All questions are answered by Dr. Sally Cocburn, GF's resident doctor.
DISCLAIMER: Information on this page is not intended to replace a visit to your GP for any medical concern. The age of consent is 16 years old (17 in some states and 18 under particular circumstances). For more specific information on consent, visit girlsgottaknow.com.au.
Recently when I have sex it hurts, like my vagina is burning. Is the problem with him or me? Do I have an STI, or am I not wet enough or what?
This is a little hard to answer without more information. If you’ve used condoms every time then an STI is less likely. Then again, it could be the condom that’s the problem: you might have an allergy to latex. Polyurethane condoms are an alternative but can be a bit more expensive, still they’re worth a try as a test. Also, you say ‘vagina’ but I’m just checking because lots of girls write to me using that word to cover everything down there. ‘Vagina’ is the inside tube leading to the uterus and ‘vulva’ refers to the outside lips, etc.
HAD TO STOP HER
The other day I hooked up with my girlfriend and she put her fingers inside my vagina. I was surprised (but I still let her do it), then it started to hurt so I asked her to stop. What happened?
Sexual contact must always be consensual – i.e. both people are willing partners who give consent. She should have asked first, but it’s good that you were comfortable to ask her to stop when it hurt, and it’s appropriate she followed your wishes. It’s important for partners to feel they can talk to each other during sex, in particular to indicate when to slow down or stop. The pain may have just been poor positioning, long nails, or just that you weren’t ready. More foreplay can help, and talk her through how you’re feeling.
LIKE TWO VIRGINS
Me and my boyfriend were virgins when we met. We started having sex and the first couple of times it really hurt. Then it was fine for a while, but the last time it hurt as much as the first time. Is there something wrong with us?
Painful sex can have various causes. While the first time might be due to stretching or breaking of the hymen, it may also simply be muscles tightening up through nervousness, which can happen again any time you feel that way. It may also just be that you’re not in the mood so lubrication is lacking, or he has entered or thrust in an awkward way. This can happen even to the most experienced person. Don’t be put off – relax, take it slowly and try different positions. If this doesn’t work and it persists, please see your doctor.
MORE, MORE, MORE
I’m 13 and I masturbate, is that normal? Also, it feels like I’m addicted to it.
Masturbation is totally normal. Not everyone feels like it all the time, but touching yourself is perfectly safe. The brain chemicals it produces make you feel good and can make you want to do it more. If it’s taking over your life to the point where you’re masturbating instead of doing what you usually do for fun, there may be a problem. Work on getting a balance back with other stuff you enjoy. If this is too hard, talk to a counsellor, your GP, or call Kids Helpline on 1800 55 1800.
If I masturbate am I not a virgin anymore? MYTH.
Virginity isn’t a physical or medical thing, but a cultural idea that people define differently. It isn’t possible to masturbate your virginity away.
Can it make me infertile or give me acne? MYTH.
It can’t. Really.
Masturbation is for losers. MYTH.
There’s nothing wrong with loving yourself. Justin Bieber would be the first to agree.