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Prevention/Epidemiology

Washington: Everything Teens Want to Know About Sex ... But Were Afraid to Ask, Can Be Found at Scarleteen.com

May 25, 2007

Scarleteen.com is a judgment-free teen-oriented resource about sex, the body, emotions, how to co-exist with adults, and communicating to make informed decisions. The Web site is the nine-year-old brainchild of Heather Corinna, 37, a Seattle-based sex educator originally from Chicago.

One choice many teens make is to abstain from sex, and the Web site offers them a thorough "sexual readiness checklist." However, other teens might have sex, which the site embraces as a potentially positive experience when they are ready to approach it safely.

"I'm unwilling to say 'no' is always a better answer than 'yes,'" said Corinna. "(a) I'd be a giant hypocrite since it's worked OK for me, and, (b) it's an option. But it's an option the world we live in doesn't support."

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Each day, Scarleteen gets about 15,000-30,000 visitors, according to the site. Site volunteers answer every question submitted.

"When I have a question about something that normally I would be scared to ask anyone else, I can go to Scarleteen and ask the question and always get a quick response without any worry of someone harassing or making fun of me for asking that question," said one 18-year-old female.

The site, which exists almost entirely on donations, stays on top of new research and provides sources for its information. While half the Web's teen visitors are in crisis mode -- pregnancy is the site's number one topic -- the other half are there to ask general questions.

Back to other news for May 2007

Adapted from:
Seattle Post-Intelligencer
05.14.2007; Athima Chansanchai


  
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This article was provided by Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. It is a part of the publication Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report. Visit the Kaiser Family Foundation's website to find out more about their activities, publications and services.
 
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