The Joy of Teen Sex pulls no punches, showing close-up shots of genitalia and simulated sex acts, and giving a wide range of advice. Last night a gay teenager was introduced to the pleasures of sado-masochistic sex and a teenage couple were counselled to confront the conservative parents who didn't want them having sex.
Yet it struck me that TJOTS, by focusing on sexually active teenagers, may be distorting the extent to which most British teenagers are active. In their hurry to shake off taboos over teenage sexual activity, they may instead be shifting them onto chastity: increasing the emotional pressure on teenagers to become active, worsening the unhappiness of those who cannot.
Then there are doubts about some of their "experts". Last night featured one teenage boy who hated the idea of giving his girlfriend oral sex. In the process of fixing this boy's problem the experts gave him some advice on how best to stimulate his girlfriend, using a large padded model of the vagina. The expert advised him, among other things, to stimulate her G-spot:
Expert: "Also work on the G-spot inside."
Girl: "Where is that, exactly? 'Cos I thought it was just a myth."
Expert: "It's not a myth. Every lady has a G-spot."
A possible explanation for the lack of heritability may be that women differ in their ability to detect their own (true) G-spots. However, we postulate that the reason for the lack of genetic variation—in contrast to other anatomical and physiological traits studied—is that there is no physiological or physical basis for the G-spot.
Meanwhile other medical doctors have been responding to TJOTS. Dr Petra Boynton said she had been approched by the producers before the show was made, but that she had "reservations from the outset" and refused to be involved:
The phrase that put me off supporting the programme most was ‘Sex is the most important thing in a teenager’s life’. It may surprise you, but I profoundly disagree. ‘Sex’ may be important to some teens some of the time, but not to all teens all the time. For many young people the most important thing in their lives may be their friends, their schooling, hobbies or sports, their pets, their faith, music or a whole slew of other stuff I’m probably to old and boring to know about....Another, Dr Stuart Flanagan, criticised the programme on Twitter:
The majority of young people (2/3 of the UK population) do not have ‘sex’ (at least defined as penis in vagina intercourse) until they are 16 or over (the UK’s age of consent). Many young people aged under 18 have not have sex or a relationship. Those having sex at a very young age tend to be more vulnerable due to numerous reasons (covered here) and are of particular concern to educators, healthcare staff and youth workers....
Critics of sex education often argue that talking about sex encourages early experimentation, which is not accurate. However, you can see why critics get worried when young people are being encouraged to view sex as the cornerstone of their entire lives, when for many it isn’t (at least not all the time).
#thejoyofteensex is frustrating because they are getting info re common concerns WRONG. Did they ask the Screen Dr to review the script??
Average time b/n penetration to climax is NOT 7 mins it is 3-4 mins. Plenty of research to back it up #thejoyofteensex 's random stats
So is #thejoyofteensex saying no oral sex is a relationship deal breaker? What about trust, loyalty, kindness? Aren't they sexy?
#thejoyofteensex isn't a realistic view of sexual health services, or young people. Plus you can see a male Dr/Nurse/advisor if you want to!
#thejoyofteensex "the average u16 has slept with 3 people" WRONG! For most u16s it's zero, <1/3>
And so on.
So The Joy of Teen Sex is an odd one. Standing as a source for curious teenagers to learn about sex, it seems instead to be repeating questionable "facts". It may also normalise sexual activity among teens to the extent that the inactive feel like abnormal failures. Not sure how healthy all that really is.