pro-choice-or-no-voice:

The Importance of Comprehensive Sexual Education:
"Research has identified highly effective sex education and HIV prevention programs that affect multiple behaviors and/or achieve positive health impacts. Behavioral outcomes have included delaying the initiation of sex as well as reducing the frequency of sex, the number of new partners, and the incidence of unprotected sex, and/or increasing the use of condoms and contraception among sexually active participants. Long-term impacts have included lower STI and/or pregnancy rates." [x]
We need to equip people with knowledge and resources to maintain a healthy and safe lifestyle. By teaching comprehensive sex education we are allowing people to make informed decisions about their health and and personal lives. - Paige

The Basics (Anatomy and Biological functions): 
What is a vagina? 
What is a vulva? (Basic Anatomy inside links.)
What is the vagina’s biological function during sexual intercourse (specifically PIV sex)?
What is the uterus and what is it’s biological function?
What is a hymen and what are the different kinds of hymens? 
What is the purpose of a hymen?
Which hole does urine come out of and which hole does menstruation come out of?
Menstrual Cycle: 
What is a menstrual cycle?
 What is menstruation?
Why do we menstruate?
How to use pads, tampons, and menstrual cups.
What is ovulation?
Vaginal Hygiene:
The vagina, is in fact, designed to keep itself clean with the help of natural secretions (discharge). But there are ways you can help maintain the cleanliness of your vagina (i.e. avoiding perfumed soaps and gently washing the vulva area, not the actual vagina.) Click the link for more information.
*Vaginal odors and discharge; what’s normal and what’s not?
What is douching?
What are Pap Smears?
"A Pap smear, also called a Pap test, is a procedure to test for cervical cancer in people. A Pap smear involves collecting cells from your cervix — the lower, narrow end of your uterus that’s at the top of your vagina."
When do I need a pap smear?
What are vaginal orgasms? Clitoral orgasms? G-Spot orgasms? How can you achieve an orgasm?
"A “vaginal orgasm” is the notion that [people] can have an orgasm through stimulation during intercourse or other vaginal penetration, entirely without clitoral stimulation. However, the vagina has few nerve endings, and therefore cannot create an orgasm on its own. Instead of thinking of the vagina and clitoris as separate entities, try thinking about them as a network of nerves and muscles."
"There’s some disagreement about the size of the G-spot; it may range from a quarter inch to a couple inches along the upper wall of your vagina, about an inch or two past your vaginal opening. Underneath it is highly sensitive tissue that, when touched the right way, triggers feelings of sexual happiness, explains Debby Herbenick, PhD."
Myths and facts about orgasms.
Tips on how to have an orgasm.
Having trouble reaching an orgasm? No worries, there is help! [x][x]
Female Genital Mutilation Information:
"Female genital mutilation (FGM) includes procedures that intentionally alter or cause injury to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons."
“The procedure has no health benefits for girls and women.”
"Procedures can cause severe bleeding and problems urinating, and later cysts, infections, infertility as well as complications in childbirth and increased risk of newborn deaths."
"FGM is a violation of the human rights of girls and women."

The Basics (Anatomy and Biological Functions):
What is a penis? 
What are testicles? (Basic Anatomy inside links.)
What is the penis’ biological function during sexual intercourse? (Specifically PIV sex.)
Examining your testicles for Testicular Cancer: How to.
Penile Hygiene:
"Gently wash the penis with warm water each day when you’re having a shower or bath. If you have a foreskin, pull it back gently and wash underneath."
"Gently washing your penis once a day with warm water is sufficient to maintain good hygiene. If you want to use soap, choose a mild or non-perfumed soap to reduce the risk of skin irritation."
What is an erection and ejaculation?
"An erection begins in the brain. Physical and/or mental stimulation cause nerves in the brain to send chemical messages to nerves in the penis telling the penile blood vessels to relax so that blood can flow freely into the penis. Once in the penis, high pressure traps the blood within both corpora cavernosa. This causes the penis to expand and sustain an erection."
"Ejaculation, the release of semen at climax, is triggered when a person reaches a critical level of excitement."
*Overcoming ejaculation problems.
Is ejaculation and having an orgasm the same thing?
What is semen and what does it do?
What is Erectile Dysfunction? Treatments.
What is circumcision & is it medically necessary?
"Circumcision is the removal of a simple fold of skin (the `foreskin’ or `prepuce’) that covers the head (glans) of the un-erect penis."
While there are benefits of being circumcised, it is not medically necessary.

The Basics:
What is masturbation and how do you do it?
Why do people masturbate?
Is masturbating normal and can it be harmful? (Short answer: Masturbation is normal, and no it is not harmful!)
WebMDs Masturbation FAQ.
The benefits of masturbation: [x] [x]
An Asexual’s Guide to Masturbation.

What is sex?
People define “sex” in different ways. Some people believe that it only counts as sex if a penis goes into a vagina, but this isn’t true for everybody. There are lots of different ideas about what sex can be: Vaginal sex (penis-in-vagina intercourse), Oral sex (mouth-to-genital contact), Anal sex (penis-in-anus intercourse), Dry humping or genital rubbing, Fingering or hand jobs (hand-to-genital contact), and Masturbation.
What is oral sex?
What is anal sex?
Why do people have sex?
How to have safe sex.(STI and pregnancy prevention goes more in depth below!)
What is Consent and is it mandatory?
"Whenever you have sex, you need to make sure that your partner is just as enthusiastic about having sex. In other words, that they give their full consent.” Consent is an enthusiastic, freely-given, uncoerced, sober, “yes”.
Consent is ALWAYS mandatory, whether you’re married, dating or just met.
What is sex without consent? Rape/Sexual Assault.
What is sexual assault? What is rape? (Resources below.)
Sexual assault can be verbal, visual, or anything that forces a person to join in unwanted sexual contact or attention.
What do I do if I’ve been sexually assaulted?
Sexual assault prevention and awareness.
Resources for sexual assault victims: United States.
Resources for sexual assault victims: Canada.
Resources for sexual assault victims: United Kingdom.
More international resources.
More resources.
Is sex supposed to hurt the first time?
"While it’s common for [some] to feel pain or discomfort with sex, it’s not “normal” in that it has to happen or there isn’t an alternative. Sex is not supposed to hurt: it’s supposed to feel very good.” [Inside the link above, it does explain what to do to make sure sex is not painful.]
Are there benefits to having sex?
10 Surprising Health Benefits of Sex.
Top 11 Benefits of Having Sex.
14 Unexpected Benefits of Having Sex.

What does MOGII mean?
Marginalized Orientation, Gender Identity, and Intersex. It’s a synonym for LGBTQIAP+ and is inclusive for people who don’t have or don’t want labels, rejects allies, and uses no reclaimed slurs.
What is a sexual orientation?
"Sexual orientation describes to whom a person is sexually attracted. Some people are attracted to people of a particular gender; others are attracted to more than one gender. Some are not attracted to anyone."
“Affectional orientation is a term that describes to whom a person is romantically attracted, acknowledging that for many people there are more components to attraction than just sexual desire.”
What is gender identity?
"The ways in which a person identifies and/or expresses their gender, including self-image, appearance, and embodiment of gender roles. One’s sex (e.g., male, female, intersex, etc.) is usually assigned at birth based on one’s physical biology. One’s gender (e.g., man, woman, genderqueer, etc.) is one’s internal sense of self and identity.”
Some gender identities.
Some more gender identities.
Genderqueer and Non Binary Identities.
Resources for most Gender Identities.(Resources for understanding gender identity, figuring out yours, how to come out to parents and friends, transitioning resources, local supports, and more!)
What is asexuality?
"Some people who identify as asexual do not experience sexual attraction to other people, while others experience sexual attraction but no desire to act on these attractions."
“Asexuality and Celibacy are not the same. Many people who are asexual live a celibate life, meaning that they do not engage in sex with others. But while Celibacy is a choice, asexuality is not.”
"Asexuality is not a dysfunction, and there is no need to find a "cause" or a "cure."" [x]
Are all people who identify as asexual sex repulsed? No!
Asexual Visibility and Education Network.
What does transgender mean? (Resources below!)
"Transgender – or trans – is an umbrella term for people whose gender identity or expression is different from those typically associated with the sex assigned to them at birth (e.g., the sex listed on their birth certificate)." [x]
"Transgender may be used to describe someone who was assigned female or male at birth, but later realizes that label doesn’t accurately reflect who they feel they are inside."
Resources for transgender people.
More resources for transgender people
Coming Out as Trans
All About Gender Therapy
Trans Health Matters: Trans Women
Trans Health Matters: Trans Men
Top 10 Trans-Friendly Colleges
What does intersex mean?
“Intersex” is a general term used for a variety of conditions in which a person is born with a reproductive or sexual anatomy that doesn’t seem to fit the typical definitions of female or male.
How common is intersex?
Intersex Society of North America.
Resources for intersex people.

What are STIs, how do you get them, and what are the symptoms?
"A sexually transmissible infection (STI) is any infection or disease that can be passed from one person to another during sexual activity. Sexually transmissible infections include chlamydia, herpes, gonorrhea, syphilis, genital herpes, scabies, pubic lice (crabs), hepatitis and HIV (the virus that causes AIDS).”
Why do we call them STIs now and not STDs?
Everyone is at risk of obtaining an STI, but some are more at risk.
STIs that can be contracted through non-sexual contact.
How do you protect yourself from STIs?
Female / male condoms and dental dams.
Finger cots (finger condoms).
Post-exposure prophylaxis, is a short-term antiretroviral treatment to reduce the likelihood of HIV infection after potential exposure.
Know the signs and symptoms of an STI. If you notice a symptom that worries you, get checked out!
How do I get tested for STIs?
What treatments are out there for STIs?

What is pregnancy? When are you considered to be pregnant? How do you get pregnant?
To be pregnant is to have an embryo/fetus developing in your uterus. “A pregnancy is considered to be established only after implantation is complete.”
"When engaging in unprotected vaginal intercourse during which ejaculation of sperm occurs in the vagina. The sperm can then travel up through the cervix, into the uterus, and, if an egg is present, the sperm may fertilize it."
"It is also possible — but less likely — for a person to become pregnant through any kind of sex play in which semen, or ejaculate, comes in contact with the vulva. The sperm can travel through the moisture on the vulva into the vagina."
WebMD’s Online Pregnancy Center.
What to Expect: Pregnancy.
Pregnancy Resources.
What are my options if I get pregnant?
If you’re pregnant you have three options; parenting, adoption, and abortion.
Only you can decide what is right for you, definitely take some time to go over your options, but remember, the sooner you decide the more options you’ll have.
Resources for Decision Making and Low Income Parenting.
Abortion funds and Judicial Bypass.
How do you prevent pregnancy? (Check out birth control masterpost below.)

"Birth control allows us to prevent pregnancy and plan the timing of pregnancy."


Birth control is not a “one size fit’s all deal” there are all different kinds of birth control out there from hormonal to non hormonal, methods to medicines, and so on. The best way to figure out which birth control works best for you is by doing research and speaking with your doctor.

****Contraceptives Masterpost****^^ Lists many birth control options (and links you to more information about these options),  goes over emergency contraceptives and FAQs, birth control FAQs, options for people with allergies or personal preferences, and debunks myths about birth control.
Lubricants that should not be used on condoms.
Where can I obtain birth control/contraceptives?
Guide to getting privacy under parent’s health insurance.
10 Ways to save on Birth Control.

The 5 Steps of a Breast Self Exam: Checking for Breast Cancer.
Sex Ed for physically, emotionally, and mentally disabled youth.
Sex Ed for Youth with disability or chronic illness.
Advocates for Youth.

pro-choice-or-no-voice:

The Importance of Comprehensive Sexual Education:

"Research has identified highly effective sex education and HIV prevention programs that affect multiple behaviors and/or achieve positive health impacts. Behavioral outcomes have included delaying the initiation of sex as well as reducing the frequency of sex, the number of new partners, and the incidence of unprotected sex, and/or increasing the use of condoms and contraception among sexually active participants. Long-term impacts have included lower STI and/or pregnancy rates." [x]

We need to equip people with knowledge and resources to maintain a healthy and safe lifestyle. By teaching comprehensive sex education we are allowing people to make informed decisions about their health and and personal lives. - Paige

image

The Basics (Anatomy and Biological functions):

Menstrual Cycle:

Vaginal Hygiene:

  • The vagina, is in fact, designed to keep itself clean with the help of natural secretions (discharge). But there are ways you can help maintain the cleanliness of your vagina (i.e. avoiding perfumed soaps and gently washing the vulva area, not the actual vagina.) Click the link for more information.
  • *Vaginal odors and discharge; what’s normal and what’s not?
  • What is douching?

What are Pap Smears?

  • "A Pap smear, also called a Pap test, is a procedure to test for cervical cancer in people. A Pap smear involves collecting cells from your cervix — the lower, narrow end of your uterus that’s at the top of your vagina."
  • When do I need a pap smear?

What are vaginal orgasms? Clitoral orgasms? G-Spot orgasms? How can you achieve an orgasm?

  • "A “vaginal orgasm” is the notion that [people] can have an orgasm through stimulation during intercourse or other vaginal penetration, entirely without clitoral stimulation. However, the vagina has few nerve endings, and therefore cannot create an orgasm on its own. Instead of thinking of the vagina and clitoris as separate entities, try thinking about them as a network of nerves and muscles."
  • "There’s some disagreement about the size of the G-spot; it may range from a quarter inch to a couple inches along the upper wall of your vagina, about an inch or two past your vaginal opening. Underneath it is highly sensitive tissue that, when touched the right way, triggers feelings of sexual happiness, explains Debby Herbenick, PhD."
  • Myths and facts about orgasms.
  • Tips on how to have an orgasm.
  • Having trouble reaching an orgasm? No worries, there is help! [x][x]

Female Genital Mutilation Information:

  • "Female genital mutilation (FGM) includes procedures that intentionally alter or cause injury to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons."
  • The procedure has no health benefits for girls and women.”
  • "Procedures can cause severe bleeding and problems urinating, and later cysts, infections, infertility as well as complications in childbirth and increased risk of newborn deaths."
  • "FGM is a violation of the human rights of girls and women."

image

The Basics (Anatomy and Biological Functions):

Penile Hygiene:

  • "Gently wash the penis with warm water each day when you’re having a shower or bath. If you have a foreskin, pull it back gently and wash underneath."
  • "Gently washing your penis once a day with warm water is sufficient to maintain good hygiene. If you want to use soap, choose a mild or non-perfumed soap to reduce the risk of skin irritation."

What is an erection and ejaculation?

What is circumcision & is it medically necessary?

  • "Circumcision is the removal of a simple fold of skin (the `foreskin’ or `prepuce’) that covers the head (glans) of the un-erect penis."
  • While there are benefits of being circumcised, it is not medically necessary.

image

The Basics:

image

What is sex?

  • People define “sex” in different ways. Some people believe that it only counts as sex if a penis goes into a vagina, but this isn’t true for everybody. There are lots of different ideas about what sex can be: Vaginal sex (penis-in-vagina intercourse), Oral sex (mouth-to-genital contact), Anal sex (penis-in-anus intercourse), Dry humping or genital rubbing, Fingering or hand jobs (hand-to-genital contact), and Masturbation.
  • What is oral sex?
  • What is anal sex?
  • Why do people have sex?
  • How to have safe sex.
    (STI and pregnancy prevention goes more in depth below!)

What is Consent and is it mandatory?

  • "Whenever you have sex, you need to make sure that your partner is just as enthusiastic about having sex. In other words, that they give their full consent.” Consent is an enthusiastic, freely-given, uncoerced, sober, “yes”.
  • Consent is ALWAYS mandatory, whether you’re married, dating or just met.
  • What is sex without consent? Rape/Sexual Assault.

What is sexual assault? What is rape? (Resources below.)

Is sex supposed to hurt the first time?

  • "While it’s common for [some] to feel pain or discomfort with sex, it’s not “normal” in that it has to happen or there isn’t an alternative. Sex is not supposed to hurt: it’s supposed to feel very good.”
    [Inside the link above, it does explain what to do to make sure sex is not painful.]

Are there benefits to having sex?

image

What does MOGII mean?

  • Marginalized Orientation, Gender Identity, and Intersex.
    It’s a synonym for LGBTQIAP+ and is inclusive for people who don’t have or don’t want labels, rejects allies, and uses no reclaimed slurs.

What is a sexual orientation?

  • "Sexual orientation describes to whom a person is sexually attracted. Some people are attracted to people of a particular gender; others are attracted to more than one gender. Some are not attracted to anyone."
  • Affectional orientation is a term that describes to whom a person is romantically attracted, acknowledging that for many people there are more components to attraction than just sexual desire.”

What is gender identity?

  • "The ways in which a person identifies and/or expresses their gender, including self-image, appearance, and embodiment of gender roles. One’s sex (e.g., male, female, intersex, etc.) is usually assigned at birth based on one’s physical biology. One’s gender (e.g., man, woman, genderqueer, etc.) is one’s internal sense of self and identity.”
  • Some gender identities.
  • Some more gender identities.
  • Genderqueer and Non Binary Identities.
  • Resources for most Gender Identities.
    (Resources for understanding gender identity, figuring out yours, how to come out to parents and friends, transitioning resources, local supports, and more!)

What is asexuality?

  • "Some people who identify as asexual do not experience sexual attraction to other people, while others experience sexual attraction but no desire to act on these attractions."
  • Asexuality and Celibacy are not the same. Many people who are asexual live a celibate life, meaning that they do not engage in sex with others. But while Celibacy is a choice, asexuality is not.”
  • "Asexuality is not a dysfunction, and there is no need to find a "cause" or a "cure."" [x]
  • Are all people who identify as asexual sex repulsed? No!
  • Asexual Visibility and Education Network.

What does transgender mean? (Resources below!)

What does intersex mean?

image

What are STIs, how do you get them, and what are the symptoms?

How do you protect yourself from STIs?

image

What is pregnancy? When are you considered to be pregnant? How do you get pregnant?

  • To be pregnant is to have an embryo/fetus developing in your uterus. “A pregnancy is considered to be established only after implantation is complete.”
  • "When engaging in unprotected vaginal intercourse during which ejaculation of sperm occurs in the vagina. The sperm can then travel up through the cervix, into the uterus, and, if an egg is present, the sperm may fertilize it."
  • "It is also possible — but less likely — for a person to become pregnant through any kind of sex play in which semen, or ejaculate, comes in contact with the vulva. The sperm can travel through the moisture on the vulva into the vagina."
  • WebMD’s Online Pregnancy Center.
  • What to Expect: Pregnancy.
  • Pregnancy Resources.

What are my options if I get pregnant?

How do you prevent pregnancy? (Check out birth control masterpost below.)

image

(via uglyfoxybaby)

(Source: meetsadgrls, via andyouknowit)

"Because lying to your kids about sex helps nobody. Telling them that sex is “only between mommies and daddies” is a lie that leads to confused, hormone charged teenagers. Telling them that sex is “only something that happens when two people love each other very much” is a lie that causes hormone charged teenagers to confuse “love” with “lust,” or “obsession.” It leads to leaps of logic like, “If I have sex with them, we must be in love.” Or worse- “If I love them, I have to have sex with them.” And how many teenage tragedies are based on that misconception?"

— Lea Grover, "We Don’t Play With Our Vulvas At The Table" (via themindislimitless)

(via afemmesnowwhite)

holisticsexualhealth:

You and your partner can have a satisfying sexual relationship in spite of your chronic pain.


By Mayo Clinic Staff

People need physical and emotional intimacy almost as much as they need food and shelter. Sexuality helps fulfill the vital need for human connection. It’s a natural…

(via transqueermediaexchange)

heavymuffintop:

stingyqueens:

heavymuffintop:

tangledupinlace:

Everyone, my sweet sweet lover is in A LOT of pain and it doesn’t seem any of our accessible remedies are going to work. I am beyond worried and at a loss of what to do next. There is a lot of shame in asking for help. So please know we wouldn’t be doing this if we had another way out. Knowing we have had the support of our community far and wide during this process has been a truly beautiful experience. Thank you everyone for all of the love and support!
I know there is so much going on in the world and so much need. If you can and you’re giving with an open heart, we’d really be so appreciate of any help you can give. 
THIS IS THE LINK TO OUR GO FUND ME PAGE
thank you again <3 <3

guh I H8 that we have to do this and I’m having a lot of class shame but I’m also in so much pain and just want this fixed so whatever! I got some shotty dental care a few years ago and its left me a with a lot of dental problems. Our natural remedies are no longer working.  Please donate if you can, or signal boost. Thank you so much loves. I really appreciate it. 

I’ve been following these two folks for a good long while. I have never met them and probably never will, but I love seeing posts from either of them pop up on my dashboard — they are both insightful, sweet, powerful, delightful and they fill me with hope and inspiration that has more than once carried me through a bad day.
Consider giving a little, if you can.

oh my goddess this is so incredibly sweet. I am fully blown away by the deep love and support that is happening. we are almost half way there! I am so excited to no longer be in pain! 

If you are a Heavy Petter who wants to help Majestic get some vital preventative dental care please consider donating! 

heavymuffintop:

stingyqueens:

heavymuffintop:

tangledupinlace:

Everyone, my sweet sweet lover is in A LOT of pain and it doesn’t seem any of our accessible remedies are going to work. I am beyond worried and at a loss of what to do next. There is a lot of shame in asking for help. So please know we wouldn’t be doing this if we had another way out. Knowing we have had the support of our community far and wide during this process has been a truly beautiful experience. Thank you everyone for all of the love and support!

I know there is so much going on in the world and so much need. If you can and you’re giving with an open heart, we’d really be so appreciate of any help you can give. 

THIS IS THE LINK TO OUR GO FUND ME PAGE

thank you again <3 <3

guh I H8 that we have to do this and I’m having a lot of class shame but I’m also in so much pain and just want this fixed so whatever! I got some shotty dental care a few years ago and its left me a with a lot of dental problems. Our natural remedies are no longer working.  Please donate if you can, or signal boost. Thank you so much loves. I really appreciate it. 

I’ve been following these two folks for a good long while. I have never met them and probably never will, but I love seeing posts from either of them pop up on my dashboard — they are both insightful, sweet, powerful, delightful and they fill me with hope and inspiration that has more than once carried me through a bad day.

Consider giving a little, if you can.

oh my goddess this is so incredibly sweet. I am fully blown away by the deep love and support that is happening. we are almost half way there! I am so excited to no longer be in pain! 

If you are a Heavy Petter who wants to help Majestic get some vital preventative dental care please consider donating! 

parlefeu:

forgottenawesome:

Do You Love Someone With Depression?

If you have a partner or are close to someone who struggles with depression, you may not always know how to show them you love them. One day they may seem fine, and the next they are sad, distant and may push you away. It is important that you know that as a person who is close to them and trusted by them, you can help your friend or partner have shorter, less severe bouts of depression. Mental illness is as real as physical illness (it is physical actually, read more about that here) and your partner needs you as much as they would need to be cared for if they had the flu.

Your relationship may seem one-sided during these times, but by helping your partner through a very difficult and painful affliction, you are strengthening your relationship and their mental health in the long term.

1. Help them keep clutter at bay.

When a person begins spiraling into depression, they may feel like they are slowing down while the world around them speeds up. The mail may end up in stacks, dishes can pile up in the sink, laundry may go undone as the depressed person begins to feel more and more overwhelmed by their daily routine and unable to keep up. By giving your partner some extra help sorting mail, washing dishes or using paper plates and keeping chaos in check in general, you’ll be giving them (and yourself) the gift of a calm  environment. (I’m a fan of the minimalist movement because of this, you can read more about that here.)

2. Fix them a healthy meal.

Your partner may do one of two things when they are in a depressed state. They may eat very little, or they may overeat. In either case, they may find that driving through a fast food restaurant or ordering a pizza online is just easier than fixing a meal. Eating like this, or neglecting to eat will only degrade your partner’s health, causing her to go deeper into her depression. Help your loved one keep her body healthy, and her mind will follow. This is a great article that talks about the “Brain Diet” which can help the symptoms of depression, and this article talks about how our modern diet could contribute to the recent rise in depression. Here is a recipe for a trail mix that is quick to make and has mood-boosting properties.

3.Get them outside.

 The benefits of getting outside for a depressed person are huge. And it is possibly the last thing on earth your partner will want to do. Take them to be somewhere in nature. Pack a picnic and lie in the sun, take a leisurely hike or plant a garden. Being barefoot in the dirt, or “earthing” helps ground the body and reverse the effects of living in a world of emf’s, and digging in soil can actually act as an antidepressant, as a strain of bacterium in soil, Mycobacterium vaccae, triggers the release of seratonin, which in turn elevates mood and decreases anxiety. Sunshine increases Vitamin D production which can help alleviate depression. My friend Elizabeth wrote an excellent post about Vitamin D and its link to depression here.  For more information about other sources of Vitamin D, this is a great post as well as this.

4. Ask them to help you understand what they’re feeling.

If your partner is able to articulate what they are going through, it will help them and you better understand what you are dealing with, and may give insight into a plan of action for helping your partner. Also, feeling alone is common for a depressed person and anything that combats that feeling will help alleviate the severity and length of the depression.

5. Encourage them to focus on self-care.

Depressed people often stop taking care of themselves. Showering, getting haircuts, going to the doctor or dentist, it’s all just too hard, and they don’t deserve to be well taken care of anyway in their minds. This can snowball quickly into greater feelings of worthlessness since “Now I’m such a mess, no one could ever love me”. Help your loved one by being proactive. Tell them “I’m going to do the dishes, why don’t you go enjoy a bubble bath?” can give them the permission they won’t give themselves to do something normal, healthy and self-loving.

6. Hug them.

Studies show that a sincere hug that lasts longer than 20 seconds can release feel-good chemicals in the brain and elevate the mood of the giver and receiver. Depressed people often don’t want to be touched, but a sincere hug with no expectation of anything further can give your partner a lift.

7. Laugh with them.

Telling a silly joke, watching a comedy or seeing a stand up comedian will encourage your partner to laugh in spite of herself. Laughing releases endorphins and studies show can actually counteract symptoms of depression and anxiety.

8. Reassure them that you can handle their feelings.

Your partner may be feeling worthless, angry and even guilty while they are depressed. They may be afraid that they will end up alone because no one will put up with their episodes forever. Reassure them that you are in the relationship for the long haul and they won’t scare you away because they have an illness.

9. Challenge their destructive thoughts.

A depressed person’s mind can be a never-ending loop of painful, destructive thoughts. “I’m unlovable, I’m a failure, I’m ugly, I’m stupid”. Challenge these untruths with the truth. “You’re not unlovable, I love you. You aren’t a failure, here are all the things you’ve accomplished.”

10.Remind them why you love them.

Look at pictures of happy times you’ve had together. Tell them your favorite things about them. Reminisce about your relationship and all the positive things that have happened, and remind your partner that you love them and they will get through this.

(via The Darling Bakers)

YES!

(via welookoutuponthesea)

deviantfemme:

Great article and such a deliciously awesome subject.

(via fuckyeahfatdykes)

Qualities of a Good Friend

onlinecounsellingcollege:

1. Respectful; is interested in your point of view

2. Caring and considerate

3. Understanding and supportive

4. Encouraging and affirming

5. Doesn’t belittle or put your down

6. Co-operative, adaptive and flexible

7. Willing to negotiate and compromise

8. Able to discuss disagreements openly; values honest communication

9.  Can admit when they are wrong, and are willing to apologise

10. Wants the best for you; isn’t threatened by your achievements and successes.

(via tinyblkbirdd)