communication

Off Script: Some Sex Stuff that Isn't Talked About

PlaygroundPushover
asks:
I'm a virgin, a girl and on the pill. I have a boyfriend and we're ready to have sex. We've been talking about it for months and we both feel we are finally ready. I honestly cannot wait to have sex with him, (I wouldn't say I'm the girl in the classic script), we both want it. We're very comfortable around each other and have done everything except vaginal sex....

What Is Healthy Sexual Development?

Depending on your view, the answer to that question might seem really obvious or very tricky and hazy.

At a recent conference I was part of in London, Alan McKee presented a talk which included a piece published in the International Journal of Sexual Health (2010, 22(1), Healthy sexual development: a multidisciplinary framework for research. What McKee and his colleagues determined to be the core parts of healthy sexual development had me jumping up and down in my seat with joy (literally: I may have disturbed my fellow attendees with my bouncing). It summed up the things we try to support, encourage and inform our users with and keep core at Scarleteen so well, and so much of what I think -- after many years of thinking hard about and working with these issues, and being fully and broadly immersed in them with a very diverse population -- truly is central to healthy sexual development.

I'm delighted to have permission to excerpt and reprint this framework here.

Prior to Periods

Laura
asks:
I'm 13 and i just want to know out of curiosity if you can have sex if you haven't ever had your periods AT ALL? Does it make any difference if you've had them before or if you haven't?...

I feel dirty and irresponsible because of genital herpes

fairies
asks:
I'm 20 and have been with my partner for about two and a half years. We have a great relationship and are happy together. However, two years ago, when we first started sleeping together, I contracted genital herpes, even though we used condoms. I was a virgin before I slept with him so I knew it had come from him....

How Can a Lesbian Have Sex With a Dyke? (Or, How Good Consent & Communication is the Answer to Everything for Everyone)

Sun11
asks:
I'm a 19 year old lesbian ("Lipstick") and my girl friend is a "Dyke" and I know she has had previous partners and well so have I but never a Dyke. I'm scared of what may happen when we actually do have sex. What if I do something she's not comfortable with? Matter of fact what do I do if I do? I'm scared that I'll completely blow it and ruin our sexual relationship. ...

How to Become an Expatriate of Owville

PaulaKristine
asks:
I am a 20 year old female. I have been sexually active since I was 17. Every time I have sex whether I was in a relationship with them or not having sex hurt. When we first start to have sex it feels good, but after a few minutes it starts to hurt, feeling like the penis is hitting a wall. I can't last for more than around 5 minutes or the sex feels like intense pain....

Hooking Up Can Be Awkward - Until It's Great

I host consent workshops professionally, and at one point during past workshops, when the audience is generally settled and feeling comfortable opening up, I have asked, “Who here has ever had something silly and awkward happen during a hookup? Even slightly awkward.” Hands have shot straight up and we all ended up getting a good laugh out of it. It just goes to show how awkward connecting with sex can be, whether you're in bed, thinking about it, or just talking about it!

I think a lot of these awkward moments happen because of the conversations we are having around our romance, or, should I say, the conversations we aren't having.

What Makes Someone Good in Bed?

veganpop
asks:
I'm confused as to how a girl can be "good" in bed in a heterosexual relationship? What does it mean to be good at sex?...

A Faking Farewell

Confused Teen
asks:
I've been in a relationship with my current boyfriend for a year now, and we've been having sexual intercourse for around 8 months. Throughout this time, I have NEVER reached an orgasm through sex, but because I thought I was the weird abnormal one, and was afraid of how my boyfriend may react, I since have faked it every single time which we have had sex....

Whoa, There! How to Slow Down When You're Moving Too Fast

Is your sex life or sexual relationship feeling like someone pressed the fast-forward button and now it's spinning out of control? Evaluate whether things are moving too fast for you or a partner, and then get some help on pulling back the reins and slowing things down to a more comfortable pace.