The Happy Trail

How to Talk About Sex: a TikTok Sexpert, Chloe, Explains 

Image: Screenshot of the bio and top vids from @chloe.explains’ TikTok.

By Kaya Heimowitz

  By day, Chloe Bush is a Behavioral Health Technician who graduated from the University of Colorado Boulder in 2022 with a degree in psychology. By night, she runs @chloe.explains, a viral TikTok account dedicated to talking about sex. 

  She started her account in 2020 when she was taking a semester off and working at a warehouse making COVID gowns. She had time to reflect on a class she had taken the previous semester on the social constructs of sexuality and on her experiences as a woman who had been taught to be ashamed of being a sexual being. She filmed one of her first videos in the bathroom of the warehouse she worked in about the health benefits of masturbation. 

  Bush says she just wanted to make an educational video about masturbation to help other women feel less ashamed about being sexual beings. “I just thought it’d be cool to put a video out there about masturbation, and if anyone happens to see it, hopefully, it’ll make a positive impact on their life and make them feel less shame and make them know that other women masturbate too.” 

  In high school when Bush’s guy friends would talk about porn, sex, and masturbation she and her female friends would say, “Stop talking about that,” or “That’s disgusting,” or “I would never touch myself.” She remembers feeling ashamed and that she couldn’t talk about watching porn or masturbating because her female friends would call it “gross.” Bush says that even though she wasn’t very religious, she always felt “like I’m doing something so disgusting and sinful, and like, I’m probably hurting my body, and I had all this shame, and these like false ideas about masturbation.” 

  Bush was not isolated in her experiences of shame and confusion surrounding masturbation. That first video went viral, and she received 500,000 followers within a week and hundreds of DMs from women asking questions, oversharing personal issues, and thanking her for destigmatizing masturbation. 

  Bush continued to post regularly for the following year and said that the ideas for her content came from her own questions and myths she had heard (like the myth shown on Glee that you could get pregnant from someone ejaculating in a hot tub). She also took inspiration from “DMs that I was getting from women wanting me to speak on specific topics, women reaching out saying they were experiencing this and not and if I could help at all.” 

  She first comes up with the idea for a video, researches the topic, writes a script, and then films. Bush says, “The knowledge that I gained from pursuing a bachelor’s in psychology like it taught me how to source from reliable sources.” She did all of this while being a student and even during her time studying abroad in Berlin.

  In fact, her interest in sex education is one of the reasons she studied abroad in Berlin. After learning about the sexual revolution occurring in Berlin in a psychology course and doing a final project on sex clubs, her professor from Berlin encouraged her to study abroad there and witness the revolution firsthand. Bush continued making educational videos about sex education while abroad and included some centered around travel, like a video about laws about sex in Berlin and a sex museum in Amsterdam. Living in Berlin helped Bush know she wanted to become a sex therapist. She is on track to achieve this goal and will start to study for a master’s degree in marriage and family therapy this fall. After completing this program, she plans on getting her license in sex therapy and officially becoming a sex therapist, so she can turn sex education into her career. 

  On her TikTok account, she has covered topics ranging from facts about penises, to squirting, to pornography, to period sex, to UTIs. If you have ever wondered about it, there’s a good chance she’s made a video about it. While there may be plenty of people who message her telling her she’s wrong for speaking about these topics, they are outnumbered by the sheer amount of people – mostly women – who continue to ask questions and thank her for bringing these topics up. The amount of people who want to learn more highlights a real education gap and indicates just how important it is for all of us to work to destigmatize these topics and learn more. The best way to remove the taboo surrounding sexual health is to start talking about it! So, let’s all talk about sex!