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My friend is making terrible choices: how can I help?

Marie asks:

My best friend thinks its safe to have unprotected sex. She's sixteen (and has been for six months) and her boyfriend is fourteen (and will be for another three months). He thinks she's on the pill, so he doesn't ask her that they use a condom. Even though both of them were virgins, she was his first girlfriend while she had been "messing around" with guys as old as thirty four when she was as young as twelve. Her boyfriend is best friends with my boyfriend, and she is my best friend. Neither my beloved or I want to see this happen, but she acts like it's no big deal, and he yells every time we try to ask about it. She tells me I don't know what I'm talking about, since I'm a virgin and so is my boy -- and we intend to stay that way until we're in a truly committed relationship -- and says to just quit bothering her about it. If I didn't know for a fact that my best friend WANTED to have her boyfriends baby -- and soon -- I wouldn't stress nearly as much as I am currently. I don't know what to do, and was wondering if you could give me any advice... anything is helpful, I know she isn't ready for a kid and wish I could find a tactful way to convince her that there is no safe kind of unprotected sex. I've already showed her Scarleteen, and she brushed it off... so I'm out of ideas. Thanks much!

How do I support someone coming out to me?

Anonymous asks:

How do I best support a family member who has come out to me? The person is 15 years old and says they are bisexual.

Pandora's Aquarium

An online support group, message board, and chat room for rape and sexual abuse survivors with 24/7 peer support, access to links and resources, so no one ever needs to feel alone.

Blinders Off: Getting a Good Look at Abuse and Assault

A basic lowdown on interpersonal abuse and assault: what all the terms mean, why strangers are the least of our worries, what a cycle of abuse looks like, how you can start seeing abuse for what it is, where it is, and how to protect yourself and others and make abuse stop.

He's my boyfriend, so how could it have been rape?

worried asks:

I was forced to have sex a few days ago and I'm worried I could have caught something. I have this itch that feels like it's on the walls of my vagina and I can't scratch it because, obviously, it's internal and I don't wanna make myself bleed. Does any infection have symptoms of an itch like that?

My boyfriend decided to take my virginity by force but can I call it rape? He is my boyfriend, but I didn't think I was ready for sex and he pushed it on me that night with a guilt trip. Please help.

Can I have a friend with me during an exam?

Taylor asks:

Why is it that when I went with my friend to Planned Parenthood, they wouldn't let me go in the room with her even though that's the whole reason she brought me? I wanted to go in to see how it's like so I can possibly make an appt. for myself. But I'm scared and I want someone in with me. Will they allow it if I say I want my boyfriend or friend in there with me?

I was raped a few years ago: how do I tell others and build trust again?

Leslie asks:

Hi, when I was about 16 (I am 21 now), I was sexually assaulted by two extended family members. Over the years it has caused me to loose trust for many males especially the ones I met after the incident and males of my race. The only people I seem to fully trust are my four brothers and parents. I have not told them about he incident and I am scared to do so because I don't know how I will or what their reaction might be. I am also facing a problem with dating. I am a little scared to date as I don't know how my partner my react to this incident or if I will treated nicely. Recently, I have been approached by two male friends who have interest in me and I am a little scared to even date them. I have built a trust for them. What should I do?

I was molested on an airplane: was it my fault?

Amsinha asks:

When flying on a plane back to New York I ended up sitting next to a man who had the wrong idea about me. He started out by complimenting me but the moment I lay down to sleep he started kissing me and feeling my breasts and ass sexually without my consent. This happened the day after I turned 18 and he made two very obvious attempts to engage me in something I wasn't into and didn't want. When I returned to my seat after a while the guy noticed that I was pissed and began talking to me about his reasons, one of which was that he asked for consent and that I gave it to him. I don't remember his asking or my consent partly because I was in a state of half asleep and listening to my ipod on maximum volume. The two of us had four seats to ourselves which I used to push him away from me after the fact, however throughout the rest of the flight and the last few days I have had a nagging feeling in the back of my head that I somehow told him it was okay even though it felt completely wrong and one sided.

I'm pregnant: he's MIA, and my parents want me to abort. Help!

Elydia asks:

I found out that I was pregnant a couple of months ago and after I told my boyfriend, he broke up with me. I'm not really sure what to do especially because he won't even talk to me and his friends are starting to spread rumors that the baby isn't his. When I told my parents, they completely freaked and said that I had to have an abortion, but I don't want to. Basically, I'm not sure what to do. I don't know how to reach my now ex, but I do want him to be a part of our baby's life. What am I supposed to do if he doesn't want to?

I'm a sexual abuse survivor: how do I get okay being intimate again?

Anonymous asks:

I'm 15 years old and was sexually abused for two years in the past. How do I get over my intimacy issues?

The last boyfriend I had, anytime we were physically intimate, my chest would get really tight, I'd often start to shake, and I'd go into this blank zone where I'd just stare at the ceiling and my body would be completely unresponsive. It was really scary. Sometimes he would notice and ask me if I was alright, and I would just kind of nod numbly so I wouldn't disappoint him. Since that relationship, I've dated a little, but now it's gotten to the point where even kissing makes my stomach roil. I've had to stop seeing them so I wouldn't be put into a situation where they would try something physical. I cannot bear the thought of anything remotely sexual, and I feel like it's rapidly becoming an unstoppable downwards spiral.

I want to enjoy intimacy, not be terrified and repulsed by it. It's odd having my sisters gush over how good it feels when I just want to throw up. I feel really abnormal. I also feel like I'm never going to have a working relationship because what guy is going to want to be with a girl like me? It's frustrating, because I'm perfectly okay with all the other aspects of a relationship (of course I'd like to have someone to hang out with and cuddle with and all of that), but I'd just like it without the sex part.

What should I do? Is there any way I can fix this? I'm currently in therapy, but I still don't feel quite ready to open up and tell my therapist about my intimacy issues. It's easier this way. I hope you can help, I don't know what to do and I certainly don't want to get any worse!

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