Is reading about sex a sin?


I came into this situation today. I was reading posts on a website and ended up reading an article called something like “Sex Acts that are Better in Theory,” which listed and slightly explained why a variety of sex acts that people often think are great might not be, such as having sex in the shower. I read the article, not for the purpose of sexual arousal or to imagine these situations, but because I do want to get married someday and thought it would be something interesting to know. Basically, to get a little more informed about these ideas. However, I did become sexually aroused while doing so. Again, I wasn’t purposely fantasizing about doing these acts, but just sort of going “Huh, that’s something to keep in mind for when I’m with my future wife.” Would this be considered a sin of lust?


To be honest I don’t know if its a sin of lust. Did you enjoy thinking about these things? Did you take pleasure in entertaining them? If so then yes, it’s a sin since you are unmarried and should be living a chaste life. Furthermore those types of articles usually give zero tips on how to live a good, holy, Catholic marriage. They are just tips on how to enjoy carnal pleasures incorrectly. If you want to read something that will help you be a good wife then read “Three to get Married” By Fulton J. Sheen. Same goes for any man that wants to be a good husband.


A sin? Well, if you for sure did not “enjoy” reading it and if it for sure did not give you any thoughts about having sex, it hardly is.

Short comment. We are allowed to enjoy sex when we are married.


I don’t see a sin if you were reading for informational purposes and thinking of sex in the context of marriage and avoiding making mistakes that would possibly make you and your future wife unhappy or uncomfortable.


It would be for me. Your mileage may vary.


I would say it depends on the context. In your context, I don’t think it was a sin, but you could ask your priest next time you go to confession. I’m uneducated as to whether we are supposed to learn only about sexual relations with our spouse, or if books can be read.

Some of the fiction books I have read which otherwise have good plots, have explicit sex or even soft porn type paragraphs. I have long skipped over those; they don’t add anything for me. Needless to say, I’m not interested at all in reading any of the Fifty Shades series. :smiley: If only it was that easy to avoid that type of thing in new release movies that I wouldn’t mind seeing otherwise.


Reading about sex should not be sinful so long as you are not doing it to derive sexual pleasure from the reading material. If you are unmarried, then you need to realize that what you are reading may only be intended for married couples.

If you were a doctor who treats sexual dysfunction, psychological disorders relating to sex, etc. then this type of research may be a no brainer. It all depends on what you are looking to gain from the research. Learning how to have sex and give a spouse sexual pleasure within marriage or to counsel others if you are a doctor, would not be sinful in my opinion.

Each person is different in how they respond to this type of information. I have read books about how to spice up a married sex life, but never got sexual satisfaction from it. Once you have been married for over a decade the “usual” can become mundane and we look for ways to make our spouse happy, etc. I don’t see any problem with this as long as what we are reading is not vulgar, profane, etc.

It is not normal for sexual information to be discussed with anyone other than our doctor and our spouse. Books can at least provide some information on how to be a better lover for our spouse.

As an aside, many wives will not tell their husbands if they are happy with their sex life. This is unfair for the husband and the wife. She may not be able to reach a climax and it may simply be that she does not know how and the husband doesn’t know other. Books that are not vulgar, but describe sexual positions, how each gender experiences sex, etc. can provide information that will lead both spouses to a better and happier sexual life with each other.

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