I just finished reading a quick article online by Lauren Vinopal, titled, “Porn Makes Men Think Women Will Do Just About Anything”. The title caught my eye and as the Executive Director of Integrity Restored, it resonated with me. After hundreds of hours of conversations with both men and women who regularly consume pornography, with “performers”, with mental health experts, with clergy, the ONE thing I’ve learned is true is that pornography does change your brain! So why should we be surprised that it changes the way we think about women, who are so often depicted in pornographic videos?
In the article, it asks a great question:
“If you are a porn user – and according to surveys, very large segments of the population are – it might be worth considering if porn has had an influence over your thinking even at a very basic level?”
Gary Wilson and Marnia Robinson of YourBrainOnPorn.com talk about the science of neuroplasticity, explaining that humans are always strengthening certain neural pathways and clearing others, meaning sexual desires can change, for better or for worse.
I remember one conversation where a young lady (probably 20 something) told me she felt like she had to watch porn to know what her boyfriend “wanted” so she wouldn’t lose him. The problem was then when they were intimate, she just felt like a bad actor because she was just repeating the same motions she saw on screen and derived no pleasure from it at all. “I was just acting to make him happy. But honestly, I felt horrible each time, I was just so scared to lose him. So, I’d watch more to learn something new.”
Porn has not only changed our expectations about our own bodies and our partners’ bodies and sexual performance, it has gotten increasingly violent. Now, people can mistakenly think that’s what women like – to be dominated and mistreated.
Female performers tell a different side of the story:
Alexa Milano: “My first movie I was treated very rough by 3 guys. They pounded on me, gagged me, and tossed me around like I was a ball! I was sore, hurting and could barely walk. My insides burned and hurt so badly.
Alexandra Read: (After being whipped and caned for 35 minutes) “I’ve never received a beating like that before in my life. I have permanent scars up and down the backs of my thighs. It was all things that I had consented to, but I didn’t know quite the brutality of what was about to happen to me until I was in it.”
Princess Donna: “I was crying and crying, which was not against their shooting rules. There was a male dominant and a male videographer and a female photographer. I kept looking to her to save me.”
Regan Starr: “I got the crap kicked out of me. I was told before the video – and they said this very proudly, mind you – that in this line most of the girls start crying because they’re hurting so bad . . . I couldn’t breathe. I was being hit and choked. I was really upset, and they didn’t stop. They kept filming.”
Jenna Presley: “It was torture for seven years. I was miserable, I was lonely. I eventually turned to drugs and alcohol…to numb my pain and get me through…and attempted suicide. I knew I wanted out, but I didn’t know how to get out.”
Belladonna Read: “I’m not happy… I don’t like myself at all… My whole entire body feels it when I’m doing it and… I feel so — so gross. I hung out with a lot of people in the Adult industry, everybody from contract girls to gonzo actresses. Everybody has the same problems. Everybody is on drugs. It’s an empty lifestyle trying to fill up a void.”
Becca Brat: “I became horribly addicted to heroin and crack. I overdosed at least 3 times, had tricks pull knives on me, have been beaten half to death.”
None of these women, or the countless others I’ve heard speak, read about or spoken to, enjoyed the industry, the increasingly violent scenes or the physical, emotional and spiritual toll being an adult performer took on them. Yet, we can be fooled into believing this is all their choice, that women do enjoy that type of behavior and that we should expect it.
Nothing could be further from the truth!