Blurring the Line with Photos?

I have noticed that recently this site has had more “explicit” pictures—nothing below the belt, but plenty of photos have included bare breasts. Where does the line get drawn? Who picks the images? What does everyone think about this change?

WakaWaka123

From MarriageHeat:

What a great question; we thank you for bringing it up. Over the years, several people have taken issue with the photos we include and emailed us to air their concerns. We take their opinions seriously and value input from all viewpoints when offered respectfully and out of love.

MH does not believe that nudity in itself is sinful or displeasing to God and our Savior, Jesus Christ. Our photos are meant to represent some aspect of or scene from each story artfully. The pictures we choose from the stock photo sites with which we have a license would compare to the motion picture industry’s “R” rating or milder. Some authors have suggested images for their stories, and we have yet to reject any of those suggestions.
Most stories culminate in scenes that we choose not to illustrate, so we have to draw our inspiration from earlier in the story. When the tale focuses on breasts, the picture will probably show breasts—but bare breasts are not new to MH. Taking a look back at the images used through the years, we find that they have included female breasts and even nipples on occasion.
We do understand that some people experience lustful urges towards the models when they see someone in the nude (or even fully clothed), and we respectfully suggest that those who do should not visit our website. It is not our intent to be a stumbling block for anyone who struggles in that way. But we also caution that lust and arousal are two different things. Lust is desire, a condition of the heart and will, and there are things you can rightfully desire (like sex with your spouse, which we encourage) and things that you can’t (like someone else’s spouse, which we definitely do not.) Physical arousal, however stimulated, does not equate to lust.

We hope to be able to introduce an option for turning off photos at some point, but we haven’t made much headway in that regard. We do know that it is possible from within at least some browsers’ settings or with extensions. An internet search with the terms “block images” followed with the name of your browser should get you the instructions to do so.

We are always interested in the feedback of the MH family, so please comment below on our photo choices.

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11 replies
  1. StillLikeNewlyweds says:

    Really good question, and great response from MH. I’d like to first add to MH’s statement about browser settings. Most computer browsers have that option to not load images. The only iOS browser that I know of that offers this is Firefox. I would assume the Android version has it as well. It is also easy to find. It’s called “Block Images” in the app menu.
    As for the issue itself, it is important to remember that we are responsible to govern ourselves in the power of the Holy Spirit. We are not all tempted the same way; we do not all have the same weaknesses, and also those can change within ourselves at different times. We must always be on guard.
    I feel that MH does a great job of matching pics to the stories while keeping them tasteful. My story “My Happy Place” was one of those that showed nipples in the picture, and as I don’t think it’s necessary to do that a lot, I felt it paired (hehe) excellently with the focus and emotions of the story.

  2. NotMadMax says:

    I would prefer that the images would have less nudity.

    Since porn — and these images — are of only highly attractive, young bodies with perfect features and perhaps with photoshop, it doesn't reflect reality.

    Here's the phrase that I liked: It's not helpful to the marriage when our spouse is the "least-attractive" naked person we see.

    • JuicyForMyMan says:

      If you click on that link above about authors suggesting pictures, you will find info on where to find them.

  3. southernmost says:

    I think "explicit" has to do with one's heart and attitude as opposed to how much skin one reveals. I think we tend to draw the line when we decide if it's a good or bad thing. But honestly, I don't know why humans are so hung up on nudity – or at least, the West, particularly the USA. A naked person sunbathing on a beach minding their own business is far more moral – in my opinion – than someone at a party wearing clothes which precisely accentuate their features in a sexual manner.

    And some will say "Ok, but this isn't a nudist site, it's a married erotica site". Fair enough. But then I will say again, it's about heart. Sex and sexuality is about heart, not just the body. If we want to make nudity equal to sex, then we miss the point. And honestly, how many readers here actually get off to the images shown? My guess is very very few. But, how many get off to the stories written here? And I would say, almost everyone.

    And yes, the people in the pictures may seem "too perfect". I don't think so, but for argument's sake, how many of these erotic stories seem "too perfect"? How many people actually have the sex lives detailed in these stories? Should we then not also call the stories porn by the same manner of thinking? On the note of perfection, I think we need to see past what "perfect" is. We're all made in God's image and I think we should meditate on that.

    My girlfriend and I are nudists, new nudists in fact. And she's a curvy woman (which I love) and she used to feel bad and not as beautiful as skinny women. I had an equal but opposite view of myself. But honestly, being nude, especially with others, you soon learn that sexual attraction has very little to do with nudity. My girlfriend and I see tons of people who seem more "ideal" than us, and we couldn't really care about them, because we only have eyes for each other.

    • Grace911 says:

      I agree. The older I get, the more I appreciate God's design for the human body. I applaud your decision and courage to become a nudist. I wish we had the courage to do so. The picture on here don't bother me either.

  4. ILoveMarriage says:

    I am fine with exposed breasts or full nudity for that matter. We are made in God's image. There is nothing sinful about appreciating the human body.

    I don't know how feasible this is given your photo source, I also would like to see more realistic and less "perfect" models. God made women in dizzying variety. A gal with a more padding than a supermodel or one with less padding and A-cup breasts can still be a "10".

    Also, and again I don't know how available this would be, but I personally would Ike to see more older models — more age-appropriate stuff for us old farts 🤣.

    I am working on a story where breasts figure heavily in the storyline. I'll see what I can find.

    • MarriageHeat says:

      We agree with you wholeheartedly! We'd love to see more diversity of shape, size, age, and race. Sadly, it seems most photographers, at least of sexy stock imagery, go for thin young white people as subjects. It's a great opportunity for some enterprising entrepreneur to fill in the gap, don't you think?

  5. Sarge says:

    That is a good question. My feelings are that as long as genitalia is not shown, or full breast images are limited to a particular story, then MH is doing things right. And I know where they generally get their pictures from.

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