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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?

Undoing Sexual Shame

Feeling ashamed about sex or sexuality? Here are some steps to help you get started on turning that around so you can learn to love, not revile, your sexual self.

Shame & Stigma: How It Makes Young Moms and Dads Feel

As a young parent, being shamed for the decisions you have made and being stigmatized for your identity makes navigating through the world -- and pregnancy and parenting -- much more difficult.

The Sex Goddess Blues: Building Sexual Confidence, Busting Perfectionism

Many women and girls feel insecure about sex, especially when it's new. How can we build some sexual confidence?

Connecting with WOC and Sexuality

Ever since puberty, I found my body to be a site of shame, something I desperately wanted to escape.

A transplant to predominantly white Catholic schools on Long Island, I was immediately deemed ugly. I had an older sister, but we were close enough in age that we were navigating puberty around the same time. As second-generation daughters of immigrant parents, we were on our own as far as navigating the personal and social meanings of our bodies.

A lot of hurdles were awkward for me. I grew flustered and self-conscious when relatives felt no qualms about making unsolicited comments about my body.

“You’ve got boobs now,” an aunt told me bluntly when I came over with my mother once. How could she mention them? I was mortified.

I could avoid it for a while by wearing starchy undershirts under my school blouses, but soon, I couldn’t hide my growing breasts anymore. I crossed my arms over my chest in an attempt to hide my nipples as they showed through my shirt, but I might as well have be

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Wild and Untamed Things: Why a Cult Classic Still Resonates After All These Years

Scarleteen volunteer Sam reflects on the significance of The Rocky Horror Picture Show and how it relates to sexuality, identity, and her middle school experience.

Recovering from Sexual Shame

123throwme asks:

When I was younger, I was caught "experimenting" with oral sex by my parents. They reprimanded me severely. Ever since then I've had a hard time coming to terms with my sexuality. It took me a long time to get over my feelings of how "sex is bad," but now I'm in a healthy, sexually active relationship. My problem is that, although I want to be intimate with my boyfriend, there's a part of me that still feels the shame of my younger self. It's led to me being uncomfortable with myself, and especially uncomfortable with oral sex (giving, but mostly just receiving). My sex life is fine, but I can tell that my partner doesn't really understand where I'm coming from. I haven't told him any of this, and I'd rather not. What can I do to get over this feeling?

You're Not Pregnant. Why Do You Think You Are?

Some people struggle with strong pregnancy fears when there isn't a pregnancy or hasn't even been any real risk of pregnancy. What's that really about, and how can you move forward?

I liked masturbating, but then I felt really gross about it. What now?

Csherenow asks:

I'm 13 years old. I've had an interest in sex since I was 10. So when I heard about masturbation for women, I was all for it. When I tried it, it felt great. But afterwards, I felt sick to look at my self in the mirror. I was disgusted by what I had done. Whenever I went back to school, I felt like everyone knew what I had done. I know they don't, but it still feels like it. It felt so good, though! Should I try again or just give up for the time being?

Lions and Tigers and Orgasms, Oh My! When Orgasm Seems Scary.

jelsova asks:

I'm a girl and I've been with my boyfriend for 8 months. I'm 18 and he's my first boyfriend. We've never had sex (he has had it before) but we've done other things. I have a problem though, I'm really scared to orgasm. Like we'll be doing something that feels so good and I know that if we just continued a bit longer I would get there (I feel the muscles contracting, the heart pumping, the intensity building and all that) but then I chicken out and make him stop. He's fine with it and very supportive and respects that I'm so scared, but it bothers me. Why can't I just let myself get there? It's the same deal if I um, "pleasure myself." Is there any way I can or he can help myself get over this fear of the unknown?

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