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How digital mediums are helping to destigmatise sex

6 minutes to read

Let’s talk about sex baby, let’s talk about you and me, let’s talk to chatbots, watch teenagers talk about intercourse and all that baby, let’s talk about destigmatising sex in our overly protective society. If Salt-N-Pepa doesn’t get you shakin’ your booty in anticipation for this piece, I’m not sure what I can do to arouse you.

Yes, I will be unpacking how society is attempting to destigmatise sex with a variety of mediums for younger, middle-aged and even older individuals so that their sexual frustrations, questions, and desires may be heard, no matter how weird they are. The thing is, individuals interested in exploring sex and sexuality may physically access more information now than they have ever been able to before, however they are still barred by society’s moral, ethical, legal and technical barriers. Our society is notorious for trying to ‘protect the innocent’ younger generation with a plethora of Helen Lovejoy’s, from The Simpsons, whispering in my ears “wOn’T soMEboDY pLEAsE THiNk oF tHe ChILDreN.” They stand in a choir and harmonise with each other out my window in an attempt to ensure that my mind isn’t tainted with thoughts of sex.

Season 7 Episode 23 GIF destigmatise

Any allusions to sex in our extremely accessible world are censored beyond belief, and many parents seem to think they’re doing their children a grand service. There are apps and services which can outright block any scandalous content, which is honestly disappointing because it is one of the best parts about being a rebellious child. I choose to believe this is the wrong approach in trying to ‘educate’ children about sex as they not only become sensitive to such content but develop unrealistic expectations. As traumatising as this sounds, the first time I laid my eyes on porn I actually cried, and no – not a happy cry of orgasmic joy. God, 12-year-old me didn’t even know that anal was a thing back then, but boy oh boy does present me have a good old lesson for 12-year-old me.

The digital age gives us (some – a little – okay, not really any due to surveillance culture, but the idea is nice) the privacy to access technology and mediums to learn about taboo subjects, such as sex, in the comfort of our own beds instead of in someone else’s. Our society demands that we are educated about the ins and outs of sex as it is supposed to be: a choreographed set of activities where the man inserts his appendage somewhere and everything is all white rainbows. This contradiction of the need to know about sex to make it perfect yet the subject being taboo leads to the neglect of sexual discovery during our youth. This is the danger with not entering into the subject of sex deeply enough so that people can understand the level of human emotion and feeling within ‘the act.’

I strongly believe the problem lies with how children are educated about sex in school. Bless my little 9-year-old, Catholic schoolboy with high-school sweetheart parents soul. When I was a kid, my parents skirted around the ‘conversation’ and when they did finally let me know how two people have a baby together, they gave me a picture book. I was obsessed with reading, however, this non-digital medium did not have the best advice. I vividly remember a sentence from the said monstrosity, reading “the erection is when the man becomes excited.” I was terrified. Not because I would get something weirdly hard in my undies, but that I feared that every time I would watch cartoons with my sister, I would pop a stiffy. God help me if I was with one of my dude friends and I got excited about winning Mario Kart, there would be more than one bullet bill on the track.

Meg Ryan Orgasm GIF destigmatise

 

Society has evolved profusely with advancements in technology, which provides the younger generation with access to information about sex and entertaining ways to learn about it. Netflix’s Sex Education is a great series where a guy who can’t get it off ends up shaking out his fears of masturbation while also becoming his school’s sex therapist. It’s a brilliant way to address the taboo in society while also demonstrating that safe sex is cool, we should respect people’s feelings while engaging with them sexually and that sex should be talked about because not talking (in any circumstance) is dangerous. It’s also freaking hilarious and is a must watch.

 

High School Eric GIF by NETFLIX destigmatise

Now we come to the creme dela creme. Sexbots. People are inherently sexually adventurous in their endeavours to spice up the way they horizontal tango with each other. Usually, the moderator in a situation like this would be a physical sex therapist like in Sex Education, however, what if you could do this within the comfort of your own home with no third party to judge how badly Sally wants to do the deed with Ken?

Planned Parenthood made a sexbot called Roo, targeted at young adults, who can text the 24-hour chatbot with questions about their sexual health, relationships, bodies, and more to receive answers within seconds. As Roo is a form of AI, it will learn how to interact with copious amounts of people, learning warning signs and red flags about a user’s health. Not even the most off the cuff questions are barred, so go ahead and ask it about your daddy issues (God knows I have).

Although we have the necessary technology now, the fact that we are still scared about sharing our sexuality with others in an open forum is confronting and the stigma should be broken down. As people begin to understand that sex is natural (just like pooping) we can create an open dialogue with each other to reduce the sexual illiteracy of our society. We even have sex robots now that people can use to get their stress release, however, the ethics and rules regarding these machines is still a blurred line which our society hasn’t totally figured out. I’m personally waiting for my Chris Pratt bot like the ones from Futurama where Fry has Lucy Liu.

Lucy Liu Futurama GIF destigmatise

In conclusion, sex shouldn’t be as tabooed in our society as it has been in the past. There are a plethora of digital mediums that individuals can access to gain information or desensitise themselves from the looming darkness that is classified as sex in our modern society. Brb, going to the shops to pick up my Chris Pratt sex robot.

 

 

 

Featured image via Unsplash