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Scarleteen Confidential: How “Men Suck” Messes Everybody Up

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 here at Scarleteen, or follow the series on Tumblr at

Messages parents or guardians have given our users about gender come up frequently, and often problematically. We often see the negative impacts of crummy ways some of their parents frame and talk about gender. As feminists and queer activists, we address gender stereotyping often in our content and conversations around women and gender nonconforming people of many stripes (or polka dots, whichever one prefers), and we know the weight of it all too well. But gender stereotyping is not just everybody’s problem, it’s a problem for everybody, and that includes for men, and the problems, for everybody, many gender stereotypes


I'm a guy interested in receptive anal sex: does that mean I'm gay?

bobwilkins asks:

I'm a 16 year old boy, and for as long as I can remember I have been attracted to girls and yet rarely able to feel comfortable around them and get to know them. I've always been a nice person (the friendly guy) but without that many actual close friends who are girls. Recently I've noticed I am turned on (and everything that follows that) with the thought of receiving anal. Yet when I actually tried to see what anal was like through porn (I know this isn't realistic) I really didn't like it (to be polite). People have sometimes quietly thought of me as homosexual as I've never had a girlfriend and now I'm really not sure about myself? There are so many bad stereotypes and public jokes about gays I don't think its worth considering? I guess if I could fall in love with a girl and kiss her I would be far more confident...but I shouldn't need this! Advice please?

The Truth Behind the Trope: Understanding the Realities of Teen Parenthood and Teen Pregnancy Prevention

What do we know about teen parents? Take a moment to make a mental list (or, if you’re motivated to get out a pen and paper, I won’t stop you) of all the facts and statistics you’ve heard.

In case you’re coming up short, I’ll give you a few:

  • Most teen parents drop out of high school.
  • Only 2% of teen parents will graduate from college by age 30.
  • Many teen parents will end up on welfare, costing tax payers billions of dollars nationwide.
  • The children of teen parents are more likely to fail a grade in school. Their sons are more likely to go to jail. Their daughters are more likely to become teen mothers themselves.
  • The relationships of teen parents almost always fail, leaving teen mothers to be single parents.

You can read more here or here or here or watch any episode of 16 and Pregnant that features Dr. Drew. He’ll usually cover most of these points before the hour is up – while interviewing young people who are actually parenting.

Beyond these “facts”, we hear plenty of othe


I'm a girl, he's a guy, and we're dating...but I think he's gay.

Anonymous asks:

I am dating this guy and I think he is gay. He had dated many girls recently but he has a 'gay' personality. He is very friendly, uses make-up and when I and my friends are around him we feel like he is a sister. My friends thinks I could do better but I am not sure if I should break up with him or not and he is emotional so I don't know how to tell him if I am going to break up with him. Is he gay? Should I break up with him?

Something Surprisingly Real in Secret Life

I cannot stand this show. No sense in being shy about it, because this is a bias I cannot hide, as will be apparent in nanoseconds.

If I had anything even remotely decent or interesting to say about it, I would have blogged it before now. But every single blog post I have even started to think about writing in the past about it had the same title every single time, one composed entirely of profanity except for the articles of speech linking all my four-letter words together.

Summaries and commentaries that read like these do not balanced critical commentary make:

  • "Parade of nonstop clichéd stereotypes! Night of one thousand -isms! All stereotypes encouraged and welcomed to march proudly on Monday! Heart-of-gold hookers! Sexually compulsive foster children and abuse survivors! Slutty latinas! Dry, unemotional Asians! Lady who doesn't know who the baby daddy is! Hypocritical evangelical girl! Hair-pluggin', affair-havin' mid-life crisis guy! Badly-behaved developmentally disabled pe

Assumptions about race; Or, "So, where are you from?"

This morning I had class at 7:45 am, which is brutal since A) I live way off campus which means that I have to get up more than 15 minutes before I need to be there, and B) I left campus last night around 10 pm. Also, I had not had any coffee (devastating, in my case), so as a result, during the break I ran over to the nearest cafe to grab some. While I was in line, a (white) person that I had never before seen in my life, walked up to me and asked me if I was Chinese. My immediate reaction was "uhmm, what?", while I tried to process this stranger in front of me, asking this randomly intrusive question without having had any coffee in my system. The kid held up a Chinese language workbook. "I need help with my homework, and I was wondering if you speak Chinese." he explained. I (politely, mind you, though it took a lot of restraint) told him no, I'm not Chinese and don't speak it.

I tried to process the situation over my cup of coffee, during the last remnants of my break. Why did thi


The Sticky Situation of Interracial Attraction

Are you in an interracial relationship? Do you have the hots for someone of another race? Attraction is all well and good until someone gets targeted for their race. Here’s the scoop: attraction is different than fetishism. People can have fetishes about all kinds of objects and acts, which can be part of a normal, healthy sexuality. Fetishes about people—particularly about specific races—are more complex than having a fetish about feet or breastfeeding, for example. Let me give my distinction between attraction to those of a certain race and fetish. Attraction is finding a person beautiful or sexy, part of which may be their race. A fetish is finding an object (or a huge, diverse category that someone perceives as an object, like say, race for example) sexy. The key here is looking at the whole person, not how their racialized characteristics fit into your preconceived expectations of them, and seeing that person as a person, not as an object.

Another distinction is that fetishes are


The Cutting Room Floor: Masculinity, Gender and Orientation

It's often a bit of a bummer to do extended interviews for press pieces, because a lot of the time -- including just because of length constraints put on the reporter at hand, which are often very strict -- I find I feel like the most interesting stuff said, or some important context, winds up on the cutting room floor.


Bodaciously Bad Advice: Standardized Testing?

In Bodaciously Bad Advice, a new regularly updated feature at Scarleteen, I look at some of the dating advice articles from glamour magazines and around the web. I find that most of these advice articles are heterocentric and endorse many gender stereotypes, in addition to just being really crappy dating advice. In deconstructing the articles, I hope to help you, the reader, see them for what they really are and learn to apply these skills of critical observation and thinking to other areas.


Getting Through a Breakup Without Actually Breaking

Breakups sure can suck. But you can get through them, and come out on the other side okay. Find out what can make that easier, what can make them harder, and some ways to help yourself with so you can deal, heal and get back to the business of being your kickass self.

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.