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charting

Talking Menstruation with Toni

Toni Weschler used to be my neighbor, a fact that caused me to squee more than a little loudly and scare the bejeezus out of my pets when I first discovered it. Sadly, we didn't connect as often as I wish we had before I moved out of Seattle and to a more remote island outside the city.

A while back, I sent Toni some questions for Scarleteen, and many months later, she apologized for sending them to me so late. Now I owe her an even bigger apology for publishing them far later than that!

If you don't know who Toni is, she's the author of Taking Charge of Your Fertility: The Definitive Guide to Natural Birth Control, Pregnancy Achievement and Reproductive Health, which is pretty much THE book for people who want to chart fertility, and the book I used to learn how to do it well in my 20's. She also wrote a great book about menstruation and charting for teen women, called Cycle Savvy: The Smart Teen's Guide to the Mysteries of Her Body. She's an amazingly dedicated and energetic person

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It's Smart to Chart

What's charting? It's a person taking and keeping notes about their menstrual and fertility cycles. Those notes may be as little information as what days you get your period, may have more information, like what kind of flow you had and what discharges you experienced that month, or have just about anything and everything you can think of that does or may have something to do with your fertility cycle: your basal temperatures (a vaginal temp you take daily with a thermometer made for that purpose), your libido, your sleep patterns, the whole works. What information you include depends on what you want to observe, and what your needs in charting are.

When you hear about people charting their periods or overall fertility cycles, it's usually either about trying to conceive or using natural family planning (NFP or FAM) as a primary method of birth control. Many of you are not trying to conceive, and for younger people, NFP isn't a sound sole or primary method for you either because your

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Am I infertile because my mother was?

Anonymous asks:

I'm 15 years old, going on 16 and I've been told my whole life by my Mom that I'm not supposed to have kids. I mean, in terms that I'm not able to. She was supposed to infertile (they were married for two years before me and there hasn't been anything since) and she's only had me. She told me that because I'm so much like her that I'm probably infertile too. I've never had the tests done. Gynecologists creep me out. For some reason, I've always wanted to be a mom. I'm really great with kids and I love them to death. I feel awkward feeling this way! Is this normal? I'm I wrong to feel this way? When I get older, is there any way that, supposing I am infertile, I could have a baby? Is it wrong that I want to be a mother so much? I've told one of my ex boyfriends (when we were still dating) about it and he just called me a whore for it. Is this natural? Is there any way to fix infertility?

What do you want to know about periods and sex?

Ellie asks:

If you're due to start your period and your boyfriend fingers you, can fingering stop you from coming on your period or make you a little late?

A cornucopia of "Can I get pregnant if...?"

Anonymous asks:

Does precum contain enough sperm to get you pregnant if you have sex when its present? Also, if the guy pulls out and the cum gets all over your vagina and the a few minutes later he re-enters you, is that a pregnancy risk? My friends have told me that it's impossible, but I don't know. I'm scared, please help!

Get With the Flow: All About FAM

The Fertility Awareness Method (FAM) is a means for women to observe the three primary fertility signals: cervical fluid, waking body temperature and cervix changes so that you can be as in-the-know as possible when it comes to your own fertility and menstrual cycle. Find out the basic how-to so you can make the mystery of your own fertility cycle become a lot less mysterious.

Is it safe to have unprotected sex ten days after a period?

Anonymous asks:

I had unprotected sex with my girlfriend 2 days after her periods was over, as she told me that 10 days after period are safe to have unprotected sex. Her last period was 27th October. Well today, 19th November, she called me and said that her period repeats in 20-25 days and she should have period now but she is not having. Can you tell me the reason? Another question, is that safe to have unprotected sex after period within 10days? Please mail me answer, also fast please.

Signs of PMS and pregnancy risk

anonymous asks:

I have a question about menstrual symptoms. My 13 year old cousin just had her first period and since I am really the only other girl that can give her advice on her period (we're the only girls in a large family made up of boys), I just wanted to know what are the signs when you're about to start your period. I told her from my experience, I'm 17, that my breasts get tender and I have cramps, but are there any other signs that I can tell her. I want to help her out because I had to learn about them on my own and I'm still learning, so this question really helps both of us out.

Also, I'm sexually active and my boyfriend and I are really careful because we both don't want to get pregnant. Is there a certain time of the month that the chances of me conceiving are lowered? I mean, I read the article about discharge and how thick or thin it is tells me what phase I'm in. I tend to worry, even though I know the condom didn't break and no sperm were anywhere near my vagina. So really, how can I keep myself from stressing out about when my next period will start.

Right now, I'm a day late but I know it's due to stress. I just started college and I'm now worried about things like tuition, my studies and the fact that my boyfriend and I are going to different schools. I trust him completely but a part of me can't help but wonder. How can I keep my stress levels down as well. I know of one way and that's when I'm with my boyfriend, but I'd like another way to reducing it.

Thank you, I know this got a bit long.

Ovulation, intercourse pain and how sports effect sex

Anonymous asks:

I am a virgin and naive to many things concerning sexuality. I have a boyfriend now and am curious. Can you tell me how a women's ovulation cycle works? How do I know when I am ovulating? During what time of the month will sex be the most painful?

I am also wondering if certain sports can affect first sexual intercourse. I am a dancer, which means I do a lot of stretching. Can this sort of physical activity wear away my hymen? As dancers, we also have the tendency to clench our butt muscles. Can the tightness in these muscles affect sexual intercourse?

Wasn't that a safe time to go unprotected?

Kayla asks:

Me and my boyfriend had unprotected sex on the second to last day of my period, we thought this would be safe as it is highly unlikely to become pregnant at that time. I am now 8 days late, and never usually late, but have been experiencing abdominal cramps for about 4 days on and off as though my period is going to start. Could I be pregnant?

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