Clinical sexologist and YouTube star Dr. Lindsey Doe’s video series “Sexplanations with Dr. Doe” has become increasingly popular amongst students and youth. The series aims to talk about all things sex — from sexual health, to healthy relationships, to understandings of sexuality — in a frank and honest way that can help viewers learn in an engaging, fun and nonthreatening environment.
Some of the series’ videos include “The Vulva — the Vagina’s Neighbourhood,” “How to Get the Sex You Want” and “Dry Humping Saves Lives!”. Doe’s unabashed and straightforward approach to sex is ideal for students who are interested in learning more about sex, but have found more conventional forms of sex education insufficient, awkward or boring. Doe’s videos thrive on honesty and energy.
“Because our school systems can be fairly conservative, I think this channel is an opportunity for students, regardless of age, to get sexual education without having to be embarrassed,” said Brock student and part-time YouTuber Michael Brydges. “The charisma that is shown on this channel and how much fun the host has with it is out of this world!”
Sexplanations started in May 2013 as a relatively small project that was made in collaboration between Doe and YouTube star and musician Hank Green (also known as the brother of young adult novelist John Green). Since then, the channel has grown to over 180,000 subscribers, over 17 million views and a thriving discussion section in which Doe responds to fan questions and comments. In a time when traditional sex education is becoming increasingly criticized, and discussions of sexual health are becoming more controversial, the need for an effective, accessible and enjoyable source of information on sexual health has become apparent.
“I want to make sex education accessible to the universe,” says Doe in her first video. “There are a lot of people out there who need accurate information. I’ll give it to you for free!”
Doe’s videos deal with both conventional and unconventional topics. In addition to videos on topics that are not often covered in a classroom, including bondage and “sex smells,” some of her videos, such as her video on contraceptives called “sex shields,” deal with subject matter that would conventionally be approached in a North American sex education classroom. However, Doe approaches these conventional topics in ways that strive to make them more engaging, and also more relevant, than the ways that they are often covered in classrooms.
Doe’s videos are also notable for their inclusive approach to education on sexual health. Unlike what many people may have experienced in their high school sex-ed class, heterosexuality is never assumed or normalized in Doe’s videos. Her videos strive to be inclusive of diverse sexualities and gender identities.
She also has several videos specifically about understanding gender and sexuality, including several videos that discuss asexuality.
Doe’s channel reflects an overall trend of educational YouTube channels that seek to make education accessible and fun for people who would otherwise be excluded from learning. Sexplanations is an intersection between the increasing need for improved sexual education in North America and this trend of free education being offered online, allowing for a digital intervention into current educational conflicts.
Sexplanations is available at youtube.com/user/sexplanations.