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Body and Sexuality Disconnects with Disability

evan21 asks:

Hi all! This might be a super specific question only to me, or it may help some of you out in the Interwebz, too. I am a university student with a disability called cerebral palsy. As a result, I walk on crutches. I have also been a virgin for all my 21 years. Generally I'm a romantic type of guy, but in a university environment, this tends to get me friend zoned pretty quickly. Lately I've realized I carry a lot of shame about my body and my sexuality. I can't be seen as a sexual object, because it would "ruin" my romantic image. Because of the disability, I tend to live in my head and not deal with my body as much.

Even though I'm an outgoing, positive person, anything to do with sexuality makes me feel bad and down on myself. This can be anything from meeting a girl on a night out and getting rejected, to thinking about all the fantasies and kinks I may or may not have. What should I do? How can I feel comfortable in my own body and with my own sexual nature, particularly when it doesn't look like I'll be sharing it with someone anytime soon?

Thanks so much for all the work you do on the site. I recently discovered you guys, and you all are awesome!

I want to try masturbating, but I'm afraid it will hurt.

insanity98 asks:

I'm 15 years old. The only sexual things I've done are kiss and give a handjob. I want to start masturbating but I'm very scared. I have an EXTREME fear of pain: I can't even get shots without hysterics. Pain scares me more than the average person, and it's getting in the way of my sexual pleasure.

I've never fingered myself and I don't know how. I've looked at diagrams and at myself but I'm just not sure where my vagina opening is. I've never used a tampon, due to pain fears. When I tried fingering, I was very tight. I've read some answers here that said that a reason for vaginal discomfort when trying to insert objects could be that you're anticipating pain. So, how do I finger myself? What do I do since I'm so tight? Will my fear of pain get in the way of masturbation and, in the future, sex? How can I calm myself down enough so I won't be so scared and insertion will be easier? Please help me. I'm very scared. Thank you.

Implanon Part 3: The Upgrade

Back in 2009, I wrote two blog entries about Implanon: what made me decide to use that particular method, and my experience of having it inserted. Those pieces live here and here.

Although the implant is a long-acting method of contraception, it does only last three years, so eventually it needs to be removed entirely or replaced. For me, the decision to get mine replaced was kind of a no-brainer. Everything that factored into my original choice was still there: my desire not to have children at the moment, the other medications I'm on, the very high effectiveness rate, the fact that it requires pretty much no effort on my part. Plus, after three years, I knew what the side effects would be like for me, and in general, those have been pretty minimal. One of the main reasons people get the implant removed is irregular bleeding or spotting, and while I definitely don't have a regular cycle anymore, I'm not bleeding constantly and I've had only a little bit of spotting on occasion.

One

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Of Bums and Bellies: When Body Image is Down and Out, Should Sex Be Up and Running?

Vee17 asks:

My boyfriend and I have recently discussed trying anal for the first time together. I'm perfectly happy to try it apart from a few concerns, most of which I've found answers and explanations to in response to questions already asked by other users. But there's one issue I've not come across: it's quite personal and frankly I've never spoken to anyone about it, ever, not even my partner. I know that pubic hair grows to quite far down past the vagina, but I seem to have quite a lot of hair around my anus. It's something I've tried getting rid of by shaving but I can't reach it all. I've never waxed, but I'm considering it because I wouldn't want to have a hairy bum while trying anal. I don't know if anyone else has this or if it's even safe to wax around there, but I'd really like a solution because then I think I'd be more comfortable not only about anal sex but also about my body image anyway.

Quick Hits: Yet More Kinds of No

Sevensinz asks:

I was wondering, can a doctor tell if you've masturbated? And in the case they can, is it possible to mistake it for being sexually active? I'm asking because I have a lot of health problems and I have to see an OB/GYN soon, which means that there's a chance the doctor will check to see if my vagina looks right. And I'm really scared because I don't want them to think that I'm sexually active, which with my health, would probably cause them to talk to my parents. And I'm just to shy to stick up for myself, so I really don't want that to happen. Thanks in advance for your answer.

Lube 101: A Slick Little Primer

Meet our good friend, Lube. It can't create world peace, but it can make some kinds of sex more comfortable, masturbation or other sex you already enjoy even better, help prevent condoms from breaking and more.

Do Yoga With Me

Free online yoga classes, for healthier bodies and healthier minds! Besides increasing strength and flexibility, yoga has proven itself as a great stress-reduction tool. Do Yoga With Me has videos for all levels of experience and fitness- all you need is some comfy pants and a clear spot on the floor.

Fear of pregnancy? Ready for sex?

Hannahcarissa95 asks:

I am almost 18. My long distance boyfriend is 22. I have decided he is the man I want to lose my virginity to. Seeing as he is 1500 miles away means that he is not going to be doing it anytime soon. However, I am going to where he lives for Thanksgiving and we are planning on doing it then. He is a very spiritual guy and has a strong feeling that I might get pregnant on the first time that we have sex. He thinks this due to the fact that I really want a baby and I always have. But I want one when I am married and able to support it and a family. I told him that the best that we can do is be safe and smart about sex and protection and if it happens it happens but I need some advice on what else to tell him. Could you help me? I also was wondering if you have any suggestions about what would be the best plan of action if I were to get pregnant? In my mind abortion is not an option for me. I asked him what we would do and he said that he would obviously support me with multiple jobs. we would get our own place. But we all know that things never go exactly how you plan them. What do I do to ease his worries and my own?

Bothered by being "hot and bothered"

Jackieson9d8 asks:

I'm 14 and am constantly hot and bothered and have constant erections. I've been like this for as long as I can remember even when I was little. I find I have to masturbate every 4 to 7 days or I will start to ache when I get a erection. I'm a little worried but I can't exactly discuss this with family or friends because it's embarrassing. I want to know if this is something to see a doctor about or if its fine as it is but any way it would really help if you could give me a reply.

I'll Show You Mine: Blink

This is our final installment of stories and photographs from I'll Show You Mine, a book by Wrenna Robertson and photographer Katie Huisman, and by all of the women featured in the book, collectively. To find out more about the book, Wrenna, and why we think this is such an important project, check out our interview with her here. Or, you can visit the website for the book to find out and more and get a copy for yourself.

If you'd like to ask the person whose body and words are featured in each entry any questions or have a conversation with her, most of the subjects have agreed to make themselves available here in the comments for discussions with our readers. As mentioned in Wrenna's interview, so many people never get the opportunity to talk about genitals in an honest, open and safe way with others, so we encourage you to avail yourselves of the opportunity, and are so grateful to the women involved for making this kind of conversation available to Scarleteen readers.

We're also

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Information on this site is provided for educational purposes. It is not meant to and cannot substitute for advice or care provided by an in-person medical professional. The information contained herein is not meant to be used to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease, or for prescribing any medication. You should always consult your own healthcare provider if you have a health problem or medical condition.