Celebs Go Dating returned to screens last month, with eight new famous faces ready to be assisted by love experts Paul C Brunson and Anna Williamson in their search for romance.
On the line-up is Apprentice star Ryan-Mark Parsons, TOWIE’s Chloe Brockett, Made In Chelsea’s Miles Nazaire, rapper Abz Love, Married At First Sight’s Nikita Jasmine and Jessika Power, Geordie Shore’s Marty McKenna, and presenter Ulrika Jonsson.
At 54, Ulrika is the oldest person on Celeb’s Go Dating this season - and, when she sat down for a double date with Chloe Brockett, the men they’d brought out to the restaurant were intrigued by her relationship history.
‘So, I’ve been single I guess for three and a half years,’ explained Ulrika. ‘Done quite a bit of…’ she added before choosing to leave her sentence unfinished.
‘Spit it out,’ her date prompted impatiently.
‘Dating and sort of, not seeing people but, like..’ Ulrika paused again.
‘Doing bits?’ Ulrika’s date asked.
To which she simply replied ‘yeah’ and looked down at her lap as she avoided anyone’s gaze.
Chloe laughed and defended her, saying: ‘Doing bits! Ulrika doesn’t do bits! She’s a respectful woman!’
Ulrika’s date responded: ‘Yeah until 10pm,’ which made the presenter laugh for the first time in the entire scene.
People on Twitter did not enjoy this exchange. ‘Hearing Ulrika say she “does bits” leaves me cringing a little,’ wrote one user.
‘Argh! Ulrika talking about “doing bits,”’ added another alongside the vomiting emoji.
Seemingly, the only reason anybody has a problem with Ulrika ‘doing bits’ is her age. When the phrase catapulted into pop culture thanks to the 2018 series of Love Island, nobody was saying it made them feel sick then. Because Ulrika is a 54-year-old woman with four children, suddenly there seems to be a problem.
This reaction is overwhelmingly unfair. Of course, women do not automatically become asexual beings the moment they pass 50. In not allowing women of a certain age to speak about sex comfortably, it becomes drenched in shame, which has long been a way for society to control desire and promiscuity.
Noticeably, Ulrika wasn’t the one who said ‘doing bits’. She was so hesitant and careful in the way she explained her casual relationships, presumably because she knew she would be judged. It was only when she was pushed that she said anything at all. And her words were quiet and body language uncomfortable.
It’s unsurprising Ulrika chose to be slightly coy. First, she was on a first date and probably unsure what to reveal. Second, she has faced backlash previously over the fact that her children have four different fathers: ‘Four children…All with different fathers… such a mixed-up world we now live in…’ wrote one troll.
Ulrika is single, attractive, clever, and funny. It shouldn’t be sickening or shocking that at the age of 54 she still has a sex drive. She has spoken openly about how her last marriage was sexless for nine years. Why shouldn’t she enjoy single life and all that comes with it now that it’s over?
‘I reached this point where I [didn’t] want to be in a relationship,’ she told Vicky Pattinson on her The Secret To… podcast. ‘But I do want to have sex – and I’d like to have a lot of it. please.’