Does porn make you cheat?
Researchers say don’t let your habit get out of hand.
Watching porn may increase your urge to fool around, according to a new study in "Social, Psychological and Personality Science."
Researchers found that the more a guy looked at smut, the more likely he was to stray from his partner. That fits in line with previous research that shows men who cheat are more than three times as likely to watch porn regularly.
What’s the kink link? Porn offers men access to no-strings-attached sex, often with multiple highly attractive partners, said study co-author A. Marlea Gwinn, of the University of Central Florida. And even though you recognize it’s all make-believe, those erotic images reinforce the idea that there are many willing and attractive alternatives to your current squeeze, Gwinn said.
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Dirty images also focus your mind on reproduction, and your instinct to reproduce values multiple sex partners over a loving, steady relationship, Gwinn adds.
Now, the science on porn is controversial and ever-evolving. (Check out our 2012 report, “Is Porn Harmful?” for the breakdown.)
But if you feel as though you’re spending more time on PornHub than usual, it’s time to cut back, said Rob Weiss, a certified sex addiction therapist and the director of sex and intimacy disorder services for Elements Behavioral Health.
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First, set a goal. Try to go two weeks without porn, Weiss recommends. Before you start, write down three reasons why you want to scale back, and tape these where you’ll see them often — like the back of your phone or by your computer.
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After the two weeks are up, set specific targets for your habit, whether that’s once a week or once a month, Weiss says. If you find yourself struggling to stay with it, he recommends computer tracking software from companies like Spytech ($70, spytech-web.com), which can block certain sites or even notify one of your buddies if you break down.
Photo: Does porn make you more likely to cheat? / Nicolas Hansen/Getty Images
From purely my own perspective I disagree with these findings. Of course there are those who say that the mere act of watching pornography is a form of infidelity in and of itself. I was married and totally faithful for 39 years and 4 months when I lost my wife to complications of Parkinson's Disease. The last 6 years were difficult where sex was concerned. When someone is a total care giver for another person it is difficult to relate to them on a sexual level, or at least it was for me. So I resorted to porn and autoeroticism for most of my sexual needs. I resisted the urge to actually engage in a sexual liaison with another woman.
For me it was purely a matter of self discipline and honoring my wedding vows. I not only loved my wife but honored her and respected her enough to keep my promises to her regardless of what temptations crossed my path. Frankly blaming porn for a man's cheating is just using porn as a scapegoat because if it weren't for porn something else would have ultimately triggered their infidelity. How do I know this? Simple. Men have been cheating on their wives for millennia and the recent advent of porn has just made it easier to see the greener grass on the other side of the fence. I have no doubt they would have cheated anyway. LOL
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