Our Live Chat Service
This is a real-time chat, staffed and seen only by you and our staff and volunteers. It works just like an IM conversation or Facebook chat. If you want a chat at a time it isn't scheduled, you can always come to the message boards and see if any staff are available and ask. You may also sometimes see the available chat icon -- a red S in a small yellow circle floating over the lower left of every site page -- outside of chat hours if and when staff are available for chat at times other than our set hours, and are welcome to come into chat anytime you see that icon.
Use for: Sex, sexuality, sexual health and relationship questions, help, support and referrals. This service does require your immediate and full attention, so if you want to be able to come and go throughout a conversation, especially with lapses of several minutes, hours or days, or want to multitask, please use the boards or SMS service instead. The current chat hours are:
- actively suicidal
- living in a home where they are a victim or otherwise a part of ongoing incest
- otherwise in immediate harm
We are glad, however, to help anyone in those circumstances to find local or online resources who do have the capacity and qualifications to provide direct intervention or other appropriate help.
We will no longer engage with users using proxies or other IP anonymizers in chat or on the message boards. Those using these tools here typically only do so to engage in abuse of our staff, users or our services.
Additionally, before using a direct service, please search the main site or message boards first for answers, as we have a very small staff for our level of service. Thank you!
- Monday: 10 AM - 1PM PST
- Tuesday: 12 PM - 3:00 PM PST
- Friday: 8:30 - 11:30 AM PST
- Saturday: 8 - 10 AM PST
If you want a chat at a time it isn't scheduled, you can always come to the message boards and see if any staff are available and ask. We're currently in the midst of making some changes to our schedule, so the current schedule should be considered temporary.
All of Scarleteen and its services are intended to expressly provide information, education and support within the scope of sex and sexuality, sexual health and relationships. That means things like:
- sexual anatomy, body changes and body image
- partnered sex and masturbation
- sexual response and pleasure (or lack thereof)
- sexual health issues such as STIs/STDs, contraception (birth control), abortion, finding sexual healthcare, and sex safety
- sexual and gender orientation or identity, including LGBTQA information and support
- relationships: dating, relationship models, casual sex, negotiation, communication and agreements; managing conflict, breakups, choices; managing sexuality where it intersects with non-sexual friendships or family
- consent and sexual communication
- preventing, identifying and surviving sexual abuse, assault or harassment
- sexual ethics, activism and politics
What CAN'T Scarleteen's direct services help you with? (And where can you get help?)
- Scarleteen staff can and will not answer or engage with ANY questions or discussions stemming from or about pregnancy fear or anxiety with people who are not pregnant or who are not or have not been otherwise directly involved with an actual pregnancy. For more on this recent policy change, what we CAN help with, and links to help with issues usually at the root of these fears, including anxiety and other mental health issues, click here.
- Medical emergencies or a medical evaluation, treatment or advice, such as a suspected or ongoing infection, chronic pain condition or a sexuality issue, concern or problem that has come up related to or deeply impacted by a health condition where only someone very educated in your condition can consult.For help with those, see: An in-person healthcare provider via a clinic, hospital, or private practice. If you need help finding or accessing one, call your insurance provider if you are insured, or contact your state, country, provincial or city public health or social services office. Scarleteen can often provide support and additional information once you get a diagnosis and treatment, but we cannot diagnose any user nor provide or advise about treatment for any medical conditions. For online information about overall health or specific conditions, we suggest the Mayo Clinic, the NHS, or the World Health Organization.
- Ongoing mental health issues or conditions like anxiety disorders, clinical depression, bipolar disorder or persistent phobias, or users stating they are at risk of harming themselves in any way. For help with those, see: A mental or general healthcare provider. For extra online support or information, you can check out the National Institute of Health, Mental Health, here, or Mental Health @ NHS Choices here. If you feel at risk of self-harm or suicide, calling 911 or a suicide hotline is the right next step.
- Those trying to conceive (trying to intentionally become pregnant). For help with that, see: An obstetrician/gynecologist, midwife, doula, other fertility/pregnancy educator, or a general healthcare provider. For online help and information, you can check out: Taking Charge of Your Fertility.
- Ongoing, persistent relationship conflicts which have not been resolved over time and/or with help and coaching already provided by us via our direct services. For help with those, see: Your partner. And yourself. Then your partner again. Then yourself. (AKA: communicate with each other and then make some decisions, y'all.) Or, you and your partner may need to consult with an in-person counselor, mediator or therapist.
- Abusive or dysfunctional family or partner situations where you are in immediate danger and need help. For help with those, see or contact: A domestic or interpersonal violence shelter, and/or your local social services department or agency. You may also call the police, or go to any hospital emergency room and ask for help. We can help with support around these issues once you are out of immediate danger, however, or help you find the appropriate help to get safe if you cannot find those shelters or services on your own.
- Legal advice. For legal help, see: A lawyer or contact your local legal aid service. Looking for age of consent laws and policies? Check out: Worldwide Ages of Consent @ Avert.
- Help or counseling for those who are currently perpetrating or have perpetrated emotional, physical or sexual abuse or assault. For help with that, see: A mental healthcare provider, such as a therapist or counselor. You can call local community centers or hospitals and ask about any available violence intervention programs which may be local to you. If you self-report any abuse or assault you have perpetrated to the police, you may also ask for counseling resources when you do. In the UK, this hotline is available for help for abusers. A similar service is available in the United States via the National Domestic Violence Hotline.
- Uterine scrying or other psychic services (in other words, "When will my period come?" "Am I pregnant?" "What is my boyfriend/girlfriend thinking?" For help with those, see: Waiting, in the case of waiting for a period. Or a home or clinical pregnancy test, to find out if you are pregnant. Or, your boyfriend or girlfriend, to find out what they are thinking, feeling or wanting, by asking them those things.
- Issues exclusive to, or those which predominantly only impact, those over 30, such sex in long-term marriages, sex and aging, or post-menopausal issues. For help with those, see: Your general or sexual healthcare provider, your local library or bookstore, or a sex-positive sex toy store. For extra online support, you can check out sex-positive stores which include educational content or assistance, like Good Vibrations, Babeland or Early 2 Bed; or adult sexuality education; or research centers like the CSPH or the Kinsey Institute. For those seeking help with sex and sexuality issues over 50, see the AARP's excellent sexuality section.
- Any issues you may have at other websites, such as bullying or harassment, issues of differing information, lack of service, etc. For help with those, see: Those other websites. Look for a contact from at the website to contact an administrator, owner or moderator.