This is what porn ACTUALLY does to your relationship

Is it healthy or toxic? A new study reveals what every couple should know.

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  • Inevitably, each time we cover pornography in an article, comments pop up in defense of porn. And here's the deal: we get it. There is a LOT of conflicting information out there about pornography, but recently, a study by University of Oklahoma sociologist Samuel Perry shed some interesting insight on the long-term effects of pornography on a marriage - even a super happy marriage - and, spoiler alert, it's not pretty.

  • Do people look at pornography because they are unhappy in their marriage? Or does the porn make them unhappy in their marriage?

  • That's a question scientists have had difficulty separating in previous studies when looking at this tricky topic, and it's one that Perry's study worked to sort out. Over a series of years they observed 2,000 married couples. Each couple rated the quality of their marriage and identified their use of sexually explicit material.

  • The discovery

  • Pornography has measurable, negative effects on long-term relationships.

  • "We found that married Americans who began pornography were roughly twice as likely to be divorced," Perry told NPR's science correspondent Shankar Vedantam. "It's a difference of, say, 6 percent likelihood of divorce for people who never begin pornography use to about 11 percent to people who did begin pornography use."

  • And the scary part is that it tended to affect those in happier relationships more than older couples or those in less-happy relationships. Young couples were also more affected by porn use.

  • The amount of pornography viewed also played a role in how significantly these negative effects seeped into the marriage. Daily use was much more toxic than very occasional use.

  • In a conversation with FamilyShare, Brian Willoughby, a professor and researcher of family sciences, said studies show about 60 to 70 percent of young men and 30 to 40 percent of women report consistently using pornography. Research shows porn shifts views on intimacy and expectations in marriage and it's shown to increase conflict within marriage.

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  • To read more about pornography, check out some of our top articles on the topic:

    1. Dear son, what I wish you knew about pornography
    2. 5 damaging side effects that come with a porn habit
    3. Healing from your husband's porn habit
  • While there may still be defensive comments and opinions about pornography, research has shed some unflinching truth on just how harmful it can be.

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Amberlee is the content manager for FamilyShare.com and earned a degree in journalism. She creates beautiful things with her experience in writing, graphic design, photography, video and music. She loves her family, the outdoors, baby foxes and podcasts.

Website: https://amberleepeterson.com/

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