There are a lot of sexual orientations. The LGBT community has grown into the LGBTQQIP2SAA and I have heard podcasts recently that certain kinks may be tying to edge their way into sexual orientation status.
I recently heard a new one – Pornsexual. This is a person who is more attracted to pornography than they are to real people. They prefer living their sex life in online porn to sexual experience with real people.
This raises a couple of interesting questions. First of all, what does it take to become a ‘sexual orientation’. WebMD says a sexual orientation “is a term used to refer to a person’s emotional, romantic, and sexual attraction to individuals of a particular gender (male or female).” So, to be a sexual orientation, it seems to be a combination of who you are sexually and who you are attracted to sexually (and/or emotionally). So, while many people poke fun at the alphabet soup of sexual orientation, it actually makes a lot of sense when you break it down — For the LBGTQQIP2SAAs, L, G, B, T make perfect sense; the QQ of queer and questioning.. sure; I – intersex.. it is rare but certainly legit; P – pansexual… love ’em; 2S which I understand to be something like pansexuality or bisexuality in indigenous cultures.. for sure; the first A, asexual… absolutely; and the other A, allies.. I’m not so sure but there seems little harm in it. For all of these (except the last A – give me a break.. allies – these are all different ways in which people feel their sexual and emotional attraction.. and I have a sense (albeit uninformed) that they are all somewhat innate. And while they may change over time, they are not consciously changeable.
Pornsexual, by comparison.. I dunno. Maybe I’m an old softie, but I don’t think anyone is innately preferring the company and arousal of porn over the experience they could have with a real person. So, I’m not sure their affection for porn is so much an innate sexual orientation as it is a forfeiture of hope of a more ‘human’ sexual experience. I’m a big believers that humans are social animals and that we crave touch and the company of others. Not always and not exclusively, but even the most introverted person needs people in their lives with whom they feel connection, love and affinity.
I think what likely goes on with the Pornsexual is this. Meeting people/humans that you are attracted to (and who are attracted to you) is hard. Turning on your computer and jacking it to porn is, on the other hand, very very very easy. Over time, you can come to believe that porn is all you need and you become satisfied or resigned to that. You kind of give up on the human/sex/connection thing and spend all your time in your basement with your box of tissues. But this does not make your exclusive dating habit with porn a sexual orientation .. its more of a resigned preference I would say.
But really.. why does this matter. Is it a problem to consider pornsexual a sexual orientation. I would say it is a problem – for two reasons. Firstly, the Ls, the Bs, the Ts… they fought hard for the respect and rights that come with being a sexual orientation. It leads to practical things like the legal entitlements that come with marriage; the respect and understanding of a judging society. I think we diminish this when we allow too many undeserving ‘joiners’ into the sexual orientation camp. Secondly – and maybe more importantly for the porn lover seeking orientation status – it legitimizes what I consider to be (and call be judgy here) a dangerous and damaging lifestyle choice. While I’m a pretty big fan or porn, and think it can have a healthy place in all of our lives… I fear some pretty dangerous anti-social tendencies start to arise when it becomes your only source of secular and emotional connection.