Skip to main content


Scarleteen Confidential: In Defense of Teen Media

This is part of our series for parents or guardians. To find out more about the series, click here. For our top five guiding principles for parents or guardians click here; for a list of resources, click here. To see all posts in the series, click the Scarleteen Confidential tag above, or follow the series on Tumblr at

For two years, I worked in a bookstore that was aimed primarily at children and teenagers. It was a job I quite enjoyed, but I quickly discovered that when you work near books, people always want to tell you their opinions on said books. That's fine most of the time. But I noticed a pattern when parents or adults would refer to The Hunger Games series. They would express dismay over a child wanting to read the book, wondering what they saw in it, and either implicitly or explicitly stating that they thought the book was not good for youth to be reading. I would usually give a neutral response about how yes, the book is dark (for t


You Can't Test for Virginity

Tammyluvgurl asks:

Hello I'm 13 and don't plan on having sex but my mother says that when I'm 16-18 she is going to get me checked to see if I'm still a virgin because I'm religious and we believe in no sex till marriage. Even though I don't plan on having sex, does masturbation affect the test the doctors going to take? And how do they take this test? Because I don't want to masturbate and find out the doctor says I'm not a virgin. Is there even a way for the doctors to test it (because my mom could be bluffing)?

P.S. me and my moms relationship is good so she would trust me if I told her I didn't have sex plus if I did she would be understanding.

My Friends Think It's Gross When I Talk About Sex

Freckle Face asks:

I"m 17 and I need some advice about my friends. We've known each other for years, one since toddler hood and the other two since middle school. They all talk about losing their virginity (or just having sex in general) all the time. When we go to college next year, when her boyfriend comes home for the summer, and on and on. However, whenever I say anything regarding something like that, they act like it's the grossest thing they've ever heard. It's like I don't get to have sexual thoughts like other people. All my other friends are perfectly fine with me commenting on those kinds of things, but my "best" friends aren't. Is that normal or do they not want me to talk about that for some reason?

Getting Married When We (May) Want Different Things from Sex

greentea23 asks:

I am 23 and I am getting married this fall. I have never had sex before because I have been waiting for marriage. My fiance is not a virgin. We have different views on the purpose of sex. His goals are intimacy and pleasure. I have a lifelong history of feeling guilty about any kind of physical pleasure and therefore trying to avoid it altogether. I really do not care whether I ever have an orgasm. I actually do not know what I think the point of sex is. How can we start a sexual relationship when our goals for sex are so different?

On submission and speaking up

BrooklynnL asks:

I am a trained Submissive. I have only ever been in relationships with Dominants who know exactly how to be sexually/emotionally involved with a Sub. I am extremely into bondage/spanking/biting/ect., and the Doms that I have been involved with know exactly how to effectively provide that for me in a sexual relationship. I don't think I can even HAVE an orgasm without the aforementioned activities.
But recently I met this AMAZING guy that I have totally fallen for. He is perfect in every way and is just a total dream. He is pretty dominant, but I know he isn't a dom. We have been dating for almost 4 months now, and I haven't told him about my sexual past. We have been having sex but it isn't at all satisfying to me. I've been faking all of my orgasms, and have been putting up with the "Vanilla" sex since we've started dating. I'm afraid to tell him about my sexual preferences. I'm scared that hell think its disgusting or weird and run away. Or even worse, he'll stay but not be able to provide the things I need in a sexual relationship which will completely ruin our entire relationship all together. How do I effectively communicate to him my sexual needs and tell him that I've been hiding this from him? It's really hard for me to even think about doing that because as a Submissive I have always been with Dominants who always know exactly what I want and provide for my needs. Help!

My Boyfriend Doesn't Enjoy Oral/Manual Sex, and I Feel Bad About It

MojMycha asks:

My boyfriend doesn't enjoy receiving oral or hand jobs, and it makes me feel inadequate, what can I do?

Jealousy: Making Friends With a Green-Eyed Monster

How to tame those scary, growly feelings and use them for good.

He Flirts and I Feel Bad, but I Don't Want it to be Over

Lorelli123 asks:

So I'm 14 and me and my bf have gone through loads. We were best friends for three years and have been together for one and a half years. He struggles with bullying at school, so to impress this guy he got pics of two girls on Snapchat. This crushed me because he sent stuff to her like "your tits are perfect" and stuff like that. I found this out four months ago and put him through a lot, then finally forgave him a couple months ago. I know he loves me and I don't want to hear stuff like I should leave him or anything it just upsets me so please don't. It's great and were so in love but it's hard to forget sometimes and it does cause some arguments. I need help on getting over it, and keeping the relationship strong at school with the constant bullying about us and I want to keep my friends at the same time. If you can tell me how to not be bothered with him flirting because he flirts naturally and has friends that are girls more. (We do sexual things but not proper sex, which made me feel self conscious when he got those pictures and that feeling has faded but still effects me).

My parents and I have different ideas about sex and relationships - how can I still be honest with them?

purplenirvana asks:

How do I tell my mom that I'm not virgin anymore? Our family is very religious and believe in waiting for marriage. Me and my mom are really close and it just kills me not to tell her! Please help!

Don't Want to Have Sex?

Then don't! Here's a feast of support and help for those who want to say no, not now, or not-like-this to sex or sexual relationships.

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.