Q I’m really embarrassed about my vagina. My flaps hang out of the bottom and it looks so ugly! Labia minora are the internal vaginal lips that sit inside of the labia majora and just like the rest of our body they differ immensely from one woman to another. One of the issues with body image and pornography is that we are only shown one body type and that usually means one vagina type. Many women who perform in porn have had labiaplasty – a cosmetic procedure to reduce the size of their labia minora – just like many female porn performers have had breast augmentations. There is no ‘normal’ when it comes to labia, but if your labia minora protrude to the point where they are painful it may be worth talking to your doctor.
Q Do girls abuse their male partners? Male partners can be the victims of abuse in relationships. This is true for both heterosexual and homosexual relationships. However, it’s important to note that in at least 95% of cases, it is the male partner who is the abuser.
Q What do you do or say to help if your friend is in an unhealthy relationship? It can be really hard to watch your close friend stay in an unhealthy relationship but the most important thing you can do is to be there for your friend and support them no matter what their decision is (if they stay in the relationship or break up). Talking and listening to your friend shows that you care and this may also help your friend realise that they may not be in a respectful relationship.  It’s important not to blame your friend for the relationship or tell them to leave. Instead ask them if there is anything you can do to help, let them know about the support services in school or in your community that may be helpful.  For more information check out our page on Intimate  Partner Violence for tips on what to do & say to a friend who may be in an unhealthy relationship.
Q My dad abused my mother – does that mean I will be in an abusive relationship? Abuse is a learned behaviour. Sometimes people see it growing up. Other times they learn it from friends or popular culture. But, no matter where it's learned, it's not ok and it's never justified. Many people experience or witness abuse growing up and decide not to use those negative and hurtful ways of behaving. It's important to know that being abusive is a choice - and it’s not one that you have to make. Likewise, if you’re concerned that you may be abused because you witnessed abuse growing up, it’s important to learn about respectful relationships, the early warning signs of intimate partner violence, and develop a healthy self esteem and self respect. If you grew up in a violent home you may want to talk to a counsellor to help you sort through your feelings.