I've been with my wife for fifteen years. The only other person I've had sex with longer is myself. I suppose it's no surprise that we've had to make a few changes along the way to keep it fresh, keep it moving.
When we started dating she was the powerful one in bed. She'd pursued and conquered dozens of guys and her arousal was really tied up in that chase, that conquest. She reveled in her ability to turn me on, she used the fact that her body was exactly what I was looking for to keep me completely in her thrall and somehow, for a while, that did it for her.
Then came the lull. After she realized that her conquest was complete, we had a long period where there wasn't a lot of sex and what we had involved faked orgasms and a lot of begging. Long story short, a few things happened, communication picked up and she let me know that she wanted me to become the dominant one in bed. In fact she wanted to be restrained.
I love my wife. I'd do anything for her, especially in the bedroom, so I jumped in with both feet.
Historically, I haven't ever really cared for BDSM. It seemed too theatrical, maybe even a bit anti-woman. But I needed to figure out how to do this thing correctly so I did a lot of reading and looking. I studied my knots, I looked at bondage porn, I practiced my knots, I kept watching that porn. And you know what? I could feel myself starting to get turned on by things I hadn't ever thought would be my thing. And it only got more intense once I started tying up my wife.
I've mostly looked at fairly vanilla porn. Big boobs, relatively innocent sex, heck, a lot of it was more glamour nudes then hardcore porn. Suddenly I was looking at sets from Kink.com and feeling the blood moving. Granted, it was mostly at the details, a well tied wrist cuff, an ingenious attachment to the wall, beautiful breasts framed perfectly by brown hemp, that sort of thing. I'm still a bit squicked at the pain stuff and while I totally respect everyone's right to be turned on by whatever they like, once it gets to caning it moves quickly into the realm of the extreme pain seeking that made me resist the idea of even dipping my toe into the BDSM pool for years. But all in all I've seen a really significant shift in what turns me on.
All this is said to point out that the more you look at something, the more you study it and the more you integrate it into your sex life the more it's going to turn you on. I seriously can't pick up a nice, supple slippery hank of rope without feeling the blood flow to my nethers pick up. My fantasies might still be full of big round breasts, but now they're bound tightly, waiting for me to touch them in the way that makes me feel good rather then just bouncing out there in space.
The point is that people seem to think that you fantasize about the things that turn you on. I think it might be the other way around, that you're turned on by the things you fantasize about. I rewired a lot of my desire over the course of a year just by thinking about and looking at different things.
It makes me think that maybe this experience is generalizable, that maybe we can take the flood of images that are so uniquely available in this historical moment and turn them to our advantage. Rather then worrying that porn is creating unrealistic body images or unhelpful expectations, maybe we can use the stream of images to actively shape our expectations and mold what sort of body we find arousing.
Tumblr is the perfect tool for this job. You can very readily find a Tumblr that specializes in any sort of photo you could possibly imagine. While this might seem like the perfect chance to dive ever deeper into unrealistic body images and more and more niche tastes, it turns out that it's also an amazing tool for shaping what turns you on.
Follow a couple Tumblrs. Make them exactly what you like right now, whatever your twist, let it fly, then add a few of the new stuff. Maybe your partner is older, maybe your partner is gaining some weight (or you are, so you're not dating the young, hot things anymore) maybe your partner wants to be tied up or caned or dressed in a fuzzy suit with a big head. You'll find great quality Tumblrs devoted to every one of those things.
Once you've got the feed set up, scroll through, you'll find that the old stuff that you've always liked will definitely turn you on. Let it. As the new stuff starts to scroll past, you might, at first, be taken out of the moment, but eventually you'll find that as you look at it, especially juxtaposed with images that you've always found alluring, you'll get turned on by the new images too. Maybe you'll even find that you start removing some of the feeds that you liked before to make room for more of the new stuff.
This works even better if you're exploring new stuff with your partner at the same time. That way what you're working on with your porn you're also working on in real life and they will DEFINITELY reinforce each other. It's amazing how easy it is in a reasonably short time to rewire what you're looking for.
To close, let me just say that I'm saying this without judgment. No one is ever a perfect erotic match for their partner and too many people spend too much time trying to change their partner into something more perfect (either through making them change or swapping them for the new model). I think the world would be a sexier place if we all actively worked to make more body shapes, activities, ages and grooming states sexy. Rather then divorcing your wife or pressuring her into getting surgery, explore the erotic potential of a fat body, or sagging breasts or an older face or an unwaxed bikini area (and believe me, there's a LOT to get turned on about in all those things). That goes for activities as well. I'm convinced that everyone can learn to like what their partner likes or has to offer. It just takes a little work and the rewards are amazing.
We all win when we learn to take pleasure when we find it on its terms, not our own. I hope I've inspired you and given you something like a toolset to find, something new, sexy. You won't be disappointed.