Sex On Wheels voyeuristic exploitation or compassionate programme-making? – Compassion from a TV Channel… Thats Rich!

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Sex life with disability: Channel 4's documentary Sex On Wheels focused on disabled people's sex lives

Sex life with disability: Channel 4’s documentary Sex On Wheels focused on disabled people’s sex lives


Channel 4’s documentary Sex On Wheels looked at the sex lives of four people with disabilities.

Pete had cerebral palsy and was so sexually active, he wanted to be a porn star.

And another (Leah) had brittle bone disease. She had broken every bone in her body but, she announced cheerfully, ‘None during sex!’

On the other hand, Karl, a handsome, laddish 32-year-old had been physically and sexually active until ten months earlier when a car accident left him paralysed from the waist down. ‘I want my erection back!’ he demanded bluntly.

Finally, John, 26, was born with global development delay, a condition that made it difficult for him to communicate with any potential partners.

‘What are the main reasons for you wanting to have sex?’ the interviewer asked him.

‘To lose my virginity,’ he said.

To help him achieve this aim, his mother had taken the ‘difficult’ decision to hire an escort.

Sex On Wheels was an unofficial follow-up to The Undateables, the controversial series about the difficulties a group of severely disabled young people faced when trying to find a date.

Channel 4 resisted the temptation to call Sex On Wheels something similarly sensational like The Unshaggables but that’s basically what it was.

Like The Undateables, it trod a fine line between coming across as voyeuristic exploitation or a piece of touching, compassionate, thought-provoking programme-making.

Its subjects were Leah (aged 23 from Bedfordshire), Pete (26, from Hampshire), Karl (32, Cheshire) and John (26, West Yorkshire). Sex On Wheels was about their disabilities and their sex lives.

Two of them were sexually active – to say the least! Read more…

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