VR and Relationships: Is It Actually Cheating if It’s Not Real?

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As the industry becomes more sophisticated, some couples wonder whether or not interacting with the realism that VR porn presents could be considered cheating. How real is too real?

Sexuality, and sexual boundaries, are highly individual concepts. What can be construed as normal for one couple, could easily set the teeth of another firmly on edge. So when we come up against dicey questions, such as “is watching VR porn cheating?” They become difficult to answer.

The VR Porn scenes are industries that have been gaining some serious traction in the world of late. With users, psychologists, sex toy makers, tech producers, and even the porn industry itself weighing in on the pros and cons of VR porn, where it could go in the future, and just how real is real enough; things tend to get even murkier. What we can measure, what we do know for sure, is that VR porn is here, and there are a lot of people pumping in a lot of money to make it happen. All because there are a lot of users that are loving every second of it. For better or worse.

Experts Weigh In

More than just providing an immersive experience, researchers have discovered that VR porn results in greater arousal than transitional types of pornography. They believe it has to do with the difference in the way that VR pornography clips are filmed, creating a more intimate experience. This experience creates a greater sense of “presence”, creating a sort of “ultimate porn” experience. Making VR perspectives more enticing and enjoyable than 2D, voyeuristic porn. Which has some people concerned that this could only serve to intensify addictions and unhealthy habits.

To which some experts suggest might not be a bad thing. VR porn, or any erotica that creates a more immersive, personal experience, could help to boost empathy. Allowing participants to experience porn from a multitude of perspectives, as well as broaden their sexual horizons. One study found that participants who watched VR porn had higher levels of salivary Oxytocin, a hormone that is equated with empathy and social bonding. Which could lead to better bonding moments outside of pornography itself, and inside our own preexisting relationships.

Specifically for those who are feeling disconnected or lonely during the recent wave of pandemic-related depression. It could also lead to healthier porn habits, as the intimate environments could make it more difficult to disassociate from what you’re seeing on the screen. Leading to more ethical porn choices. However, there is always a counter-argument, and some still believe that VR porn could lead to higher levels of dependence if people are using the construct to avoid problems in their real lives.

VR Porn Industry

With the technical aspects of VR continuing to grow, access to high-quality pornographic material and VR content is also blossoming. Where headsets were initially large, cumbersome, and heavy, many are now Bluetooth enabled, lightweight, and have their own ability to connect to the internet directly. This means that users no longer require additional hardware for the sets to work.

More than that, leaders in the sex toy industry are beginning to work alongside VR porn producers and providers to create an even more immersive experience. Creating toys that are specifically designed to link up with certain clips, allowing users to be stimulated in tandem with what they are seeing. More than just simulated physical stimulation, the way these clips are shot are designed to make them all the more real for the user. Clips are filmed for a personal POV perspective, so instead of the classic voyeur look into someone else’s bedroom, you are in the performer’s bedroom, or wherever else the scene may take you.

Giving users a more intimate experience. Because of the way these clips are filmed, actors are life-size, and users are encouraged to interact with them on a “personal” level. As actors deliver their lines straight to the camera. Perhaps because of this, the feeling that users are personally interacting with the people and situations they are seeing on screen is one of the reasons the phenomenon has some couples feeling a bit hot under the collar. So whether or not consuming VR porn scenes should be considered cheating isn’t cut and dry, and like all problems, should be openly discussed with your partner.