home
RSS
Do women like porn as much as men?
April 28th, 2011
08:48 AM ET

Do women like porn as much as men?

Ian Kerner, a sexuality counselor and New York Times best-selling author, blogs about sex on Thursdays on The Chart. Read more from him at his website, GoodInBed.

If you’d asked me this question a couple of years ago, I would have said “no.” But the times they are a-changing: just as female infidelity is on the rise, women are catching up to the guys in other ways, too - including a propensity for porn.

As a sex therapist and founder of the website Good in Bed, here’s what I’m observing:

- More couples are enjoying porn together, with women often taking the lead in choosing the material.

- More women are using porn to get themselves in the mood for sex or to enjoy their sexuality on their own.

- More women are using porn to learn new sexual techniques or to explore sexually adventurous situations.

- More women are using porn to satisfy a general curiosity about sex overall, and

- More women are comfortable and confident in asserting their opinions on the subject.

In short, women are increasingly using porn for pretty much the same reasons (and pleasures) as men. Meanwhile, guys are increasingly surprised to discover that their female partners are interested in porn - and tend to be even more surprised to discover what they’re watching (I’ll get to that in a moment).

So what’s going on? Why the apparent change? To be honest, I’d always been of the mind that men and women are somewhat different when it comes to porn, for both biological and sociological reasons:

On the biological side, I’ve often said female sexual desire is more complex than male desire, and that porn rather clearly illustrates that difference: In men, visual stimulation leads quickly to sexual arousal, and with that chain of arousal often comes a desire to be stimulated to orgasm. In that sense, arousal and desire are very closely related, and it’s one of the reasons that Viagra has been so successful with men: Give a guy an erection and he basically wants to use it. In men, porn initiates the “sexual-circuit” very quickly.

That’s not to say that women don’t respond to visual stimulation either, or that that stimulation doesn’t lead to genital arousal, but that arousal doesn’t always trigger desire in women the way that it does with men.

When I talk to guys about their porn use, many describe a lack of pre-meditation. For example, a guy could be hanging out on his computer, checking out his favorite sports site, when up pops an ad with a sexy woman in a bikini and, bang, next thing he knows he’s trawling porn sites in search of sexual release.

With women, however, the use of porn or the desire/decision to have an orgasm is often less opportunistic. A woman may see something super-sexy, and recognize it as sexy, and even arousing, but that doesn’t mean she’s necessarily going to stop what she’s doing to stimulate herself to orgasm. (By the way, if you don’t agree with any of this, please chime in below in the comments - sexual desire is by no means a one size fits all model: everyone is different and topic of women and porn is a highly debated one.)

On a more sociological level, generations of women have been told that porn is evil: that it exploits, objectifies, and degrades women, and that a woman who enjoys porn is a betrayer of Women. Some may still feel this is true, (and there are plenty of women who feel uncomfortable with porn), but there are also plenty of women who would beg to disagree and look at porn as a fairly innocuous form of erotic escapism that’s a personal choice and not a big deal.

Additionally, many women have contended that porn, until fairly recently, was never really created with female customers in mind; that porn was designed to appeal to men and lacked elements that were more organic to female sexuality, such as foreplay, intimacy and erotic storylines.

Well, today there are many porn sites geared toward women. In fact, there’s even a regular Feminist Porn Awards that recognizes erotic entertainment that is smart, sexy, and appreciates women as viewers.

Combine a recognition of a female audience with the rapid proliferation of easily accessible Internet porn, and it only makes sense that more women are enjoying porn. (By the way, if you’re a woman and you’re interested in dipping a toe - or perhaps nose-diving - into the world of porn, I suggest checking out the work of Violet Blue and her book, "The Smart Girl's Guide to Porn." Or if porn isn’t your thing, but you’re interested in some hot erotic literature, take a look at the anthologies that are edited by Rachel Kramer Bussell.)

As it turns our women may be able to enjoy porn with less guilt, or at least with less grief from their male partners. In my experience, women tend to worry a lot more about their man’s porn habits and what it means to their relationship, whereas many of the men I’ve spoken with tend to be intrigued by the idea of women and porn - especially since women are much more likely to enjoy porn that does not directly reflect their sexual orientation.

One study at Northwestern University, for example, examined the effects of porn on genital arousal and concluded that men responded more intensely to porn that correlated to their particular sexual orientation, whereas women tended to be genitally aroused by a much broader spectrum of erotic material. Who knows –- perhaps the enormous variety of material offered by the Internet will end up playing more to the spectrum of female desire than male desire in the long run?

For the moment, it would seem that women are not watching porn nearly as much as men. Recently, a researcher from the University of Montreal set out to study whether pornography had an impact on guys’ sex lives. He searched for men in their 20s who'd never consumed porn, and guess what? He couldn't find a single one. I can still show you plenty of women who have never looked at porn - but perhaps not for long.

So do women like porn as much as men? You tell me.


soundoff (1,981 Responses)
  1. Digital Marketing Studio

    This site truly has all the information I wanted concerning this subject and didn’t know who to ask.

    http://dev-skanvor.1gb.ru/redir.php?url=https://spokanevalleyseo.com/

    May 19, 2021 at 04:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. Maserati Levante Gts

    Way cool! Some extremely valid points! I appreciate you writing this post and also the rest of the website is very good.

    https://www.vans.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/LinkShareGateway?siteID=IFCTyuu33gI-HmTv1Co9oM2RT1QCkYxD_Q&source=LSA&storeId=10153&url=http://club-maserati.com

    May 19, 2021 at 05:52 | Report abuse | Reply
  3. Trenton Sensor

    Pretty! This has been an extremely wonderful article. Thank you for supplying this info.

    https://extraproxies.com/e4bba3e58a9eefbc88e5b7b4e8858ae789b9e5a4a7e5ada6e6af95e4b89ae8af81efbc89e6beb3e6b4b2ube69687e587ade5beaeqefbc9a551190476e6beb3e6b4b2/

    May 19, 2021 at 06:01 | Report abuse | Reply
  4. Video Marketing Studio

    Good post. I'm dealing with many of these issues as well..

    https://www.sns.51.ca/link.php?url=https://www.meticulousjessmarketing.com/

    May 19, 2021 at 06:11 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. prescription energy pills

    Excellent article! We are linking to this great content on our site. Keep up the great writing.

    https://islulu.com/link.php?url=https://energygopep.com

    May 19, 2021 at 06:32 | Report abuse | Reply
  6. 2014 Maserati Ghibli

    The very next time I read a blog, I hope that it won't disappoint me just as much as this one. After all, I know it was my choice to read through, however I really thought you'd have something helpful to say. All I hear is a bunch of complaining about something that you can fix if you were not too busy searching for attention.

    https://www.prmac.com/external_link.php?release=34382&l=1&url=https://club-maserati.com

    May 19, 2021 at 07:10 | Report abuse | Reply
  7. Contact Lens Eye Exam Near Me

    http://cs.odu.edu/~mln/teaching/cs751-s11/?method=display&redirect=http://eyedoctorphoenixaz.com

    May 19, 2021 at 07:24 | Report abuse | Reply
  8. Eye Doctor Near Me Walk In

    http://libregraphicsworld.org/?URL=https://eyedoctorphoenixaz.com/

    May 19, 2021 at 08:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  9. Lake Powell Jet Ski Rental Discounts

    Pretty! This has been a really wonderful article. Thanks for providing these details.

    https://secure.tickmill.co.uk/redirect/index.php?cii=132&cis=1&lp=https://nevadapwcrentals.com/

    May 19, 2021 at 10:12 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. Window Graphics Near Me

    Hi! I could have sworn I’ve been to this blog before but after going through a few of the articles I realized it’s new to me. Anyways, I’m definitely happy I stumbled upon it and I’ll be bookmarking it and checking back regularly!

    http://ab-search.com/rank.cgi?mode=link&id=107&url=360branded.com/

    May 19, 2021 at 10:40 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. Sheet Metal Shop Near Me

    Hi there! I simply wish to give you a huge thumbs up for your excellent information you have got right here on this post. I am returning to your website for more soon.

    http://www.dresscircle-net.com/suteki/rank.cgi?mode=link&id=633&url=http://www.jrkreations.com/

    May 19, 2021 at 11:24 | Report abuse | Reply
  12. Jet Ski Rental In Laughlin

    This page really has all of the information and facts I wanted about this subject and didn’t know who to ask.

    http://manoeksportas.vz.lt/invitePage.do?id=309782144&url=http://nevadapwcrentals.com/

    May 19, 2021 at 11:38 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. Welding Fabrication Service

    https://www.schornsteinfeger-duesseldorf.de/redirect.php?url=https://jrkreations.com

    May 19, 2021 at 11:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. Sprinter Van Repair

    http://www.phototo.com.ua/uk/redirect-to-site?client_id=258&url=https://ocrv.tv/

    May 19, 2021 at 13:14 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. RV Windshield California

    /

    May 19, 2021 at 14:14 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. trailer repairs near me

    This website was... how do you say it? Relevant!! Finally I've found something which helped me. Appreciate it!

    https://www.chope.co/bali-restaurants/passport?a=logout&b_u=https://kaltarabisnis.co/2019/09/sipelandukilat-raih-penghargaan-top-45-kipp-2019-penghargaan-akan-diberikan-wapres/

    May 19, 2021 at 14:29 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. RV Washing Los Angeles

    Very good information. Lucky me I discovered your website by chance (stumbleupon). I've book-marked it for later!

    http://vanpeople.com/space/link.php?url=http://tododeporteonline.com/el-historico-soto-iguala-serie-ante-yaquis-yaquis-de-obregon/

    May 19, 2021 at 14:46 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. RV Upholstery Near Me

    Great site you have here.. It’s hard to find high quality writing like yours these days. I really appreciate people like you! Take care!!

    /

    May 19, 2021 at 16:32 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. RV Windshield Near Me

    Having read this I believed it was really informative. I appreciate you finding the time and effort to put this informative article together. I once again find myself spending way too much time both reading and posting comments. But so what, it was still worth it!

    /

    May 19, 2021 at 18:41 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. RV Repair Near Me

    After I originally commented I seem to have clicked on the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and now every time a comment is added I receive four emails with the same comment. There has to be a way you are able to remove me from that service? Appreciate it!

    http://park3.wakwak.com/~yadoryuo/cgi-bin/click3/click3.cgi?cnt=chalet-main&url=https://epsnewjersey.com/1xbet-sportivnoe-agentstvo-kotoroe-delaet-stavku-34/

    May 19, 2021 at 19:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. RV Repair Riverside

    Excellent blog you have here.. It’s hard to find high quality writing like yours these days. I honestly appreciate people like you! Take care!!

    /

    May 19, 2021 at 20:24 | Report abuse | Reply
  22. Content Marketing Agencies

    Right here is the perfect blog for anyone who really wants to find out about this topic. You understand so much its almost hard to argue with you (not that I personally would want to…HaHa). You certainly put a new spin on a topic that has been written about for many years. Great stuff, just wonderful!

    http://www.adventuresonly.com/redirecthandler.ashx?url=http://www.quotenearme.com/

    May 19, 2021 at 20:27 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. RV Mattresses Riverside

    http://marianvarga.sk/scripts/redirect.php?https://ddcwelcome.de/whats-on-in-dresden-2-august-8-august-2019-2/

    May 19, 2021 at 20:54 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. rv windshield replacement near me

    /

    May 19, 2021 at 22:13 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. fabrication shop near me

    /

    May 19, 2021 at 22:40 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. Social Media Marketing Service

    https://www.sys.labaq.com/cli/go.php?s=lbac&p=1410jt&t=02&url=https://postfallsbootcamp.com

    May 19, 2021 at 23:48 | Report abuse | Reply
  27. rv restoration near me

    You ought to take part in a contest for one of the highest quality websites on the net. I'm going to highly recommend this website!

    https://www.momoantena.com/redirect?url=https://www.ingenieurleistungenreiter.de/index.php?option=com_phocaguestbook&view=phocaguestbook&id=1&Itemid=4&t=680&limitstart=58020

    May 20, 2021 at 00:08 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. Google Marketing Service

    It’s hard to come by experienced people about this topic, but you seem like you know what you’re talking about! Thanks

    http://track.affclkr.com/track/clicks/3171/c627c2b89e0522dbfe9cbd2e8d2b8914736245cb75e9f0ab416db1046005?t=http://bjsnearme.com

    May 20, 2021 at 03:34 | Report abuse | Reply
  29. Local Marketing Agencies Near Me

    Excellent post. I am experiencing a few of these issues as well..

    https://www.demo.cloudhostedresources.com/?id=7cde069d28fee9161e9475b01c2cf8cf&fullscreen=1&task=get&url=https://postfallsvideographer.com

    May 20, 2021 at 04:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  30. Social Media Marketing Agency Near Me

    May I simply say what a relief to discover someone who genuinely knows what they're discussing on the internet. You certainly understand how to bring a problem to light and make it important. More people need to check this out and understand this side of the story. I was surprised that you're not more popular because you certainly possess the gift.

    http://www.sweetcotton.com/osanpo/search/rank.cgi?mode=link&id=1154&url=https://spokanevalleymarketing.com/

    May 20, 2021 at 05:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. Internet Marketing Firm

    http://www.senwes.co.za/LinkTrack.aspx?i=Sat24LinkAF&url=http://www.webdesignpostfalls.com/

    May 20, 2021 at 07:26 | Report abuse | Reply
  32. Local Marketing Consultants

    https://forum.winhost.com/proxy.php?link=https://postfallsvideographer.com/

    May 20, 2021 at 07:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. SEO Marketing Companies

    Hi, I do think this is an excellent website. I stumbledupon it 😉 I will come back once again since I book-marked it. Money and freedom is the greatest way to change, may you be rich and continue to guide others.

    https://www.city.tonami.toyama.jp/search/?mode=bn_ad&url=https://postfallsbootcamp.com

    May 20, 2021 at 08:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. Internet Marketing Services Near Me

    http://chtbl.com/track/118167/postfallsvideographer.com

    May 20, 2021 at 09:07 | Report abuse | Reply
  35. Social Media Marketing Businesses

    I used to be able to find good advice from your articles.

    https://twpusc.org/Redirect.aspx?destination=https://spokanevalleywebdesign.com/

    May 20, 2021 at 10:03 | Report abuse | Reply
  36. Digital Marketing Business

    I must thank you for the efforts you have put in penning this blog. I am hoping to see the same high-grade content from you in the future as well. In fact, your creative writing abilities has encouraged me to get my very own website now 😉

    https://www.redirect.me/?https://internetmarketingwashington.com/

    May 20, 2021 at 10:07 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. Content Marketing Firm

    https://www.click.dsp.com/c?type=2&db=mediav&pub=120013_527433_1050746&cus=172_663_12717020_63096188_63096188000&url=https://internetmarketingoregon.com

    May 20, 2021 at 10:26 | Report abuse | Reply
  38. RV Maintenance Los Angeles

    https://nanostandards.ansi.org/banner_click.php?id=2&url=https://theocrv.com/rv-repair-shop-baldwin-park-california

    May 20, 2021 at 15:09 | Report abuse | Reply
  39. Sprinter Van Service Near Me

    https://www.tkdk.gov.tr/Home/Dil?Dil=en&ReturnUrl=http://commercialvanrepairshop.com/rv-windshield-replacement-shop-near-me

    May 20, 2021 at 15:12 | Report abuse | Reply
  40. how to repair a slide out on a travel trailer

    Spot on with this write-up, I really feel this site needs a lot more attention. I’ll probably be returning to read through more, thanks for the info!

    https://vse-doski.com/redirect/?go=https://ocrvcenter.com/playstar-collision-repair-shop-near-me

    May 20, 2021 at 15:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  41. Dodge Sprinter Repair Shops

    https://www.smartsupp.com/affiliate/click?id=1124&url=https://sprintervanrepairshop.com/rv-technician-shop-near-me/

    May 20, 2021 at 16:15 | Report abuse | Reply
  42. Chevy Venture Van Repair

    Pretty! This has been an extremely wonderful post. Many thanks for providing this information.

    http://pcsafer.inews24.com/log/link.asp?tid=web_log&adid=57&url=https://fleetrepairshops.com/chevrolet-cargo-van-repair-shop-near-me/

    May 20, 2021 at 16:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  43. RV Slide Out Near Me

    https://pakopako.misty.ne.jp/old/out.cgi?id=palette&url=http://ocrv.today/rv-repair-shop-glendale-california

    May 20, 2021 at 16:34 | Report abuse | Reply
  44. good paint shops near me

    https://www.otohits.net/home/redirectto?url=https://ocrvcenter.com/rv-repair-shop-azusa-california/

    May 20, 2021 at 16:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  45. RV Driver Seats Riverside

    http://mambasana.ru/redir/?ocrv.info/rv-repair-shop-north-hills-california

    May 20, 2021 at 16:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  46. rv windshield replacement near me

    http://zumax.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=ocrvcenter.com/motorhome-lighting-repair-near-me

    May 20, 2021 at 18:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  47. rv remodeling companies

    http://www.dmca.com/Protection/Status.aspx?ID=edc817fd-d796-4c84-abb8-d1cb5b2e3719&refurl=https://ocrvcenter.com/rv-repair-shop-sunland-tujunga-california/

    May 20, 2021 at 20:29 | Report abuse | Reply
  48. monrovia collision center

    I needed to thank you for this good read!! I certainly loved every bit of it. I have you saved as a favorite to look at new stuff you post…

    https://domaindirectory.com/policypage/terms?domain=ocrvcenter.com/rv-windshield-repair-near-me

    May 20, 2021 at 20:43 | Report abuse | Reply
  49. rv storage orange ca

    http://forums.womenshealthmatters.ca/gynegals/index.php?app=analytics&module=analytics&controller=link&topic=115902&url=https://ocrvcenter.com/rv-repair-shop-oceanside-california/

    May 20, 2021 at 21:27 | Report abuse | Reply
  50. RV Storage Riverside

    http://bb3x.ru/go.php?https://theocrv.com/rv-repair-shop-south-pasadena-california

    May 20, 2021 at 21:44 | Report abuse | Reply
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34

Post a comment


 

CNN welcomes a lively and courteous discussion as long as you follow the Rules of Conduct set forth in our Terms of Service. Comments are not pre-screened before they post. You agree that anything you post may be used, along with your name and profile picture, in accordance with our Privacy Policy and the license you have granted pursuant to our Terms of Service.

Advertisement
About this blog

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.