Sure we’ve got a top-notch squad of peer sexual health educators here at Teen Health Source, but we know we’re not the only ones! There are lots of other people online who are working to share good, accurate, and accessible information about sexual health and relationships. And we want to introduce you to some of them!
Eva is a 21-year old peer sexual health educator, and creator of the YouTube series “What’s My Body Doing?” Her channel is full of rad Sex Ed information, covering topics like Masturbation, Asexuality 101, Myths about Period Sex, and more! Thank a bunch to Eva for chatting with us. Check out “What’s My Body Doing?” for all the videos and info, and follow Eva on twitter to keep up with what she’s working on next!
Tell us about your channel! What got you into peer education?
My channel is for sexuality and sexual health, primarily focused towards women, nonbinary people, and trans folk. It’s also very much evidence based, since I’m just wrapping up my undergraduate degree in science. A big part of why I wanted to start my channel was to translate all the information about sexuality and sexual health that I was learning so that it was more digestible for people to understand. For example, when I answer a question like “Is period sex healthy?”, I try and go see if there’s any literature on that. Or “How do relationships work?”— I try and look to socio-psychology.
When should someone have sex for the first time?
There’s no right time to have sex for the first time. You make that decision for yourself! That having been said, I do have some suggestions for things to think about before your first time.
The first one would be: Do you have the knowledge or the tools to make sure that your doing it safely? Like, do you want to go on birth control? Do you know where to get condoms and lube? Can you access these things?
The second thing is that there’s a misconception that the first time will be perfect and easy. This isn’t always true! It would help if you feel comfortable with your partner, especially because the first time is probably going to be a bit hard and awkward, and it would be more helpful if you were comfortable with your partner.
In short: do you have the tools, and do you have someone you can be comfortable with?
How can masturbating help someone to prepare for sex?
Masturbating is so good for preparing for sex! For starters, as a baseline, it can help you feel really comfortable in your body and different level of nakedness in general. More specifically, it can help you know your physiological responses in your body a little bit better – that way you can tell partners what you like, so that you can have a more satisfying and fulfilling experience!
What are some other, unconventional ways to prepare for sex?
So, one way is to prepare a Want/Will/Won’t list. You’d just write out things you want to do, things you will do, and things you won’t do. You can specify within the list what the soft and hard no’s are. You can prep that way, and then compare that with your sexual partner(s) — that way, everyone can get what they want! Other ways include deciding whether you want to use toys, then picking the toys, if you wanted to try something new.
One other unconventional method is having a sex spreadsheet. Basically, you can track down different things about your sexual encounters: you can write down what type of acts you did, etc. For me, I like to write down things that could be improved – that way if you’re having sex with the same person multiple times, you can be like, “this is what worked last time, and this is what I want to do for next time”. Those are also really good for sexual health, in term of checking of STI, and if you have anything just in general happening with your bits, it’s good to know practically!
Body hair is often considered unsexy. What are some of the different ways to be comfy in your own skin, against society?
Whenever I talk about body-positivity and things, one of the things I talk about is social media. We spend a lot of time looking at images and that definitely give us an idea of what sexy is supposed to look like. Nowadays we have so much control over the images that we see! You can curate your twitter and Instagram to show ideas of different bodies! Here are some of my favourite body hair positive instagrams: @clubclitoris and @the.vulva.gallery. Those are more vulva specific, but there are definitely tons out there!
It also helps me to think about how our ideas of beauty are so malleable. They’ve changed so much over time, and if you take it from that perspective it makes sense that things are always changing. @WhoresofYore is a great twitter account that shows the [Western world’s] history of bodies and body hair through the ages!
When it comes to sex and sexual health, how do we feel about risk? What are things we can do to reduce risk of things we don’t want to happen? For the first post in our What Is Risk series we’re talking about Pregnancy Risk!
Stealthing is the non-consensual removal of a condom during sex. It’s been around for a long time, but it’s been in the news a bunch lately. While the idea of it being a “new trend” can make you roll your eyes, stealthing still a serious issue when it comes to consent and sexual safety.
Did you know that Teen Health Source has been around for 25 years! To help celebrate our 25th Anniversary, we’re checking in with some of our previous volunteers. Today we’re hearing from Susy!