While the use, and especially the frequent use of pornography over an extended period of time, can have effects on the user’s relationship with family members, work colleagues, and other contacts, Weeks’ (2010) statement that the ‘couple relationship, in particular, often feels the most negative effects of pornography’ must be credited as true (P. 1). Nevertheless, we should bear in mind Manning’s (2006) assertion that ‘the impact of sexually explicit material is felt by entire family systems.As to the specific ways in which pornography use may damage a relationship, Weeks (2010) provides a useful summary when she lists ‘addiction, isolation, increased aggression, distorted beliefs and perceptions about relationships and sexuality, negative feelings about themselves.Having sought arousal from an artificial stimulus external to the relationship, many of the issues that pornography usage by one partner can cause in a relationship relate to the sexual aspect of that relationship. Some users find it increasingly difficult to become aroused without the use of pornography, and can eventually lose interest in the sexual act altogether. Most individuals use pornography privately, and in many cases the partner of a pornography user is unaware of this behavior. Some individuals, and even some who have studied the subject, have claimed that the mutual use of pornography by a couple as a sexual tool in their relationship can have a beneficial effect on their intimacy.
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