by JENNIFER ROBACK MORSE

This article was first published at National Catholic Register on February 13, 2015.

Do you want to come and see Fifty Shades of Grey with me? You know we really shouldn’t be going to see it. But what the heck. It is just a movie. It is perfectly okay. Since we pretty well know the “plot” will drag in a movie like this, here are a few things for us to think about.

1. We came to this movie because we expected to be sexually stimulated. Anything else, we tell ourselves, is self-deception.

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Radical pro-choice rhetoric attacks the most basic facts of our human existence: that the human body comes in two different but complementary types, male and female. They cannot forgive women who embrace femininity rather than neuter themselves.

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Pornography Use in Committed Relationships: More than meaning

Abstract

Very little is known about how pornography use affects the quality of committed relationships.  This study examines associations between pornography use, the meaning people attach to its use, sexual quality and relationship satisfaction.  Participants were (N = 393) couples who were either married or cohabitating at the time the data was gathered.  Overall results indicate that male pornography use—but not female use—is negatively associated with both male and female sexual quality.  This finding is significant above and beyond the meaning individuals attach to its use.  Sexual quality, in turn, is positively associated with relationship quality, and pornography use is found to indirectly influence relationship satisfaction.  Following the discussion of results, implications for couples and practitioners are provided.

Pornography in Committed Relationships

To date, research focused on the effects of pornography on committed relationships is sparse at best (Manning, 2006), and with very few exceptions the existing literature is limited to therapy and sexuality studies.  Non clinical marriage and family scholars have done little if any research in this area.  Yet, there are two consistent findings extant in the pornography research literature that indicate pornography use has repercussions for committed relationships. 

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Pornography’s Impact on Marriage:
An Econometric Approach

Introduction

The growth of the Internet has lowered the costs, increased the accessibility, and furthered the anonymity of one of males’ favorite vices—pornography. Although the discussion of pornography has long been considered taboo, its effects are now coming under greater scrutiny as both its use and acceptance are growing quickly. From a study by Adult Video News, the adult entertainment industry made approximately $12.6 billion in revenue in 2005. More than 70% of men from ages 18 to 34 visit a pornographic site at least once in a typical month (comScore). In addition, according to the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, the Internet was a significant factor in two out of three divorces in 2003, with excessive use of online pornography contributing to over half of such cases. While some with more traditional or religious values are quick to oppose pornography, its use is becoming more accepted by society as a whole and received especially well by young adults (Carroll). And when you add to this the proponents of free speech who see any attempt to regulate pornography as a violation of one’s rights and those who believe pornography serves as an outlet and actually reduces the number of rapes and violent crimes, you’ve got yourself quite the debate. Because pornography consumption has recently been increasing at an unparalleled rate, researchers are starting to examine potential consequences of its use. This has resulted in the emergence of new datasets and studies that have enabled us to look at the effects of pornography on the user, surrounding family members and friends, and society as a whole.

This paper addresses the impact of pornography on marriage. Since pornography consumption is significantly higher for men than for women (though the gap seems to be shrinking), I specifically look at the effects of pornography on married men. If the results indicate that pornography significantly diminishes the quality of one’s marriage and leads to infidelity, then they could be used as evidence against its distribution and for its regulation.

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The Negative Effects of Pornography on Family Relationships:
Preventative Measures and Help With Addiction

Introduction
Over the past few decades, media that negatively affects family life seems to have dramatically increased. Pornographic material is prevalent and available everywhere: on the internet, television, and in books, and magazines. Unfortunately, families cannot avoid exposure to pornography completely. Some families may put in all their effort to shield their children from pornography because they fear its destructive effects and feel, as Will and Ariel Durant put it, that “sex is a river of fire that must be banked and cooled by a hundred restraints if it is not to consume in chaos both the individual and the group” (Durant, 1968). Contrastingly, others do not view pornography as an addiction, just merely an indulgence viewed as a normal activity of human nature. Because of this, pornography remains “ a hidden public health hazard exploding, in part, because very few are recognizing it as such or taking it seriously” (Manning, 2006). We must recognize pornography for what it truly is to avoid the destruction that it imposes on families. In the main portion of this paper, I will discuss how the use of pornography influences individuals and how it conflicts with marital, parent-child, and family relationships. Afterward, I will discuss preventative measures that can be taken to help protect against pornography from entering the home, and finally, I will discuss what those who are currently struggling can do to find help and overcome these negative effects on the family.

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