In 1970 a Federal study estimated the total retail value of pornography was around $10 million. Shockingly, by 2001, a study put the total (including video, pay-per-view, Internet and magazines) between $2.6 billion and $3.9 billion. That profit number should be a red flag for anyone trying to understand the morality behind pornography, as any corporate influenced industry usually leaves ethics and human wellness at the door when promoting their profit margins. 
Is Porn Ruining Sex?
Brett and Kate Mckay from theartofmaniless.com, wrote in an article titled The Problem With Porn, “Pornography is such a polarizing issue, that it’s easy for people to take extreme sides when approaching it. Oftentimes, religious people, while very sincere in their beliefs, brand porn as vile filth that turns good men into sexual perverts and unclean lepers… The other extreme sees porn as just a healthy expression of sexuality. Pornography is heartily encouraged in order to help people discover what pleases them sexually, no matter how graphic or violent the material is. The people in this camp will argue that as long as consenting adults are involved and no one gets hurt, then anything goes. However, this approach fails to recognize the detrimental effects porn can have on an individual, on women, and on society.”
Pornography watching without a doubt can be a compulsive practice. It’s more like food to a compulsive over-eater. Once you make those pleasure connections in your brain they can be very hard to break. And it’s not an exaggeration to say that porn can ruin your life. The false standards and ideals established through porn affect men and women more so than you might think. Some might disagree to this notion, but pornography objectifies both women and men. For the longest time, the subject of objectification was based solely on women, and this held true for many years. However, one cannot deny that in our current culture men are objectified just as much in the media. In pornography especially (heterosexual and homosexual), men and women are looked at as sexually gratifying ‘things’, leaving out the need to connect spiritually, emotionally, or intellectually.
One of the largest issues with pornography is the false standards and expectations that exist as its entourage. The men usually have shredded bodies and large penises, the women are usually tiny with massive breast implants. When children see these types of images at a young age, insecurities arise due to erroneous definitions of what ‘men’ and ‘women’ are stated to be.
Where’s The Love Yall?
There is no love associated with sex in porn, but instead sex is portrayed as an aggressive, animalistic type of practice that wants only to see the gratified ending. There is a massive mis-education done through pornography which creates unrealistic ideas of what ‘good’ sex is. In some cases this can create a big problem in the bedroom, with some people even having to revert to sexual fantasies while having sex in order to reach orgasm. Furthermore, watching porn on a regular basis can diminish the need for sexual pleasure within a relationship.
After repeated exposure to the stimuli, your pleasure plateaus. At this point, people often reach for more-more food, more sex, more porn, etc. in order to recover the initial pleasure they once took in the experience. But this only begins a vicious cycle in which you must seek ever greater and more intense stimulation to return to your initial pleasure level. Eventually you overwhelm and numb your pleasure receptors.Author Naomi Wolfe touched upon this in her New York Magazine article “The Porn Myth”,
“Pornography works in the most basic of ways on the brain: It is Pavlovian. An orgasm is one of the biggest reinforcers imaginable. If you associate orgasm with your wife, a kiss, a scent, a body, that is what, over time, will turn you on; if you open your focus to an endless stream of ever-more-transgressive images of cybersex slaves, that is what it will take to turn you on. The ubiquity of sexual images does not free eros, but dilutes it. Other cultures know this. I am not advocating a return to the days of hiding female sexuality, but I am noting that the power and charge of sex are maintained when there is some sacredness to it, when it is not on tap all the time.”
With all that being said, it must be made clear that I am not denouncing masturbation. Exploring self-pleasure is an essential aspect of being human. After all, those pleasure centers are innate for a reason.
What I’m saying is that there has been a massive misrepresentation of sexual intimacy through the media and porn industry for many years, and these falsifications have destroyed the sacredness of the act. Sex has lost the self-giving, mutually reciprocating intimacy that it was designed for. As we move forward as a society, the media-based values and principles surrounding sexuality need to be readdressed and perhaps fully erased to make room for a new foundation for sex, one without definition and limitation, and one that realigns our bodies with the true nature of intimacy and pleasure.