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How Sex and the City is Still Relevant 20 Years Later

Sex. An act so taboo and provocative even today, it’s hard to imagine how a show like Sex and the City was allowed to air twenty years ago. Yet, every observation Carrie Bradshaw seems to make about it is still applicable in today’s dating world. It’s possible that the show was years ahead of its time, but I personally believe that maybe, sex and dating are always going to stay the same. Sex and the City resonates with millennial dating culture either way, making the show a universal guide on navigating the rocky landscape of the current dating scene.

In the sixth episode of the first season, “Secret Sex,” Carrie struggles with the fact that maybe Big is hiding her from the world: an issue I’ve faced with men multiple times. Especially in college, men love to make it a secret about their hookups. Rarely will I ever hear guys talk about girls they hookup with, yet all my girl-friends will tell anyone who will listen about their conquests. For men, sex is simply just that. Sex. They want to keep their women hidden from the world so it doesn’t hurt them in future pursuits with other women, and it helps to avoid commitment. If no one knows about you, how can you possibly expect a relationship?

Carrie brings up the idea of monogamy in the following episode, which made me think: how is it that with technology and constant communication, relationships have gotten even more rare? In the 90’s, being exclusive with someone seems to have been a myth according to Sex and the City.  Yet in 2018, we hardly see relationships lasting. Perhaps monogamy will always be unappealing to men, as highlighted by the responses Carrie receives when asking males, but I think it’s different. When you can contact someone at every waking moment and always know what they’re doing, it takes the fun out of dating. The excitement to see them isn’t there, as you already talk to them every second and have nothing to look forward to.

Regardless of the reasons, dating today is still similar to what it was then. People have sex, wonder what they are, and then typically it doesn’t work out. And like Carrie and her friends, we try again and again, hoping each time it’ll be different. Yet each time, we end up back with our friends complaining about how awful men are and swearing them off.

And sometimes, the b*tch fests with our friends end up yielding results. Often, like in Sex and the City, we discuss sex. This cathartic release allows me to feel closer to my friends. The intimacy of the topic and the trust garnered with my friends makes these hangouts make me feel so much closer to them. Carrie Bradshaw taught us a valuable lesson: talking about sex will not only make your love life and your satisfaction better, but it will also help you form stronger bonds with your friends.

If there’s anything I’ve learned from applying Sex and the City to this day and age, it’s that the only thing I can count on is my friends. In a world where dating still means isolation, lack of communication, and sex-centered relationships, the only genuine bonds can be with your girlfriends. The relevance of Carrie’s friendship with Samantha, Miranda, and Charlotte is one that will always be universal, no matter how much relationships with men develop and change overtime. Instead of ending the night with a man this weekend, grab your closest gal pals for some cosmopolitans, good Chinese food, and Sex and the City.  Just enjoy each other’s company; it’s way better than any sex you’d have anyways.

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Emma is a sophomore at the University of Pittsburgh studying communication and political science. She is originally from Wyomissing, Pennsylvania aka Taylor Swift's hometown. In her free time, Emma is a member of Theta Phi Alpha and serves as their junior Panhellenic rep, as well as a member of the Pink Campus Team. She enjoys listening to music, watching movies, reading, writing, and going to the gym.
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