I really didn’t like
the way I felt afterwards…

It was only after I pushed the pornography from my life that I was able
to feel good about myself. It was only then that I began to be able to
be honest about the things that I liked and didn’t like. My husband
didn’t like it. He raged at me, angry that I would ‘suddenly’ take away
‘his right’, that I would do such an about-face…

When I was watching porn I was more insecure than I have ever been in
my life. I was chaotic, I drank too much, I self-medicated with alcohol
and sedatives to numb myself to my own sense of worthlessness. I
allowed degrading things to be done to me because I was numb…

Since I have stopped watching porn, since I stopped allowing it in my life and in my home, I began to heal…

Everywoman Center Coordinator: Porn Damages Women;Porn Addiction
Stacey Roth, coordinator of an educational outreach program at
Everywoman Center, a women’s advocacy group at the University of
Massachusetts, said that, based on accounts of area women speaking
about their experiences with domestic abuse, she agrees with recent
arguments that pornography damages women.

“Typically, a woman will say that her boyfriend is into very violent
forms of pornography and likes to act out specific aspects of that, and
she doesn’t know how to stop it,” Roth said, “or a battered woman might
perceive a connection between the pornography in her household and the
bouts of violence…

“In no other case [of media communications] are people so quick to
discount the argument about the human cost, which I think reflects how
low protection of women ranks in our priorities. We’re quicker to
protest media (material) that depicts the mistreatment of animals than
of women,” Roth said. “A society does need to make choices about what
attitudes it wants to condone.”

National Feminist Antipornography Movement
“…even the toughest women–women who at rape crisis centers routinely
deal with sexual violence–find the reality of pornography so difficult
to cope with. No matter how hard it may be to face the reality of a
rape culture, at least the culture still brands rape as a crime.
Pornography, however, is not only widely accepted but sold to us as

Certified Sex Therapist Marty Klein Wants You to Believe Porn Is Harmless
We are concerned that victims of abuse could hesitate to seek help for
fear of encountering people like Dr. Klein, who would cheerfully throw
them back into the lion’s den, with the admonition that they should
enjoy being devoured. It’s no wonder that sex crimes and domestic
violence are heavily underreported.

Through the Flame: “Life with a Porn Addict”

‘Through the Flame’ Online Forums Support People Recovering from Porn Addiction
Even in the relatively short time the site has been operating, we have
witnessed broken families becoming whole, relationships being restored
and people being healed.

A New Category Debuts: Love and Beauty
Our new category, Love and Beauty, will show how sex, love, relationships and people can be so much more than the narrow, blinkered version
that porn offers. Watching porn instead of seeking a loving
relationship with a real person is like being given a gorgeous race car
that can go 200 miles per hour, only to drive it backwards down the
highway at a crawl and scrape it against railings and bridge abutments.

Making Today’s Marriage Work: Smart Women and Egalitarian Relationships
For all its protestations about being liberatory, most of today’s
bestselling porn is atavistic and repressive. Women, goes the theme,
should accept and enjoy abuse from men…

Films on sale at (“the largest adult retail chain in the nation”) proclaim over and over that women are stupid and need to be put in their place…

If you’re looking for a happy marriage, these messages are dead wrong. Stephanie Coontz reviews the latest research in “The Romantic Life of Brainiacs”

Voice Male: “Intimacy and Porn: A Contradiction in Terms”
Personally, I know using porn never left me feeling particularly proud.
It was more likely to bring up feelings of shame after the fact–seldom
a good sign. My reflections sparked by the Jensen article inspired a
revelation: Jasmin and I strive for intimacy in our relationship. Using
porn hinders that. Whether alone or with my wife, viewing porn takes
time and energy away from our union and squanders it on a
pseudo-relationship. Even using porn as a stimulus for marital sex is
problematic because porn rarely reflects healthy modes of connection.
Porn is wham, bam, thank you, ma’am–at best–and not reflective of the
kind of sex I really want in my own life. No surprise, I find it easier
to achieve sexual pleasure and intimacy with my wife when images of
models paid to perform male fantasies are not playing in my head.

Beyond heat and pleasure to joy and light: the third post on Robert Jensen, porn, and sexual ethics
take such a strong stand against pornography for many reasons. I think
the conditions under which a great deal of pornography (not all) is
produced are exploitative to the performers involved. I think there is
credible evidence that long-term pornography consumption leads to a
decreased ability to empathize with others, and in particular, a
decreased ability to connect intimately and openly with real-life
sexual partners. I’ve made that case before in many posts, just as
Jensen makes it so cogently in this marvelous new book of his. But the central reason why I find pornography so troubling is that it deceives us into surrendering the chance for genuine joy.

am not a naive virginal adolescent writing rapturously about what he or
she imagines sex to be. I am not a shame-ridden middle-aged convert,
either. (Okay, I’m on the cusp of genuine middle-age, but that’s as far
as I go.) I think sex is pretty darned dandy, and I think pleasure is a
fine thing. I like an orgasm as much as the next person, frankly. But
if there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that pleasure that comes at the
expense of another living creature or of our own humanity can never
lead to joy
. The deepest joy comes from pleasure +
connectedness, from revealing light as well as creating satisfying
heat. And as strong as my libido is, my longing for joy is stronger
still. And that’s why I hate pornography.