One last birthday card for Scarleteen!
I saved this very wonderful birthday card from the also-very-wonderful Liz for almost a year now, looking for the right time to publish it. Considering that we are two days away from the end of this 20th year and our next (our 21st!) Anniversary, this is certainly a good time. If you want to help […]

I saved this very wonderful birthday card from the also-very-wonderful Liz for almost a year now, looking for the right time to publish it. Considering that we are two days away from the end of this 20th year and our next (our 21st!) Anniversary, this is certainly a good time. If you want to help us wrap up this great anniversary year with a little support to help us stick around for years to come, you should know some cool stuff that's happening right now or to come!

1) Any new donor this month gets early access to our new zine! You can read all about it here.

2) For those who can and want to order awesome, non-toxic and affordable toys, Kenton at Funkit Toys has made them special toys just for us - they're even scarlet! - to help support Scarleteen. $ 10 for each $ 24 dildo and $ 18 for each $ 40 model is back to us, and you can even add an extra donation while you're at it if you're feeling extra generous.

3) At the end of the month, there will be opportunities for two more donors to win this big price! - Heather

If you told me fifteen years ago that I would do sex education as a job I would have probably laughed at you. Can you imagine: me story other that you can have a healthy sexuality relationship with your body, let alone admit it myself!? A lot has changed for me since then - today's Liz is more confident, more comfortable with herself (not to mention the breasts that eventually grew).

What has not changed since is that Scarleteen has remained my primary resource in sex education.

As a young teenage girl who had really only seen potential versions of herself on websites that as a minor I had to lie to get access to, finding a site that wasn't just suitable for her. age, but never talking to me just because I was young changed my thinking: both about sex I might someday have and the types of relationships I might have.

I don't think of myself as 'born a boy', but this is how many people saw me as I was growing up nonetheless. Faced with the barrel of expectations that came with it, I searched for a new set of expectations and ideas. When I was stuck, alone, or scared, I felt good knowing that there was a place online I could turn to for help and support that I was even entitled to.

Many years later as I find my own family and learn from a whole new generation of young people weird folks, it is an extraordinary privilege to help contribute to the same annals of counseling from which I have sought solace, and which have helped to make me the adult I am today. I have no shame in admitting that they always do too! Sex education has no age limit, and as I revisit the pages of Scarleteen, I still find myself learning and growing. That doesn't mean it's perfect, or that all the topics have been covered: I'm delighted with what twenty more years will bring!

No birthday is complete without goodies, and I think the greatest gift you can give yourself is the time and opportunity to explore what you expect from life, love, sex, romance and relationships - whether it's all the time or just a few of them every now and then, thank you very much! To know that there are people from every genre and sex in the sun looking for a little bit of advice, or a word of love, and being able to tell them that I stood where they are and survived is a humbling thing , just like homosexuals have told me.

We all have to start learning somewhere, but we also have plenty of room to keep learning; to continue a journey of knowledge about sexual health, practices and pleasure, and in particular about ourselves and our own body. I will always be grateful for the tools Scarleteen gave a scared young me, for the tools he continues to give me as (for the most part) less scared, and for the tools I receive to help build for the hundreds of thousands who access these pages each year.

Happy Birthday Scarleteen, and here are many more decades online!

There are many types of health including physical health, mental health, spiritual health, cultural health, social health, financial health, environmental health, etc. Plus all these types of health can impact each other. For instance, if you are trying to prevent pregnancy and are able to access the birth control you need ( physical health ), this may help to create a more positive mood ( emotional health ), which may also positively impact your sense of sexual confidence and sexual self-esteem ( sexual health ).

Sexual health-related issues are wide-ranging, and encompass sexual orientation and gender identity, sexual expression, relationships, and pleasure. They also include negative consequences or conditions such as : infections with human immunodeficiency malware ( HIV ), sexually transmitted infections ( STIs ) and reproductive tract infections ( RTIs ) and their adverse outcomes ( such as cancer and infertility ) ;unintended pregnancy and abortion;sexual dysfunction;sexual violence; andharmful practices ( such as female genital mutilation, FGM ).

No matter where you are coming from, WE ARE HERE to help bring Sexual Health into a more positive and empowering place. A place where hopefully you can learn the sexual health information you would like, see or speak to a professional in the field whether on the Sex Sense Line or at one of our many clinics throughout BC, and come away knowing that sexual health is a natural part of being human.

Options for Sexual Health champions and celebrates sexual health including an individual’s freedom of sexual expression, the diversity of human sexuality, and a positive sexual self-image for individuals throughout life. Think about what factors influence your sexual health ? What messages have you been given about sexual health from… ( if applicable ) ….. your family ? friends ? society ? culture ? religion ? spirituality ? What are some of your own values and beliefs ?

How we experience our sexual health is also part of how we experience the world. For example, there are many factors that health researchers have identified that can impact our health including sexual health. These are known as the ‘social determinants of health’ and include how health is affected by income, education, employment, childhood development, food, housing, health services, gender, espèce, disability, Indigenous status, social marginalization, and social services. If someone’s gender identity/identities are not recognized this can effet their sexual health and experiences of social marginalization. Another example is if someone is a newcomer to Canada and may not speak the language or have the health care card that will allow them to access the sexual health services they need. As you can see, our sexual health is as individual and complicated as the various dynamics of our lives. Human sexuality rarely falls into neat categories or lends itself to simple labeling, but rather is a rich and complex area of human experience. Sexual health is personal, psychological, relational, cultural, spiritual, physical, and emotional. So what does “sexual health” mean to you ?

This supplemental issue of Public Health Reports ( PHR ) presents a variety of articles addressing the méthode and practical applications of sexual health, an important health réduction concept with the potential for improving population health in a broad range of areas related to sexual behavior, including human immunodeficiency virus ( HIV ) /acquired immunodeficiency syndrome ( AIDS ), sexually transmitted diseases ( STDs ), viral hepatitis, teen and unintended pregnancy, and sexual violence. The focus of these articles is especially timely given the population burden of these conditions in the United States and other nations, and the growing recognition that, despite the sensitive nature of the topic, addressing the broad construct of sexual health can enhance the national dialogue in this area and increase the effectiveness of public health programs

The concept of sexual health has evolved since its principal articulation by the World Health Organization ( WHO ) in 1975, 5 but it has generally emphasized well-being across a range of life domains ( e. g., physical, esprit, and emotional ) rather than simply the absence of disease or other adverse outcomes. 6 The definition of sexual health currently in most widespread use is that developed by WHO in 2002 :

Sexual health is a state of physical, emotional, mental, and social well-being in relation to sexuality; it is not merely the absence of disease, dysfunction, or infirmity. Sexual health requires a positive and respectful approach to sexuality and sexual relationships, as well as the possibility of having pleasurable and safe sexual experiences, free of coercion, discrimination, and violence

Sexual health is a state of well-being in relation to sexuality across the life span that involves physical, emotional, esprit, social, and spiritual dimensions. Sexual health is an intrinsic element of human health and is based on a positive, equitable, and respectful approach to sexuality, relationships, and réplication, that is free of coercion, fear, discrimination, stigma, shame, and violence. It includes : the ability to understand the benefits, risks, and responsibilities of sexual behavior; the prevention and care of disease and other adverse outcomes; and the possibility of fulfilling sexual relationships. Sexual health is impacted by socioeconomic and cultural contexts—including policies, practices, and services—that support saine outcomes for individuals, families, and their communities.

Similar to the WHO definition, this newer definition is health-focused, emphasizing well-being related to sexuality that is beyond the absence of specific health problems, in multiple dimensions of life, as well as positive and respectful approaches to sexuality and relationships. Moving beyond the WHO definition, the CHAC definition also specifically emphasizes attributes of sexual health at both the individual level ( e. g., individual understanding of benefits, risks and responsibilities, and prevention and care of health outcomes ) and the social level ( e. g., impact by socioeconomic and cultural contexts and saine outcomes for families and communities as well as individuals ).

In the past decade, there has been increasing attention to the importance of addressing the concept of sexual health, 1–4 with the premise that offre de promotion of sexual health has great potential to complement traditional disease control and prevention efforts for a range of conditions of public health importance—not with the intent of replacing those exercices, but rather of improving their acceptance and, thus, the impact of those prevention efforts on the population. It is from this perspective that this supplemental provenant of PHR has been developed, with the purpose of bringing together a range of articles addressing new insights into research, surveillance, program practice, and broader perspectives that can influence our understanding and progress on the broad topic of sexual health. It should be noted that “sexual health” is a concept undergoing evolution, not only in its definition, but also in its practical application. The term generally includes a focus on health and wellness rather than disease, an appreciation for the intrinsic importance of sexual health as part of overall health, and an attempt to address comprehensively a range of outcomes of public health importance; however, some of the articles in this supplement address a relatively narrower focus ( e. g., STD and pregnancy prevention9–11 ), while others include a broader spectrum. 12–17 Such variety is a necessary and important aspect of the uptake of the sexual health concept into the méthode and practice of public health.

Four articles address important research questions in key areas relevant to sexual health. First, Penman-Aguilar and colleagues conducted a detailed literature review to assess the impact of socioeconomic disadvantage on teen childbearing. 9 While the factors evaluated varied by study, the authors discovered a consistent theme across the review, with all studies that considered socioeconomic factors as determinants finding a significant association with teen birth rates, including factors at the family level ( e. g., lower levels of responsable d'un enfant education and family income ) and the community level ( e. g., lower per capita income and higher rates of unemployment and racial segregation ). The review found that relatively few studies assessed factors at both the family and community levels, an important priority for future research.

Second, using nationally representative data from the National Longitudinal Study of Youth and the U. S Census Bureau, Biello et al. conducted an in-depth analysis of the effet of various dimensions of residential racial segregation on the risk for early initiation of intercourse—an important risk factor for STD and teen pregnancy—among black and white ados. 17 The finding that black youth were more likely than their white peers to have initiated sexual intercourse in adolescence was significantly modified by several measures of segregation ( e. g., concentration and unevenness ) with a particularly notable black-white disparity in highly segregated areas. While preliminary, these findings contribute to our growing understanding of the complex interplay between social determinants and individual sexual health outcomes and should stimulate further research in this area.

Third, to understand the association of relationship characteristics and attitudes about STD and pregnancy outcomes with the use of dual protection strategies ( i. e., both highly effective contraception and condoms ), Crittenden Murray and colleagues conducted formative research among young African American women attending reproductive health clinics. 10 The study found a tension from trying to balance the desire to establish and maintain intimate relationships with the use of protection strategies ( e. g., condom use could be seen as a sign of mistrust ). The authors conclude that a more holistic approach, with a focus on healthy adolescent and young adult relationships, is crucial in interventions to prevent STD and unintended pregnancy, an issue that can be especially important in environments where trust is often violated ( e. g., due to frequent concurrent partnerships ) and childbearing at younger ages is accepted.


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