Locker Room Talk & Shots Podcast

Normalizing Porn? An Intimacy Coordinator Weighs In On the Debate

July 18, 2023 She Explores Life Season 2
Normalizing Porn? An Intimacy Coordinator Weighs In On the Debate
Locker Room Talk & Shots Podcast
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Locker Room Talk & Shots Podcast
Normalizing Porn? An Intimacy Coordinator Weighs In On the Debate
Jul 18, 2023 Season 2
She Explores Life

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Ever wondered what a day in the life of an Intimacy Coordinator is like?  Our guest Avril  Louise Clarke, a sexologist and intimacy coordinator for Erika Lust Films, joins Locker Room Talk & Shots Podcast host Annette Benedetti to lay it all bare. Listen as we dismantle the myths and misconceptions about the porn industry and discuss the integral role that Avril plays in maintaining a consensual and safe experience for all involved.

Our conversation shines a spotlight on the concept of 'normalizing porn.' Avril sheds light on the significance of before, during, and aftercare in the porn industry and its crucial role in fostering a safe and consensual space for performers. We also examine the hot-button issue of the purported harm of porn on mental and physical health. Avril then uncovers the potential benefits of porn, from sparking candid discussions to aiding individuals in uncovering their desires.

Join me and my friends for a Porn watch party! We will be watching an Erika Lust Film called Super Femmes! You can download it here.  Or click this link for your free viewing:

Funfactory.com has partnered with Locker Room Talk & Shots so when you use my special code SELS20, you get 20% off your fun factory purchase. Just head to https://us.funfactory.com/and use my code SELS20 at check out for 20% off sex toys, lube massage oils, and more

Get 20% off all Fun Factory Products when you use my code SELS20
funfactory.com: https://www.shareasale.com/u.cfm?d=1038109&m=117851&u=2029266

15% off Womanizer products with code EXPLORES15
Womanizer.com: https://womanizer-north-america.sjv.io/y2xNQN

Get 15% off lingerie, sex toys, and body products when you shop Lovehoney.com and use code EXPLORES15

Lovehoney: https://lovehoneyus.sjv.io/rQ15ZR

Support the Show.


Watch on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/@annettebenedetti

Connect with us
We are on all the socials:

  1. TikTok: @ LockerRoomTalkPodcast
  2. LRT's Insta: @Lockerroomtalkandshots
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  4. SEL Inst: @SheExplores_Life
  5. LRT's FB: @LockerRoomTalkandShots
  6. SEL FB: @ SheExploresLife
  7. Annette's YouTube: Annette Benedetti


Check Out More Sexy Content:
She Explores Life Website: sheexploreslife.com

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Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

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Ever wondered what a day in the life of an Intimacy Coordinator is like?  Our guest Avril  Louise Clarke, a sexologist and intimacy coordinator for Erika Lust Films, joins Locker Room Talk & Shots Podcast host Annette Benedetti to lay it all bare. Listen as we dismantle the myths and misconceptions about the porn industry and discuss the integral role that Avril plays in maintaining a consensual and safe experience for all involved.

Our conversation shines a spotlight on the concept of 'normalizing porn.' Avril sheds light on the significance of before, during, and aftercare in the porn industry and its crucial role in fostering a safe and consensual space for performers. We also examine the hot-button issue of the purported harm of porn on mental and physical health. Avril then uncovers the potential benefits of porn, from sparking candid discussions to aiding individuals in uncovering their desires.

Join me and my friends for a Porn watch party! We will be watching an Erika Lust Film called Super Femmes! You can download it here.  Or click this link for your free viewing:

Funfactory.com has partnered with Locker Room Talk & Shots so when you use my special code SELS20, you get 20% off your fun factory purchase. Just head to https://us.funfactory.com/and use my code SELS20 at check out for 20% off sex toys, lube massage oils, and more

Get 20% off all Fun Factory Products when you use my code SELS20
funfactory.com: https://www.shareasale.com/u.cfm?d=1038109&m=117851&u=2029266

15% off Womanizer products with code EXPLORES15
Womanizer.com: https://womanizer-north-america.sjv.io/y2xNQN

Get 15% off lingerie, sex toys, and body products when you shop Lovehoney.com and use code EXPLORES15

Lovehoney: https://lovehoneyus.sjv.io/rQ15ZR

Support the Show.


Watch on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/@annettebenedetti

Connect with us
We are on all the socials:

  1. TikTok: @ LockerRoomTalkPodcast
  2. LRT's Insta: @Lockerroomtalkandshots
  3. Annette's Insta: @BeingBenedetti
  4. SEL Inst: @SheExplores_Life
  5. LRT's FB: @LockerRoomTalkandShots
  6. SEL FB: @ SheExploresLife
  7. Annette's YouTube: Annette Benedetti


Check Out More Sexy Content:
She Explores Life Website: sheexploreslife.com

Cheers!

Annette Benedetti:

Hi, this is Annette Benedetti, your hostess for a locker room talk, and shots the podcast that likes to think of itself as the queer NPR of raunchy women's sex talk. You are about to sit in on the kind of conversations women have on their girls' nights out or behind closed doors, while enjoying delicious drinks and dishing about sex, think fun, honest and feminist as fuck, and always with the goal of fighting the patriarchy. One female orgasm at a time. Welcome to the locker room. Today's locker room talk topic is normalizing porn and intimacy. Coordinator Waysen. Dedicated listener.

Annette Benedetti:

You know I love porn. I watch it a lot. You know my friends do. If you scroll back to past episodes, you can listen to a full episode with me and my friends talking about the porn we watch, how much, what we like to watch. It's shocking. It's shocking. I was really shocked to find out what some of my friends were watching. They are dirty little motherfuckers just like me. But listen, there are many people out there that would tell you and believe wholeheartedly that porn is bad for your mental, physical and even relationship health, and there are some strong arguments. But today my guest is the perfect person to weigh in on this conversation and give us a different perspective.

Annette Benedetti:

My guest is sexologist and intimacy coordinator for Erica Lust Films, a sex positive indie adult film company, aka porn site, avril Louise Clark.

Annette Benedetti:

Avril is also the brand manager for the Erika Lust nonprofit project, the Porn Conversation, which is dedicated to increasing the and and sex-positive of education for young people, and you guys know I support that.

Annette Benedetti:

But before I hand the mic over to Avril, I want you guys to stay tuned to the end, and here's why Avril is going to, by the end of this podcast, suggest a couple of different Erica Lust films for me and my friends to watch.

Annette Benedetti:

That's right, I'm going to have a porn watch party with my besties. I'm going to sit side by side with my good friends and watch some porn, and what I would like you to do by the end of this podcast is scroll down to the notes. I'm going to leave a link to whichever porn episode that I watch and you get to join me for free and I want you to click on it and I want you to watch it and then come back when I do the next podcast episode, which will be sort of a review of what our experience was. What was it like watching the porn with my friends next to me, and it will be a fun one and it will be a great conversation, and this will give you an opportunity to weigh in with what you thought. So, Avril, now why don't you take the mic and tell people a little bit about you?

Avril:

Hey, yes, thank you so much for having me on. My name is Avril. You did an amazing job at already introducing myself, but I'm just super glad to be here because I think that it's really nice to be able to share space and talk about porn. It's probably my favorite topic to talk about, and it seems like you've been doing a lot of talking, a lot of watching, so I'm really excited to hear what questions you have in store for me and how we can find a nice film for you and your friends to watch.

Annette Benedetti:

I'm excited about that too, so thank you for joining me. I'm kicking off my day with coffee. Avril is at the end of her day because you live where.

Avril:

So I live in Barcelona.

Annette Benedetti:

I'm in Portland. Barcelona sounds real nice right now.

Avril:

Portland sounds super nice too.

Annette Benedetti:

It is nice and super sex positive. I've heard a lot of good things about Portland. All right. Well, I'm raising my coffee, you raise your water, and let's get ready to talk about porn and sex Cheers.

Avril:

Amazing Cheers.

Annette Benedetti:

Let's start with what I think most people want to know, which is what is an intimacy coordinator, and then I'd like you to share what's a day at work look like as an intimacy coordinator.

Avril:

Yeah, so intimacy coordinator is a role that's gained popularity and, I guess, existence since the Me Too movement.

Avril:

So when obviously a lot of news was coming out about the unfair not even unfair the unsafe, ridiculous practices that were happening on sets in Hollywood, as far as when it came to sexual violence and behavior on sets that were done in manipulative ways, with the balances, the power imbalances and everything that would happen in Hollywood.

Avril:

So it was a role that was created in order to primarily protect performance Performers, in this case being actors and actresses in Hollywood, and it's a person who acts as a liaison between production teams and performers or actors and actresses, and they are there to coordinate essentially right, and so it's a role that's been played in the sexual scenes within the film industry and TV industry. But when it comes to being an intimacy coordinator in the world of porn, obviously there are big differences because, on the one hand, in Hollywood you're going to be coordinating mimicking sets and in porn we're actually having sex. There will be responsibilities that probably definitely don't exist in Hollywood, such as going through sexual boundaries and consent practices. When it comes to sexual practices, sci testing talks about contraceptives rather than the whole pretending we're having sex like right.

Annette Benedetti:

So it's definitely different but still holds the same title, at least for now. It sounds like it's more intense, definitely in holding that job in a situation where you're managing porn, because going from acting out sex to doing sex risk goes up Definitely.

Avril:

I think also, as, like a sex educator, I think there's always risk, right, when it comes to any kind of physical touch. So, for example, I don't know, in a Hollywood set they wouldn't be doing like a car chase scene or a fight scene without, I don't know, martial arts instructors and firefighters there ready to extinguish any flames, right. So why would you be acting out sexual acts and situations or heavy kissing scenes or anything physical like that without someone there to also protect the performers? So I agree, I think you know, just in sex education, like I teach kids and teens as well, I never say you know they're safe sex, but they're safer sex. So for me it's really important to kind of like adhere to proper protocols and policies to make sure that I'm making you safe as sexual experience for all.

Annette Benedetti:

Okay, and then can you give us an idea of what a day at work as an intimacy coordinator looks like?

Avril:

Yeah. So I guess it really depends on the day. So, when we're going into production, there's three phases, so you have pre-production, production and post-production. So I guess the typical day as far as pre-production, would look like meeting with performers, you know, having a meeting with them, with their scene mates, and then we can figure out what they're going to be doing, whatever they're going to be in the sex act with, and making sure that we understand you know, what are the STI, just in protocols understanding what are their hard nose, what is the safe word that's going to be used on set, what are the boundaries, what are the expectations, what contraceptives do we need to have available for them?

Avril:

You know no, I don't know power imbalances that might be happening. What if there's a performer that's new to the world of pornography and their I don't know their mates in the scene is a well-known performer? Is there going to be this like equal playing field, and how can I like construct these conversations where everyone feels the liberty and the freedom to speak their mind and really make sure they're making decisions not based on any coercion or pressure? Right? So it would look like having a meeting to next day making sure the sex box is filled with all the goodies that we need. So I don't know if it's internal, external condoms, types of lubricants, mints, chewing gum, whatever we need to have on set, a sex box.

Avril:

The sex box, yeah, the sex box is something that the intimacy coordinator will bring to set, at least on an air-cola set, and it's something that I keep organized with everything I might need when we get to set. So it's filled with condoms of all types of condoms, right. Of all types of latex, non-latex, different brands, lubricants, right, water-based lube, silicone-based lube. It all really depends on just making sure we're having all the protective measures covered, as well as also the preferences of the performers. So that's always key for me is to make sure that we have what might be needed or what is, you know, preferred by whoever's performing that day on set.

Annette Benedetti:

Okay, I have a sex box too. A lot of stuff, definitely. I have well with my current partner, not condoms, but Lou, I have all different types and Of course then, whatever we're gonna do that night all the different, or day or morning afternoon, all the different toys, yeah, yeah, and after-care stuff, wipes, ph balanced wipes. For me, you know a little sex towel, all right, so that is the pre conversation. Then you get into the sex room, the set, and Let me tell me a little bit about that.

Avril:

Yeah. So An Erykah Lutz set, you know, based on the amazing cinematography and Everything, the story lines that go behind all of her films, you can imagine it's probably not your average porn set. So there can be at least like 20 people minimum there, from makeup artists to catering to I Don't know crew To the production team for the performers, and it's a hustle on a bustle. So it might look like me showing up there Meaning the performers, checking out with them how are they doing that day? Kind of like feeling the vibe in the mood, because production is fast-paced, production is a whole different world. So I think that's why, into mystic part, leaders are so essential to, because there's a lot of movement and a lot of waiting around and a lot of things that, like people, you know it's not your typical workspace and so it's just that person that I think is like standing still so Doing the rounds, checking the vibe, seeing how everyone is making sure that all the paperwork is Ready and there, and everyone has has, you know, been through the conversations of consent and boundaries, and then we get to the sex scene, which is the serious hour of the day, right. So before going into the sex scene, I meet with the performers who are going to be going into it and we have something called the sex talk, and typically it's done with the director in the room and we go over everything that we had spoken about in our meetings, right? How are you feeling today? Is this so true for you? Is this how you're feeling? What's going on? What are the expectations? You know, based on how the set is built, right, this conversation that we're having pre-production Might be different once we get to the, to the set, because now you can physically see, okay, this is the space where we're going to be having sex, and sometimes it's not a bet, right? So sometimes we're they're having sex in, you know, outdoors or In an office space or you know whatever they're working with. So it really does ship the conversation. So we start getting a little bit more technical, especially with the director involved saying kind of like okay, well, what positions would you feel like? Might you know, make this work? And Also, with the month, with the sense of like, comfort and protection in mind, of course, then making sure that everyone is ready to go into it.

Avril:

We review the safe word to make sure everyone is aware of the safe word on set and we are then mic'd up so I'm able to also hear the consent and the communication between the performers while they're in the act and we go into rolling and so, obviously, performers are allowed to stop at any time.

Avril:

There's water breaks, there might be bathroom breaks, there might be hey, we want to switch out the toys breaks or whatever, but we typically like to like go into it where everything is very properly Organized for whatever needs that might come up. I'm there waiting with the slippers, in the robes, right and also within eye contact with the performers, making sure that I can hear them, I can see them and that everything is Done in a way that had been spoken about for right, like the whole aspect of like no surprises. What I do love about working on Erica less said though, I must say is that the crew and the performers I feel like there's always a very Good understanding of upholding these ethical production practices, so it's not ever feeling like you're working against somebody always feels like we're all there for the same values and reason and Everyone has kind of like the you know the right Perspective in minds, especially when it comes to comfort and safety of performers.

Annette Benedetti:

So that's incredible. You're actually mic'd up with them so you can hear everything that's taking place. So there's no room for coercive whispering, or I mean anything that could happen If there was someone who wasn't ethical onset. That's amazing, I, I didn't know that.

Avril:

Yeah, I think what really helps, too, is that we encourage communication between performers.

Avril:

So it's not like, don't speak to each other because you're gonna ruin the audio. It's like, no, please speak to each other, because it only adds to the scene. And also what we're trying to do is create realistic sexual situations, right, and also, if many people are going to porn to learn about sex, well, we want to then replicate it in a way where we that can still be hot and sexy, but can also include positive sexual communication, and that's not something that you'll see typically always cut out of our films, right.

Annette Benedetti:

And then let's talk about the third phase, which would be the aftercare.

Avril:

I assume yeah, so aftercare looks Like checking in with the performers after the sex scene is completed, you know, having that like cool down moment. What would they need in order to, you know, get back to A space where they feel they feel good about the whole the whole day? Right, just checking in and saying like, okay, well, how did you feel like today went when we're filming? How are you feeling right now If they have the opportunity always to check in with? You know, we have sexual health check-ins. We do offer the services of pineapple support, which is a really, really great organization that does mental health support for sex work communities, and so just making sure that they're just aware of the tools that are available to them, but also knowing that you, there's always been to be a time where we're going to check in, whether or not it's the day after a few days later, just to make sure that everyone's still feeling good about said. That's going to be of importance to us as well.

Annette Benedetti:

Okay, so the reason why I started with this conversation about what your job looked like. There are a couple of reasons. First of all, it's interesting to me how it correlates With good sex, right, what we do during good sex, which is you. It's the before, the during and after. On this podcast we've talked a lot about how sex starts before the P in the V or the oral or whatever begins with the conversation and setting the stage for Consent and and safety. And what do we need to be comfortable? We talk a lot about sex boxes here I've got a lot of tools and I share that with my listeners and then aftercare.

Annette Benedetti:

Sex doesn't just end when people have orgasms. We have those after conversations about what worked, what didn't, so on and so forth. So I wanted people to Understand your job and understand why you are a perfect person to weigh in on this conversation about Normalizing porn. There's been a lot of media around the normalization of porn and how it's primarily harmful. I haven't found many articles or Experts, you know, shouting the benefits of the normalization of porn. I have different feelings about porn, obviously, because I do frequently use porn. I would like to just start with what is your stance on Normalizing porn, the effects of it, etc.

Avril:

Yeah, I think you know I'm I'm a porn literacy educator, so meaning that I Take a very poor, neutral stance in the sense that I think porn can be great for some people. I think porn is just not it for people. I think it can be helpful to some sexual Relationships, and I think it just depends on you know, being a conscious consumer of what type of media you're into, and that's true to social media, that's true to whatever news outlets you are here to. I think that every piece of media out there comes with a message, and I think it all comes down to supporting Porn that aligns with your values. Right, that's what it means, like for me.

Avril:

I Think that Whether or not you are indifferent to porn, whether or not you look for, or whether or not you Maybe despise it for whatever reason may, that's okay. I don't think it's everyone's cup of tea, but I also realized that it's a very, very strong and and Oftentimes helpful form of media for people to explore their sexual identities, their interests, and in a way where you're not necessarily Directly having to figure it out in the quote-unquote real world. Right, porn is Fantasy and it's really fun to explore these spaces where you can, you know, show a little bit of curiosity and Really explore yourself and what's out there and decide for yourself. Well, what turns me on? What would I like to try? What would I not like to write in these safer spaces?

Annette Benedetti:

Right. Do you think that there is validity to the strong stance that porn causes damage to mental and physical health?

Avril:

I Feel like porn.

Avril:

If you're not consuming it responsibly, if you're allowing your consumption of porn to affect the way you Relate to others, relate to yourselves, then you have to take a step back and decide well, what is this? But not only just like porn in general, but like well, what type of porn am I consuming? If I'm consistently consuming porn that is violent, racist, misogynistic, has these horrific categories and titles that are, I don't know, sexualizing deans or people of a certain race, you need to step back and ask yourself like, hey, is maybe this the reason why I'm not necessarily feeling so comfortable with this? Am I confused? Because, yes, maybe the content is turning me on, but the messages around it and within it are Conflicting what I truly value. It's a nice little practice and I think it's something that we all need to do, no matter what media work is. To me is just a question first. So, validity it's. It's hard to tell, but I think that with the right tools and sex education and porn literacy education, you can really choose for yourself how to relate to it and how to use it more consciously.

Annette Benedetti:

Yeah, I would say it's interesting to me. There are definitely porn niches that are in conflict with my ethics and for me it's a logical decision Not to consume those, even if it's pretend or whatever. And and I feel that If I were choosing to consume those, then I need to check in with what's going on with me beyond the porn, right Like, because there's something before the porn that brings me to that kind of porn. But I think the other thing I hear regularly is people talking about how it hurts people's intimate and sexual life because it depicts acts that Normal people don't do. Now I'm going to say strongly I disagree with that.

Annette Benedetti:

I think normal people do a lot of things that you do see in porn, but they are very secretive about it because those things hold a lot of shame. You see a lot of gangbangs in porn and people act like people don't do those things. People do enjoy sex with multiple people at the same time and that kind of thing is shamed. And then people feel guilty and weird about themselves when they get turned on by the idea of it because they're told only abnormal sex addicts want to do and engage in these kind of things. So my question to you is. What role does porn play in in harming or helping someone sex life.

Avril:

Yeah, I think it's a good question. I feel like for these people kind of questioning it and being like, hey, normal people don't do this. I want to be like, well, who do you define as a normal person? Is a sex worker not a normal person? I think that, yeah, of course there's a sense of fantasy to it, right. But also isn't that like a plus? Isn't that great that I can go to a space where I can explore and decide for myself like, hey, maybe this is something that I like to consume, but actually the reality of a gangbing is not something I want to actually do, or maybe, yes, like it gives you that space to kind of play with these fantasy versus reality kind of flows, right, which is, I think, a very positive part about pornography.

Avril:

As far as it affecting your relationship, I know it's like a very consistent argument you hear in a lot of cis-hetero relationships, especially monogamous relationships. You'll hear this argument of porn just like being this third person almost in the relationship, that's having this negative effect on one's relationship, either with themselves or typically with their partner. And I always say just be open and curious, because isn't it cool to know that maybe, yeah, what you're doing in your sex life is different than what maybe your partner is into consuming or is into trying. I think there is. This is the greater conversation to be had there. It's not a form of cheating, it's not a form of I don't know dishonor in a relationship. It's actually a really fun point where I think there can be more conversations and less shame and less stigma. I think it's time to really take those moments as learning opportunities in a relationship.

Annette Benedetti:

I was going to say what do you think about people considering their partner's consuming porn cheating? It's actually come up in one of my previous podcast episodes on cheating. Folks scroll back to that one that's some and it tends to be women, although that may change soon Consider it cheating when their partners are watching porn. And you kind of answered that you clearly don't think that's true.

Avril:

No, I personally don't think that's true, but also this is where I also leave space for people to have their opinions about porn, right, like I said before, whether or not you love it, you feel indifferent about it.

Avril:

You absolutely can't stand it. You're allowed to have your viewpoints on porn, of course, but also make sure that you're giving your partners the space to have their own sex life with themselves too. This is all true to any relationship, whether or not it comes to masturbation, porn usage, expiration. There has to be a space for you to have the explosion of curiosity within your own life. And also I've worked with couples that bring porn into their sex lives, and it has become extremely helpful to then have conversations about sex that they weren't allowed to have before. I think that when we think about the two things of porn and masturbation, it's like these two topics that typically happen behind closed doors, with shame, things that we've learned since our childhood about hiding and having no space to really talk about it with. I think the culture around it is changing, and so now it's really fun to kind of use porn as a tool to enhance these conversations and to fight through this stigma and fight through this shame, and this is all thanks to sex workers.

Annette Benedetti:

We love sex workers.

Avril:

Yes, we do.

Annette Benedetti:

We champion them here. So that brings me to the benefits of porn. I think a lot of people would be surprised to hear that porn can come with benefits to an individual, to a relationship, possibly to society as a whole. I like to take big leaps and conversations. What are your thoughts on that? What benefits would you say porn can bring to the table?

Avril:

I think conversation I know this is a bit repetitive of my last answer, but I feel like porn really brings in conversation. I feel like it's this one topic that obviously I feel absolutely no shame in my game and what I do for a living. But I think, like you know, it's the reason why I have like porn conversation with Erica Lust is because, like it's this consistent topic that we just don't talk about, whether or not it's in relationships or with our kids, or in schools or in society, but it's so prevalent and it's so widely used. So I feel like porn has its benefit because we are getting to have these conversations.

Avril:

I mean, there's so, so, so many messages that are reflected in porn, that are deeply reflected in our society. Right, we talked about some of them before misogyny, the fetishization of the LGBTQ community, the sexualization of young people. There's these massive, massive topics that porn and a lot of them massively produced porn allows us to then deconstruct. Why is this on here, why are there these messages that are being sent? And also, how does this reflect society of how it is right now? But, on the other hand, you can find porn that aligns with your values. You find porn that is ethically produced and in a way that isn't sending these messages that don't align with your values, then it can be an amazing space also for conversation and exploration, but in a more sex positive way.

Annette Benedetti:

Right. One of my thoughts, too, is especially in monogamous relationships, whether it's LGBTQ relationships, I mean, lesbian deathbed is a real thing In heterosexual relationships. I mean there's like the seven year itch, which I think is now down to like the three year itch. Oftentimes people need to figure out how to spice up their sex life. I mean, it happens to everybody, everybody, and I think that one of the main blocks too, that happening is the shame around sex and doing sex acts that the not normal people do.

Annette Benedetti:

And one of the easiest ways to dip your toe in the water of finding out what partners might want to try out is watching porn together and discussing it, and then, you know, taking something from fantasy to reality in a safe way. So, for example, I was really curious about a male, male, female threesome, and I have so much shame around it, especially as a bi woman who tended to be more attracted to an interested in women. I'd always conceptualized threesome as two women and I thought, oh, two men, that's going to be violent and blah, blah, blah the stuff that I would see in not ethical porn. But then my interest got peaked and I was able to, with a partner, set up a situation that was really amazing and safe and consensual, but that was because I was able to share that with a partner, watch it with a partner, talk about it and then set it up in that way.

Annette Benedetti:

And I'm not saying everyone has to take their porn experience or fantasy to reality, but it starts a conversation and looking at the thing, the thoughts you've had and the shame you've had around things that like also get you wet, and figuring out why am I feeling scared of that or why am I feeling that strong? And is that true? Is it wrong? And I feel like in a relationship that's helpful, especially if your partner is like, hey, I kind of want to tie you up and spank you and you're like, oh, only weird people do that.

Avril:

Absolutely, and porn. Then in your case, right, you were able to be like, I saw this, I can now show it to a partner. This really turned me on and I would love to like replicate, right, something like this. But think about, like the conversations that where, I don't know, maybe you've had experiences like this, like this is very familiar in, like my early sexual experiences where I was realizing, because they didn't have sex education, my partners that I was having like were replicating, were obviously replicating what they were seeing in porn, but obviously it wasn't the porn that was necessarily female, positive or like all about getting work asm. It was like very much like clearly like, oh, they're just doing what they saw and they think that this is pleasure.

Avril:

And then it confused me because I was seeing the same kind of stuff. So I was like, oh, this is pleasure, this is sex, right. And when you're older and you have to sex education and the porn literacy, decide for yourself, thank goodness, and we have so many great options out there in the porn world, now you can decide for yourself, well, what is it that really turns me on? And then you can have these wonderful situations, like your situation, where you can show what you mean. This is what turns me on, and there's some really great communities and spaces out there for people that are looking for these types of media that can then, you know, share this with their partner, share this with your friends, like you're doing tonight, and show it with their lovers to replicate in a safer space and kind of like lead that communication.

Annette Benedetti:

So you keep saying porn literacy. What is that?

Avril:

Yeah, sorry. So porn literacy is a type of media literacy. So media literacy is something that's been taught in the education system for decades, and it's a way of deconstructing types of media, which in this case, is pornography, which is a type of mainstream media, for sure and figuring out what messages it has, who created it, why are these messages being sent, and then deciding for yourself what meanings do I want to take from this and also, do I want to be consuming this type of media? Right, and how is it affecting my life or how is it affecting lives around each other? This can be done with a social media page.

Avril:

We follow influencers, a book we're reading, a podcast we're listening to just kind of figuring out the weights and worth this media has on your life, right. And so porn literacy is like the framework that we built the porn conversation around, which is the nonprofit I run with Erica Lust, and I am out there advocating for porn literacy as a part of sex education, but not just for kids and teenagers, I think. You know, as adults we probably didn't have it ourselves, so I'm always like go to the porn conversation, teach yourself some sex education and use our porn literacy tools to then also decide for yourself, you know, is the type of porn I'm consuming aligning with my values, or how can I improve upon my relationship with porn?

Annette Benedetti:

Right, I will jump on. I agree with the complaint women often have and I think men do too about porn, at least the old school 80s porn. Jesus, don't consume that. If you if you get on a porn channel and you see porn stars with mullets? Just don't, just don't.

Avril:

The mullets are back, though, so it might be shit All right.

Annette Benedetti:

Well, you know what I'm saying.

Avril:

Look out for the quality of the camera. Yeah, the quality of the camera.

Annette Benedetti:

Are their spandex included? I don't know. It is a valid complaint that porn has promoted or I don't know if I want to say more, promoted, it has depicted sex acts or reality, a sexual reality that doesn't exist. For instance, you know a woman deep throats guy for a half hour, then he aggressively rubs her clit for two seconds and she comes. That's guys it does. It does not work like that at all. And just these not realistic standards of sex and how our bodies work in reality and stuff like that.

Annette Benedetti:

And I think that you spoke to that a little bit and the idea that we're just supposed to make certain sounds. And then you know, my experience is sometimes, when I have had sex with other bisexual women who maybe are new to having sex with women, they start doing the porn sounds they do with guys and I'm like oh, no, no, no, my clit runs right up in my body because I'm like I know what you're doing. So replicating some of the things we see in maybe low quality porn can be problematic to your sex life. So this brings me to Avril. How can my listeners find ethical porn? What are some steps they can take to find ethical porn and porn that will depict, maybe, a good example of how to being a partner proper.

Avril:

Oh, yes, oh my gosh, I love this question. So I completely agree Sorry with everything you said for them. How everyone can find ethical porn is we have it at EricListcom, and on EricListcom you can see we have X confessions, which is one of my absolutely favorite projects ever, and it's a site where we take confessions from the public and we turn them into real porn films and they're shorts and they're about like 20, 25 minutes in length. They're really funky and cool and have amazing, amazing storylines and really really hot sex and there's porn there for absolutely everybody. Then we have Lust Cinema on there as well, and Lust Cinema, I think, answers your second question, which was like is there porn out there that can teach us to have, you know, realistic sex? Right?

Avril:

And Lust Cinema has a really, really great series out there called Sex School, and Sex School actually is erotic sex education videos. So they cover different topics and then they act them out in a way where it's educational and it's hot and it's sexy and it's pleasure positive and for those looking for something a little more softly about cinema, and then we have the store where you can kind of browse and pick different films. If you're not looking to subscribe, you just want to check out one of the films, but X Confessions has a really, really great watch free link, so I think that's something we're going to be sharing with your listeners and they'll be able to check out a selection of free films.

Annette Benedetti:

Yeah, Now outside. So we know Eric Alast. We already know Eric Alast is an ethical porn Indie cinema film company. But let's say the listener has already subscribed and they want more and are looking excuse me, and are looking outside of Erica Lust. How do you know if what you're consuming is ethical, if what you're consuming is the healthiest version of porn possible for you?

Avril:

I think one good way to know is if it exists behind a paywall, right? So when there's a paywall meaning that you have to subscribe, pay for your porn that typically means that it's ethically produced, meaning that fair pay is part of that company's values and standards and that it is directly supporting sex work payments, intern payments, production payments everything that goes into making this amazing porn for you. Transparency is something I look forward to. Can you see who directed it? Can you see who is a part of this production? Can you easily find out about these performance and find ways to support them all directly? Maybe there's a performer that you found that you want to use I don't know consume more of their content. This should all be very, very transparent. So I think transparency and a paywall for me are top dogs here.

Annette Benedetti:

Before we jump into what you're going to suggest for us to watch, you have any thoughts, suggestions? Tips for watching porn with your friends' meaning Our hands will not be in each other's vaginas, most likely, but we're going to be a group of people sitting around with popcorn watching porn together. Yeah Well, my gosh, what tips do I?

Avril:

have for this moment. I think just like taking in, first of all, how cool it is that you're going to be watching porn with your friends, how we're going to be normalizing porn in that sense, and also, maybe, practice getting vocal about it, having conversations about it. We're trying to de-stigmatize porn in the sense that I think it's really fun to talk about it. It's really fun to share it with friends, to talk about what you liked about it, what you didn't like about it, what you would like to try, what you wouldn't be into but that was cool to watch or hot to watch Right, just practice getting vocal about it, because I think it will be helpful for people to not only de-stigmatize porn, normalize porn, but also then be able to replicate these conversations and get comfy with sharing it with lovers too. Yeah, I mean, I think there's a saying that some people like friends who watch porn together.

Annette Benedetti:

Stay together, right, oh, bond, no, there should be. If not, yeah, we can make that a thing.

Avril:

We're going to make that a thing.

Annette Benedetti:

So what are some of the suggestions? And then, listener, I'm going to review the suggestions and you are going to head down to the link that I put in this episode in the notes so that you can join me. What are some suggestions? So I think I picked up the perfect film for you and your friends to watch.

Avril:

It's called Super Fence and it's a group of badass superhero gals and it's a mix between reality and animation, so like live action animation and their names are Super Clit, vegetarian and Steel Tits and they're fighting the patriarchy and there's some really really hot sex within this film. But also it's just fun and I think it's will just really really relate to your viewing experience with your friends. I love that. That goes along well with the theme of my podcast.

Annette Benedetti:

Fighting the patriarchy. One orgasm at a time, that's my life's purpose. Amazing Kind of, but one of them that sounds fucking fantastic.

Annette Benedetti:

So, again, scroll down. You are going to get to watch with me, listener, and, like I said, you will get to see some video clips of us attempting this watch party for the first time together, and then we will weigh in on a upcoming podcast, avril. Do you have any last thoughts that you want to share with my listeners? Something I haven't asked you, something you want to make sure that they take away from this episode? Yeah, I would say for everyone out there that is a consumer of porn.

Avril:

You are part of the porn industry, and I think the best way to directly support those who are creating the porn is to pay for it. So always, always, pay for your porn. Support ethically produced pornography. Find pornography that aligns with your values, that makes you feel good, and get comfy with talking about porn, because it's not going away.

Annette Benedetti:

Absolutely not, it's definitely not going away and do you want to let my listeners know where they can find you? Follow what you're doing, support what you're doing.

Avril:

Yeah, so you can find the project I was talking about that I have with Erica Lust at theporneconversationorg. You can find more information about Erica, myself and the other people who are included in the project on our about page. Feel free to drop us a line. Follow us on Instagram at the link in the description. Follow us on Instagram at the P letter, p conversation, because you know we can't say porn on Instagram and we're always just putting out cool events, activities, educational materials. We also do live porn, watching events online. So, yeah, we're just going to keep creating this education that we feel the world deserves.

Annette Benedetti:

I love that. I love that and, listeners, you know where you can find me. You can find me on Instagram and Facebook. She explores life and locker room talk and shots. You can join me on TikTok locker room talk podcast and hey, I want you to watch porn with me. And then I want you to email me at annette she explores lifecom and give me your thoughts, talk to me. I'm looking forward to it. So, thank you, averill, for joining me and until next time, listeners, I will see you in the locker room. Cheers.

Avril:

Cheers Three Browns.

Normalizing Porn and Intimacy
Normalizing Porn
Benefits and Concerns of Porn
Ethical Porn - Watching With Friends