Watching porn is not cheating. Of course it’s not. But as GirlOnTheNet says, it’s hard to formulate actual arguments in support of this proposition that don’t boil down to (her words) “What the ACTUAL MENTAL FUCK ARE YOU ON ABOUT?”

I once wrote:

Some women object to porn the way wives object to the idea of prostitutes, and for the same reason: it means they have to use actual sex, rather than their erstwhile monopoly over the possibility of access to sexual stimulus, in order to maintain and enjoy the sexual attention of their men. Women who want to have that attention without having the actual sex for which most men will cheerfully trade it are teases, in all the negative and none of the positive senses of the word.

GirlOnTheNet suggests it’s more about jealousy:

But it’s cheating in the mind, right?

No. Because what you’re describing there is a thought crime. If watching porn is cheating then writing slashfic is a form of rape.

I think this comes from female (and it is usually female – I’d like to see how men react to the idea that their girl watching porn is ‘cheating’) worries about not being adequate, and their partner being sexually interested in other people and things. It’s ‘cheating’ because he’s getting off to something that isn’t you, and that taps into a fairly primitive female jealousy about boys leaving their girlfriends for younger/prettier/thinner/more-willing-to-do-anal models.

Well, it probably sucks for these girls to hear this but he is interested in other people. Sexually. No matter how stunning or sexually adventurous you are, you are not the only thing that makes your man’s dick hard. Nice though you might think that would be, it’s not practical, nor even desirable. Many of his best moves have probably come from things he’s seen while doing some one-handed browsing during an idle moment.

She also points out something I’d never noticed, which is that the visual nature of men’s arousal processes makes us much more open and vulnerable to having our fantasies discovered and judged:

But what he watches is so disgusting and degrading

Hahahaha.

Haha.

No, seriously, stop it – you’re killing me.

It’s so much easier to demonise men for the porn they watch because men tend to require more visual stimulation than women do to get off. In short – you can watch theirs too whereas yours is probably locked away inside your head. Saying that their fantasies are ‘degrading’ and ‘disgusting’ is really easy to do when your own fantasies aren’t exposed for all to see, at the click of a mouse on the 3 a.m. section of your Chrome history.

Ain’t that the truth?

Thanks to Adele Haze for the link.