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Tackling Taboos and Busting Myths

When it comes to periods and puberty there is plenty of fake news out there but do you know the difference between the myths and the facts?

Whether you heard it when you were younger or it’s doing the rounds in your classroom, there are plenty of puberty related myths flying around the place. Whilst they may seem harmless, lots of them reinforce taboos and stigma so it’s important to tackle them head on. If you hear any of the following myths in your school, here’s how to bust them.

You have to shave body hair because it’s unhygienic

Growing body hair is a totally natural part of puberty – whether it’s armpits, legs or genitals. There is a myth that for people with vulvas this hair should be removed because somehow, it’s unhygienic or ‘unsightly’. We advocate choice, which means allowing people the freedom to decide what they do with their body, so no-one should feel pressured to remove hair.

If you use a tampon you’ll lose your virginity

Absolutely not! Your first time having sex is entirely different to using a tampon. The dictionary definition of virginity is someone with a vulva or penis who has yet to have penetrative sexual intercourse. Therefore, using a tampon is not linked to the loss of your virginity.

If you’re on your period you can’t swim in the sea because sharks will attack you

When you say it out loud, it sounds pretty daft doesn’t it?! Still, we know this one does the rounds and there’s 0 scientific evidence behind it.

Periods are dirty

Periods are natural and healthy, there’s nothing dirty or shameful in having them.  

Masturbating is bad for you

We’ve all heard the rumor that too much masturbation can make you go blind… not true! Or even that masturbation is bad for your health… also not true! Teens often find they want to explore their body and touch areas (penis/vulva) for sexual pleasure, it’s a totally normal part of growing up.

People with vulvas don’t/shouldn’t masturbate

Why not?! Of course people with vulvas masturbate and it’s entirely their choice whether they do or don’t. There’s nothing shameful in getting to know your own body, likes and dislikes.

Only boys have wet dreams

Wet dreams can happen to everyone regardless of their gender, however, erections and releasing semen only happens if you have a penis. For people with vulvas they may have sexual feelings and orgasm in their sleep. Sometimes (though not always) this can involve release of vaginal fluid as the body is sexually aroused. Wet dreams are natural and nothing to be ashamed of.


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