Why Netflix’s “Sex Education” is so important
Yet again, Netflix is making headlines around the world with their brand new original show, Sex Education. While the show is set in an unknown time period, has American influences yet British accents, and a whole lot of awkwardness chucked in, it has quickly become a roaring success among teens and adults alike.
Whether you can relate to the awkward sex issues that the characters struggle with, or walking the tightrope between being a good parent and giving your kid space, Sex Education ticks a lot of boxes.
If you haven't had the chance to sit down for a Netflix binge, here's the low-down. The show mostly focuses on Otis Milburn, whose mum is an author and sex therapist, and his classmate Maeve. An unlikely duo, Otis and Maeve set up a "sex therapy" business in their high school, with Otis using skills he has observed from his mother to help distraught teens with a plethora of sex dilemmas. As you can imagine, it's raw, funny, totally relatable and 100% awkward.
Diversity and acceptance
Sex Education promotes diversity in every way throughout the show, breaking many social "norms" that have been present in many other movies and TV shows. One of the "popular kids" identifies as gay, there is a lesbian couple, Otis has trouble masturbating, his mum likes to bring different men home regularly... the list goes on! Point being, the show helps normalise things that are, well, totally normal, but not usually seen on the television.
This is vital in improving the future of sex education in schools, and ensuring teens are properly educated and knowledgeable about sex. But the most important thing about Netflix's new show is that it focuses on sexual exploration and pleasure, something that is never covered in health class, and rarely touched on by parents. Teens should understand that sex is supposed to be pleasurable for both parties involved!
Covering sensitive topics in pop culture and media can be a difficult feat to achieve, but Sex Education doesn't shy away from it. Erectile dysfunction is surprisingly more common than most people realise, and substances such as drugs and alcohol can affect this even more. While some might think this is only an issue among older people, it can also affect teenagers! According to Live Science, the definition of erectile dysfunction can range from complete impotence to unsatisfactory performance, and most men experience it at some point.
Opening up about these issues in a show won't cure the problem, however it makes it okay to talk about, particularly for impressionably teens watching.
Otis' mum runs a successful sex therapy business out of her own home, where people come to talk to her about all sorts of issues they are having in their relationships, or alone. Seeing people from all walks of life go to her, and then the kids at school going to Otis to get help, starts up an important discussion about reaching for help when you need it.
If teenagers are too scared to ask for help when they run into sexual issues, then it's much more likely that they could end up with unwanted STIs, pregnancy, and a range of other mental and physical side effects. Whether in need of a therapist or just a hug from their parents, Sex Education helps make it okay to reach out.
Everything wrong with sex ed
Sex education today is seriously lacking, and that’s why shows such as Sex Education are so important to help bridge the gap and make it okay to talk about the hard stuff. Essentially, Netflix has helped outline exactly what is wrong with sex ed in schools, but showing everything they skim past. We can only hope that sex toys such as dildos and vibrators will be just as accepted in society and media one day soon!
Video sourced from Clue.