8 Tips For Watching Porn With Your Partner
Ashley Batz for Bustle
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I constantly hear about the benefits of watching porn with your partner, but I'm always left with the question, "how do you go about that?" How do you bring it up, what do you do to get the most out of it, and then how do you apply that experience to your own sex life? Also, how do you deal with the awkwardness that could come up — not to mention the rampant misogyny and unrealistic portrayals of sex in mainstream porn? So, I asked some experts how the heck you go about watching porn as a couple.

First, though, don't feel pressured into this activity if you're not totally comfortable with it. Not everyone wants to watch porn, not everyone wants their partner to watch porn, and even those who are totally cool with it may not want to make it a couples' activity. Don't feel like you should watch porn with your partner in order to be the "cool girl" or do what they want. Only do what makes you comfortable and turns you on.

That said, if you're both on board with it, watching porn can bring you closer, become a starting point to talk about how to spice up your sex life, and warm you up for sex.

So, if you're into the idea, here's how to do it.

1Discuss It In Advance

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Just as you wouldn't touch your partner in a specific way or send them a nude photo without their clear consent, you shouldn't spring any videos upon them that you haven't agreed on beforehand. While some people will be totally cool with it, "some partners will take offense and feel pressured if you surprise them with porn," says relationship expert April Masini.

2Make It About You Two

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The idea of introducing other people into your bedroom, even just through a video, can make some people feel deprioritized. So, when you ask your partner if you'd be interested in watching porn together, emphasize that ultimately, your goal is to enhance sex between the two of you, says Couples Counselor and Dating Coach Samantha Burns, LMHC. She suggests saying something like, "I was thinking that maybe we could mix it up a bit and watch some videos to inspire us. I think that would be really hot, and just the idea of it makes me want to put my hands all over you."

If you don't think insecurity will be an issue for your partner, then you can simply say, "I thought we could watch something together" or "I wanted to show you something that turns me on."

3Frame It As Just A Bonus

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Be careful not to imply that watching porn is your proposed solution to a lackluster sex life, says Masini. "When you introduce this as something fun and extra, it doesn’t feel like such a big deal, and that’s really the best way to have good sex."

4Pick Something Good

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Porn is a dime a dozen on the internet, but good porn takes a little more digging. Good Vibrations Staff Sexologist Carol Queen recommends looking for feminist porn, which you can find on Good Vibrations' website or the Feminist Porn Awards site, to minimize the chances that you'll stumble upon something degrading. "Don’t just let your partner’s taste dictate what you’d choose," says Queen. "Think of your own interests too."

5Start Simple

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If you're not sure where to start, go with something that makes you both comfortable and mimics something you'd actually be willing to try, says Burns. You can save the kinky scenarios and new moves for your second porn session.

6Make It Interactive

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To keep making it clear that this is an addition to your sex life, not a substitute, interact with your partner while you're watching the porn, says Burns. Touch them, look at them, and tell them how hot they'd look doing what you're seeing.

7Give Your Honest Opinion

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Agree not to judge each other over what turns you on or turns you off, and be honest about your reaction to each video. "Often times, people feel embarrassed talking about their sexual fantasies or fetishes one on one in the bedroom, so watching porn together gives you a specific context to broach these types of topics," says Burns.

8Remember, This Is Not Sex Ed

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The fact that porn can inspire your sex life IRL doesn't make it an accurate reflection of sex, says Queen. So don't expect your partner to look or act like a porn star. Take what you're watching with a grain of salt, and when it gets ridiculous, you can even share a good laugh over it. After all, they say laughter is an aphrodisiac.