back to top
Health

This Sex Therapist Teamed Up With Pornhub To Teach People About Sex

"When the opportunity came up to reach this many people it was a no brainer for me to do that."

Posted on

You probably know Pornhub for its...porn. But the site is branching out into sexual health and education content, too.

Voltage Pictures

No, not in the form of ~instructional~ porn videos. This month, Pornhub launched the Sexual Wellness Center, a free online resource with articles about sexual health, sexuality, and relationships.

(Heads up: The site isn't as NSFW as Pornhub.com — as in, there's no nudity, porn previews, or aggressive naked pop-up ads — but obviously it still talks about sex and has the Pornhub logo, so do with that what you will.)

The Sexual Wellness Center is run by Laurie Betito, PhD, a licensed clinical psychologist specializing in sex therapy.

Facebook: drlauriebetito

Betito has over 30 years of experience in sex therapy and a private practice where she sees individuals and couples. She also hosts a Canadian radio show called Passion and regularly contributes to other media outlets.

"I've spent my whole career teaching and talking about sexuality and sexual health," Betito tells BuzzFeed Health. "When the opportunity came up to reach this many people it was a no brainer for me to do that, because my goal is to reach as many people as possible with good sexual health information."

Advertisement

That reach is no joke: The site averaged 64 million visitors a day last year, according to their 2016 report.

Warner Bros. / Via buzzfeed.com

About 40% of those visits came from the US, with the next highest traffic coming out of the UK, Canada, India, and Japan. The site reports that 26% of its visitors worldwide are female, based on data from Google Analytics.

Millennials make up the majority of Pornhub visitors; 31% are between the ages 18 to 24, while 29% are between the ages of 25 to 34.

"Knowing from my own practice how many younger people go to these sites, many of whom, from all over the world, have no access to sexual health education, I thought, Wow, if these people could have a place where they could not just get good information but also get their questions answered, then I’m helping somebody somewhere. And that to me was really important," says Betito.

Interestingly, learning about sex from porn isn't something Betito suggests. In fact, that's why she's producing content on Pornhub.

Loryn Brantz / Via buzzfeed.com

"The problem is that because we have — worldwide — a very limited sex education for youth, they are turning to [porn] for their education," says Betito.

"That’s what’s bothersome more than anything. If I can do a little bit of something to help that, I will. If I can give some information — that what you’re watching is a fantasy — I will."

So far the site has published articles related to consent, adult male circumcision, various sexually transmitted infections, sexual dysfunction on antidepressants, and more. "This is an ongoing project," says Betito. "We have so much more than what's on the site already.

Readers are encouraged to send in their sex questions for a Q&A portion of the site. In the first 48 hours of their launch, Betito says they received over 200 questions.

NBC

The questions were mostly things that should have been covered back in sex ed: how to avoid STIs, if you can get pregnant on your period or through anal sex, what's "normal" when it comes to your body, etc.

But they also touched on topics like virginity, masturbation, sexual orientation, and relationships, which suggests that it's still hard to find open, thoughtful, nuanced information about this — online or elsewhere.

Betito says she's writing most of the answers and other content so far, with help from a team of experts that includes gynecologists, urologists, researchers, and other specialists.

"We’re here to talk generally about issues that people have questions about," says Betito. "I don’t know you, nobody has examined you, but here’s what you should look out for."

So what happens if this sex advice ever includes (*gasp*) taking a break from porn or thinking more mindfully about your porn consumption?

youtube.com / Via hipstertrendy.tumblr.com

Obviously there might be instances where taking a porn hiatus may be advised — like if you're having trouble getting aroused without that visual stimulus or you're only able to orgasm one specific way that isn't replicable with your partner. Will the fact that this content shares a domain with Pornhub impact the advice? Betito says no.

"They’re not telling me 'No, you can’t write anything anti-porn.' This is science-based. I can talk about some of the research that says it’s damaging and the research that says that’s not true."

The goal, Betito says, is to reach people who are already on the site — not to drive new traffic to Pornhub through the sexual health content.

3 Arts Entertainment

Pornhub marketing manager Alex Klein tells BuzzFeed Health that they're in the process of adding links to the Sexual Wellness Center on the Pornhub homepage — both in the top navigation links and the bottom of the page. Klein says these should be working later this week, though they were not present at the time this post was published.

And if you're wondering if this new addition will change the type of porn available on Pornhub, that's unlikely.

youtube.com / Via fiercegifs.tumblr.com

The Sexual Wellness Center will be functioning separately from the rest of Pornhub, where videos can be uploaded by users. Betito says it's not her job to determine what is and isn't promoting a healthy view of sex and sexuality in porn. "I can't alter what's already there or what people find."

"Whether something is offensive to one person and turns on another person, I’m not going to be the police of Pornhub in any way shape or form," she says. "My role is very separate and it really is to provide quality sexual health information, and to have a team of contributors who I trust who are known in the field."

Promoted

Every. Tasty. Video. EVER. The new Tasty app is here!

Dismiss