Viewing Sexually-Explicit Materials Alone or Together: Associations with Relationship Quality
- 1.9k Downloads
This study investigated associations between viewing sexually-explicit material (SEM) and relationship functioning in a random sample of 1291 unmarried individuals in romantic relationships. More men (76.8%) than women (31.6%) reported that they viewed SEM on their own, but nearly half of both men and women reported sometimes viewing SEM with their partner (44.8%). Measures of communication, relationship adjustment, commitment, sexual satisfaction, and infidelity were examined. Individuals who never viewed SEM reported higher relationship quality on all indices than those who viewed SEM alone. Those who viewed SEM only with their partners reported more dedication and higher sexual satisfaction than those who viewed SEM alone. The only difference between those who never viewed SEM and those who viewed it only with their partners was that those who never viewed it had lower rates of infidelity. Implications for future research in this area as well as for sex therapy and couple therapy are discussed.
KeywordsPornography Relationship quality Couples Sexually-explicit material Infidelity
This research was supported by a grant from the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (R01 HD047564) awarded to Scott Stanley and the second and third authors.
- Boies, S. C. (2002). University students’ uses of and reactions to online sexual information and entertainment: Links to online and offline sexual behaviour. Canadian Journal of Human Sexuality, 11, 77–89.Google Scholar
- Haavio-Mannila, E., & Kontula, O. (2003). Sexual trends in the Baltic Sea area. Helinski: Population Research Institute.Google Scholar
- Kenrick, D. T., Gutierres, S. E., & Goldberg, L. L. (2003). Influence of popular erotica and judgments of strangers and mates. In S. Plous (Ed.), Understanding prejudice and discrimination (pp. 243–248). New York: McGraw-Hill.Google Scholar
- O’Reilly, S., Knox, D., & Zusman, M. E. (2007). College student attitudes toward pornography use. College Student Journal, 41, 402–406.Google Scholar
- Stanley, S. M., & Markman, H. J. (1997). Marriage in the 90s: A nationwide random phone survey. Denver, CO: PREP.Google Scholar
- Stock, W. E. (1997). Sex as commodity: Men and the sex industry. In R. F. Levant & G. R. Brooks (Eds.), Men and sex: New psychological perspectives (pp. 100–132). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley.Google Scholar
- Striar, S., & Bartlik, B. (1999). Stimulation of the libido: The use of erotica in sex therapy. Psychiatric Annals, 29, 60–62.Google Scholar
- Zillmann, D. (1989). The effects of prolonged consumption of pornography. In D. Zillmann & J. Bryant (Eds.), Pornography: Research advances and policy considerations (pp. 127–157). Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.Google Scholar