What are the Differences Between Porn, Erotica, and Romance?

Posted by on Jul 31, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on What are the Differences Between Porn, Erotica, and Romance?

Are you confused about how to label sexually-explicit material?

Porn, erotica, and even romance novels are often used interchangeably in some circles. These materials include explicit depictions of sex, but there are some basic differences:

Porn. These materials are specifically designed to sexually arouse the audience. There’s very little merit to, or plot line involved, in pornographic materials. Characters are generally stereotypical and one-dimensional. Female characters are almost always small-framed, with big breasts and a low I.Q. Submission and violence toward females are recurrent themes. Porn is almost always visual, including movies, videos, magazine, pictures, etc.

Erotic stories. Erotic stories are created with merit beyond the sexual information. They’re designed to elicit other kinds of emotion, like love, joy, sadness, or anger. The message is compelling and the characters well developed. Sexual images occur in context, rather than simply being gratuitous. Romantic happily-ever-after endings are not a prerequisite. Instead, emphasis remains on the individual sexual development of the characters.

Erotic romances. Depicting the development of a relationship through sexual interaction, sex is an integral part of the story, character development, and progressing connection. Without sex, the story could not stand alone. Here, the romantic nature of the story requires a happy ending. The best-known erotic romance currently is 50 Shades of Grey by E. L. James.

Sexy romances. Similar to erotic romances, the stories depict the development of romantic relationships. Basic romance stories injected with more explicit descriptions of sex, the storylines do stand alone. However, the main focus is on the character’s relationship and the “happily ever after” at the end.

Typically, erotic stories and romances appeal to women, whereas porn appeals to men.

The general assumption is that erotica and romances are fairly harmless, while porn does lasting damage. However, research does not support the common claim that porn inspires rape, or chauvinistic attitudes regarding rape.

There is some evidence supporting the idea that irresponsible or excessive use of explicitly materials can cause harm in the following ways:

  • Erotic materials can cause unrealistic expectations of what a partner should be like.

Sometimes people turn to the novel characters because they find fiction more arousing than reality.

Men, especially, may struggle with emotionally intimate, love-based relationships, having developed incorrect ideas about female arousal, sexual interaction, and readiness. Also, having become desensitized to real-life sexual partners, male performance problems may result.

  • Both men and women may develop problems with body image and self-esteem.

These materials portray unrealistic images of what people should look like and how they should feel sexually. The discrepancy between fiction and reality often negatively impacst how people perceive themselves, their bodies, partners, and worth.

  • Used excessively, sexually-explicit materials can lead to addiction.

Excessive use can chemically alter the brain. Soon, sexual stimulation is no longer as pleasurable as it once was. Ironically, the thing that desensitizes people also compels them to pursue it for satisfaction.

If these materials get in the way of your life or relationships, it’s time to seek professional help.

Used cautiously, within healthy limits, porn, erotica and romances can actually enhance your relationship and provide:

  • A way to talk about sex.

These materials help provide a framework for discussing sexual likes, dislikes, and desires you might have difficulty discussing otherwise.

  • A means to heighten excitement.

This is especially important for women who generally need more cues to be sexually ready.

Sexually-explicit materials act as a sort of foreplay that both partners find enjoyable.

  • New ideas for your relationship.

Sexually-explicit material may move your relationship out of a sexual rut. Videos or stories provide an avenue for trying new things and spicing things up.

Online Therapy Available NowRead More