I was just reading an article about the new Through the Keyhole telly program. Apparently the pilot episode has the show’s host, Keith Lemon, snooping around Kerry Katona’s house. It’s reported that he opened a drawer to find some sex toys. Rather than say something intelligent about a woman who is empowered enough to own sex toys or how fabulous that she has a love for sex, he apparently ‘makes a big meal of it’ and the audience falls apart laughing along with the panelists.
It saddens me to read this sort of response to finding sex toys in a grown woman’s home. How is that funny? I think it’s wonderful! The author of the article I read only adds to the problem when she describes the event as ‘embarrassing’. Why is it embarrassing to own sex toys? Ok, perhaps you don’t want your kids or grandparents to find out about your sex toys on national television, but it’s not embarrassing to be sexual, to be a sexual woman, to own sex toys.
I would venture that Mr Lemon’s response fueled the response of the audience and the panelists. If he had said something sex positive and mature, rather than sex negative and childish, he could have opened people’s minds and helped to get rid of sexual shame rather than adding to it. He had a great opportunity to help people feel good about being sexual, to show just how normal sex is, but instead decided to use it as a joke, probably hiding his own shame. People often laugh when they feel uncomfortable and I wonder if the laughter that followed his comments were down to each individual’s own shame around sexuality or their discomfort with their host’s response?
I don’t plan to watch the show, but I wonder what Kerry’s response was. My hope is that she didn’t feel embarrassed, and just felt like it’s perfectly normal to be sexual and own sex toys. Hopefully she didn’t add to the shame and drama that Mr Lemon and the others demonstrated. Hopefully one day we’ll live in a world where sex, sexuality and sex toys are just a normal, wonderful part of our lives and not something to poke fun at or be ashamed about.