Are TV Doctors Getting Better?

I was home last week, writhing in pain from a back injury, so I figured watching TV was the best way to kill 10 hours of lying motionless on the floor. I saw the Dr. Oz's show was on and he was talking about women and sex so of course, I flipped to that channel. I'm not a huge fan of Dr. Oz. I'm generally not a huge fan of anyone that's made their fame on Oprah. I find him to be arrogant, with his sparkling clean scrubs that he wears to prove to us that yes, in fact, he is a doctor, and his obvious belief that he is an expert on every area of medicine, including sexual health. The basis of this segment was that new statistics have come out showing that teenagers are having more sex and having sex earlier. They didn't bother to explain what these statistics are and where they came from - they never do. It seems that one of these alarmist studies comes out every year. I was sure I was in for another show about how 'these girls just need to learn to have more respect for themselves' and 'parents have to be aware of what their kids are doing!'. But I was pleasantly surprised. Dr. Oz had Dr. Laura Bermann on the show. I've taken a lot of shots at Bermann, but if given enough time to really communicate, she actually has a great attitude about sex. So instead of just crazy alarmist talk, the show was about how to really educate your kids about sex. Imagine that! They talked about explaining the risks of STI's in a real, non-sensationalized view, and prevention strategies that include more than just abstinence. The part that I loved the best was when Bermann suggested that parents take their pre-adolescent girls to get the HPV vaccine. Dr. Oz interjected and said he wouldn't do that. I thought he was going to say that he wouldn't do it because it has too many side-effects or because it would send his daughter the message that having sex is okay. But no. He said that he wouldn't simply take his daughter to have the vaccine because he would want to talk to her, explain what it was about, and have her make the decision as to whether she wanted to have it or not. I almost fell off my chair (well, if I had been able to sit in a chair at the time, I would have fallen off of it). We rarely get to hear famous TV personalities talk about allowing teens and pre-teens to make their own decisions around sexuality. It was beautiful. So props to Dr. Oz. for that. It's a small thing. But at least it's something.

I also watched a bit of 'The Doctors'. I hate this show. I just flat out hate it. Have a look at my previous post on this show for more on that. But again, the show descriptor said they were talking about women and sexual satisfaction so I had to check it out. The little 'news' bit that they were talking about was the study that claimed to show that women with a smaller distance between their clitoris and vaginal opening experience more orgasms during sex (they never elaborated on the word 'sex' but obviously they meant 'penis in vagina' sex). No props to the producers for research because this study actually came out in early 2008. We're not exactly talking cutting-edge news here. But there was one little ray of light in this whole discussion. The female doctor, (yes, in a cast of five, there is only one woman) Dr. Lisa Masterson, took over on this discussion and said that the point is not really to figure out if you have the right or wrong body, but how to work with the body you have and make sex happy for you. Wow! What an idea! She used the word 'sex-positive' about 20 times. I'm not completely sure she knows what it means but it was nice to hear that word on television. It seemed that what she meant to say by using that word was that the emphasis does not need to be on a particular act or a particular goal but on enjoying sex in and of itself - and enjoying any particular type of sex you have rather than trying to make yourself enjoy the type that everyone says is the right type. Indeed, that's a big part of being sex-positive. What a change to hear that as the bottom line, on a show full of medical doctors. Then they switched to a segment on surgeries to make your butt look smaller. Oh well, you win some, you lose some.

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