Like Sex with Dr. Jess on FacebookFollow Sex with Dr. Jess on InstagramFollow Sex with Dr. Jess on TwitterSubscribe to Sex with Dr. Jess's channel on YouTubeSubscribe to Sex with Dr. Jess's RSS feed
Sex with Dr. Jess


July 12, 2017

Why Are MILFS So Popular?

From foot fetishes and threesomes to squirting and vampire orgies, rule #34 of the internet, has yet to be disproven: If it exists, there is porn of it. No exceptions.

Despite the fact that there exists a genre of porn for everyone without exception, there is one variety that rises above the rest in popularity: MILF porn. The MILF, which stands for “Mom I’d Like to F*ck” is so sought after, that according to A Billion Wicked Thoughts, “mom” is the most popular search term on the world’s largest adult content site,

To help us better understand our erotic fascination with the mother-figure, I enlisted the expertise Dr. Justin Lehmiller, sex educator and author of the popular blog Sex and Psychology. According to Lehmiller, the popularization of MILF porn is not indicative of widespread desire for sex with our mothers.

“MILF is a misnomer. It is just a term that caught on, because it’s short and catchy. It’s not a new genre and the characteristics of MILF porn and fantasies have been around for a long time.” He adds, “MILF fantasies are likely more connected to a desire for an older, confident and more experienced lover who can play the role of a teacher and take control.”
Mother and daughters with surfboard on beach

But if viewers are simply searching for an older, more dominant figure, why then do they not search for more specific terms like “Dominatrix” instead of “mom”? According to Lehmiller, the difference may lie in a desire for a nurturing lover as opposed to simply a powerful one. The MILF is in a unique position to fulfill both of these elements and allows us to explore the connection between vulnerability and sexual pleasure. In this sense, Lehmiller concedes that there could be some connection between the feelings of vulnerability that we attach to our relationships with our mothers and the MILF phenomenon, but this connection doesn’t amount to maternal eroticization.

The taboo element may also contribute to the appeal of MILFs, but Lehmiller emphasizes that for most people, the allure is related to the forbidden fruit. “There may be some men who are aroused by the idea of having sex with someone they’re not supposed to — not necessarily a mom, but perhaps someone’s else’s wife. The element of cheating, for example, can be arousing in the right context.” The popularization of MILFs as sex objects is particularly fascinating in light of our culture’s desexualization of parents and older people in general. When asked about what meaningful messages we might draw from this apparent contradiction, Lehmiller suggests that this could create positive openings for change:

amaraandbaby1“Moms (and dads) might reasonably conclude that it’s okay to play dual roles. A lot of people view parenthood as the end of their sex life and this is simply not the case. It’s nice that we’re coming around and seeing people of different ages as sexual and we see this in other genres of porn related to age. In fact, it’s not just younger people searching for older partners. More older people are searching for porn as well. I see this as a positive thing. Porn isn’t an equal opportunity field, but they’re expanding as the range and diversity of performers become more diverse.”

Though Lehmiller is clear that MILF fantasies have less to do with moms than they do with elements of confidence and sexual mastery, he acknowledges that our parents do influence who we’re attracted to in subtle ways. We may not intentionally seek out partners who resemble our parents, but we subconsciously select partners with physical and psychological traits in common with our parents. For example, children born to older parents tend to choose older partners as adults, which suggests that some degree of sexual imprinting from parents exists in subtle ways.

So is the MILF sexual icon here to stay? It’s possible that evolving gender norms could see a decline in MILF popularity as more women of all ages embrace sexual confidence and prowess. After all, you certainly don’t have to be a mom of a certain age to teach your lover a thing or two about good sex.