MEET THE PUKKAS: Anna and Matt discuss watching porn at work

In this week's #TrueRomance column, Anna Whitehouse and Matt Farquharson answer a reader's fears about their partner watching porn at work...

A reader asks… My husband uses porn at work: should I be worried?

He says…

By Matt Farquharson

Depends where he works. If he’s a lonely goatherd logging on to alleviate the long nights watching the flock, or a rigger stationed in the North Sea for weeks at a time, it might be worth cutting him some slack. If he’s a bus conductor, it would be a red flag. But I guess the chances are he’s like 70% of workers in the UK and finds himself sat at a desk every day, wondering where it all went wrong. Given the existential angst that can be caused by being told – as an adult with voting rights – where you have to sit and when you can eat lunch, my feeling tends to be that we can make some minor allowances for the agonies of being human and understand that everyone handles these in their own way. But this is more than that. My guess is he doesn’t just watch it – hardcore grot now so normalised that it’s become casual viewing like a lunchtime catch up on the latest episode of Bake Off – but that he’s putting it to use, the logistics of which are deeply concerning. Either way, he should probably imagine what would happen to him if he were caught. He’d be sacked, but also leave some pretty uncomfortable mental imagery in the mind of whoever busted him. While there’s nothing wrong with self-love, it’s best kept to the confines of the home, and I think it’d be fair to point this out to your slick-wristed partner in the strongest possible terms.

Meet the Pukkas

She says…

By Anna Whitehouse

When recently asked by a friend about my feelings towards porn, my answer was somewhat wearied. It’s acceptance more than anything. I equate it to a dull thudding in the background; a headboard gently hitting a wall in sexual rhythm. It doesn’t really interfere with watching Netflix or eating dinner, although I’d probably prefer it to not exist. And like any repetitive noise it can start to grate. Especially if it enters the real world, where cucumbers are better used for sandwiches and no one offers the plumber more than a cup of tea. But ultimately it’s treading a thin line when taking your handiwork to the office. As Tinder becomes a catalogue of potential dating errors, the easy access to YouPorn makes X-rated viewing standard. It normalises it. In the sanctuary of an office toilet, maybe it can seem like a relative safe space of voyeurism: a sealed capsule of erotica, regardless of whether the HR director is sitting on a porcelain chalice next door. It’s ‘just porn’. That’s until you get issued with your P45 form and the whole office knows you like watching MILFs rifling around in a carpenter’s tool box. Tell him to sling the workplace grot or else he can sling his hook.

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