I’m an 18-year-old cis hetero girl from Australia, and I've been listening to your podcast and reading your column since I was 13. Thanks to you I’m pretty open-minded about my sexuality and body. Having said that, I do have a few questions. I started watching porn from a youngish age with no real shame attached, but I have some concerns.
1. I get off really quickly to lesbian porn, but it never feels like a “good” orgasm. My guess is that subconsciously I think it’s inauthentic and therefore degrading.
2. I really enjoy and have the best orgasms to vintage gay-male porn and trans FTM porn, which seems odd to me because I’m so far removed from the sexual acts that these kind of porn movies portray, but I always feel satisfied after getting off to them.
3. I get off to tit-slapping videos, but it screws with me morally. I understand why I like these kinds of videos. I have quite large breasts, and I feel resentment towards them. It seems both morally wrong toward the progress I’ve made toward accepting my body and also to the message being sent about violence toward women.
Care to weigh in?
Concerned About Porn Preferences
1. There are gay men who watch straight porn, lesbians who watch gay porn, and 18-year-old hetero girls in Australia who watch lesbian porn and vintage gay porn and trans FTM porn. So, many people get off watching porn that isn’t supposed to be for them — so many people fantasize about, watch and sometimes do things that aren’t supposed to be for them — that we have to view these quote/unquote transgressions as a feature of human sexuality, not a bug.
2. Lesbian porn gets you off, vintage gay porn and trans FTM gets you off, but you feel conflicted after watching lesbian porn because it seems inauthentic. That’s understandable — a lot of so-called lesbian porn is inauthentic, in that it’s made by and for straight men, and features non-lesbian women going through the lesbian motions (often with long and triggering-for-actual-lesbian fingernails). Some gay porn features gay-for-pay straight male actors, of course, but most gay porn features gay actors doing what they love; the same goes for most trans FTM porn, which is a small and mostly indie niche. I suspect your orgasms are just as good when you watch lesbian porn, CAPP, but the sense — suppressed when you were turned on, surfacing once you’re not — that the performers weren’t really enjoying themselves taints your lesbian-porn-enhanced orgasms in retrospect. The solution? Seek out lesbian porn featuring actual lesbians — authentic lesbian porn is out there. (I found a bunch with a quick Google search.)
3. Sometimes we overcome the negative messaging our culture sends us about our identities or bodies, only after our erotic imaginations have seized on the fears or self-loathing induced by those messages and turned them into kinks. It can be freeing to regard a kink, like your thing for tit-slapping as a reward. So long as we seek out other consenting adults who respect us and our bodies, we can have our kinks — even those that took root in the manure of negative cultural messaging — and our self-acceptance and self-esteem, too.
I’m a 32-year-old male. I recently met a hot older woman, age 46, who has told me she finds me equally hot. I’ve always preferred older women. I just love their confidence and their comfort in their own skin. They’re just so much sexier than my age cohorts. The problem is that I take a serious interest in feminism. I think I do pretty well with the overt stuff: I don’t mansplain, I call out peers who ignore sexism, and I don’t objectify women, even when I do find them attractive. (Small steps, but steps nonetheless.) But when I see this woman and we flirt like mad, my brain just shuts off, and all I can think about is her hot bod and the many hours I want to spend with it. However, I worry that she’s spent her whole life relying on her looks to gain validation from men, and that my brain-dead, loins-alive attraction is only perpetuating her objectification. Is that so? Or am I just overthinking things?
Man, I Love Feminism
At the risk of dansplaining …
There’s nothing feminist about slagging off younger women to justify your attraction to older women. You like what you like, and you can own that without implying that younger women lack confidence and aren’t comfortable in their own skins. The same culture that put the zap on CAPP’s head for having large breasts — her breasts attracted unwanted attention, and she resented her breasts and now gets off on erotic images of breasts being punished (even though she now knows her breasts weren’t the problem) — put the zap on your head. Men, young and old, are supposed to be attracted to younger women. You’re not attracted to younger women, you’re attracted to older women; instead of accepting that, you feel compelled to justify it by comparing younger women to older women and declaring — again, by implication — that there’s something wrong with younger women. You sound like one of those gay men who can’t tell you why he’s attracted to dudes without also (or only) telling you what he dislikes about women.
As for objectification, MILF, the problem with objectification is when the person doing the objectifying isn’t capable of simultaneously seeing the object of their affections as a three-dimensional human being with desires, fears and agency of their own. Technically, MILF, we are all objects — “a material thing that can be seen and touched” — but unlike, say, Fleshlights or vibrators, we feel joy and pain, and have wants and needs. You can’t help being drawn to this woman’s externals; there’s a huge visual component to human attraction and, as your thing for older women demonstrates, there isn’t one universal standard of beauty. So long as you can objectify someone while at the same time appreciating their full humanity — so long as you can walk that walk and chew that gum — you don’t have to feel like a bad feminist for objectifying someone. (Particularly when that someone is clearly objectifying you!)
On the Lovecast — Finally! Porn that makes consent SEXY: www.savagelovecast.com.