The following is a review I wrote for PopMatters for Deadpool Assassin #1. Enjoy!
I talk a lot about taboos, double standards, and various gender quirks. I don’t just do that because it highlights significant disparities among people trying desperately to get along and/or make love to each other. I do it because it offers some fascinating insight into the conflicting mentalities that drive such conflicts.
A lot of those conflicts, however, are on a larger, more impersonal scale. A typical couple, be they heterosexual, homosexual, or something else entirely, can only do so much to impact larger cultural forces that they had no role in choosing, propagating, or subverting.
These forces, from our approach to marriage to the assumptions that guide our understanding of romance, usually only effect individuals and couples indirectly. We’re all somewhat at the mercy of what our culture has built for us and we can only do so much to guide it forward.
However, there are a few lesser-known aspects of that culture that we can influence on a day-to-day basis. One such aspects involves porn and whatever porn collection that you or your significant other might have, be it hidden or not. I’m sure just mentioning it has made certain individual’s tense for various reasons that I won’t state outright.
Regardless of how you or your lover feels about porn, it exists and it exists in a big way. It’s also a huge multi-billion dollar industry. The fact it’s so huge is a telling sign that both you and your lover have probably consumed it at some point. It’s also very likely that anyone claiming that porn is immoral has probably consumed it as well.
Despite this prevalence, porn is still immersed in taboos and quirks. I don’t want to focus too much on those, since I’ve already touched on a few. The ones I want to focus on have to do with how those in a romantic relationship react to it. That reaction, in many ways, goes beyond double standards and reflects something deeper about our concept of relationships as a whole.
Most people probably don’t need much imagination to surmise how their lover would react to their porn collection. Whether or not it’s a secret, there’s this underlying sentiment about someone in a relationship who consumes porn. That sentiment usually manifests in two scenarios. This is the first and probably most basic.
A woman casually walks by her lover’s desk. Their computer screen is open and so are a wide number of files. Curious, she takes a closer look, only to find out that there’s a sizable collection of pornographic videos on the computer. She’s utterly shocked at just how much content there is.
There are videos featuring extreme, hardcore scenes. There are videos featuring bondage, S&M, and various fetishes. When her lover returns, she is outraged. She sees this level of porn consumption as an affront to their relationship and demand that the files be deleted.
This isn’t just a basic thought experiment. This sort of thing does happen in real life. A part of what inspired this article were stories like this one where a woman kicked her husband out of the house after finding some porn on his phone. Granted, her reaction was extreme, but it reflects a similar sentiment.
There are those who, when they find their lover’s porn stash or just part of it, see it as an insult and an affront to their relationship. They see their lover’s desire to seek another sexual outlet as proof that they aren’t enough and their lover isn’t attracted to them anymore. For some, it can be fairly traumatic and for understandable reasons.
Now, I didn’t specify the gender of the person who voiced that outrage like I did in the scenario. I did so because I don’t want to generalize too much. From a purely anecdotal perspective, which is admittedly flawed, women are more angered by their lover’s porn consumption than men.
Again, that’s a generalization. It also says nothing about how homosexual or transgender relationships couples react to porn. I honestly had a hard time finding research to that effect. However, I found plenty that indicated how common porn consumption is among couples and how reserved many are to admit it.
That leads me to the next scenario, which isn’t as common, but is a bit more colorful. It involves a different kind of reaction for a couple that probably has a very different dynamic from the first, but that dynamic is key in understanding the implications.
A man casually walks by his lover’s desk. Their computer screen is open and so are a wide number of files. Curious, he takes a close look and discovers a sizable collection of pornographic videos. For a moment he’s shocked, but then he’s impressed at the sheer breadth of the collection.
There are videos featuring lesbian couples. There are videos featuring bondage, S&M, and various fetishes. When he confronts his lover, it’s awkward and a little funny. However, he’s also genuinely intrigued by this side to his lover and says they should talk about it so as to re-evaluate their outlook on their sex life.
It’s not nearly as dramatic, which is probably why it doesn’t make the news as often. Again, I was vague with the gender dynamics here and I’ll probably get in trouble for saying the person in the scenario was a man. I get it. That’s a general assumption fueled largely by existing cultural expectations.
Men are okay with porn. Women are a bit more sensitive about it. Not everyone is like that. Some women don’t have a problem with porn and even enjoy watching porn themselves. Some men don’t care for porn and are genuinely averse to it. Everybody has their own attitudes towards it.
That said, there is this prevailing sentiment that men are anxious about revealing their porn habits to their significant others and women don’t like the idea that their lover has a sexual outlet other than them. In both cases, there’s an anxiety over what this means for them and the relationship.
To some extent, porn consumption and learning that your lover consumes it undercuts the romantic script that we think we have to follow. Within that script, two people are in love. They only desire one another. They’re only attracted to one another. Anything that might diver that attraction must be a bad thing. Porn does all of that and then some.
In that context, it’s understandable why some would react harshly to their lover’s porn collection. It shatters the romantic ideal they once assumed. Suddenly, their love is not on part with Romeo and Juliet. Their relationship is not some epic romance. The idea that they’re still sexually aroused by other people makes it seem less special and less meaningful.
At the same time, such a reaction has more distressing implications. If someone is disgusted by the notion that their lover is sexually aroused by something other than them, then that implies they somehow own their lover’s desires. They own their ability to have sex and be intimate. The idea of owning another person to that extent goes beyond love and into the realm of obsession.
In that circumstance, even a stray thought anyone has towards someone other than their lover is an affront. Given the many indications that humans aren’t entirely built for monogamy and the high divorce rate, this is wholly unrealistic and a little scary and it sets unreasonable expectations among couples that are bound to disappoint.
There are, indeed, certain cases where someone’s porn consumption is detrimental to a relationship. However, from a pure numbers perspective, those instances are the exception and not the norm. From a pure betting perspective, there’s a good chance that your current lover or future over consumes porn. How you deal with it will likely reveal the strength and/or weakness of your relationship.
Well, it took a week longer than I wanted and I screwed up the first time, but I can now say I did it. I have successfully moved to my new condominium. That’s right. As I write this, I am doing so from a true bachelor pad. After all the work I’ve put in, I can finally enjoy the fruits of my labor and it’s a damn good feeling.
I’m very excited about it, but also very uncertain. I’ve never actually lived completely alone at this point in my life. I’ve always had roommates or family members living with me in some form or another. This is my first taste of true, unambiguous independence. I look forward to exploring it. I hope I can draw some sexy inspiration from it.
For now, though, I’ve still got plenty of adjusting and unpacking to do. My new bachelor pad isn’t quite ready for company just yet, but it will be soon enough. I’ll make sure of it. Also, if anyone out there has any advice on how to maximize the impact of a bachelor pad, I’d love to hear it. Thanks and I look forward to sharing this new and sexy experience.
The wait is over. The shopping is done. The eggnog is cold. The decorations are bright, lit, and a sight to behold. That’s right. It’s Christmas. Whether you’re an adult, a child, or an adult who just enjoys acting like a child every now and then, it’s a special day that’s worth cherishing with those we love.
So to those who have helped make this website so successful, especially over the past two months, I sincerely thank you. On behalf of myself and all those who try to bring a little sexiness into this world I wish everyone a very sexy, very merry Christmas. Open gifts, celebrate with loved ones, and enjoy this wonderful holiday.
I meant to make this sooner. After every month, I usually do a quick post to update regular visitors to this website on how much or how little the traffic has increased. For the most part, traffic has gone up steadily since I began regularly posting on this site back in early 2016. By steadily, I mean a few hundred visitors at most.
Then, November 2017 came along. At the same time, I joined the wonderful digital world that is Reddit. Since then, there has been nothing steady about the traffic increase this site has gotten. I honestly had no idea the flood of visitors would come so quickly and so consistently.
To put things into perspective, here’s a quick overview of the numbers. In October, my overall traffic count for the entire month was around 1,800 visitors. It was only a slight uptick compared to September, but I was still proud of that.
Then, after joining Reddit on the last day of October, I topped that amount in the span of two days. At first, I though it was the flukiest of flukes. I’m so glad I was wrong. By the end of November, my total traffic count stood at approximately 16,100 visitors. Do the math and that amounts to a roughly 894 percent increase. Find one non-Bitcoin related trend that can match that kind of performance.
I’m still in shock at the sheer breadth of this increase. To give a hint as to just how big a shift this is, my most heavily-trafficked article, which happened to be a piece I did about my conversation with a transgender woman, got more traffic in one day than this entire site got in a single month. Once again, I can’t thank Reddit enough for making it possible.
Now, this may still be a fluke in the sense that this increase was a simple spike. There’s a real chance that the traffic will decline or level off. I’m still learning to navigate Reddit effectively. I’ve had a few missteps, but I’m trying to learn from them. I hope to continue building this site’s base through Reddit and whatever other means I can utilize.
Whatever the future of this site, I sincerely thank all those who have supported this blog as it endures its growing pains. I hope it continues to grow in the sexiest way possible. Rest assured I’ll work hard to make that happen.