safer sex

All the Barriers! All the Time!

Everything you'll probably ever need to know about safer sex barriers, like which to use, how to use them, how to get more comfortable with them, and how surprisingly cute they are.

This Way, Not That Way: Avoiding One of the Most Common Condom Oops

hatOne of the most common condom whoopsies we hear about from our users involves themselves or a partner going to put a condom on, then discovering they've put it on the wrong way.

Often, after doing that, they'll also report following that up with a second common oops, which is just flipping that same condom over and then putting it on the right way.

Figuring Out How to be a Lesbian Safer Sexpert

When I started having sex with girls, there was no one cheering, especially not encouraging me to have safer sex. But over the last few years, I’ve finally begun to feel confident with safer sex, and it’s improved my sex life a million percent. I wish I’d gotten comfortable with it sooner.

His Religious Beliefs Are No Condoms, But I Need Them. What Do I Do?

sapphire12758
asks:
The guy I'm sleeping with really wants to have PIV sex with me, but he won't wear a condom because he's Roman Catholic. Everything else we've done has been amazing and I really want to do it, but I'm terrified of getting pregnant and I've already had a scare that I haven't told him about. I'm on the pill now, but I know that it isn't 100% effective....

We Really Liked Anal Sex, But Should We Do It Again?

likeboom
asks:
My boyfriend and I, both 18, are very comfortable with each other. We took things slow, somewhat due to my discomfort in the religious section and partly to make it more genuine. Skip forward a bit and we are delving into the world of sexual activity. I want to steer clear of PIV sex for pregnancy reasons and virginity reasons....

STI Testing, Safer Sex Social How-Tos, Fresh Starts and a Bittervention

frenchiemathwhiz
asks:
Heather: I have a question about STD testing, but it's together with a lot of other stuff, so I'm giving you some of the whole story. My long-term boyfriend just broke up with me, seemingly out of the blue. We were together for several of the most tumultuous years of our lives—we dealt with so much stuff, I can't even describe it....

After Contraception or Commitment, Why You Still Gotta Rock Safer Sex

We sometimes deal with a tough situation in direct service: a user comes in, and reports having contracted an STI; a user who also isn't a first-time user of our site or services, and who, in a previous conversation with us about pregnancy risks, blew off also talking about STIs and safer sex and turned down help we offered to them to reduce their STI risks, not just pregnancy risks.

This is one of those things where there's no joy or pride in being right: it stinks to be right about someone getting any kind of illness and being unhappy.

Of forgotten condoms. And days without pants.

It occurs to me that the "we both forgot to use condoms" thing that comes up often enough is a bit like suggesting that a person forgot to wear pants.

For a whole day.

And didn't notice.

At all.

The Testing Diaries: Véro

This summer, I went to my clinic to see a general practitioner (GP) for an annual check-up.

Officially I’m a certain GP’s patient, but I see the residents that she supervises whenever I go. When I made the appointment, I did not have any particular concerns, but I wanted to get a pap smear and STI testing.

In the past, I have made some unsafe decisions, and I have also been in situations where a partner has not respected my condom-use wishes. Since then, I have had several clear results from pap smears and STI tests, but I have been going at least once a year as a precaution.

The Testing Diaries: Joey

I was tested for the first time seven years ago, shortly after I had my first sexual experiences. Things did not go according to plan: though I'd insisted on condom use, the person I was with at the time had not honored my request. I wound up on Scarleteen to ask about pregnancy risks, and was advised to test for STIs.