Thursday, September 22, 2011

Dan Savage Calms a Woman Upset by Father's Fantasies

Superstar columnist Dan Savage got a question from a 22-year-old college grad who moved back home...

My parents are divorced, so I've gone back and forth from one place to the other. The other day, I was using my father's computer, and the history came up on the search engine. It turns out that while I am in the house, my father views pornography that involves incest fantasies.

This is not uncommon. Porn or erotica depicting or describing consanguineous sex is very popular.

I felt quite disturbed by what I saw — it made me physically sick — and I'm wondering if I should continue to have a relationship with my father.

What if she had a sister who was into lesbian erotica, and it grossed her out? The sexuality of our parents, or another person's fantasies, may not be our thing, or may gross us out. It is no reason to let it hurt the relationship.

Should I tell him that I know about it and I'm not interested in having a relationship with him anymore?

No. Let him be.

Do I tell my friends or family?

No. It is none of their business.

Her father may or may not actually be into consanguinamory, or may not find her sexually attractive. Not everyone who likes horror movies wants to kills people, or be chased by a killer, but porn or erotica choices may reveal some hidden desires. If her father has not made any unwanted advances, there isn't a problem.

Savage agrees, writing...

Unless your father has given you reason to suspect that he actually wants to f--- you — unless finding your dad's porn helped you to identify a pattern of inappropriate behaviors on your father's part with but one possible interpretation (he actually wants to fu--- you) — let's give your father the benefit of the doubt, shall we?

We might find the attractions and fantasies of others to be strange, even disgusting, but as long as they aren't forcing themselves on anyone, let them be.
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