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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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I am very self-conscious. I weigh 161.1 lbs. I hate the way I look but others say that I look good. I always feel like they are messing with me which makes me feel worse. What should I do?

Thanks for writing in! It can totally be frustrating to feel like your body doesn't fit in. But, luckily for all of us, there is no "normal" - everybody is different! When it comes to bodies, there are lots of different shapes and sizes. And that's all totally healthy and ok. As you grow, your body may change. Healthy weight actually can fluctuate over time. 

What can be tough and complicated about self-image and self-confidence, is that you're the only one that can do it. It takes a lot of time and practice at loving the skin you're in - and it's okay to struggle with that. Go to somewhere you feel comfortable, like a park or a coffee shop, and notice the people around you - everyone is different. Consider journaling about how you feel, and if it makes you feel better talk to a trusted adult or health care provider who can discuss this with you. Try following somebody positive folks on Instagram, you will absolutely find a vibrant community of support and folks who also feel this way - you are not alone! 

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Why does my penis grow in the morning?

All men get around 3-5 erections while they sleep. Science thinks that these erections actually contribute to penis health. There are a few theories behind why 'morning wood' happens such as a partner brushing against you in your sleep or shifting testosterone levels as you go through the sleep cycle. 

The ideas that waking up with an erection are a sign that you've had a sexy dream or need to pee however, have pretty much been ruled out by science. 

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Is it okay to be feeling up with a girl during class if nobody notices?

 

A good rule of thumb is if you're ever in a place without a distinct set of walls and doors where you can be confident of your privacy, and other people are around that could notice, do not engage in any sexual behavior. It's a sign of respect to yourself, your partner, and those around you to be mindful of your surroundings when engaging in sexual activity. 

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My inner labia are really long and have heard many nasty names used by guys to describe this on other girls before, I feel really insecure & scared to show anyone my body, what do I do?

Thanks for writing in! It can totally be frustrating to feel like your body doesn't fit in. But, luckily for all of us, there is no "normal" - everybody is different! When it comes to labia, there are lots of different shapes and sizes. And that's all totally healthy and ok. Keep in mind the media, as they do with most other parts of the body, portrays a single image that doesn’t look like most real people. Consider following some body positive Instagram accounts, like The Vulva Gallery, surrounding yourself with people that promote self-love and inclusion can help combat these feelings. One of the hardest parts of about finding a way to having more self-confidence is that you’re the only one that can get yourself there – don't put pressure on yourself to achieve this goal, recognize that it’s okay to fall on the spectrum of self-love, but don’t engage with people or content that makes you feel badly about yourself. You’ve got this. Loving the skin you’re in isn’t easy and we can promise you no one is 100% confident- all you can do is try. <3

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I'm a female and masturbate everyday with a vibrator. I recently found out that my brother and parents heard me almost EVERYTIME. My brother feels uncomfortable around me, my dad doesn't know how to look at me, and my mom tries to make me feel guilty. I never did it with the intent of others knowing, but I feel like I ruined their lives. It's really hard for me to keep living like this and really don't know what to do about my family relations. It's always awkward, I feel like a walking burden, and I sort of feel like I want to die.

This sounds like a tough sitution, but you know what - you didn't do anything wrong! Self-pleasure is okay and normal, not to mention a lot of fun! It looks like you were respecting that there is a time and a place to masturbate, you absolutely can't help it that you didn't know they could hear you. Be kind to yourself, and try to show yourself some forgiveness - you didn't know and it's not your fault. Consider speaking with your family, perhaps one on one or together - whichever you prefer, and do not apologize for what you did, but you can apologize for causing discomfort. Going forward, maybe play some music, turn on a tv show, lock the door, or wait unitl you're home alone.

We get the discomfort your family's feelings caused you, and it probably seems signficant, but we are here to tell you it gets better and once you're older this will seem like nothing. If it gets to the point where it feels like more than you can bear for this or any issue, you can talk to someone at any time for FREE at the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-8255. 

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Hi. I'm a 16 year old female with a single, very old school and conservative father. My best friend (16f) also comes from a conservative single parent. I really like tattoos and have a few of them from previous years that both my parents are aware of. My best friend is very intrigued by my tattoos and kept begging me to let her get one. I succumbed to her demands and on the 29th Of January, I took her to a tattoo parlor. We both lied about our ages and received our respective tattoos. Somehow her mom found out and contacted my dad, who was out of town on business. He's returning tonight and is very, very angry and upset with me and it breaks my heart to know how badly I've messed up not only with him but also with my incredibly supportive friend's family. I have apologized to both repeatedly and will continue to do so, but I just have this terrible, guilty feeling that what I've done is painstakingly wrong and unforgivable.

This sounds like a sticky spot to be in - we've all been there, we all mess up and have to own up to our mistakes. You're not alone. One of the major keys in any confrontation is communication. It sounds like you did the right thing by apologizing to both your dad and your friend's mom. Unfortunately, you can't undo your actions or take back the consequences, but remaining calm and level headed while talking to these adults, explaining your actions (without making excuses,) and showing that you've learned from the experience will go a long way in rebuilding trust in these relationships. Don't forget to be kind to yourself throughout this process! 

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I am really short and I am teased about it by school. I was really skinny first, but now that I am starting to become healthy and people are appreciating me....I am getting more insecurities and want to return back to my super skinny state, what should I do?

 

Loving the skin you're in isn't easy. We all fall somewhere on the spectrum of self-love everyday and that is okay. Reach out to support structures, like your family and friends, if you are feeling insecure about your body. Consider talking to a trusted adult or a health care provider who can give you an unbiased opinion and tell you if your weight is healthy. Try following some body positive folks on Instagram, you will absolutely find a vibrant community of support and folks who also feel this way - you are not alone!  

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I am really short and I am teased about it by school. I was really skinny first, but now that I am starting to become healthy and people are appreciating me....I am getting more insecurities and want to return back to my super skinny state, what should I do?

 

Loving the skin you're in isn't easy. We all fall somewhere on the spectrum of self-love everyday and that is okay. Reach out to support structures, like your family and friends, if you are feeling insecure about your body. Consider talking to a trusted adult or a health care provider who can give you an unbiased opinion and tell you if your weight is healthy. Try following some body positive folks on Instagram, you will absolutely find a vibrant community of support and folks who also feel this way - you are not alone!  

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What do I do if I haven't had my period in 6 months and I'm not pregnant?

Thanks for your question, 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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Hey um..when I was dating my ex-boyfriend I felt like I was not good enough and I think I'm fat and ugly and my friends say that I'm not and that im perfect the way I am, but I don't believe them, what should I do?

 What can be tough and complicated about self-image and self-confidence, is that you're the only one that can do it. It takes a lot of time and practice at loving the skin you're in - and it's okay to struggle with that. Go to somewhere you feel comfortable, like a park or a coffee shop, and notice the people around you - everyone is different. Consider journaling about how you feel, and if it makes you feel better talk to a trusted adult or health care provider who can discuss this with you. Try following some body positive folks on Instagram, you will absolutely find a vibrant community of support and folks who also feel this way - you are not alone!

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So, I recently went through my boyfriend's phone. I know, I'm very nosey. I went through his deleted photos and I saw pictures of him where he is naked, like taking full on body nudes, with his butt. Why would he have done this, what if he isn't into me?

There are a few important things here. First, let's address the issue of personal privacy. It is never okay to go through someone's phone, or any other personal property, even if you feel like there is a good reason to do so. If you are concerned for a friend or partner's personal safety - seek the advice or help of a trusted adult. 

It's sometimes easy to jump to conclusions, thinking things through and removing personal feelings can be tricky and it takes a lot of work to do this at times. Next, try not to jump to conclusions that are supported by stereotypes. There could be any number of reasons that your boyfriend was taking these photos. We hear your concerns, but see a opportunity for you two to discuss trust here. Consider asking yourself the tough questions that only you can answer- what initially prompted you to look through your boyfriend's phone? When you're looking for trouble in a relationship, you're almost always going to find it.

Think about it this way, if your boyfriend, a friend, or even your parents went through your phone, what would they find? They might come across something you deleted or thought was innocent that they may find problematic. Or, if you hand five different people the same photo, they might all see something different depending on what they are looking for. We hope that makes sense. 

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Hi! I am 15 (I am a student-athlete, idk if that has any impact) and my boobs are small but women in my family have bigger boobs . Will mine grow more or will I stay at an A cup? Can I predict my size by genes?

Thanks for writing in! It can totally be frustrating to feel like your body doesn't fit in. But, luckily for all of us, there is no "normal" - everybody is different! When it comes to boobs, there are lots of different shapes and sizes. And that's all totally healthy and ok. As you grow, your body may change, so you may not stay at an A cup. That being said, you also can't predict size by looking at your family members. 
 

What can be tough and complicated about self-image and self-confidence, is that you're the only one that can do it. It takes a lot of time and practice at loving the skin you're in - and it's okay to struggle with that. Go to somewhere you feel comfortable, like a park or a coffee shop, and notice the people around you - everyone is different. Consider journaling about how you feel, and if it makes you feel better talk to a trusted adult or health care provider who can discuss this with you. Try following some body positive folks on Instagram, you will absolutely find a vibrant community of support and folks who also feel this way - you are not alone!  

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Hi, I have a question regarding sex. Recently my boyfriend and had sex for the first time and I was bleeding which is normal for the first time right. So I didn’t give it much thought but it’s been more time and I am still bleeding? And it’s still really painful? So I was wondering if it’s normal since it’s still new and everything?

Thanks for writing in, we are sorry to hear you're uncomfortable. Pain during sex is common, but you should go and see your healthcare provider especially if you are experiencing consistent pain and bleeding during sex. It's a common myth that pain during sex, especially your first time, is normal. Sex doesn't have to be and shouldn't be painful, sex is something that can make you feel good, whether it's masturbation or partnered sex. Talking to your healthcare provider about what options can help you is a great place to start. Next time, try using lube and seeing if that helps. 
 

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Hi, I have a question regarding sex. Recently my boyfriend and had sex for the first time and I was bleeding which is normal for the first time right. So I didn’t give it much thought but it’s been more time and I am still bleeding? And it’s still really painful? So I was wondering if it’s normal since it’s still new and everything?

Thanks for writing in, we are sorry to hear you're uncomfortable. Pain during sex is common, but you should go and see your healthcare provider especially if you are experiencing consistent pain and bleeding during sex. It's a common myth that pain during sex, especially your first time, is normal. Sex doesn't have to be and shouldn't be painful, sex is something that can make you feel good, whether it's masturbation or partnered sex. Talking to your healthcare provider about what options can help you is a great place to start. Next time, try using lube and seeing if that helps. 
 

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I'm nearly 17 and a female and I've never had a boyfriend or even been asked out; I try to not let it bother me, but it's hard. I often worry about why I am apparently unattractive. I wonder if it is my personality or looks (though I often equate it to my weight as I am 5'4" and 141 lbs. How can I not feel so hopeless and romantically alone?

What can be tough and complicated about boosting your self-image and self-confidence, is that you're the only one that can do it. It takes a lot of time and practice at loving the skin you're in - and it's okay to struggle with that. Go to somewhere you feel comfortable, like a park or a coffee shop, and notice the people around you - everyone is different. Consider journaling about how you feel, and if it makes you feel better talk to a trusted adult or health care provider who can discuss this with you. Try following some body positive folks on Instagram, you will absolutely find a vibrant community of support and folks who also feel this way - you are not alone!

What's great about bodies, but terrible about the beauty industry and media at large, is that the purpose of your body isn't inherently to please anyone. Media can make us feel like if we aren't attracting someone then we aren't attractive and there is something out there that you can buy that will cover your flaws, make you skinnier, or do both! And that there is someone out there that is prettier than you, and the truth is - there probably is and always will be why? because everyone is different and everyone is attracted to different things. If you bring in ten people to choose from 100 photos of other people almost every one would pick someone different. There is no perfect weight, no perfect height, or age to get in a relationship. Investing in yourself, what makes you happy, and what makes you feel good is the best investment you can make. You're the only person who is going to be in your life start to finish - so you might as well get comfortable with yourself and come to a place where you recognize that it's okay to fall somewhere on the spectrum of self-love from day to day, but ultimately can find strength and joy in the assets that you do have. 

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How do I make my penis bigger?

We are afraid to report that no matter what body part you want to enhance or resize there is no magical way of doing this, especially when it comes to penises. It can totally be frustrating to feel like your body doesn't fit in. But, luckily for all of us, there is no "normal" - everybody is different! When it comes to penises, there are lots of different shapes and sizes. And that's all totally healthy and ok. Keep in mind the media, as they do with most other parts of the body, portrays a single image that doesn’t look like most real people. One of the hardest parts of about finding a way to having more self-confidence is that you’re the only one that can get yourself there – don't put pressure on yourself to achieve this goal, recognize that it’s okay to fall to have good days and bad days when it comes to your body image, but don’t engage with people or content that makes you feel badly about yourself. You’ve got this. Loving the skin you’re in isn’t easy and we can promise you no one is 100% confident- all you can do is try. <3  

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I just turned 14 last year and I've been really looking into masturbation. I have done it before but, never broken the surface. I want to but I'm afraid it might hurt. What do I do ?

Good for you! Masturbation can make you feel good and help you to know your body better. Start by touching different parts of your body and see what feels good, it shouldn't be painful, so if you do experience pain, we advise that you ask your healthcare provider about why this might be happening and how they can help. 

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How do you know if you can't have kids?

Whether you're a man or a woman, the only way to know for sure that you can't have a child is to go to the doctor and have some tests done. If you're interested in knowing about your personal situation, to check in with 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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What is a g-spot?

The g-spot is the female equivalent of a man's prostate. It's exactly position varies from person to person, but you can find it along the inner, front wall of the vagina when seated or on the top wall of the vagina when lying down. When stimulated it can provide a lot of pleasure. 

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What does it mean when you get pimples on your vagina?

There are a couple of possibilites here. If you shave, wax, or tweeze the hair around your vagina, it's possible that those bumps are actually ingrown hairs. They'll go away if you stop removing your pubic hair for a while. If the "pimples" appear red, warm, and/or sore they could be an infection or a sign of an STI. In that case find a health care provider and get their advice. Need help finding a health center? We’ve got you covered—just enter your ZIP code in our Clinic Locator.

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Normally when I have a period there's lots of blood sometimes? And sometimes the blood's either bright red or dark red? What if the blood was more of a clearish pinkish color? Is something wrong?

The color of your period blood does matter, so you're smart to take note of it.

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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Why is the inside of my vagina itchy?

There are a number of different reasons why your vagina might itch; an STI, a bacterial infection, or a yeast infection, for example. But there's no way to know for sure 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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I love the beach and have looked around online for a new bikini and the more I look the more tempted I get one that is skimpy. I started to fantasize about how it would feel to get a skimpy bikini with a g-string back. I have a pair of panties like that and when I'm home alone I sometimes wear them and a bra and walk around the house fantasizing that I'm on the beach around people. It turns me on. I think I'm gonna order a g-string bikini online and am gonna wear it on the beach this summer. Is it normal to feel like this? I turn 16 soon and I'm pretty happy with my figure. It would feel really exciting to do it. Do you think I should do it and is it normal to want to show off in a tiny bikini like this even though I'm only 15?

First-- your feelings are totally normal and plenty of people, men and women, like to show off their bodies on the beach. And the more general idea of exhibing your body in public is also normal. But due to your age it's probably inappropriate to wear a swimsuit like that in public. We'd suggest that you talk to a parent/other adult that you look up to try to see about finding a solution that mixes what you want with what is best considering your age. 

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I am 18 years old and may be having premature ejaculation. I used to last around 5-10 minutes masturbating, but within the past week, I have been barely lasting 1 minute. Why is this happening?

First, premature ejaculation is pretty common, it's estimated as many as a 1/3 of men say that they have had this problem at some point in their life. A bad sexual experience, anxiety, or worry could contribute to this problem. But as long as it's not happening every single time you engage in solo or partnered sex, you probably don't need to worry. But since we cannot offer specific medical advice on the internet, we recommend that you talk to your health care provider if you are worried. 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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When can I start using tampons?

There's no hard and fast rule as to when it's ok to start using a tampon. It'll be easier to insert a tampon once you're more comfortable with your body and your period, but once you have your period it's safe to use one as soon as you're ready. 

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Is it normal to feel ashamed of my body while having sex? Like I watch porn and see all these pretty ladies with perfect bodies and I can't help but feel like I should hide myself for being so ugly and chubby ....what should I do?

You're not alone, a lot of people feel this way. But what you see in porn is not normal or realistic, just go to your favorite park or coffee shop and look at the other adults around you, these are people that likely have engaged in sex and don't have what society tells us the perfect body is. Sex also generally doesn't happen the way porn portrays it either, porn can be a hurtful form of media that doesn't illustrate positive, healthy, consenting sex.

So be you and love your body - that being said, we know it isn't always easy to love yourself. We all fall somewhere on the spectrum of self-love from day to day and that's okay. Try surrounding yourself with people that lift you up and support you. That means virtually too! Try following some body positive Instagram accounts so you can surround yourself with positive, uplifting content. 

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I just want to know other peoples opinions on this. So a guy that I’ve had sex with before in the past basically raped me. But I was in denial because I felt that since I had consensual sex with him before maybe I might have done something to provoke it, but the more I think about it the more I think it’s rape. So please what do you guys think?? Oh, and another thing, after that night he called me saying how “hot” the sex was and how I was just laying there taking it. Like what? The only reason why I was laid there and said nothing is because I was in shock and I’ve never been in that situation before. I also don’t feel like my friends care. I feel very alone so I resorted to online help. What do you guys think?

We are so sorry that this happened to you. We are understanding that this was not consensual and is 100% not your fault. Your reaction was totally okay, we all react differently in traumatic situations. If you are comfortable doing so, go to the police.  If you're not comfortable doing that at this time, talk to experts like the folks, at RAINN.org.

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