This past decade brought upon the argument: “Should extremely violent video games be banned? Do children watch them and get bad ideas?”
It’s pretty ironic to me that we make the assumption that video games can be linked to violence, but few are talking about the correlation between pornography and women’s abuse. There are approximately 372 million pornographic website pages online today, with the average age of first exposure being age 11.
So picture this. An 11 year old is introduced to pornography. It would not be uncommon for pornography to skew violence towards women as “hot”. Cheating on a spouse is portrayed as “scandalous”. Having sex with a married woman is “our dirty little secret”. Women in pornography are a mere object and we’re teaching our growing boys today, through pornography, that the male role in sex is the only role that matters.
This year, I started dating someone. Once I found out he was watching pornography, I felt belittled. I felt like I wasn’t good enough and I assumed that I just wasn’t giving him what he wanted, so I concluded that I should try and be sexier, buy more lingerie, and suggest to try new things. I unfortunately furthered this notion that my duty was to “please my male”. But, after trying more things, the problem prevailed and he continued to watch pornography. I felt guilty for asking him to stop, because we’ve all heard this: “She’s psycho. She doesn’t even let her boyfriend watch porn”. So I kept quiet.
But, I think this is wrong. Why should I feel “psycho” for wanting to have a boyfriend that isn’t fantasizing about cheating? And betrayal? And objectifying, harming and abusing women? I am a woman, shouldn’t I stand up for my gender? If something hurts my self-esteem and makes me feel bad about myself, shouldn’t my boyfriend stop out of love and respect for me? But instead, our society has decided, “Boys will be boys!” or “That psycho girlfriend who doesn’t let her boyfriend watch porn.
Well, from now on, call me psycho. If I’m psycho for standing up for women’s rights and fighting against what I believe is a huge issue in our society, then so be it.