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Anatomy, biology, and body image. Loving your body and understanding how it works isn't always easy. We're here for all your questions, concerns, and insecurities. Ask away!

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Got questions? We've got answers. We're taking any—and we do mean ANY—of your questions. Relationships? Birth Control? Sex? All of the above? Bring it on. 

How do I deal with my parents divorcing?

What a great question, and something that is a large part of of our culture today. With nearly 50% of marriages ending with divorce today, a lot of kids you know might be going through the same thing. You might also find that other trusted adults or older peers might have already gone through this and could offer some great advice.


If you can talk to your parents about how this is affecting you, try that. Know that while this is hard right now, they didn't make this decision lightly, and probably really believe this is for the best for you and themselves. Relationships are great and amazing things can come out of them, even if they don't work out in the end. 

If you have siblings and you feel comfortable doing so - lean on them for support! Know that it is okay if you react differently than your siblings. If you're an only child, or simply don't feel comfortable approaching parents or siblings, try to find a support network outside of your home, lean on school counselors, friends, extended family, and/or other trusted adults. 

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I am dating a guy who i really like, and we've already had sex (safely). He was a virgin and we've only been dating for a month. I really want to keep having sex with him but I don't want that to be the only thing our relationship is about... Should we hold off for a while even though it was something we both enjoyed?

First of all, it’s awesome that you’re having safe sex, and that you understand how big of a step it is! There’s no harm in waiting to have sex, and you guys can still have a great relationship if you’re taking a break from sex. That said, if you both enjoy sex, there’s no reason to stop if you’re being safe. It’s good to be aware of not wanting your relationship to be all about sex, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that you need to completely stop. You might want to have a conversation with your guy and see where his head is at. You’re raising a really legitimate concern, and the same thing may have crossed his mind. Figuring out how to find balance in your relationship is something that you’re going to do best as a team. Whether that balance means designating one night a month as a movie-watching and cuddling night where you guys don’t have sex and just talk or it means taking a break from sex and focusing on the friendship, the best way to figure it out is through honest conversation.

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Well there's this guy and I've known him for around a year now but recently I've noticed him doing all these things that makes it seem like he likes me (like he's almost always around me, he talks to me first, he wrote that I love him on my arm, he put little heart emojis by his contact name on my phone etc) but I heard that he had a crush on this other girl for a while so I'm not sure whether he likes me or not. Am I just reading the signs wrong? Is he just being friendly and joking around?

Guys can be really hard to read! This guy might be flirting or he might just be playing around, but the only way to know what’s going on in his head is to ask. You might want to ask him what’s going on when you guys are alone so he doesn’t feel put on the spot in front of his friends. If you do decide to ask what’s going on, he might say that you guys are just friends, but at least you’ll know for sure what’s going on.

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I am currently talking to my crush, and I've liked him for almost three years, and he told me a little while ago he likes me (I asked him if he liked anyone). I was really happy and we're going on a date this coming weekend, and I'm looking foward to our last year of high school together. But I'm afraid we'll get tired of each other half way through the year. I've always wanted to date him, but now that I have a chance with him I'm worried about losing him. What should I do? I'm trying to stay positive and optimistic but I'm just really worried.

The last year of high school is full of all sorts of transitions, so worrying about starting a new relationship is totally normal. The best thing that you can do is try to focus on the excitement that you have over finally going out with the guy that you’ve been crushing on for the past three years—that’s a big deal! Senior year is meant to be a lot of fun, and starting it with a new relationship should start your year off on the right foot. If you guys have known each other for three years, you might be able to skip some of the awkwardness of a new relationship. This doesn’t mean that you guys will get tired of one another; it actually might mean that you can form a deeper connection more quickly.

If you’re really worried about dating this guy during your last year of high school, you might want to have a conversation with him to see where his head is at. It’s important that you guys are both on the same page about where the relationship is headed, and chances are good that this has crossed his mind too. This conversation doesn’t have to come right away; it might be better if you wait a bit before bringing it up to him, but if this anxiety is standing in the way of your happiness in this relationship, you should definitely talk about your feelings.

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I'm a guy and I want to know how to help my bro (guy friend) see that having sex isn't a good idea. He did it once and I don't think he understands what it can do to his future. (We're 17) so how can I help him see that he shouldn't have sex again, but not make him feel guilt ridden?

It’s great that you’re looking out for your friend! Sex is a big deal, and it’s really important that your friend understands the consequences of unprotected sex, and that you don’t need to have sex to have a fulfilling relationship. If you’re looking for a way to bring up this topic that’s not out of the blue, try relating it to a movie you’ve both seen or an event in pop culture that you can both relate to, talking about that broader topic first before you start talking about your own lives. If he does choose to have sex again, remind him of the importance of using a condom and encouraging his partner to use a form of hormonal birth control to make sure that they are both protected!

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Around what time are you supposed to say I love you?

There’s no set time in a relationship that you’re supposed to say that you love someone. As cheesy as it sounds, what you’ve always heard is true: you’ll know when you’re ready! Remember: even if someone says that they love you, you have no obligation to say it back if you don’t feel the same way. Love is a big deal, so make sure that you’re comfortable before you say the words!

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How do I make my parents understand that I am not having sex, I just have questions about it?

Remember, at one point your parents were in the same situation as you are, so even though it might be awkward, they do understand. Explain that you want to open a dialogue with them…stress that you’re not having sex—you just want their advice because you trust and love them.  If you’re mature about it and explain your reasoning, hopefully your parents will understand that you’re just looking for information. Talking to your parents is really important because they’re there to help you. If you feel weird bringing it up out of the blue, try relating it to a TV show or movie that you’ve all seen. Talking about sex in a hypothetical sense like that, instead of attaching it to your life can help them give you information while still understanding that you’re not having sex quite yet.

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What do I do when by best friend dates my crush?

Ouch! This is a really tough situation and can definitely cause tension between all three of you guys. When a friend dates your crush, it’s hard to know what to say: you can’t really forbid them from dating the person you like, but that doesn’t mean that you want to be around their PDA. The best thing that you can do is have an honest conversation with your friend. Let your friend know exactly how you feel, whether it’s hurt or awkward or anything in between, and let them tell you what they’re feeling as well. Getting your feelings out in the open can help you both going forward, even if it does hurt.

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Ok so me and my boyfriend broke up.We were together for a year and i didnt want to break up but it just seemed like the right thing. I cant seem to get over him. How do i move on?

A year is a long time, and it’s totally okay to be sad about your relationship ending. Going through a breakup is hard, and you don’t need to force yourself to get over it right away, but you can help yourself by limiting your interactions with your ex. Sometimes, you just need to take reminders of your ex out of your life before you start feeling better—and that can include de-friending them on Facebook. The downside to this is that it can cause hurt feelings, but if it’s going to make the difficulty of breaking up easier for you to deal with, it might be a good option.

And keep in mind that moving on doesn’t always mean jumping into a new relationship. Sometimes a break up is a great opportunity to reconnect with friends. Looking to your friends for support after a break up is a great way to help you start to feel better. No one knows you better than your best friends, so text your besties and ask to get together and do a fun summer activity. There are still a few weeks of summer left, and that means that there’s plenty of time to have fun, whether that’s hosting a movie night or hanging out at the pool!

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So my boyfriend is at college early and I'm going to be a senior. He used to at least shoot me a goodnight text like every night but lately it hasn't been like that. He snapchats me sometimes but I feel so disconnected... He's coming back in a couple of weeks to pack up and such. But I just don't know how to deal with this. I recently went to a party and I talked to one of my close guy friends for the ENTIRE night (didn't even sleep) and it felt really good to talk. He was kind of touchy towards me but it might just be him, but he also told me things that made me feel like he liked me. Anyways, my boyfriend is easily my best friend, and I'll see him after he comes back, but what should I do? Just stick it with him or try someone else?

Distance can be really hard on a relationship, especially if your boyfriend is in college. He’s probably busy with orientation, classes, and trying to get the hang of living away from home, so if you’re feeling a little neglected, you’re probably justified, but it may not be intentional. College is a huge transition, and it can be difficult to find balance as you’re just starting out. When your boyfriend comes back, you might want to have a talk with him and lay some ground rules for how you’re going to deal with the distance. An honest conversation is the way to go in this situation, so you guys really understand how the other feels and can make the choice that’s best for you both moving forward. You might decide that it’s better to take a break, and that’s okay too—long distance isn’t for everyone, and taking a break doesn’t mean that you guys can’t remain best friends. 

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How do you ask someone out without making it awkward?

Asking someone out can be scary! If you’re worried that just coming out and directly asking for a date might be too awkward, you might want to wait for the conversation to turn to a topic like a new movie that’s playing to see if your crush would be interested in checking it out with you.

If you’re nervous about knowing what to say on the actual date, a great way to get around that kind of awkwardness is to try a more interactive date, like mini golf or bowling, where there’s less pressure to sit and talk because you’re doing an activity. These kinds of dates can also be fun with a group! If you’re nervous to ask someone out for a solo date, try asking them to hang out with a group of friends or with a few other couples. That way, there’s less of the pressure of a traditional date, and there are other people around to keep any lulls in conversation from getting awkward. 

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How do I ask my boyfriend, without being awkward, if he has/thinks he has a STD?

Just from the nature of the topic, talking about STDs can be awkward—but it’s really important! Good for you for realizing how important this conversation is and for bringing it up despite the awkwardness. Condoms are a good way to protect yourself from STDs, but if you’re concerned about your boyfriend and don’t want to get into awkward territory, you might want to offer to get tested together…you can say that you have a personal rule: nothing physical until you’re both definitely in the clear. That way, it won’t seem accusatory, and you guys can both find out more about your sexual health together…while also opening up a really honest line of communication. Sure, it might be awkward to bring up, but in the long run it’s really important to know that you’re healthy and protected in a relationship. When it comes to STDs, it’s always better to check in with a medical professional. If you need help finding a health care provider or clinic, check out our Clinic Locator.

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Is it still considered "abstinence" even after you have lost your virginity?

Yes! Waiting to have sex, whether you’ve done it before or not, is considered abstinence. It’s also the only 100% effective method of birth control.

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What's the best way to bring up sex with your girlfriend/boyfriend without being to pushy about it?

When you’re considering having sex, it’s important to make sure that you and your partner are on the same page. The best way to figure out where they’re at is to just have an honest conversation about where they see the relationship going. If you feel awkward or pushy just bringing up the topic of sex, try relating it to a show that you’ve both seen or some event that you can both relate to, and use that as an opener. Bottom line: talking about whether or not you guys are ready and being honest with each other is really important.

If you and your partner do decide that you’re ready to have sex, it’s important to use protection. This can also do a long way toward making you both feel comfortable and safe, two things that are absolutely essential if you’re having sex. To find out all of the birth control options that are available and figure out what’s best for you, check out our Birth Control Explorer. Need help finding a doctor? Check out our Clinic Locator.

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do you really have to use condom or its just an option??

It’s always a good idea to use a condom—they’re a relatively inexpensive form of birth control that also protects you from STDs. Condoms are also great to use as a second method of birth control in addition to a hormonal option, like the patch or the pill, to double up on protection. When it comes down to it, it’s important to be protected if you decide to have sex, whether that means condoms or another form of birth control. To find out all of the birth control options that are available and figure out what’s best for you, check out our Birth Control Explorer.

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Hi! So right now I am not sexually active. However, I know I will be sometime in the future. I obviously plan on using condoms, but I don't want to rely just on that. I was the product of a teenage pregnancy but I don't want that to happen to me. How do I talk to my parents about going on the pill?

It’s awesome that you’re being so thoughtful about sex—it’s a big deal, and it seems like you really understand the importance of protection. Talking to your parents about going on the pill can be a little bit awkward, but just remember that they’ve been in your situation, too! Test the waters by talking about something you learned in health class or mention a peer or media figure who is using birth control. A conversation may be easier if you introduce the topic through a serious of adult conversations with your parents about sex, relationships, and your health and family goals. And remember to be patient with your mom and/or dad—you’ve had plenty of time to get used to the idea of becoming sexually active/getting on birth control but this is the first they’re hearing of it…and let’s be honest—most parents (even if they’re the most chill, understanding, cool parents on the planet) are pretty freaked out about the idea of their kids having sex. So be patient and understand if they get a little nuts the first time (or two) that you bring it up…if you proceed with caution, they will hopefully begin to see your side and will respect and appreciate how mature you’re being about everything. If you want to get a better idea of what birth control options are available to you, check out our Birth Control Explorer.

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I was talking to this guy last summer, BUT we stopped talking because he met someone that summer on vacation. I really liked him, then when school started again we started talking again and now we're dating. We've been dating for 9 months and I still can't seem to forget about this girl he met. She's contacted him while we've been dating, and I'm just tired of worrying about it. How can I move on from it?

Getting over this might take some reassurance from your boyfriend. There’s no harm in asking him about this girl, especially if it’s affecting your relationship. He may not even realize that her contacting him bothers you, so just being honest about how you’re feeling in a non-confrontational way is probably best so that you both can be on the same page about your relationship. 

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My boyfriend is headed to college in the fall and I'm just worried about him cheating on me because I know there's going to be girls and tons of parties. Nothing in our relationship has led me to think like this because he's never cheated on me or anything like that for the over a year we've been together but I just have my worries. Should I call it off to protect myself from possibly getting hurt or stick through with my worries?

Long distance can definitely be tough—it’s hard being away from your partner. College does offer a ton of new experiences, and can introduce temptation into a relationship, but if you have a solid foundation with this guy, there shouldn’t be a reason to worry, especially if you’ve never been concerned about him cheating before. The best thing that you can do is address these concerns with your boyfriend. If you guys are both honest about your concerns and expectations as he heads off to college, your relationship may be stronger for it!

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My boyfriend and I having been dating for almost two years. We both love each other very much, but we're both going off to different colleges this fall and I know I'm going to miss him like crazy. Do you have any advice for long distance relationships? We talked about it and we both want to stay together.

Long distance relationships can be really tough, but if you guys are committed to staying together, it’s definitely possible, especially with FaceTime and Skype! College is a huge transition, and it can be really comforting to know that your boyfriend is there to talk to, even though you guys will be apart. The most important thing is to make time for one another, and to realize that there will be challenges to the relationship. Being completely open and honest about how you’re feeling before you guys part ways and while you’re both at school is vital to the health of your relationship.

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How do I tell my mom I'm having sex?

It can be uncomfortable to talk about sex with your parents, but they can be great resources for you as you navigate relationships, so open communication is really important. The best thing you can do to calm your nerves about having “the talk” with your mom is to organize your thoughts before you talk to her. What do you want to get out of this conversation?

Keep in mind that when you talk to your mom about sex, you guys might not see eye to eye on everything, but that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t have a conversation. Just remember that your mom was a teenager once too! While there might be awkward moments in your talk, she really does understand, and probably has some valuable insight. If you’re worried about how to bring up the topic of sex, try starting a general conversation about sex related to a TV show or movie that you’ve both watched before moving to specifics about your life.  And remember to be patient with your mom—you’ve had plenty of time to get used to the idea of becoming sexually active/getting on birth control but this is the first she’s hearing of it…and let’s be honest—most parents (even if they’re the most chill, understanding, cool parents on the planet) are pretty freaked out about the idea of their kids having sex. 

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My boyfriend and my best friend kinda used to have a thing. They never officially dated, but it's still an issue. How do i handle it?

Even if your friend and this guy never had anything official, it can be really hard to navigate dating a friend’s crush. The best thing you can do is to talk it out with your friend—think about how she would feel in your position. The best way to figure out how she feels about this whole thing and make sure that you both are comfortable is to just ask her about it! 

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My boyfriend is ready to have sex and I am too but I think it may be too soon. I am on birth control and we would use protection but he's a virgin and I'm not. What should I say to him? (about it being too soon and him being a virgin).

Being comfortable about the decision to have sex is really important before you take that step with your partner. Even if you’ve had sex before, there’s no set time when you should be having sex—every relationship is different. Plus, relationships can be just as rewarding without sex. Be honest with your partner; talking with him about sex might go a long way toward making you both feel better. It might be a little bit awkward to bring up, but if it’s already on both of your minds, there’s no reason not to talk about it. If you feel uncomfortable bringing it up, you could wait until your boyfriend brings it up again. No matter who starts the conversation, it’s really important that you have a talk to make sure that you guys are both on the same page.

Another thing that that’s super important when you’re thinking about having sex is making sure that you’re protected. You said you were already using birth control but might add another method—condoms maybe? Doubling up on protection is a great idea; for more information about what methods of birth control will work best for you, check out our Birth Control Explorer

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How do I talk to my parents about me wanting to stay abstinent until marriage? I'm 16 years old and a virgin, but my parents don't believe me. I have a close relationship with them, but I'm religious and they're not. I just really don't want them to think I'm BSing them

If you’ve decided that abstinence is the best thing for you, that’s awesome! It sounds like you’ve given this a lot of thought already, and deciding to talk to your parents about it is really mature. There are a variety of reasons why your parents might not believe this, from not understanding the religious implications to remembering their own experiences, but if you outline your reasoning to them, hopefully they will understand. Talking about relationships with parents can be a little awkward, but just take some time to reflect and figure out everything that you want to tell them before you talk. Hopefully opening a dialogue with your parents and explaining to them why you’ve made this decision will help them to understand your point of view.  

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I love my boyfriend and we've been dating for nearly 2 years now. He's in college now and has been nothing but loyal and loving, but I'm heading to college next year. College is a place filled with so many opportunities for other relationships and other kinds of guys that I might want to pursue, but I really love my boyfriend, we have a fantastic relationship, and I'm so happy. I just feel like I will have missed opportunities being with him all throughout college. He's the only boyfriend I've ever had, but I feel like I need to experience other guys. Should I ignore this feeling or break off the relationship?

It's obvious that you've thought a lot about this and that's a reallly good start! You're right that you're about to enter an exciting time in your life and that you're about to have a lot of opportunities. That doesn't mean that you need to immediately break up with your boyfriend. With so much change you may find that he's a nice point of stability or you may head to school and find that you do want to experiment. Either way is ok, but I would advise that you wait until you're at school and settled in to make a decision. 

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What do I do if my girlfriend is kissing her best friend (also a girl), but I want her not to?

The best thing you can do is to talk it out with your girlfriend. Be calm, don't accuse her of anything, and use "I" statements to explain how you feel. If she's open and understanding to how you feel that's a great sign, if she's not then it's time for you to decide if this is a relationship-ending thing for you. 

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Why does a guy that already has a great girlfriend act like he likes me?

There are a lot of possible answers to this question and without knowing him I won't be able to give you one definite one. Here are a few choices: he could just be very friendly, he could be interested in dating you, he could just enjoy flirting, he could want to cheat on his girlfriend, or any combination of these or others. The only way to know for sure would be to ask, but if you don't want to do that, I'd recommend that you maintain whatever boundaries you need to feel comfortable. 

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How can I figure out if I'm bisexual or just gay?

Do you find yourself thinking more about men or women? Both? Have you had any sexual experiences with guys or girls? Which have you enjoyed more? The answers to these questions may enlighten you, but if they don't that's ok. Sexuality is a fluid thing, you don't need to pick just one label and stick with it for the rest of your life.

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I've always been a laid-back, happy person. But lately I can feel myself becoming more depressed. I just have this feeling that I don't belong where I am and that no one wants me around anymore. I'm always the bad child, friend, or girlfriend and I just want to run away from here, but I know I can't or I won't have a good future. What do I do?

It's normal to have ups and downs in life, but if you're struggling more than normal right now I would suggest you go to a trusted adult in your life for some help. Do you have a teacher or coach you could talk to? Does your school have a counseling service you can reach out to? Or look up some online counseling services, the internet is full of free options that you can use. Find someone who can give you advice, listen to your problems, and provide you with support. 

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How can I fall in love?

First, there's no timeline for falling in love or having relationships. So if it feels like everyone around you is in a relationship, don't give in to the temptation to compare yourself to them. If you're ready to get into a relationship, but are having trouble finding someone you like try joining a new group or club. This'll not only give you a chance to explore a new hobby or do something you already love, it'll also mean you know that you have something in common with the people you're meeting. 

Once you start to date someone, stay positive and have fun! Don't try to force anything to happen. If you fall in love, fantastic! If you don't, you'll have met someone new, had new experiences, and can always try again. 

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How can you make someone fall in love with you?

You can't make someone fall in love with you. All you can do is be yourself, be kind, and be honest about your affections. If you fall in love and they do too that's fantastic! 

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What can I do to get pregnant with another boy's baby?

There are a couple of things that you could mean by this question, but no matter which you're thinking of the most important thing to remember is consent. When you want to engage in any kind of sexual activity (from kissing to oral to penetrative sex) with someone (boyfriend, girlfriend, hook up, and anyone in between) you need a explicit and enthusiastic, yes! Consent means that everyone involved is on the same page and wants this same thing.

This also applies to having a child. You need consent before you try to get pregnant with someone. If you don't you're engaging in something called reproductive coercion, or manipulating anyone's ability to reproduce. Some ways you could do this would be by not being honest about birth control, intentionally trying to become pregnant without telling your partner, or stealthing. If you want to have a baby, talk to your partner about it first and make sure you're both on the same page. 

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I am 12 and I already have upper lip hair. What should I do as it's embarrassing?

This is a great question! First, it's important to know that even though bodies can seem embarrassing sometimes because they don't match what we see on TV or online, it's natural to have hair in random places, zits on your face, or random BO even though you know you put deoderant on. Some of that stuff will fade as you get older and leave puberty, but some of it might not. 

If you want to get rid of the hair on your upper lip you have a couple of options. You could go to a salon and get it waxed or threaded off, you could bleach it, or you could pluck it (though that'll really only work welll if you don't have that much hair). It's up to you what you do, but I'd talk to a parent or trusted adult to get their advice and see if they've had experience with any of these methods. 

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How much should a girl shave in her pubic area?

This is a great question! First, it's important to know that even though bodies can seem embarrassing sometimes because they don't match what we see on TV or online, it's natural to have hair in a lot of different places on your body, including your public area. How much your trim, shave, or wax it is totally up to you. It might make sense to start by only take a little off and seeing how you like it before doing anything more. Or if you have a parent or trusted adult to go to, ask their advice and see if they've had experience with any of these methods. Hair will always grow back, but don't let anyone pressure you into changing your body in a way you don't want. 

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Once in a while my father likes to experiment with me by touching penises and letting me suck his balls. My friends said this isn't normal, but I have been doing it all my life. Help?

If you don’t consent to sex and someone forces you to do something sexual, this is sexual assault, abuse, and/or rape. Someone hurting you like this is never your fault. If one of your teachers, a family member, your boss at work, or anyone much older than you does anything sexual with you, that’s sexual abuse — even if you agree to it. Learn more about sexual assault, abuse, and rape, on Planned Parenthood's website. Or call 800.656.HOPE (4673) to be connected with a trained staff member from a sexual assault service provider in your area.

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Is it bad that my dad forces me to drink his cum?

If you don’t consent to sex and someone forces you to do something sexual, this is sexual assault, abuse, and/or rape. Someone hurting you like this is never your fault. If one of your teachers, a family member, your boss at work, or anyone much older than you does anything sexual with you, that’s sexual abuse — even if you agree to it. Learn more about sexual assault, abuse, and rape, on Planned Parenthood's website. Or call 800.656.HOPE (4673) to be connected with a trained staff member from a sexual assault service provider in your area.

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I got pregnant and terminated my pregnancy. I don't regret it, but I wish my circumstances are different. Is that normal?

It's normal to have an emotional response to a series of turbulent events like an abortion and everyone will react a little differently. Some people may feel relief, others may feel sad, and some will cycle between ups and downs as they process their experience. For most people talking to someone supportive is helpful to process your feelings. If there's no one around you that you feel comfortable talking to, you're not alone. Your nurse or doctor can talk with you, or help you find a licensed counselor or a non-judgmental support group.

If you're feeling more than sad, you may be depressed. Depression can affect how you feel, think, and act. It lasts for weeks, months, or longer, and gets in the way of your relationships, work, school, or other day-to-day activities. If you feel depressed, contact a nurse or doctor as soon as you can to ask about your treatment options. Need help finding a health center? We’ve got you covered—just enter your ZIP code in our Clinic Locator.

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My question isn't about sex just about body stuff. Do girls have hair all the way under their front or just the bit you see from the front? I have hair on the front but not on my balls and on the internet most women are bald all the way under to their bum.

They do! Though some girls/women may choose to remove hair for a variety of reasons, it naturally grows in various degrees of fullness from the front all the way to the back and some places around, like the upper thighs. 

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When should I start wearing makeup?

The answer all depends on you! Do you want to wear make up? If not, don't. If you do, wear what makes you feel comfortable! You don't have to go full glam every day, a little clear mascara and a nude lip can make you feel ready to take on the world. But if a dangerously sharp cat eye and a full coverage foundation makes you feel confident, go for it! Don't know where to start? There are a ton of reviews and tutorials on YouTube. Have fun with it!

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What is the social impact on a pregnant teen's life?

Teenage parents face a lot of difficulties, teen moms in particular. Research has found that after giving birth, 15-19 year olds are twice as likely to experience postpartum depression than those 25 and older. Teen mothers are also more likely to become depressed. Only 10% of teen moms complete an associate or bachelor's degree, though 50% do earn their high school diploma by 22. 

If you're a teen parents, or you're about to become one, we know that you work very hard to support yourself and your children, and we think it’s great that you’ve come to Stay Teen to get more information. We know your voice and perspective are a valuable addition to the conversation on teen pregnancy prevention and appreciate your help in adding to the conversation. We know that you love your family very much and are working hard to support them while still doing all those things that make being a teen fun. 

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I believe I had my period for 17 days and I had 4 negative pregnancy tests before my period and one negative after. Is there still a chance I could be pregnant?

The pregnancy anxiety can be so real, we totally understand! Home pregnancy tests may be wrong if you use them incorrectly (take it too soon, check the results too soon, take the test with diluted urine), but after five tests giving you the same results, it's very unlikely that you are pregnant. If your fear still isn't going away, check in with a health care provider and get tested for pregnancy (and STI while you're there, better safe than sorry, right?). Plus, they can help you be better prepared for next time by helping you find a birth control method that works for you.

There’s a ton of birth control methods out there, so check out our Birth Control Explorer to learn more. It’s a good idea to double up with a hormonal birth control method plus condoms, so you’re protected against STIs too. Need help finding a health center? We’ve got you covered—just enter your ZIP code in our Clinic Locator.

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Is there anyway I can have a child at 17 with a partner?

You don't mention your or your partner's sex, but yes, if there is a penis and a vagina involved in your relationship than physically you are capable of having a child.

If you and your partner are on the same page and are sure you want a child that's great. Make sure that you both understand the responsiblity and committment required to have a kid though. In the first year a baby will cost you around $12,680 and that price is likely to go up every year. It might help you and your partner if you find a trusted adult (parent, teacher, mentor, etc.) and talk to them about their experience raising kids to better understand what goes into it before you start trying for a baby. 

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When my penis is erect does the head appear or must I put down the skin to for it to appear?

For most uncircumsized guys, your foreskin should retract on its own whenever you have an erection by the time you're about 17. Before then it may need some help. If it isn't moving at all or if it's causing you pain or making it hard to pee, you might want to see a health care provider. Need help finding a health center? We’ve got you covered—just enter your ZIP code in our Clinic Locator.

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Does listening to sexual music make me more likely to make bad decisions and get pregnant? I'm very responsible, a virgin, and plan to wait till marriage. Music is like my outlet. But I am worried it will make me make bad decisions.

You're in charge of your decisions! If you'd rather avoid music with sexual messages to feel safer that's your choice. But you can continue to listen to it if you'd like too. The music you listen to is no more likely to subliminally influence your decisions than the TV you watch or the conversations you have with friends at school. 

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Why do I keep getting Bacterial Vaginosis?

Vaginas have good and bad bacteria in them. When the balance between the two gets out of whack you can get bacterial vaginosis. It's pretty common and easily treatable. If you feel like you're getting it a lot you may have recurrent bacterial vaginosis. But since we cannot offer specific medical advice on the internet, we recommend that you talk to your health care provider. If you need help finding a health care provider or someone to talk to, you can check out our clinic finder

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Which body type do men find attractive?

While it might be hard to believe right now, every body type is attractive to someone. The media pushes one kind of body type as ideal and if you don't have it it can be hard to overcome this stereotype. But if you look at the couples around you (try people watching at a local cafe or park) you'll notice pretty quickly that very few people fit those exacting standards. Feeling physical attraction to your partner is important, but it's not the basis of a lasting relationship. For that you need to enjoy spending time with a person and have things in common with them. 

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What does it mean when you don't have your period yet at age 15?

98% of girls have their period by the time they're 15, so if you don't we recommend that you talk to your health care provider. If you need help finding a health care provider or someone to talk to, you can check out our clinic finder

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I'm 13 why are my nipples so big?

 

Thanks for writing in! It can totally be frustrating to feel like your body doesn't fit "the norm." But, luckily for all of us, there is no "normal" - everybody is different! When it comes to nipples, there are lots of different shapes and sizes. Nipples can be flat, stick out, or be inverted. And that's all totally healthy and ok. As you grow, so too may your breasts and your nipples. Women who get pregnant and/or breastfeed their children, often report changes in the way they look. As you get older you may even find that your nipples will change color.

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What are some reasons why teen violence occurs?

That's a really hard question! Thanks for writing in, we are right here with you - whenever violence happens it is confusing for survivors, observers, and third parties. Trauma and secondary trauma are all around us. Violence is ingrained in institutions and it can even be ingrained in families. This is why talking to a trusted adult or even health care professional such as a therapist, if accessible, is so important. Never feel like you have to handle violence alone, we are always stronger together. 

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How do I know if I'm bi-sexual, bi-curious, or just questioning myself...I've taken so many tests, but I don't know for sure, HELP ME!!!?

That's a really great question. Sexuality is a spectrum and it's also fluid. So you may identify as bisexual or bicurious now and then as straight or gay later. It's hard advice, we know, but don't rush or push yourself into defining yourself. The answer (or answers) will come in time. If you're interested in someone and they're interested back in you, try it out! If the relationship works that's fantastic, and if it doesn't then you've learned something. 

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Why do they tell woman false information in some women's health centers?

 

Great question, we find ourselves wondering about this a lot too! It's always important to know before you go - that is knowing about the clinic, what services they provide, and how they acquire funding is really important. There are a lot of fake clinics out there that pose as comprehensive care centers for women, but generally do not over the full spectrum of women's health services. Try out our clinic finder, which is consistently updated with the most accurate information out there about where clinics are located and what services they provide. 

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Why do people think i'm gay when I really am not gay?

That's a really tough question. We're sorry that people are making uncomfortable assumptions about your sexuality. There are a lot of stereotypes about what it means it be gay and it may be that because you fit into one of them that people are giving you a label. It could also be that they're using gay as a word just to mean that you're different than their version of normal. While we all know that there's nothing wrong being gay or straight (or anything in between our outside of those labels), it defintely hurts when those around you mistunderstand who you are. Ultimately, there's nothing you can do but be proud of yourself, but we'd also suggest reading this blog by someone who's gone through your situation before. 

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What do I do if I like another guy but I'm already dating someone else?

That’s a tricky situation. It’s okay to like someone new, but you have to be honest with the person who you’re in a relationship with right now. It’s normal for people to grow apart, but if you’re starting to have feelings for someone else, it might be time to break up with the person you’re seeing now. It’s not fair to either of you if you’re not fully invested in the relationship. It might be hard, but the best thing to do is to take some time to yourself to think about whether or not you want to stay in your current relationship. If you feel that it might be time to move on, then it’s time to have a conversation with your boyfriend and let him know that you need to end the relationship. It doesn’t have to be messy or mean, and in the long run you may both be a lot happier.

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Is it better if the guy, or girl but in my case a guy, planned on having sex or it being spontaneous? I feel like if the guy, again or girl, planned on it I feel like they only want to get into your pants.

When it comes to sex, it’s always best to plan ahead. Movies and TV make spontaneous sex seem really exciting and it might feel weird to plan ahead, but it’s super important to make sure that you have a conversation about protection with your partner, especially if it’s your first time. Planning ahead shows maturity, and it means that you’re not going to get into a sticky situation if things get hot and heavy and you both forgot to ask about birth control. Whether you’re using a condom, the pill, or a longer acting form of birth control, like the IUD, it’s super important that you and your partner are on the same page before you get physical so that you’re both comfortable and protected!

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Should I get involved in my friend's choices reagarding her sex life? Or is that her own personal buisness?

If your friend asks for advice, it’s totally okay to give her your opinion! That’s what friends are for, and sometimes it really helps to have an outside perspective when making decisions in a relationship. That said, as with any issue in life, sometimes she may not want your opinion if she doesn’t ask for it. You can definitely offer to give one, but you might want to refrain from giving advice that isn’t asked for, because there’s the possibility of it coming off as judgement.

If you’re ever concerned about something in your friend’s relationship or are concerned about her safety, it’s really important to talk to your friend or a trusted adult who can help you figure out what to do next. For more information about dating abuse and violence, check out the resources at loveisrespect.org.

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Should I have sex with my best friend's boyfriend? We've been going around behind her back for months and we really like each other but I feel extremely guilty and he won't leave her because he feels sorry for her.

It doesn’t sound like this relationship is fair to any of you guys. If you care about your friend, you owe it to her to tell her what’s going on. It’s definitely not a good idea to let things go any further, especially if this guy has no intention of breaking up with your friend. Having sex is a serious step in a relationship, and it’s one that you should take with someone that you trust, who is committed to you. Besides going behind your friend’s back, if you really like this guy, it doesn’t sound like he is willing to end his relationship, which isn’t fair to you. Cheating is a serious violation of trust, and if you want to remain friends with this girl, you need to come clean about what happened and apologize.

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What do I do if I like someone but he's just playing with my feelings?

As tough as it is, you need to move on. Anyone who is just playing with your feelings is not worth your time! And, as tempting as it is to think this, it’s unlikely that he’s going to change his behavior any time soon…so there’s no point in sticking around and waiting for him to magically stop being a jerk to you. There’s someone out there who will love and respect you without playing silly games. It might be easier to get over him if you unfollow him or hide his posts from your timeline, because then you don’t have to see what he’s up to or obsess over who he’s with. Who knows—if you freeze him out for a bit he may come to his senses, but the bottom line is that you deserve to be in a productive relationship, one where you and the guy you’re talking to are both invested. 

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I still love my ex but he cheated and we don't talk anymore. How do I get over him?

Getting over an ex can be really hard! It might help to unfriend or unfollow him on social media, even if it’s just temporary. It’s really hard to get over someone when they’re constantly popping up on your newsfeed, and it can be super tempting to check up on an ex through social media if you guys aren’t talking anymore. Other than that, this is a great time to plan some extra time to spend with friends! Whether you guys are heading out to see the new Hunger Games movie together or staying in for a dance party and sleepover, hanging with your friends can be a great way to keep your mind off of an ex.

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I've been in a long term relationship and I decided to let my boyfriend take my virginity a week after my birthday. Since then all he wants me to do is come over to his place so we could have sex,and I'm starting to feel as if he only wants me for sex now...What should I do ?

The best thing that you can do is to have an honest conversation with your boyfriend. Remember that sex is a new and exciting part of your relationship, so he might just be getting wrapped up in that. Let him know how you’re feeling, and give him the chance to share his perspective with you. Hopefully you guys can work things out through clear communication. It might help to bring some suggestions to the table, instead of just telling him that you think there is too much emphasis on sex in your relationship now. The weather’s getting colder, so maybe there’s a cute winter date that you guys could try! It may help to spice up the relationship in other ways, by breaking your routine and trying something new.

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How do you bring up the conversation of sex, and not scare your boyfriend/girlfriend away? I would really like to know, although I don't really do it myself, but I'd like to know so that I would know if my future boyfriends does it right.

It can definitely feel awkward or scary to bring up the topic of sex, but it’s a really important conversation to have in a relationship. The best way to go about it is to just be honest and say that you’ve been thinking about where the relationship is going and are thinking about taking that next step. It shouldn’t be a high pressure conversation—for either one of you--and you need to let your partner know that, if they don’t want to have sex or aren’t ready, that is absolutely fine. There’s no specific time when you’re supposed to have sex over the course of a relationship; the right time is when you and your partner are both ready. Should you decide to have sex, it’s super important that you’re protected. Head over to our Birth Control Explorer to see what birth control options are available to you. Figuring out protection beforehand can feel a little awkward, but it’s much better than being caught without it if things spontaneously get hot and heavy!

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My boyfriend and I have been dating for a while now and my sister seems to absolutely hate his guts. He's never been anything but nice and polite to her but she still won't tolerate him. What do I do?

Yikes. It’s really tough when someone you care about doesn’t like the guy you’re dating. The best thing that you can do is talk to your sister. Ask what her reasons for disliking this guy are, and calmly offer your perspective. Maybe she has a valid reason for not liking this guy—it’s easy to put blinders on in a relationship, so it’s super important that you listen to what she has to say. Stay calm and don’t attack her for having a negative opinion of him; if you want to know the truth, be prepared to list to what she has to say without interrupting or freaking out. It might be a misunderstanding, but if she really doesn’t like your boyfriend, ask her if there’s anything that he could do to change her opinion of him. Actions can speak louder than words, so if you walk away from the conversation concerned that she might not like him, encourage your boyfriend to show her and the rest of your family how responsible he is.

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What is the only 100% way to avoid an unplanned pregnancy?

Abstinence is the only 100% effective way to avoid an unplanned pregnancy, but if you do have sex, there are methods of birth control that are super effective, like the IUD and the implant (both are just over 99% effective)! For more information on these and other types of birth control, visit our Birth Control Explorer.

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How do you know if someone likes you?

Everyone shows a crush in different ways—they might spend extra time talking to you, or they might seem to avoid you because they’re nervous to talk to you. Spending more time with someone is generally a great way to get a clearer picture of whether or not they’re interested in you. A good way to gauge someone’s interest in you if you’re too shy to ask them out on a date might be to hang out in a larger group of friends. If you want to start smaller than that, try talking to them more! It can be about anything, a TV show that you’re both in love with or a class that you have together, but just having these types of conversations is a great way to get to know someone better and help you figure out what your relationship with that person is.

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How do I keep the flame alive in a relationship after the newness of it has gone away

Once a relationship isn’t new anymore, it can be easy to feel like you’re falling into the same old routines, which can be super boring. One way to add excitement to a relationship is to try a new kind of date. Since the weather’s getting cold, you might want to try a cute winter date. It doesn’t have to be anything elaborate or expensive; there are tons of cheap or free dates that you can try, like cooking a favorite meal together or taking a hike on a local trail—anything new and different might help keep the sparks alive in your relationship.

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Is there an age limit on buying contraceptives?

There aren’t age restrictions on birth control, and the American Academy of Pediatrics actually recommends long acting birth control, like the implant or the IUD for teens.  However, these hormonal methods do require a doctor’s visit and usually some kind of co-pay or other cost.  If you’re interested in a long-acting method, call your doctor’s office or a nearby clinic and ask some questions like do you offer IUDs and the implant?  Is there a co-pay?  If so, how much?  I’m a minor—will this be confidential or will my parents find out through billing about this visit? If this sounds like too much, consider a non-hormonal method like male condoms or female condoms which are available in drugstores and health centers.  Emergency contraception—even though it’s not meant to be your regular birth control—is also available at drugstores.

If you want to learn more about the types of birth control that are available to you, check out our Birth Control Explorer or have a chat with your doctor. Need to find a doctor? Check out our Clinic Locator.

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What are the best type of condoms to use?

Although there can be an overwhelming selection of condoms in any drug store you go into, they’re mostly a matter of personal taste. There are a bunch of types, but they’re not all that different. If you’re not sure what kind to get, you can always look up reviews online, and if you’re looking to save a few bucks, you can check out resources where you can get free condoms at CondomFinder.com.

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I recently began a relationship with my friend. We kiss each other on the cheek, hug, and hold hands. Even though we still talk a lot, I can still feel lots of nervousness between us. I know it's only been just over a week, but is it normal for two people to be awkward at the the beginning of their relationship?

It definitely is normal for relationships to feel a little awkward in the beginning. It can be hard to shake those butterflies when you first get into a relationship, especially if you’re going from a friendship to a relationship. You might want to try a fun date to shake the nerves—try something fun that will take your mind off of any awkwardness like ice skating or cooking a meal together. The nervousness you’re feeling is probably shared by your partner, and it might help to talk about it. They might not know that you’re feeling the same way, and it can be a big relief to know that you’re on the same page about that

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We are always fighting, he never wants to go out with me. He will make the plans then cancel. I don't want to break up but I'm sick of felling like I'm the only one in the relationship. What do I do?

It’s really tough, but if you’re putting a lot of effort into the relationship and don’t feel like your boyfriend is doing the same, it might be time to reevaluate. You deserve to be in a relationship where you’re loved and respected—and where the guy is just as happy to talk to you and spend time with you as you are with him. Unless it’s productive, fighting isn’t part of a healthy relationship, and it might be time to talk to your guy and see where his head is at. He might be going through something unrelated to the relationship or you guys might be growing apart, but the only way to know for sure what’s going on is to ask. Honest communication necessary for a successful relationship, and a calm conversation should clear up confusion between you guys. If you try to have a conversation and he shuts it down or gets angry, it might be time to think about whether this is the type of relationship that you really want to be in.

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My ex and I really like each other still and we want to get back together, but he's having trouble at home and I don't know if I should put that stress on him. Is it okay for us to get back together?

It sounds like you and this guy need to sit down and have a serious talk. It’s important that you guys are both on the same page before you jump back into a relationship. If he’s having trouble at home, it might help to have you as part of his support system, but that doesn’t mean that you have to be in a relationship—your friendship is really valuable too! Relationships require time and open communication, and if you both feel like you can commit to each other and can put the time and effort into rebuilding your relationship, it’s okay to try again, especially if you decide to take it slow. If you both want to get back together and are honest with each other about what you’re both hoping to get out of the relationship, it’s okay to think about rebuilding your relationship.

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I love my boyfriend to death but he's not attracted to me anymore. What should I do?

The best thing that you can do is talk to your boyfriend. Guys can be confusing, and the only way to know for sure what he wants in the relationship and how he’s feeling is to ask him. Let him know where you’re coming from and ask him where he sees the relationship going. It’s really important that you guys are on the same page about what you want out of the relationship, and having an honest talk should clear up any confusion about what’s going on between you. People do grow apart in relationships, and it’s really tough, but it might be time to reevaluate whether or not this is the right relationship for you. You deserve to be with someone who loves and appreciates you, and if that’s not what you’re feeling in this relationship, it might be time to walk away.

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I am currently in a great relationship with my boyfriend! We have been going out for 2 months now and everything seems to be fine! I have talked to him about how I am abstaining from sex until marriage and he seems fine with it but I don't know when to draw the line on other physical intimacies. When I feel uncomfortable, I tell him to stop and he does, but what does

It’s awesome that you guys have open communication about sex and have set some boundaries. Physical stuff that’s not sex can be a little bit of a gray area. It can be hard to figure out where to draw the line, and it comes down to what you’re comfortable with. It sounds like you and your boyfriend have a great relationship and that open communication is already a part of it, so it might be helpful to have a chat with him and let him know where your head is at. It’s okay not to be totally sure how far you want to go in a relationship, but if there are things that you’re definitely not comfortable with, you should let him know. Give him the chance to tell you his perspective too! Intimacy, even when you’ve agreed to abstain from sex, is a great part of a relationship and something that you need to figure out the boundaries of as a couple.

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What should I do if my gf isn't texting back, but I don't want to seem clingy?

This is a tough situation. Communication is vital to a healthy relationship, but sometimes it’s really hard to hit the balance between talking to your girlfriend and coming off as overly attached. It’s tough not to worry when someone doesn’t text back, so the best thing that you can do is ask her about it! She might be busy or not realize that it’s bothering you, but talking to her face to face to work things out should clear up any confusion between you two.

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Why do some people have sex?

Some people decide to make sex a part of their relationships and others don’t, and both choices are totally okay. If you or your partner decides that you’re not ready for sex, that’s totally okay! Relationships can be just as awesome without sex, and the most important thing is that you and your partner are comfortable with where your relationship is going physically and emotionally. There shouldn’t be any pressure to have sex in your relationship—it’s a really personal decision, and it comes down to comfort level. If you and your partner both feel comfortable and respected and mutually agree that you’d like to have sex, then that’s okay too.

If you do decide to make sex a part of your relationship, it’s super important that you stay protected. Check out our Birth Control Explorer to see what options are available to you, or have a chat with your doctor. Need to find a doctor? Check out our Clinic Locator.

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Can a girl ask a guy out?

Girls can definitely ask guys out. There’s nothing wrong with a girl making the first move—guys can be shy too. If you’re nervous to ask a guy out, start by talking about something you have in common. It can be small like a TV show that you’re both obsessed with or a class you have together, but that gives you the chance to ask him to hang out and catch up on last season or study for that huge test with you!

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Can long distance in high school work?

Long distance is tough no matter what age you are, but it’s possible, even if you’re in high school. Long distance relationships take a little bit more planning and effort than relationships where you can see the person you’re dating more often, but for the right person it can be worth it. If you’re thinking about a long distance relationship, you should take some time to yourself to think about the commitment you’re making and about the end goal of the relationship. Is it something that you want to pursue, even though it’s going to be a bit tough? You should also make sure to talk to the person you’re thinking of getting into this relationship with, because it’s super important that you guys are on the same page about your relationship, especially if you’re not going to see each other every day. Even though they’re tough, long distance relationships can definitely work.

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Can you put a tampon in if your hymen isn’t broken?

Your hymen is a ring shaped piece of tissue just inside your vaginal opening. It's capable of stretching, which it might do if you put a tampon in, or it might break. But that won't stop you from being able to wear one. 

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My uncle (who's my guardian) keeps staring at my breasts and I'm becoming more uncomfortable. What should I do?

This is a really tough situation and we're sorry that you're in it. Do you have a trusted adult (another family memeber, a teacher, or guidance counselor) that you could talk to about the situation? They may have good advice for you or can help to mediate a discussion between your uncle and you. Sometimes people who have questions about consent find it helpful to talk or chat online with a person who's been trained in it, and RAINN is a great place to find experts to talk with about it.

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Teenagers sitting on a tree limb

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