Let’s talk about porn 2019-08-28T12:12:40+00:00

Porn & Sexpectations!

Some people watch porn and some don’t. Some people really like porn and some people really don’t. Some things about porn are good, but some are really terrible. It is important to understand that there are differences between sex in porn and sex in real-life relationships, and that people don’t always look or act like that in real life.

Is there a difference between porn sex and real-life sex?

YES!

Did you know that it can take about 8 hours to film a 20 minute porn scene? 

Although the people in porn are having sex, they are acting. So, it’s like a big sex performance, rather than how people actually have sex in real life. Watching porn and thinking that’s how sex is in real life is like watching an action movie and thinking that’s what normal life is like.

A lot of the time porn actors will need to have sex in uncomfortable positions, so that the camera can get a good close-up on what’s happening. In reality, the most popular sex position for couples is ‘the missionary’. That’s when one person is on top of the other. This allows for both people to see each other, and plenty of kissing, touching and talking.

8hrs=20mins

Porn bodies – we don’t all look like that!

Porn actors are often hired because of how they look, and generally don’t look like the rest of us. Only about 5% of porn actors are overweight. In Ireland, about 51% of women and 66% of men are overweight. The average dress size for professional female porn actors is size 6-8 – that’s 3 to 4 dress sizes smaller than the average Irish woman. Men in porn are often big, tall and muscular, and do not represent the average male body. Remember, porn actors are hired because they look a certain way – but human bodies come in many different and beautiful shapes and sizes!

Porn penises

Porn vulvas & vaginas

They can be very big!

Penises in porn are generally a LOT bigger than the average penis. In Ireland the average penis size (for an adult) is 5.1 inches, erect (hard). In porn, the average size is over 7 inches for professional actors. Porn actors are often hired because of their penis size.

Staying ‘hard’

It’s normal to get erections (boners) and lose erections when having sex. In porn, it seems like the actors can stay hard all day and all night, but remember – you’re only seeing the parts of the clip that the producers want you to see. That’s why you never see an actor losing their erection in porn.

Vulva appearance

Vulvas (the outside of the vagina) come in all different colours, shapes and sizes, but a lot of the time in porn it seems like all vulvas look the same and are all symmetrical. The reality is that, like all the other parts of the human body, everyone’s vulva is slightly different, so don’t worry if yours looks different to the vulvas on screen.

Squirting

You might hear about or see videos of women squirting in porn. This is when fluid squirts out the urethra when a woman is having an orgasm. Only about 4% of women actually can squirt, so don’t be worried at all if you can’t or you don’t know how to. When a woman squirts, a fluid (made up of diluted urine and vaginal fluid) comes out of the urethra as the woman orgasms and her bladder muscles relax. Many porn actors have admitted that a lot of the squirting seen on porn is not real, but is acted out using water and other production tricks!

Porn pubes

There are hardly any pubes anywhere to be seen in porn. This is for two reasons. Female porn actors shave their pubes so you can see the vulva (the outside of the vagina) more clearly, whereas male porn actors shave their pubic hair to make their penises look bigger. It’s all just for appearance reasons. There is no health or hygiene benefit to having no pubes.

Anal sex

There is a lot of guy-girl anal sex going on in porn. This can make it seem like anal sex is something that all women like to do, or at least try. This is far from true. A lot, if not most women, will never try anal sex over the course of their entire life. If this is something you might consider trying in the future, it’s really important that you discuss it with your partner, and know how to have anal sex properly and safely.

Anal sex hygiene

Sometimes in porn, people go straight from having anal sex to having vaginal or oral sex, without cleaning the penis in between. It is SO important that the penis is cleaned after anal sex, as bacteria can be passed from the anal passage to the vagina or mouth and cause infection.

Enthusiastic consent

Probably the MOST IMPORTANT thing in relation to sex is the giving and receiving of consent for every single thing that you do. That means making sure that anything you do with your partner is for the right reasons, and that both of you really want to do it. In porn, you don’t see the giving and receiving of consent. It looks as if all people involved are mind-readers who know exactly what the other person wants. But remember – it’s scripted and they are acting! Everything you see on screen has usually been planned out well in advance and agreed on by all actors involved.

Condoms

You don’t often see condoms in porn sex. However, condoms are used a lot in gay porn and certain porn companies ensure that all of their employees use them. It’s important to note that all professional porn actors are required to get STI checks every 2 weeks, and even that does not guarantee that they don’t pick up any STIs. It’s really important to use condoms when you have sex, to protect against STIs and pregnancy.

Orgasms

Ooohhh, Eeeehh, Aaahhh! – There’s a lot of this going on in porn. Female orgasms in porn are generally very loud and exaggerated. Unfortunately, most of the time, they are faking it. Remember, they are acting and it is a performance! The majority of people don’t make these sounds when they are having an orgasm, but some do and that’s cool too. Also, it is perfectly possible to have pleasurable sex without everyone having an orgasm – it does not need to be the ‘goal’ of sex. Putting pressure on yourself or your partner to orgasm will most likely make it more difficult and could ruin a great experience! There is loads of penis-in-vagina (penetrative) sex in porn and women seemingly having tonnes of orgasms from this alone – in reality, over 80% of women need the clitoris to be stimulated, and the most sensitive part of the clitoris is not in the vagina at all, but on the ‘outside’ (towards the top of the vulva). Porn also depicts men being able to have sex for a long time without having an orgasm, and then suddenly having ‘the big O’ right on cue. Again, there is so much going on behind the scenes – masturbation, taking breaks, and sometimes extra actors who will stand in and orgasm when the director wants them to. So, all in all, orgasms in porn are very different to orgasms in reality!

Sexual violence

The things that we see in some (not all) porn can be terribly nasty and violent, like people being hurt or sexually assaulted. It might seem like the actors love being called names and treated really badly, but they don’t – they’re just acting and the people in the videos are paid to act like they are enjoying it. It can be confusing to watch when someone looks like they are enjoying being hurt. It is never OK to assume that someone wants to be touched or treated aggressively – see our ‘consent’ section to learn a little more about effective and respectful sexual communication. If you have seen something that you are upset by it is really important that you have somebody that you can talk to about it.

If you feel that you have been affected by rape or sexual assault contact Galway Rape Crisis Centre for advice and support http://www.galwayrcc.org

Here are some things that will almost certainly happen at some point in your sex life, that you rarely see on the big screen.

  • You, and your sexual partner(s) will sweat – sometimes A LOT. This is completely normal, as sex is basically a really fun form of exercise! Hair, make-up, fake tan, fake nails etc. can all get a little messy during sex. Anyway, you won’t have make-up artists touching up your foundation between shots like they do in the movies. If you are enjoying yourself and feel comfortable with your partner, you won’t mind a bit! Focusing on how you feel rather than how you look is a key learning point when it comes to feeling relaxed, comfortable and enjoying the experience with your partner.

  • You will try different sex positions – you will enjoy some, and not like others. Some may feel uncomfortable or just plain awkward. You might bang a few elbows, heads and knees off walls and low ceilings from time to time. You will get to know what you like as you become more ‘experienced’ – no one starts off having sex with a tool belt full of tricks and skills! Sex takes time and practice, and loads and loads of communication!

  • You will sometimes feel awkward or lacking in confidence – but so does everyone! Sometimes we feel more confident with certain partners, or when we have been having sex for a while. Sex should be fun, not a stressful experience, so talk to your partner about what might make you feel more comfortable – it is different for everyone!

  • If you have a penis, you may orgasm early sometimes, not have an orgasm at all, find it difficult to get and keep an erection or simply get tired. If you have a vagina, you may find that you become sore after having sex for a long time, or find it hard to orgasm and also become tired. These are all normal experiences. They happen to us all! Sex can use up lots of energy, so we need to be patient with our bodies. Sex can feel very different depending on how our body and mind is feeling, which can be affected by our mood, anxieties, pain, energy levels, libido, menstrual cycle etc. Check in with yourself, and each other, and figure it out together!

  • You will learn that ‘foreplay’ is super important for most people, particularly if you have a vulva and vagina! If you were going by that unforgettable 8 Mile sex scene, you might think that it’s totally normal to get straight down to business. In reality, taking time to get our bodies ‘warmed up’ during foreplay allows the vagina to get ready for sex, and it is also very pleasurable and adds to the overall experience. Also, sometimes the term ‘full sex’ is used to describe penetrative sex, and ‘foreplay’ is used to describe any sexual acts that lead up to it, e.g. oral sex. In reality, penetrative sex does not need to be the ‘end goal’ or destination during intimacy. Oral sex and sexual touching are valid, standalone ways in which people pleasure each other – penetrative sex does not need to happen for the experience to ‘count’ as sex.

  • Your body will make weird noises! Your bodies might make those cringey squelchy sounds when you are up close and personal, strange sounds might come out of your mouth and air can escape from vaginas and anuses from all the action that’s going on! The best thing to do is laugh it off… sex involves letting go and enjoying yourself, so it’s totally OK that our bodies are relaxing too – we’re only human! In fact, being relaxed when you’re having sex makes it so much more enjoyable. It won’t be all romantic soundtracks and dramatic moaning and groaning every time!

  • Finally, the golden rule of sex: if you do not want to do something, don’t do it. Never put pressure on your partner to do anything sexual whatsoever, no matter the circumstances. Sometimes we forget that we can say no, and our partners need to be completely fine with that. It is everyone’s right to feel good and enjoy sex and not to feel pressured into doing something they are not comfortable with. (See Consent section for more information). If you love the idea of trying out something you have seen in the likes of Fifty Shades, good for you! If you don’t, that’s cool too. It’s your body and your experience, so don’t be afraid to say take ownership and say yes and no as often as you like.

Remember sex in porn is nothing like sex in real life…they are acting!

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