If I can’t talk to my teacher about puberty, where do I go?

Dear Diary,

It’s been a month since my body began to change, and I’m feeling more and more uncomfortable in my own skin. My breasts are growing, and sometimes they get in the way when I’m running or playing sports. I worry that my classmates will make fun of me, and I don’t want to be embarrassed.

I’ve talked to my friend Hayat about these changes, but we’re both going through them at the same time, and we don’t know what to do. We even tried asking our science teacher for advice, but he didn’t seem interested in helping us.

Feeling lost and unsure, we came up with a wild idea. After school, we decided to visit the clinic near our house and see if they could help us. When we arrived, we found a kind nurse at the reception who listened to our concerns and answered our questions.

I learned today that sometimes we have to be brave and seek out answers to our questions, even if it means going outside of our comfort zone. It’s not easy to navigate these changes on my own, but I’m grateful to have Hayat by my side and to know that there are resources available to us.

As I close this entry, I’m reminded that growth can be uncomfortable, but it’s a natural part of life, and I’ll get through it one step at a time.

Yours truly,

What does it feel to be a woman

As I was walking back home from school, my mind was filled with conflicting emotions. We were asked in class what it feels like to be a woman. On one hand, I loved the little things that came with being a woman – the way I could style my hair, the way I could feel beautiful and confident. But on the other hand, the burden of societal expectations weighed heavily on me.

At home, I was expected to take on womanly duties – cleaning, cooking, and taking care of the household. Outside, people were constantly commenting on my appearance, making me feel self-conscious and uncomfortable. And at school, while I felt most like myself, I still struggled with the changes that puberty was bringing.

But despite all this, I knew that I could be strong and intelligent, just like I had always wanted to be. And as I entered my house, I was reminded of the love and support of those around me. My favorite teacher, who always made me feel safe, and my friends who laughed and joked with me – they were the ones who truly mattered.

And as I settled into my evening routine, I felt grateful for the little things that made me who I was. The way my hair fell in soft curls around my face, the way my favorite dress made me feel like a princess, the way my laughter filled the room. These were the things that truly made me happy, and I knew that no matter what the world threw my way, I could always hold onto them. 

Because at the end of the day, being a woman was about so much more than societal expectations – it was about being true to myself, and embracing all the little things that made me who I was.

Couples who use contraceptives have more sex !

“From the moment I started using contraceptives, my fear of an unwanted pregnancy was vanquished. I could fully indulge in my sexual desires with my partner, enjoying the thrilling spontaneity that fueled our relationship. It was a liberating experience that shattered the long-held myths and misconceptions about contraception.” Tsgereda Hailu, 26

Although the link between contraception and sexual frequency may not always register as statistically significant, it’s crucial to understand that sexual activity and intimacy are fundamental components of a healthy and happy relationship. However, it’s important to recognize that various factors can influence our libido. Hormonal imbalances, lifestyle choices, and overall physical health can all play a role in our sexual appetite. Therefore, it’s essential to consider these factors when deciding on a contraceptive method, rather than solely focusing on its impact on sexual frequency.

“One key benefit of contraception is the peace of mind it provides regarding unwanted pregnancies. This freedom from anxiety and stress allowed me to fully embrace my sexual experiences and explore my desires without any apprehension.” mentions Meron Baye, 27

Additionally, using contraception allows for a more spontaneous sexual dynamic. With no fear of an unintended pregnancy, couples can experiment with different sexual positions and forms of foreplay without the need to rush or worry about interruptions. This sense of liberation and excitement can lead to a more fulfilling and passionate sex life.

“It lessens the burden on one partner and can foster a greater sense of trust and respect within the relationship” she added

Ultimately, while the relationship between contraception and sexual frequency may not always be clear, By considering various factors that influence our libido and the benefits of contraception, couples can make informed decisions that enhance their sexual experiences and overall relationship satisfaction.

Let’s Talk About Sex, Baby

The start of intimacy is not just about physical touch, it’s about the conscious and vulnerable conversations where you discuss your boundaries, kinks, and expectations. It can be awkward and anxiety-provoking to talk about sex with your partner, but leaning into these difficult conversations is crucial to creating lifelong sexual potential. Our first conversation about sex was a bit strange, as I fumbled to explain my likes and dislikes. But then came a significant moment where he saw through my shyness and I gave it all away. Have you ever wondered where the magic of intimacy actually begins? It starts with vulnerability and the courage to confront uncomfortable topics head-on.

The thought of discussing your sexual desires with your partner may be intimidating, but it takes trust and bravery to communicate effectively. To make this conversation more enjoyable, think about what you want to create together and take risks by sharing your preferences to expand the capacity for pleasure. Even if you’re not exactly sure what you want in the bedroom, it’s important to be honest and curious. Instead of limiting yourself to the traditional definition of sex, try exploring the idea of adult fun in many different ways, with or without genitals, friction, or orgasms. Consider enrolling yourself and your partner in the idea that your sex lives can be a playground for grown-ups, full of diverse options for partnered exploration.

One of the keys to great sex is taking turns speaking and actively listening with an open mind, avoiding judgment and being willing to share feelings of shame or embarrassment. Researchers have identified several universal components of magnificent sex, including present moment awareness, synchronized connection with your partner, erotic intimacy, empathy, authenticity, vulnerability, exploration, and transcendence beyond the physical. Remember that any issues that arise in your sexual relationship can be an opportunity for growth and increased intimacy. With persistence and effort, almost any problem can be solved.

Taking My Life Back, My Journey With Contraception

From whispered tales to heated debates, birth control has been the subject of much chatter. Yet, amidst the clutter of opinions and myths, the true benefits of contraception are often obscured. 

My journey with birth control was filled with moments of distress and confusion, as I struggled to find the perfect fit for my body and lifestyle. The initial discomfort and pain I felt during intimate moments made me question if something was amiss, but little did I know, it was just the beginning of a transformative journey.

I embarked on a quest for knowledge, seeking answers to questions that plagued me. I talked to experts, read the research, and gained a deeper understanding of what my body was going through. I learned that choosing birth control is not just a personal decision, but a pivotal step in shaping our lives.

When it comes to preventing pregnancy, the world of contraception offers a diverse range of options. From short-acting methods that provide immediate protection to long-acting options that offer continuous coverage, the journey of choosing the right method can be a personal and empowering experience.  

Short-acting contraceptives, such as condoms, diaphragms, and spermicides, offer a convenient and accessible solution for those who prefer to have control over their contraception at the moment. These methods provide temporary protection and require consistent use each time a person has sex to be effective.     

On the other hand, long-acting contraception methods, such as IUDs and hormonal injections, offer a low-maintenance solution for those who want long-term protection. Once inserted or administered, these methods can provide coverage for several years, making them a popular choice for those who prefer a hands-off approach to birth control.

Choosing both hormonal IUD and implant have much lower doses of hormones than the pill so they are often good options for people who haven’t had great experiences with hormones in the past, like me, but know that none of them can protect against STIs. The only form of contraceptive to control STIs is a condom.

So, remember, take the time to educate yourself, ask questions, and weigh the pros and cons. Your body and your happiness are worth it. Don’t be afraid to try, fail, and try again. “The right birth control method is waiting for you, a solution to cherish and a burden to forget.”