Photo: Getty Images

Photo: Getty Images

Here's my official position on porn: I don't like it. I don't have a political problem with it. I don't have a moral problem with it. My problems with porn lie mostly in the acting, lighting and wardrobe - or lack thereof. Watching two untalented, badly lit people who can't act well enough to get cast in a Burger King commercial have sex with each other doesn't make me want to have sex.

Oddly, though, it does make me want to have a burger.

According to an article in Psychology Today, 66 per cent of men between the ages of 18 and 34 look at porn on the Internet at least once a month. Apparently, 66 per cent of men are a lot less picky than I am, and that comes as no surprise.

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A lot of women are not happy about what 66 per cent of their husbands and boyfriends are doing at least once a month. Moreover, a lot of women don't like the idea that what their man is really longing for is some perfect-looking woman with gigantic breasts and no pubic hair. That notion makes them feel inadequate, for one, and it also makes them feel like there isn't enough time in the day (or painkillers) to keep up with that kind of personal waxing.

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What's the Appeal?
However, according to Dr. Barry McCarthy, therapist and coauthor of Rekindling Desire, what makes women in porn so appealing to men is not their fake breasts and hairless nether regions. It's the fact that they're "crazy."

Wow, if what guys want is to be with someone who's crazy, my boyfriend is the luckiest man on earth.

Maybe Dr. McCarthy is onto something with this whole "crazy woman" notion. I have noticed that a lot of strip clubs are named things like Crazy Girls. Also, Angelina Jolie, who won an Oscar for playing a crazy girl in an insane asylum, is, according to a number of polls, considered to be one of the sexiest women right now. Maybe crazy is the new hot?

Is it possible that the reason a man might think women in porn are crazy is because these women will do things like, say, have anonymous sex with pizza delivery boys? Then, allegedly, this porn-loving man further deduces that if a woman is crazy enough to do that, she might be just crazy enough to have sex with him - and that's why she's attractive?

Or is it possible that Dr. McCarthy has overthought the whole topic and that, in fact, guys like the women in porn not because they seem crazy, but because they are naked and perfect and have giant, gravity-defying breasts?

I asked some of the men I work with what they like about the women in Internet porn. What I learned is that while 66 per cent of men may look at Internet porn once a month, 100 per cent of men I work with don't really want to answer my questions about it. I talked to five different guys, telling them that I was writing this column on porn, and all five of them said they'd rather not be interviewed, even anonymously.

Finally, one man that I work with agreed to talk, if reluctantly. Tom, who is married and in his 40s, found my questions both stupid and downright insulting. When I first asked Tom what he liked about the women in the porn he looked at on the Internet, he thought I was joking. "Isn't it obvious?" he asked. I told him women think the reason men like the women in porn is because they live up to impossible standards of beauty that normal women can't live up to. He said that wasn't it at all. Tom, who I would define as a normal, nice guy who really loves his wife (she's lovely but doesn't look like a porn star, incidentally) explained, "Men like the women in porn because... they're in porn. It helps if they are good looking, but it's the fact that they're naked and having sex that makes them appealing. Men like women who want to have sex."

I asked him if he found the women in porn "crazy" and if that was part of their appeal. He seemed genuinely puzzled, then answered, "I never thought about their mental state. I don't care about their personalities or neuroses. I just like that they are uncomplicated and interested in sex. If I started to think about their personalities, that would ruin it."

The Wife vs. The Porn Star: Who Wins?
I asked him if he ever wished that his wife looked like a porn star, a question that earned me a genuine blush. "Not really," Tom finally stammered, "but if I'm going to be dead honest, there are nights, especially when she's had a long day and isn't particularly psyched up for sex, that I wish she would act like one. But I realize that no one is like that all the time. That, right there, is the fantasy. A woman who is interested in sex 100 per cent of the time, a girl who just can't say no, ya know?"

In theory, I guess I do know what he meant, though I have to say that I don't know that girl in real life either. I've never met a woman who is interested in sex at any hour of the day or night, nor do I know anyone who has never turned down the man with whom she's involved for one reason or another. To be fair, though, most of the women I know have also been turned down for sex a time or two.

With that said, my advice on the topic is pretty simple. If you have an active, satisfying love life with your partner, you shouldn't be threatened by his occasional interest in Internet porn. If you are one of the 13 per cent of women who enjoys Internet porn, maybe it's something you can share together, although I'm guessing that you're probably not looking at the same Websites. If what experts (and the one guy at work who would talk to me about it) are saying is true, it isn't the perfection of the porn stars' bodies that intrigues your man. It's the fantasy that these women want to have sex. With him.

Here's the good news. You can always be better than that fantasy woman that he imagines wants to have sex with him. And that's by being the actual woman who wants to have sex with him. Don't feel like you can't live up to those airbrushed images of perfection because apparently that's not what he wants.

He wants sex. With you. My advice is to go ahead and have some!

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