Illustrated by Prashanti Aswani
Girlsplained - the series
When three best friends start university, relationships are tested, sex becomes complicated and more followers mean more problems. Join Lauren, Janelle, and Yaz as they navigate life, love, friendship, sex, and relationships.
Girlsplained, the series, was created by us and produced with our awesome partners at Fully Focused Productions.
Will taking contraception stop me getting pregnant in the future?No, no contraceptive method affects your fertility. Once stopped, a contraceptive injective (depo) can cause a delay of a few months of your periods returning, but all other methods result in your periods returning fairly soon. Please see here for further info: www.brook.org.uk/topics/contraception/
Is it normal for sex to hurt?Vaginal sex can be painful at first, but this should improve with time. If it doesn’t you may be suffering from a condition called vaginismus. This is defined as "when the vagina suddenly tightens up just as you try to insert something into it” (www.nhs.uk/conditions/vaginismus/). You should see your GP or go to a sexual health clinic about this as there are techniques and management for this.
What is the best way of preventing STIs, including HIV?"To prevent STIs (sexually transmitted infections) such as chlamydia, gonorrhoea and HIV it is vital to wear a condom (either male or female) as this is barrier contraception and stops the infections being passed from one person to another. Condoms are also the only form of contraception that protect against pregnancy AND STIs. For HIV, there is also a new prevention method called PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis). This involves taking a tablet daily (or three tablets around the time of sex) called Truvada which is very effective at stopping the HIV virus from being passed on. The evidence is clear that PrEP works for women as well. Please see here for more info: https://prepster.info/prep-faqs/
What is the PrEP IMPACT trial about?At the start of December 2016, NHS England (NHSE) announced funding for a large scale PrEP trial in England - this was named the IMPACT trial. Please see here for more info: https://prepster.info/impact/
When should I get tested for STIs or HIV?The 'window period' is the length of time it can take between catching an infection and when it will show in a test. The window period for the most common STI tests are: Chlamydia and Gonorrhoea - Up to 2 weeks HIV - 4 weeks Syphilis - 12 weeks If you are in any doubt about when to test you should do a test now and another test at a later date. The nurse or doctor will discuss this with you. For more information: https://www.letstalkaboutit.nhs.uk/worried-about-stis/testing-treatment-of-stis/
How often should I get tested for STIs routinely?It is recommended to get tested every year or when you change sexual partners. For more information on the process and where to get tested: https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/sexual-health/visiting-an-sti-clinic/
My partner has tested negative for STIs and HIV. Does this mean I don't need to get tested?No, you cannot rely on a partner's result for any infection. You can only know if you don't have an infection by having an appropriate test yourself.
Girlsplained is a not-for-profit community group based in London, UK.
We envision young black and brown girls defining themselves in their communities by taking charge of their own health and rights. We do this through social and behaviour change communication (SBCC) methodologies, including entertainment-education (edutainment), via short films, web series and social media.
The group was established in 2018 after receiving seed funding from MTV Staying Alive Foundation. We strive to ignite fellow Black, Asian & Minority (BAME) women's health and rights through entertainment. We work closely with our partners, Fully Focused Productions, and our other collaborators to produce relevant and enjoyable content that our audiences inspire and own.
While our work begins in London, we are global-minded with a diverse team of strong women from different parts of the world, and all walks of life.
Priyanka is a co-founder of Girlsplained and works across strategy, operations and content production for the group. She is currently working as a Preventive Medicine doctor in Singapore. As a social and behaviour change communication enthusiast, in particular entertainment-education, she has a Master's degree in Public Health from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, as well as a Master's degree in Filmmaking from Raindance LLP/Staffordshire University, She loves watching TV and movies (duh!) and having great conversations over fantastic meals with her favourite people. Her mood often fluctuates with how Liverpool FC is doing and her dream is to chill with Oprah, drink with Adele and karaoke with the Spice Girls.
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