Is it wrong for my husband to watch porn?

Q: I have been married for less than a year, but we've been together for four years. I do not like porn, yet he is always going behind my back to look at it. He has hidden movies and is always online looking up porno. It upsets me. He promises he won't do it again, but three days later he's at it again. Is this normal? Does he not find me attractive? He had a lot of porn before we were together, but he said he didn't mind throwing it out when we moved in together. He has lied several times about this, and it is hurting our marriage. Am I overreacting? Please help us. I feel like I'm ready to leave and find someone who finds me attractive -- and someone who does not lie.

A: Oh, you poor thing! You sound awfully confused. Now, I'm going to put down a few thoughts I have on pornography and how maybe you can meet in the middle on this. But first, I have to say that what's most upsetting about your husband's behavior is the fact that he tries to hide it, lies about it and goes behind your back. I suspect your being so upset has as much to do with him going back on his word as it has with the pornography. On the other hand, I bet your partner's answer to this would be ''If she didn't ban it, I wouldn't have to hide it from her.'' By making such a fuss, you're actually making porn even more exciting for him because you're making it even more forbidden.

Now, I'm going to assume we're talking fairly standard pornography here, the adult male-female type. (If by porn you mean anything that involves torture, violence or children, that is a different story.) If it is standard porn, there are a few concerns I can dismiss straight away. It doesn't mean he doesn't love you or find you attractive. It doesn't mean he wants you to look like or do the things the women in the pictures are doing. Ask the average guy why he looks at porn and the answer is usually ''Because it's fun.'' It's all about men being able to separate sex and love, and truly, in 95 percent of cases, there's nothing particularly sinister about it at all. It doesn't mean he wants to be unfaithful in real life, just in his fantasy. That doesn't mean you won't feel a twinge if you catch him lusting after some girl with legs up to her armpits and breasts the size of watermelons. But truly, it does not mean he finds these other women more attractive than you. Truly! Porn is just something naughty that men do.

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