My husband has been writing about naked ladies professionally for the better part of nearly 20 years, starting long before we met. When we were introduced three-and-a-half years ago, he was the managing editor and head writer at MrSkin.com. Still is.
It’s hard to describe my feelings around my husband’s work or it’s impact on our relationship.
There is totally an image that my husband has cultivated/revels in/currently promotes mainly through social media: pornographer. He self-published his personal pre-Giuliani Times Square experiences in the zine days, honed his craft at Hustler and other Flynt publications, knocked out a couple of sexed up screenplays, and found a genuine home at Mr. Skin.
A lot of that was just on paper to me in the beginning, unreal and in the past, equal parts hot and repulsive. Well, that’s not true because repulsive is also hot. Maybe hot and eye-rolly is more like it. The person I was getting to know so intimately was much more than his resume or online persona.
But, and I’ve got a big one, I didn’t anticipate how my insecurities and general selfishness would punctuate our relationship with good old-fashioned drama.
I don’t have any real feministic convictions for or against pornography or nudity. I only mention “for” because I do believe promoting it as empowering is la bull-sheet. My stance has traditionally been as so: porno for me, fantastic. Porno for you, only if it’s not my competition. Me me me first always. I’m your porno.
The nanosecond I perceive it as a threat, you will hear me scream, cry, melt down and evangelize against men exploiting women who have most likely been abused and are on drugs, and try to blow your mind with my fake fact-theories that fake sex and fake sexual ideals are ruining real sex and our culture.
Now, it’s not that I don’t think some of those claims are true in some cases, but I use(d) them as a manipulation to get things refocused on me and how awesomely sexy I am, the irreplaceable lay of your life, etc.
That doesn’t work. And truthfully, the only reason I became marriageable is because I changed in this relationship, specifically in contrast to past ones. A dear old friend may have nicknamed me Bobby Fischer, but I no longer believe I’m three chess moves away from a victory at all times. I’ve retired from my games.
What does it all mean? Simply, my husband has a job, a brand to build, a product to sell. He’s a brilliant writer and one of his talents is creating thousands of euphemisms for female breasts. Reading his descriptions of how sexy every actress on earth is does get old, and I try not to do it around my period. Easier said than done, but not impossible.
My marriage is strong. The reality of our life and relationship is almost unbearably fortunate. My husband looking at five bazillion naked ladies a day for work hasn’t prevented that. It fact, it literally affords us that life.
He’s not leaving me when little Emily Browning pops her top in the new Sleeping Beauty, even though for most of my life, I measured my value by how sexually desirable I was to the people I wanted attention from. (It makes me sad to admit that.)
My husband’s career and public image have helped me look inward. Celebrity nudity, among other factors, has set me free by prompting me to reprioritize what’s important to me in a healthy, long-term committed relationship: real communication, emotional intimacy and NBC renewing Parenthood for a third season. Team Braverman!
I wonder if Haddie will ever do a nude scene?