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Porn is Sex Ed in USAIt has been widely reported the lack of proper sex education is a huge problem in this country. This lack of comprehensive and scientifically based information for children has been linked to higher teen pregnancy and STI rates.

Another problem, is the void that this lack of knowledge leaves. Kids are curious about sex, especially as the child grows older. Since many cannot get good accurate information from their adults, where do kids turn for their information about sex?

They turn to pornography and that is the biggest problem.

What is pornography good for?

Pornography is great for getting the juices flowing, but as to providing sex education, it can lead to feelings of inadequacy. The reason is that the acts being portrayed on pornographic films is not how real people have sex. A porn film shows people engaging in various sex acts with one partner up to a full blown orgy.

In the films, the women are moaning loud enough for a whole neighborhood to hear and the guy is pounding away like a jack hammer. From start to finish, it takes 7-10 minutes. Intimacy and foreplay is limited to oral and mutual masturbation. Rarely do you see kissing, tenderness, realistic body images, and the people involved show zero affection. Basically, what it shows is sex as nothing more than people penetrating each other and getting off.

The gaps in sex education

For many men and women, watching porn is their first foray into anything sexual and at very least, partnered sexuality.  It is widespread enough that even if you have never watched porn, it still impacts your sexuality. The problem is that even the most progressive of educations, either through school or by a parent, sex education teaches for the most part:

  • Safety
  • Physiology
  • Anatomy
  • Conception
  • Very basic mechanics (like penis goes into vagina and moves in and out) with picture of drawn silhouettes of two heterosexual people having missionary vaginal sex.

I think for most people that may be how sex was in the early 20th century, but not for people today in 2016. The vast majority seek the real knowledge.

Porn becomes de facto sex ed

Porn influences everyone by being the source of the knowledge both directly (like watching porn) or indirectly (through a friend or partner who learned how to have sex through porn). As a result, porn sex has become the way we have sex or, at the very least, the way we start having sex. Which makes, people feel inadequate about their bodies and performance because far too often we try to measure our abilities and bodies to porn stars.

A person who experiences sex for the first time trying to be Katie Morgan or Ron Jeremy is in for a big disappointment. Those perceived failures to measure up leads to feelings of shame, inadequacy, anxiety, and humiliation which then leads to problems with sex later in life.

For women, the problem is even worse because the women in the pornography are often not average women with different bodies (and hair). Slut shaming, however, is a part most do not think about.

When we call sexually active women, porn stars, and sex names like sluts, it causes even more shame and guilt about the acts being done in the movies. For example, a person who calls a woman a slut because she is giving oral sex, puts the idea that sluts give oral sex, not a “true lady.” A thought like that shames and oppresses women’s sexuality.

What is the Solution?

  • We need to teach real sex to real people. Sex ed must be taught in a way that people will know how to have sex.
  • Reproductive sex is not the reason people have sex for a vast majority of their lives. Teaching people the right way to have sex is as important as any other aspect of sexual education.
  • Teaching people that you don’t need a huge penis, huge breasts, and the perfect labia to be good in bed or attractive.
  • We need to teach people sexuality beyond those silhouettes or drawings of two white heterosexual people having missionary sex including different acts, gender identities, orientations, and even lifestyles.
  • Mostly, we need to teach and promote sex and pleasure’s positive images and practices, things not taught in porn.

Real sex may not sell videos, but it’s time we start learning to enjoy the sex we have rather than the sex Hollywood says we should.

David Fishman

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