eheadspace Group Chat
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Group Chat
Sex! What about it?
September 17th 2015 @ 12am AEST
Sexual health includes avoiding things like STIs and unplanned pregnancies, but it is also includes feeling good about who you are attracted to, and the decisions you make around sexual activity. Sexual health is something that we all need to think and talk about, regardless of our gender and sexuality.
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eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 1:49 pm
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 1:50 pm
Kristal eheadspace: Hi everyone, welcome to today’s session focussing on sex. This is a pretty big topic so if we get super busy we might have to group similar questions together. We’ll see how we go, and let you know.
My name’s Kristal and I’ll be helping to facilitate the chat today. Joining us today we have eheadspace mental health clinicians Caitlin, Jessie, Jamie, Cat and Laura. We also have Dr Sue from headspace Geelong joining us remotely, sometimes this might mean there is a slight delay in her responses. We've got a rep from YEAH which is a youth led sexual health organisation. We’ve also got Rania from hY NRG (our youth reference group) joining us remotely – again there might be a delay in her responses.
A couple of things before we start:
*When you submit your question it won't appear straight away
*Our team will be busy reading and preparing an answer to your question before it's posted live - we appreciate your patience!
*If we can't publish anything we'll let you know (in a private message)
*It also helps if you use a name (even if it's not your own!) so that if you have a follow up question we know who we're talking to
Feel free to start submitting any questions, or broader topics that you would like information on.
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 1:50 pm
Kristal eheadspace: Sorry, Jamie couldn't make it we have Phil instead :)
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 1:50 pm
Caitlin eheadspace: Hello everyone, Caitlin here!
eheadspace Moderator
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28th Aug, 1:50 pm
Jessie eheadspace: Hey everyone, my name is Jessie :)
eheadspace Moderator
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28th Aug, 1:50 pm
Phillip eheadspace: Hi everyone, Phil here. Welcome :)
eheadspace Moderator
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28th Aug, 1:50 pm
Laura eheadspace: Hi folks! I'm Laura - can't wait to hear all your questions...gr8 topic today :)
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28th Aug, 1:51 pm
Comment From Lisa
where can i get tested?
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 1:51 pm
cat eheadspace: Hi Lisa, great question. Getting tested for STI's can feel scary sometimes but it doesn't have to be. You can go to your local GP. Another option is a specialist sexual health clinic in your area- you can search for one here- www.redaware.org.au- at the 'Sexual Health Info' tab. Yet another option is your local Headspace centre- find your nearest at www.headspace.org.au
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28th Aug, 1:51 pm
Comment From Alice
Hi Lisa,
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28th Aug, 1:51 pm
Comment From Rania (hYNRG)
Hi, Rani here!
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28th Aug, 1:51 pm
omment From Alice
Whoops! Hi Lisa - I don't know where you are from or how old you are but I know in Sydney there is currently a really cool clinic for youth sexual health and health generally that is offering free checks! Something like that could be useful too!
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28th Aug, 1:51 pm
omment From Alice
Whoops! Hi Lisa - I don't know where you are from or how old you are but I know in Sydney there is currently a really cool clinic for youth sexual health and health generally that is offering free checks! Something like that could be useful too!
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 1:52 pm
Caitlin eheadspace: Hey Alice, thanks for your question. It's a really fantastic one to ask! Sex can be scary - we have HEAPS of people contact us with concerns about this. So, if anything, you're not alone! Sometimes it can feel more comfortable to play around with sex, little by little. You might start kissing, or feel parts of his body , or allowing him to touch you. Sex is not just about penetration. Give yourself permission to start slow and enjoy these steps rather than feel the pressure to go the whole hog! Also, it sounds like you might benefit from talking through this stuff with a counsellor, either at a headspace centre or someone recommended by your GP.
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28th Aug, 1:52 pm
Comment From Rania (hYNRG)
Hi Lisa, I'm 21 and in my experience youth clinics are almost always fantastic, whether its a headspace centre or somewhere else. Sexual health nurses are usually really friendly and informative and most youth focused places will be cheap or free:) I've even been to one that gave away milkshakes to anyone who got tested!
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28th Aug, 1:52 pm
Comment From Rania (hYNRG)
Hi Alice, its great that your partner says he doesn't mind. Even if you still see it as a problem it means he wants to look after your needs as well!
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 1:52 pm
Caitlin eheadspace: You're welcome Alice! Your psychiatrist should be A OK with talking about this stuff - it's not uncommon to talk about sex in sessions! But if it feels too scary to say it face to face, why don't you write it down and pass it to your psychiatrist to read? Facing your fears sure is hard, but things are often SO much worse in our minds than reality!
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28th Aug, 1:52 pm
Comment From Alice
Thanks Caitlin and Rani for your answers. I guess I have been nervous to talk to my psychiatrist about this. My fear about having sex extends to talking about it as well most of the time. I don't really know why. Hmph. I might have to just face my fears and I will take your advice on board Caitlin, thank you!
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28th Aug, 1:53 pm
Comment From Rania (hYNRG)
oops. I think Caitlin makes a really good point about taking it slow, figuring out what you like and how to go about it in a way that you're ok with could be good! You said that you never feel attractive enough to want to participate, and that must be really hard. that would be a really good thing to talk to someone about. I know how much those negative thoughts about yourself can overwhelm.
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28th Aug, 1:53 pm
Comment From Amy
Hi, I'm Amy. I was just wondering if it's necessary fo use a dental dam if neither of you have ever had sex? My girlfriend and I are going to have sex soon and we're both virgins and I just wondered it if was necessary since there's no chance of either of us having an STD?
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 1:53 pm
Kristal eheadspace: Hey Amy :) Great question! It sounds like you've put a lot of thought into this. It's always a good idea to use a barrier method just to get into the habit of it and to be having the safest sex possible. Most importantly it's about being open and having the conversation.
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28th Aug, 1:53 pm
Comment From Dan
My gf is on the pill and she still wants to use condoms.I hate using them and we are only with each other, what can I tell her to show its ok not to.
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 1:54 pm
Jessie eheadspace: Hey Dan! It's Jessie here....I can hear that you're pretty frustrated about your gf's insistence on using a condom. It's awesome she is on the pill AND being pretty firm about using condoms. Here's why...the pill greatly reduces the liklihood of unplanned pregancy but it doesn't at all protect either of you from STI's. Maybe it's worth trying out a few different types of condoms and experimenting with lube! You can put a little bit of lube inside the tip of the condom and try out thinner ones to increase the sensation too. It's awesome you guys have been talking openly about this stuff and hopefully you can figure out something that's safe, fun, feels good and works for you both :)
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28th Aug, 1:55 pm
Comment From Rania (hYNRG)
Good luck Alice! I find Dr's can be a bit scary. I mentioned in a comment to someone else how nice sexual health nurses usually are. If you went to a youth sexual health clinic there might be someone to have a chat with. In my experience they are much less intimidating than psychiatrists and, because they specialise in talking about sex they have a magical way of taking all the awkwardness out of it
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28th Aug, 1:55 pm
Comment From Jody
This might not be a sex question but my friend really sexualises her instagram pictures and I know lots of people make fun of her and I think its bit gross. what can I say to her?
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28th Aug, 1:55 pm
Comment From Rania (hYNRG)
Hi Amy, great that you're having those talks openly! there's always a risk, but the most important thing is to make sure you're both comfortable with whatever you choose.
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28th Aug, 1:55 pm
Comment From Rania (hYNRG)
Hi Dan, there are also options out there other that male condoms for barrier contraception. There are female condoms, diaphragms and a lot of variety. I know you have said you are only with each other, but trust me, sex with a condom is still 10000 x more preferable to sex with someone who is not completely comfortable with the situation or protection used.
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 1:55 pm
cat eheadspace: Hey Jody, thanks for your question. I think it's great that you're looking out for your friend and I imagine it's hard to hear people making fun of her. Ultimately though, what your friend posts on her Instagram is her call. Maybe have a private chat to her about your concerns, but be prepared for the fact that she might not want to take your advice on board. There's some good tips about having difficult convos on ReachOut, here- https://au.reachout.com/articles/3-steps-to-better-communication
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28th Aug, 2:00 pm
Comment From Rania (hYNRG)
Hi Amy, great that you're having those talks openly! there's always a risk, but the most important thing is to make sure you're both comfortable with whatever you choose.
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28th Aug, 2:00 pm
Comment From Rania (hYNRG)
Hi Dan, there are also options out there other that male condoms for barrier contraception. There are female condoms, diaphragms and a lot of variety. I know you have said you are only with each other, but trust me, sex with a condom is still 10000 x more preferable to sex with someone who is not completely comfortable with the situation or protection used.
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28th Aug, 2:00 pm
Comment From Jason
my boyfriend wants us to have an open relationship and im think im ok with it. What is the right thing to do for it to be ok and not just break up.
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 2:00 pm
Caitlin eheadspace: Hey Jason! The cool thing about sex and relationships are there are no "rules" - except to do what feels good and safe to both you and your partner. It sounds like the most important thing is to have a conversation with him about everything. It's OK if you change your mind too... If you start out being cool with it but then change your mind then that's OK. Listen in to your feelings and be true to yourself... never do anything you don't feel comfortable with.
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28th Aug, 2:00 pm
Comment From Rania (hYNRG)
Jason, that can be a complicated one! I had a friend in a similar situation and they made it work by making sure they had the same expectations and regularly checking in with how each other felt about it. e.g. is hooking up ok? is sex ok? is dating ok? is emotional connection to someone else ok?
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28th Aug, 2:00 pm
Comment From Ruth
I'm really far away from a sexual health centre is there a way to get any testing?
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
15th Apr, 6:33 pm
Jessie eheadspace:
Hey Ruth! Great question. It can be so hard to get tested when you literally don't have access to anywhere nearby! We totally need a whole lot more accessible sexual health centres so that every young person can get tested when they need. In the absence of that, you can head to a GP, a headspace centre
or if you're in Vic, they have this really cool free chlamydia test that you can do:
This service also provides telephone consultations on STI's and contraception. Hope that helps!
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28th Aug, 2:02 pm
Comment From Janie
I just found out I have herpes, how to I tell my exes?
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
15th Apr, 6:35 pm
cat eheadspace:
Hi Janie,
really good question. It can be super awkward talking to exes, especially about testing positive to an STI. It's always best to try and talk face to face, however if you are in Victoria, NSW or Queensland, there is a website you can use to send an anonymous text to previous partners to let them know you have an STI
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28th Aug, 2:02 pm
Comment From Alice
Yeah - I have been trying to tell myself that I am being a bit irrational and overthinking the whole thing. I think finding myself unattractive has really taken its toll on the whole experience. I am hoping increasing my self esteem might help. To therapy I go! And yes, I might consider talking to a sexual health nurse. Though the one I have seen previously was a little too open and I got a bit intimidated. I'd best look around for someone. Thanks Rani and Caitlin!
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 2:02 pm
Caitlin eheadspace: You've made a good point Alice - thinking too much can get in the way of good sex! Perhaps try to focus on your senses - what you can smell, touch, hear etc. This can help focus on the moment and get a bit of space from those worries. It sounds like your boyfriend has been really supportive and loves you for you, not for your body. We are often our own worst critics so learning to be your own "coach" and speaking to youself in more helpful/nicer/favourable terms is really important - get your therapist to help you with it.
It's also super important to feel comfy with your nurse/doctor so definitely have a look around if you felt intimidated by the nurse last time! Sometimes it can take a few "goes" to find someone we feel OK with.
Good luck - you'll get there!
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28th Aug, 2:04 pm
Comment From Kasey
Hi, I have a bit of an awkward question. So I was wondering if its safe to have painted nails if you're going to finger someone? I'm not sure if it could harm them but I figured it's better to be safe than sorry.
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 2:04 pm
Caitlin eheadspace: Hey Kasey, great question! It's important to get all your questions about sex answered :) So long as your hands are clean, wearing nail polish should be A OK!
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28th Aug, 2:04 pm
Comment From Alice
Thanks again Caitlin - yes, I need to focus on my other senses and not let my thoughts distract. I am my own worst nightmare and yes definitely my worst critic. I
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28th Aug, 2:04 pm
Comment From Rania (hYNRG)
Good luck Alice! for what its worth i think its brave to be taking the steps you are:)
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28th Aug, 2:05 pm
Comment From Alicia
As a teenager, I find that I have been of late, thinking about 'sexy' things a lot, such as different forms or foreplay etc. but i wondered if this means i'm strange or if this is a normal thing. My partner tells me its normal, however I get worried that sometimes I can get aroused too often and it could be a bad thing and not normal
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28th Aug, 2:05 pm
Comment From Alicia
This is hard to say, but is it bad, being a girl to sometimes think of porn and then watch it. Because the strange thing is that sometimes i feel the need to watch it, but i do and i know i do get scared each time.
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 2:05 pm
Kristal eheadspace: Hey Alicia, it can feel a bit weird when we start having those sexual thoughts huh? It's very normal to be thinking about sex, and different ways of having fun. Different people have different libidos so some people might think about (or have) more sex than others, but it doesn't mean they're bad. And in relation to porn, it's ok to be watching it - but it's important to know that porn is often not very realistic. We're actually going to be talking about porn in one of these live info sessions - so check back in December for our chat about that.
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28th Aug, 2:05 pm
Comment From Alicia
When is it necessary to have a pap test?
eheadspace Moderator
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28th Aug, 2:05 pm
eheadspace Moderator
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28th Aug, 2:23 pm
Jessie eheadspace: Hi Alicia! It can be confusing to know when and how often you should get a pap test. The general rule of thumb is to start getting tested when you turn 18 or when you become sexually active. Then get re-tested every one to two years. Here's some more info on pap tests that might be useful too: http://www.papscreen.org.au/
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28th Aug, 2:23 pm
Comment From Alicia
I have been in a relationship for a year now, its really awesome! However, only shortly after we had been dating, around the two month stage, we had sex, which at the time felt really good, new and exciting. Now however, if my partner mentions it i am almost scared. I think i am anxious about it, about a condom breaking or getting pregnant or getting disease and I can't help but shift that from my mind and therefore if i was to have sex again i can't relax and it doesn't feel special.
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 2:23 pm
Phillip eheadspace: Hi Alicia, sounds like this is something that is weighing on your mind quite a bit, and sex in general can often be a cause of anxiety for many, so don't worry, you're not alone. It's good that you are thinking about things like safety and health, as this is central to good sex and being comfortable with your partner.
Firstly, it is really important that you feel safe and respected before you do anything sexual, so if you are feeling uncomfortable about anything, you don't have to do anything you don't want to.
You may want to go to your GP and speak about some of your concerns, as getting a professional opinion can often put our minds at ease with these things. You could also try visiting a sexual health web site like http://www.redaware.org.au/ to find information about your local sexual health clinic and make an appointment to speak to someone about this.
Also Alicia, it is really important to try and speak about your concerns with your partner, so they can be aware of how you are feeling and hopefully be sensitive and respectful about this. You could also go and speak to someone about this together so you are both on the same page. I hope this helps.
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28th Aug, 2:24 pm
Comment From Alicia
Thanks! Your comment is awaiting moderation.
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28th Aug, 2:24 pm
Comment From Levi
Sometimes my girlfriend says she doesn't want to have sex, but I don't get it...we've been together for ages and I find it hard to go with it when she's not in the mood. How can I tell her that because she's my girlfriend she should be keen for us to have sex?
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
15th Apr, 6:36 pm
Laura eheadspace:
hey Levi - Laura here :)
Thanks for the question - it's a good one which I am sure lots of ppl have also wondered - what to do when you want to have sex and your partner doesnt (and vice versa)??
This can be an incredibly frustrating/confusing/awkward situation to be in, but actually it's super duper normal. The urge to have sex cannot just be activated by pressing a button...(ok sometimes there are buttons involved but there's much more to it)...so it makes sense that inevitably there are times that people are not both in the mood at the same time...
Rather than telling your girlfriend that being your girlfriend = she should want to have sex (because sorry to say, it absolutely doesnt)...i reckon it could be more productive to have an open and honest conversation. You may want to talk about how the situation is impacting you (making you feel)...and open up conversation about both of your sexual/emotional/relationship needs...
Obviously you guys are super close since you've been together for so long...i bet this convo will bring you even closer! You might also learn a thing or two about the things which turn HER on ;)
Thanks Levi!
eheadspace Moderator
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28th Aug, 2:24 pm
eheadspace Moderator
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28th Aug, 2:25 pm
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28th Aug, 2:25 pm
Comment From Alicia
Thankyou Headspace.
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28th Aug, 2:25 pm
Comment From Cass
So i am really self concious about my body and am worried that my breasts wont look right when i do have sex. Is it normal for your nipples to be pink and not brown because they almost see none existent
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 2:25 pm
Caitlin eheadspace: Hey Cass! Bodies come in all shapes, sizes, and colours! Including nipples :) There isn't any "right" way for breasts to look. Just like penises - breasts vary heaps from person to person. Learning to love and accept your body is really important, since the way we think about ourselves has an impact on our self-worth. Here's a link to general info on body image :) http://au.reachout.com/what-is-body-image
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28th Aug, 2:27 pm
Comment From Cass
Thanks i always get nervous about this stuff
eheadspace Moderator
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28th Aug, 2:27 pm
Laura eheadspace: Cass I reckon it can always help to remember that the person who may be seeing you naked is equally anxious about their own body!!
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28th Aug, 2:28 pm
Comment From Rania (hYNRG)
Hey Levi, that can be incredibly frustrating. It might be an idea to find out about her needs, and the things that are going on for her when she does/doesn't feel like it. For some people sex is a vital part of a relationship but the thing is, if she agrees to have sex when she's not "in the mood" it might make her less and less likely to actually want and get into it. Sex should never be about obligation, it takes all the fun out. Maybe really string out the foreplay, talk about what turns her on!
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28th Aug, 2:28 pm
Comment From Val
This is going to sound odd, but i have always been worried that i might not look right down there, are the Labia's supposed to be big and flappy?
eheadspace Moderator
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28th Aug, 2:28 pm
cat eheadspace: Hey Val, that is not an odd question at all- lots of people wonder about whether their genitals look 'normal' or not. The thing is, everybody's bits look different- whatever you have is normal for you, unless it is causing you pain or discomfort. If you are worried, you can talk to your GP or a sexual health nurse.
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28th Aug, 2:30 pm
Comment From Alice
OMG Cass - I totally have the same anxiety about how my breasts look to my partner. I hope you find comfort knowing I also have the same worries! But I totally agree with the advice headspace has already written here. Being naked can be frightening but yes, remember the other person could be just as scared or self conscious about their own body!
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28th Aug, 2:30 pm
Comment From Cass
Thanks
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28th Aug, 2:30 pm
Comment From Cass
Thanks everyone for the help, Sometimes i feel like i am the only one that worries but i guess not :)
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28th Aug, 2:30 pm
Comment From Molly
Hey I was wondering if masturbating could desensitise you after a while? Not like in one session but after doing it for years could it make it difficult to orgasm with a partner? I'm a girl btw.
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28th Aug, 2:31 pm
Comment From Molly
Hey I was wondering if masturbating could desensitise you after a while? Not like in one session but after doing it for years could it make it difficult to orgasm with a partner? I'm a girl btw.
eheadspace Moderator
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28th Aug, 2:31 pm
Jessie eheadspace: Hey there Molly! Great to hear from you...there are a whole lot of myths out there about masturbation and one of them is that "too much" (however you define that!) can lead to a loss of sensation. This is absolutely not true. However it can be the case that you might get used to a certain way of reaching orgasm. This could potentially become an issue when you're with a partner if communication isn't so great. Being familiar with your own body and what you like is actually an awesome thing and by keeping that communication open about what you like, it can lead to a more enjoyable experience for you and your partner. Here is a cool video on masturbation that you might want to check out: https://www.yeah.org.au/tag/masturbation/
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28th Aug, 2:31 pm
Comment From Tamara
Can a doctor force you to have a pelvic exam? I'm planning on going to the doctor to talk about something completely unrelated but I'm 16 and have never had a pelvic exam so I think she may bring it up. The problem is that I was sexually abused as a child and I totally panic at the thought of a doctor touching me, even if my doctor is a woman. So if she did mention it, would I be able to say no? She can't force me right?
eheadspace Moderator
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28th Aug, 2:31 pm
Caitlin eheadspace: Hey Tamara, that's a fantastic question. You can 100% say no to this. She definitely cannot force you. It would be against the law if she did.
So sorry to hear about your experiences of abuse. If you feel comfortable, maybe it would be a good idea to tell your doctor about your experiences so they could link you in with a counsellor? With time, talking about it might help you feel more comfortable to have a pelvic floor examination when you are ready. But again, this is not something you have to do either.
Thanks again for your question :)
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28th Aug, 2:32 pm
Comment From Sam
What are your breasts supposed to feel like when you press on them? I have rather small boobs so when I press on them I hit the back of my chest pretty quickly but if I feel around it feels like there's a bunch of small lumps. It's the same in both breasts. Is this normal or should I see a doctor because I'm rather worried. My breasts haven't quite finished growing, if that makes a difference.
eheadspace Moderator
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28th Aug, 2:32 pm
Kristal eheadspace: Hey Sam, that's another great question! Our bodies are so weird right? Some women/girls do have very lumpy breasts, and as we're growing they can feel lumpy. It is a good idea to have them checked out by your dr and they can help you work out what's normal for you. They can also show you how to do regular breast exams on yourself so that you can keep on top of things and you'll know if anything changes.
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28th Aug, 2:34 pm
Comment From Cass
Molly, i have always wondered that as well. Now i have an answer thanks
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28th Aug, 2:34 pm
Comment From Rania (hYNRG)
Val, i think what i just wrote to Cass might apply to you too!
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28th Aug, 2:34 pm
Comment From Val
Yea, Thanks everyone :)
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28th Aug, 2:34 pm
Comment From Foxx
My boyfriend bought a lot of condoms a few years ago and he reckons they're still ok to use. I don't know if they are. Also, he says that carrying one around in his wallet is good idea in case he gets in the mood. (We're both guys)
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 2:34 pm
Phillip eheadspace: Hi Foxx, really good question! When it comes to contraception, there is one golden rule to always remember - if you're not sure, don't risk it.
Properly stored, condoms have a life of about five years. Always:
• Make sure the use-by date on the packet is current
• Keep condoms in a cool, dry place (they can be affected by heat).
Also, if a condom has been kept in a wallet, it has probably had quite a bit of friction, which could affect it's durability, so it's best not to use a condom that has been stored in a wallet or anywhere where it might have been put under pressure or friction before use.
And as condoms are quite cheap and easily accessible, it will always be easier and safer to go and get a new one so you and your partner can be safe.
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28th Aug, 2:36 pm
Comment From Rania (hYNRG)
Hey Tamara, getting a pelvic exam, especially for the first time is uncomfortable even without the experiences you've had. If you don't want to the dr can't do anything. No one should ever touch you without you ok-ing it and, in the future, if you do decide to go to a doctor for an exam or pap smear or anything similar, don't forget you can change your mind at any point during and ask them to stop!
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28th Aug, 2:36 pm
Comment From Hayden
I have a girlfriend and I often find that whenever I'm with her, no matter what, I always end up getting an erection even if I'm not aroused, and I always end up having pre-cum coming out, and having to change my underpants. Is that normal?
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28th Aug, 2:36 pm
Comment From Hayden
Also another question: my girlfriend is super insecure about her body image, and seems to think that all guys want is skinny guys, and that she's not good enough for me. I constantly tell her I think she's beautiful, but she won't accept it and I feel like it kinda destroys her self esteem. Is there any way I can help her to be happier in her own skin?
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 2:36 pm
Laura eheadspace: Hey Hayden - isn't it bizzare when our bodies start doing all of these weird and wild things completely outside of our control!! I can understand why you are wondering what exactly is going on down there!
The short answer is yes, getting an erection around your girlfriend (and experiencing some pre-cum) is absolutely normal. I guess it is your body's way of saying "I like this girl...A LOT...high five!"
Although it's a mild inconveniece in the washing department...I say enjoy the ride of having a girlfriend who floats your boat :))
and in terms of your second question...unfortunately people often struggle with their body image/self esteem..this can be hard to witness when you (clearly!) find her to be a total babe!
Your girlfriend will have to come to love herself in her own way and in her own time and that's out of your control...I suggest you keep doing exactly what you are doing - letting her know how much you (and your body!) think she is beautiful just the way she is :)
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28th Aug, 2:37 pm
Comment From Alicia
What is the best way to go about booking a pap test if my family and i all go to the same doctor, who we are really close with, but my family does not know i am sexually active.
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 2:37 pm
cat eheadspace: Hey Alicia, great question. You might have already thought about this- but talking to your parents and having an open conversation with them about what you're doing is always something we'd reccomend. There are ways to get a pap test without your parents knowing though. Depending on your age, you can get your own Medicare card and see the GP privately- either your family doctor or another clinic. If you did go to your family GP, they are bound by confidentiality and would not share that information with your parents. You can also see a sexual health nurse at many Headspace centres- check your nearest one at www.headspace.org.au
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 2:37 pm
Participant
Participant
28th Aug, 2:38 pm
Comment From Cos
Hi, I think I might have Vaginismus but my GP didn't really seem to care, saying I must just not love my partner enough and that's why it hurts. This is completely untrue but it's affecting my relationship with him. Where can I go to get some advice?
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 2:38 pm
Kristal eheadspace: Hey Cos, I'm really sorry you've had that experience with your GP. My first thought is that it would be important to go back (to a different GP) to talk about this. There are lots of options and lots of options for why sex might be painful and it's important to feel able to talk to a GP that you feel safe with.
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 2:38 pm
Participant
Participant
28th Aug, 2:39 pm
Comment From Hali
When you do think the best time to have a sex talk is? My younger, trans cousin goes to a private, religious school that doesn't cover sexual education in their curriculum, and it certainly doesn't talk about possibilities for trans people. I don't want to overwhelm him with info, but I'm worried that if he doesn't know, he might not be safe with his boyfriend.
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 2:40 pm
essie eheadspace: Hey Hali! Good on you for looking out for your friend. You are so right in that sex ed for people who identify as trans is really lacking and it sounds like the school your friend attends isn't very helpful either. When is a good time? That's a tough one but I guess it's good to think about things like privacy and respect and that kind of stuff so maybe having chat in a quiet space away from others. You could start to convo by talking about your own sex ed and asking your friend about theirs. Maybe you could send them a link to this live info session or even get them to check out this resource on the Minus 18 website: . Hope that's useful Hali :) https://www.minus18.org.au/
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 2:41 pm
Participant
Participant
28th Aug, 2:41 pm
Comment From Rania (hYNRG)
Hi Hayden, you're girlfriend is lucky to have you supporting her! don't forget if you're worried about her you can always suggest she speak to a counsellor or visit a headspace centre. Keep being there for her and don't underestimate how much that can help!
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
15th Apr, 6:39 pm

Kristal eheadspace:
This is a site that let's you "check your risk"
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 2:42 pm
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 2:42 pm
Caitlin eheadspace: Finaly, some important things to keep in mind!
What is good sex?
- Feeling safe – both physically and emotionally. Feeling safe means being able to trust that your partner will treat you well – with care and respect – whether you’re together for one hour, a week, months or years
- Feeling keen – your body actually changes when you want to have sex. It pumps blood to your genitals, and makes fluids for lubrication
- Clear consent – knowing this is what you both want, not being under any pressure, and feeling free to say yes or no to anything at any stage
- Really good communication – checking in with your partner about what they like, don’t like or aren’t sure they like, what they have or haven’t tried, and what they would like to explore
- Time and space – to explore, talk, and discover things about yourself and your partner
- A sense of humour – sex can be funny and sometimes awkward or embarrassing, but that’s okay if you feel comfortable and trust your partner. It can be funny and awkward for adults, too, not just when you start having sex!
- Respect – both partners respecting the other, including their right to privacy during and afterwards.
Participant
Participant
28th Aug, 2:43 pm
Comment From Alicia
If both partners are virgins, is it possible for either to have a sexual disease or STI?
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 2:43 pm
Phillip eheadspace: Hi Alicia, really good question to be thinking about. So firstly, if someone is a virgin, this does not necessarily mean they haven't had sexual encounters, such as foreplay, or oral sex, which can both have the potential to lead to transmitting sexual diseases or STIs.
The best way to make sure you are both safe is to visit your local sexual health clinic or GP and get tested, so you both know that you are safe.
And whether you are both virgins or not, it is always important to practice safe sex and use contraception.
Participant
Participant
28th Aug, 2:43 pm
Comment From Rania (hYNRG)
Awesome Hali! I think there is no actual "best time" or hard and fast rules for talking about sex. If you think the information could be helpful now, now is probably a good time. Especially for someone going to school in that environment its probably also great for them to know talking about sex is ok, and might make your cousin more inclined to ask questions!
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
15th Apr, 6:43 pm
Kristal eheadspace:
Wow that's gone really quickly! I hope you’ve all found the session helpful today. There have been some great questions and comments. Today’s session transcript will be available from tomorrow at this link where the past sessions are also accessible
Sex can be a significant part of our lives and I doubt we have covered everything in this session. I know we really overwhelmed you with links at the end, but if you have questions that we haven’t covered it can be really helpful to ask you GP, your school counsellor or someone you trust for that information. I’m also popping in some links to the sexual health centres in your local areas and remember that you can also access the red aware site to look up centres close to your postcode!
Melbourne sexual health centre VIC
Sydney sexual health centre NSW
WA sexual and reproductive health
Quarry Health in Perth
SA sexual health (Shine SA)
NT Safe sex, no regrets
TAS Sexual health service
Find a clinic/support by state:
Legal information by state:
Good on everyone for being brave in sharing their stories and asking questions :)
eheadspace Moderator
Moderator
28th Aug, 2:46 pm
Emma eheadspace
Moderator
15th Apr, 6:44 pm
Last Audit Date: 15/04/20