What do books like Fahrenheit 451 and The Handmaid’s Tale have in common? Maybe you haven’t had a chance to read them or you only got a chance to watch the movie and TV show version! Either way, both of these books discuss a society in which knowledge and different cultural perspectives are outlawed, forgotten, or made forcefully inaccessible.
The reason I bring this up is because educators, therapists, and workers like myself, are often left to fight to provide our educational work. Media has become a way to educate the masses but due to certain platforms banning discussions of sexual education, sex therapy, and sex work, our fight continues.
Hi, my name is Flo Oliveira and I am a sex educator and coach turned Sex Therapist. I have been in my field since 2019 backed by my certificates, diplomas, and hands-on field experience. Recently, I was suspended from utilizing my Sexual Health education account. A ban that lasted 2 months was short in comparison to several other educators who have been permanently banned from media platforms for their education.
So, why am I discussing censorship?
As I mentioned before, the media has taken a huge space in our society and in 2019, there were at least 3.5 billion folks online1. With content covering personal experience, food, culture, and education – social media has provided space for self discovery and mass education.
Due to most US states lacking inclusive sex education, professionals in sexual health have taken to the media to “get it right”. For some folks, Instagram has become the one way to interact with accurate information on sexual health.
When media begins targeting sexual health professionals, the few pages skilled to teach about these topics are disposed of. This leaves thousands of users searching for accurate information once again, most not finding outlets they can trust or depend on. Sexual health pages are not solely about getting accurate information though; They are made to connect with folks around the world and provide information that is relevant to their experiences. With relevant information, educators are directly reducing shame and negative experiences folks may encounter. Having access to information that is pertinent to you is life changing and preventative.
When folks are deprived of necessary information, they may seek sources that steer them to wrong information, create bigger stories of harm, and further diminish their confidence.
So how do we overcome censorship and lack of accessible education?
Similarly to Fahrenheit 451 and The Handmaid’s Tale, eventually we as a society will have to put a collective effort to make a change and create a new norm.
Here are three ways you can start the change:
- Invest and support sexual health professionals that you bond with
- Connect with sexual health professionals on other platforms to keep access regardless of media
- Advocate for your right to knowledge!
Regardless of where censorship leads us, sexual health professionals will continue to exist, fighting to provide accessible and relevant information. You deserve to live in a reality where intimacy is accessible for you. If you find yourself in need of further guidance, I’d love to work with you at Love Heal Grow Counseling – Schedule an appointment with me today)
At Love Heal Grow we have a variety of therapists who can assist you. Please do not hesitate to reach out to us at Love Heal Grow today to get in touch with one of our therapists.
I help individuals and couples who want to rediscover themselves, their sexual intimacy, and pleasure. You can experience more fulfillment in your life and relationships! I’m here to support you.
You can read more about me or schedule an appointment here: About Flo