Don't let pornographers dictate your sex life

It should go without saying that this is having radical consequences for relations between the sexes. However, the porn industry has enough apologists spewing sophistic bullshit (“porn doesn’t hurt anyone,” “opposing porn is anti-progressive and anti-feminist”) that some elaboration is in order.

When encountering a sexually attractive woman in the wild, so to speak, straight men experience a release of dopamine in their brain’s pleasure center. It’s evolution’s way of snapping us to attention and telling us to go mate. But evolution, for all its merits, didn’t foresee the internet, and our brains still give us a nice chemical reward each time we see an image of an attractive woman, as if she were actually a potential partner. (The foregoing also applies to women, though the effects seem to be generally less pronounced.)

Like all reward processes, repeated exposure to the same stimulus results in habituation. Applied to porn, this means that the more often you jerk off to, say, Mia Khalifa, the longer it’ll take you to climax each time. Eventually you’ll find a new face. And if you’re like many guys, you might find a few hundred new faces in a single sitting.

Habituation compels us to pursue novelty. This goes for genre as well as persons. View too much vanilla porn and you’ll eventually seek out stranger fare. You’re forced to continually up the ante to maintain the same level of chemical reward.