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Pornographic use is on the rise. Here is what that means for our communities…

According to the Journal of Behavioral Addiction, pornography use went up 11-percent during the pandemic. The damaging consequences of pornography have shown to not just impact an individual or their family, but society, too.

Therapist Sherie Christensen shares some of the research.

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3 Ways Pornographic Use is Affecting the Community

According to the Journal of Behavioral Addiction, pornography use went up 11 percent during the pandemic. It’s a trend that therapist Sheri Christensen sees daily in her office.

“Across the board, we’re seeing more people coming into therapy because they are having issues as adolescents and as adults,” Christensen said. “We have research that indicates that pornography is related to depression, anxiety, and an increased loneliness. When you take those individual affects an factor in an increase – it is naturally going to affect our society at large.”

Christensen pointed to three key areas of impact:

  1. Mistreatment of Women

Women depicted in pornography and frequently the object of ridicule or violence, and men’s consumption of pornography is associated with more aggressive behavior toward female partners. (Rodriguez, C.G. & Fernandez-Gonzalez, L (2019). Is pornography consumption associated with intimate partner violence? The moderating role of attitudes toward women and violence. Behavioral Psychology, 27 (3), 431-454.)


  1. Dissatisfaction in Marriage

In general, the more often people view pornography, the more likely they are to feel dissatisfied with their spouse. Research shows that married people who use pornography more frequently are less satisfied with their marriage. (Perry, S.L. (2020). Pornography and relationship quality: Establishing the dominant pattern by examining pornography use and 31 measures of relationship quality in 30 national surveys. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 49, 1199–1213


  1. Body Image

The bodies shown in pornography do not represent the way most people look, which adds to the pervasive body shame experienced by so many people. Compelling evidence shows that frequency of pornography exposure is associated with negatively perceived body image. (Paslakis G, Chiclana Actis C, Mestre-Bach G. Associations between pornography exposure, body image and sexual body image: A systematic review. J Health Psychol. 2022 Mar;27(3):743-760. doi: 10.1177/1359105320967085. Epub 2020 Oct 27. PMID: 33107365.)

This is one of the topics being discussed at the 2022 Utah Coalition Against Pornography Conference on Saturday, May 7 at the Salt Palace Convention Center.

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