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As an independent organization without state, federal, institutional, foundational or corporate funding, whose services have always been provided to millions each year at absolutely no cost -- not low-cost, not sliding-scale, but for free -- sustaining ourselves has always been a challenge. For a very long time now, almost our whole history, we've made clear that we can't sustain ourselves, and all our services, at only the meager level of support we've had to work with.
The kind of work we do is unsupported. Sexuality, sexual health and relationship education for young people, including additionally marginalized young people, like those who are LGBQA, transgender or otherwise gender nonconforming, those in or working to heal from abuse, those with disabilities, or of color and/or in cultures or communities deeply unsupportive of sexuality or sexual health outside very limited parameters, is unsupported. That is particularly so when our larger aim is happiness, autonomy and pleasureRead more...
(If that's a meaningless reference for you, have a click over. A little vintage Bowie, and with a sharp adultism callout, no less, is always good for the soul. And it's his 67th birthday today!)
Over the next few days, you'll notice some changes on the site. We are finally finishing the process of some design tweaks, and a pretty major reorganization of our static content on the site. Yippee! Myself, the volunteers, Casey, our badass developer, and Isabella Rotman, our snazzy artist-in-residence, have all had many conversations and brainstorming sessions to figure out the changes we wanted to make and felt best about when it comes to what we do, how we do it, what works best with our general ethos and the way we conceptualize comprehensive sex education, and how we want to grow from here, as well as what we feel will be most clear, comfortable useful for our users.
We hope everyone will be as excited about what we have come up with as we do!
Some sections we've had here for a long timRead more...
Scarleteen's users are diverse, as are the reasons they find us, and the issues they bring to us. For some, the needs are as basic as needing to know how and when to use a condom or a hormonal contraceptive, or learning the names and functions of body parts. Some want help figuring out if sex with another person is something they want or not, or are ready for; some need help learning to negotiate or assert their sexual or interpersonal wants and needs. Many just need to know, from especially from someone who doesn't want anything from them, that it's okay for them to have sexual feelings and a sexuality. Many users like these have access to sexual healthcare, supportive and caring families or communities, and haven't experienced great sexual or interpersonal traumas. For those users, we're often something they need, but not something they can't manage without. We're a valuable helper, but not the only help they've got to draw on.
Some of our users come to Scarleteen just once or twicRead more...
As you may know, we started our major fundraising drive for the year this month. Our goal, for the year, is to raise just over $40,000 from new donors in order to best sustain, support and grow our organization.
Since we began the drive on the 13th, you've helped us raise just over $5,000. If the donors who chose to give monthly all keep that up for the year, that will get us to $8,500 of the total funds we need. Hooray!
We're still a long way off from raising what we need, though.
Here to help save the day, longtime Scarleteen donor, supporter and superhero (and also kickass science author) Stephen Luntz has offered a $2,000 match for funds we can raise from today at 9AM PST, through Thursday, February 28th, at 9 AM PST.
That's just $2,000 we need your help generating in the next 48 hours in order to grab those matching funds.
(We won't actually grab them. We'll take them only when offered and then say thank you politely.)
Check out this new infographic from Jacob, a volunteer at SRead more...
If you're someone who takes part in end-of-year giving, we'd like to ask you to consider giving to Scarleteen.
As you may already know, Scarleteen was one of the first online resources for young people about sex and sexuality, and remains the leading, most visited online resource expressly created and maintained for young people to get extensive and excellent sex and sexuality information, education and support.
We provide opt-in, youth-driven content and direct services every year through articles that don't shortcut, but give young people the depth they ask for, advice columns done with the aim of support and education, not entertainment; a staffed SMS service and fully moderated message boards available seven days a week, 24 hours a day, where young people talk to real people with the skills to do so well, not templates, machines or some random yahoo on Yahoo; an ever-growing database of referrals to direct, in-person services and to other credible websites or organizations; in-perRead more...
Assuming you are a woman, (and if you are not please ask one to answer this) what did you do when you were a teen to avoid getting pregnant after giving a handjob or giving oral? What steps did you take?
I wash my hands a lot before using the restroom since I know I'll be wiping myself down there and I don't want there to be any sperm on the toilet paper or I don't want to accidentally touch my vagina while I'm down there.
But the thing is that when I washed them I realized that there could be sperm still living on the soap or living in the water on the container that holds the soap (forgot what it was called) or on the towel if I didn't get them all off the last time I washed them if I washed my hands just a little while ago due to the same reason.
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.
As we've done in the past -- like here and here -- today we've got a the whole of a short interview that was excerpted in small part for a piece over at Ms. Magazine yesterday, Future of Feminism: Sex Education As a Human Right.
Given some of the content and certainly some of the comments on another (just a note: a lot of the comments there are really rough, and there is intense transmisogyny afoot) of those pieces, one that I saw right after I'd sent this interview back to the author, I feel like the second half of this interview is particularly important, and I was sorry to see it didn't make the cut.
Q: How would you define feminist sex education?
A: I consider that a work in progress, ever-evolving, but you can see how I do that currently here:
Feminist sex education:
• Emphasizes -- for all sexes and genders, not just one or two -- autonomy, personal responsibility, full and active consent, sexuality in the holistic context of a whole, well-rounded life and healthy, equitable r