The Birds & The Bees (new & improved)

This is a sex-positive blog for the purpose of education, and answering questions anyone has concerning sex, gender, sex education, sexuality, bodies, and anything else in your education and experience, or lack thereof, that has left you wondering.

Myth or Fact

masakhane:

Only vaginal intercourse counts as “having sex.”

Myth- there is no one definition of “having sex.” For some people sex is penis-in-vagina intercourse. For some people, sex is penis-in-anus intercourse. For some people, sex is intercourse with a sex toy. For some people, sex is genital rubbing without intercourse.  For some people, sex includes oral/genital contact.  For some, sex includes masturbation. The possibilities are many. 

People decide for themselves what it means to them to “have sex.” To avoid confusion when talking about having sex with sex partners, it’s important to clearly communicate your limits and expectations and to be sure you understand theirs.

Bre, Masakhane Program Development Intern

(via fuckyeahsexeducation)

faeriesandlakes:

Umbilical cord blood is a baby’s life blood until birth. It contains many wonderfully precious cells, like stem cells, red blood cells and white blood cells (including cancer-fighting T-cells) to help fight disease and infection.
Yet common practice is to quickly cut off this source of valuable cells at the moment of birth. Three reasons for this are:
**Caregivers might believe that there is little or no benefit in delayed cord clamping, despite numerous studies and recommendations
**Caregivers who might believe that delayed cord clamping can cause complications, despite numerous studies and recommendations.
**Carers being in a hurry to finish the birth. Giving birth ‘in the system’ plays a big part in whether or not the medical caregiver or establishment you deliver with wants to hurry up the process and get onto the next birth.
Studies like this one (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/m/pubmed/7612098/) published in 1995 have shown that infants who have delayed cord clamping end up with a whopping 32% more blood volume than infants who have immediate cord clamping.
“Delayed cord clamping clearly increases fetal haemoglobin, blood volume and iron stores. The evidence supports a clinical benefit of delayed clamping. There’s really no strong evidence against delaying the cord clamping. When we talk about interventions in medicine, really, the burden of evidence is on the intervention. People say, “Delayed cord clamping, you can’t prove that that’s an intervention that helps.” I’m like, “Oh, no, no, no, no! Delayed cord clamping is what we evolved to do. We evolved to get the blood that’s in the placenta. I don’t have to prove that that’s right. You need to prove to me that phlebotomizing the baby of forty percent of its blood volume is right.” — Dr. Nicholas Fogelson (You can watch his full presentation to other medical professionals at the end of this article).
In 2010, yet another study on the benefits of delayed cord clamping was published, which you can read here (http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/releases/189803.php). They stated that early clamping may interfere with ’nature’s first stem cell transplant’. A 2013 study on delayed cord clamping has just been published in the Cochrane database, again supporting the practice of delayed cord clamping. (http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/14651858.CD004074.pub3/abstract)
There has been an increasing number of studies published with regards to the timing of cord clamping, including a 16-month study which was published in 2006. You can read more about that study here (http://www.news.ucdavis.edu/search/news_detail.lasso?id=7729). It was conducted at Hospital de Gineco Obstetrica in Mexico City, where over 350 mother/baby pairs were part of the study.
This study, consistently with many others, has provided solid evidence of the benefits of delayed clamping. The main benefits being:
**Increased levels of iron
**Lower risk of anaemia
**Fewer transfusions
**Fewer incidences of intraventricular haemorrhage.
A two-minute delay in cord clamping increased the child’s iron reserve by 27-47 mg of iron, which is equivalent to 1-2 months of an infant’s iron requirements. This could help to prevent iron deficiency from developing before 6 months of age. A study from the University of Granada (2007) has similar findings.
While delayed clamping is beneficial for babies across the board, the studies found that the impact of delayed clamping is particularly significant for infants who have low birth weights, are born to iron-deficient mothers, are premature, or those who do not receive baby formula or iron-fortified milk. Given that mother nature provided breastmilk for babies and not formulas, you would think she also supplied that valuable source of iron for a reason too. You may have noticed that formula companies promote iron deficiency rates to sell their products.
The studies have suggested that delayed clamping, for as little as two minutes, should be implemented as standard practice, however this is yet to happen at many hospitals. Some couples choose to leave the cord unclamped until it has stopped pulsating, which could take a few minutes or it could take ten – either way, the baby is able to have his or her supply of placental blood.
You may be told that delayed clamping causes jaundice in babies by your carer or hospital. This is not true.
Babies are no more likely to become jaundiced by delaying cord clamping and there is no relation to jaundice and the time of the cord being clamped. In the studies, the bilirubin levels were within normal range no matter when the cord was clamped. (Excess bilirubin levels are what is associated with jaundice).
Here are some statements from recent studies to back this claim:
“There were no significant differences for other secondary outcome measures: plasma bilirubin levels at 24 to 48 hours, neonatal morbidity (respiratory distress, tachypnea, grunting, jaundice, seizures, sepsis, necrotizing enterocolitis), mortality (none), neonatal intensive care unit admission, length of hospital stay, disease up to 1 month of age, weight or rate of breast-feeding at 1 month, maternal postpartum blood-loss volume, and maternal hematocrit level at 24 hours postpartum.”
AND
“Plasma bilirubin values as well as hyperbilirubinemia rates were similar in the 3 groups, which goes along with other authors’ observations.”
AND
from the 2007 study at the University of Granada:
“…the clamping of the umbilical cord of newborns from full-term pregnancies, two minutes after the infant is expelled from the womb, makes no difference to hematocrit or hemoglobin levels of the umbilical cord vein compared to clamping the cord within 20 seconds. Thus, the study shows that early clamping (which is widely performed) is not justified.”
Further to this, Dr. Sarah Buckley’s well-researched article, A Natural Approach to the Third Stage of Labour’ states:
“Some studies have shown an increased risk of polycythemia (more red blood cells in the blood) and jaundice when the cord is clamped later. Polycythemia may be beneficial, in that more red cells means more oxygen being delivered to the tissues. The risk that polycythemia will cause the blood to become too thick (hyperviscosity syndrome), which is often used as an argument against delayed cord clamping, seems to be negligible in healthy babies. (Morley 1998)
Jaundice is almost certain when a baby gets his or her full quota of blood, and is caused by the breakdown of the normal excess of blood to produce bilirubin, the pigment that causes the yellow appearance of a jaundiced baby. There is, however, no evidence of adverse effects from this. (Morley 1998). One author has proposed that jaundice, which is present in almost all human infants to some extent, and which is often prolonged by breastfeeding, may actually be beneficial because of the anti-oxidant properties of bilirubin. (Gartner 1998)”
You may be wondering why delayed cord clamping isn’t standard practice around the world. Why wouldn’t it be, if it means healthier babies and has no adverse effects? The answer is very clear – most obstetricians are reluctant to take up this practice.
According to a survey done by WHO the ‘Attitude of Obstetricians Towards Delayed Cord Clamping’, as published in the Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, the results came back glaringly demonstrating that the reason obstetricians haven’t implemented delayed cord clamping is… wait for it… ‘difficulty implementing it into practice’. Yes, really.
I’m sure many of you are wondering why so many obstetricians REALLY are so reluctant to implement a simple process which has such massive benefits for babies at the very beginning of their life. Why can’t a midwife clamp the cord later if the obstetrician is too busy?
Allowing the cord blood to flow until pulsation has ceased is yet another very sensible and healthy process that was practiced decades ago, before obstetrics even existed. So why doesn’t every baby deserve at least two minutes undisturbed? What happened to The Hippocratic Oath, historically sworn by doctors and other healthcare professionals, to practice medicine ethically? First, do no harm, is what they are taught in medical school as a major principle.
Erasmus Darwin published this in 1801:
“Another thing very injurious to the child, is the tying and cutting of the navel string too soon; which should always be left till the child has not only repeatedly breathed but till all pulsation in the cord ceases. As otherwise the child is much weaker than it ought to be, a portion of the blood being left in the placenta, which ought to have been in the child.”
http://www.bellybelly.com.au/birth/cord-clamping-delaying-cord-clamping#.Ur5mIX-9KSO

faeriesandlakes:

Umbilical cord blood is a baby’s life blood until birth. It contains many wonderfully precious cells, like stem cells, red blood cells and white blood cells (including cancer-fighting T-cells) to help fight disease and infection.

Yet common practice is to quickly cut off this source of valuable cells at the moment of birth. Three reasons for this are:

**Caregivers might believe that there is little or no benefit in delayed cord clamping, despite numerous studies and recommendations

**Caregivers who might believe that delayed cord clamping can cause complications, despite numerous studies and recommendations.

**Carers being in a hurry to finish the birth. Giving birth ‘in the system’ plays a big part in whether or not the medical caregiver or establishment you deliver with wants to hurry up the process and get onto the next birth.

Studies like this one (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/m/pubmed/7612098/) published in 1995 have shown that infants who have delayed cord clamping end up with a whopping 32% more blood volume than infants who have immediate cord clamping.

“Delayed cord clamping clearly increases fetal haemoglobin, blood volume and iron stores. The evidence supports a clinical benefit of delayed clamping. There’s really no strong evidence against delaying the cord clamping. When we talk about interventions in medicine, really, the burden of evidence is on the intervention. People say, “Delayed cord clamping, you can’t prove that that’s an intervention that helps.” I’m like, “Oh, no, no, no, no! Delayed cord clamping is what we evolved to do. We evolved to get the blood that’s in the placenta. I don’t have to prove that that’s right. You need to prove to me that phlebotomizing the baby of forty percent of its blood volume is right.” — Dr. Nicholas Fogelson (You can watch his full presentation to other medical professionals at the end of this article).

In 2010, yet another study on the benefits of delayed cord clamping was published, which you can read here (http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/releases/189803.php). They stated that early clamping may interfere with ’nature’s first stem cell transplant’. A 2013 study on delayed cord clamping has just been published in the Cochrane database, again supporting the practice of delayed cord clamping. (http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/14651858.CD004074.pub3/abstract)

There has been an increasing number of studies published with regards to the timing of cord clamping, including a 16-month study which was published in 2006. You can read more about that study here (http://www.news.ucdavis.edu/search/news_detail.lasso?id=7729). It was conducted at Hospital de Gineco Obstetrica in Mexico City, where over 350 mother/baby pairs were part of the study.

This study, consistently with many others, has provided solid evidence of the benefits of delayed clamping. The main benefits being:

**Increased levels of iron

**Lower risk of anaemia

**Fewer transfusions

**Fewer incidences of intraventricular haemorrhage.

A two-minute delay in cord clamping increased the child’s iron reserve by 27-47 mg of iron, which is equivalent to 1-2 months of an infant’s iron requirements. This could help to prevent iron deficiency from developing before 6 months of age. A study from the University of Granada (2007) has similar findings.

While delayed clamping is beneficial for babies across the board, the studies found that the impact of delayed clamping is particularly significant for infants who have low birth weights, are born to iron-deficient mothers, are premature, or those who do not receive baby formula or iron-fortified milk. Given that mother nature provided breastmilk for babies and not formulas, you would think she also supplied that valuable source of iron for a reason too. You may have noticed that formula companies promote iron deficiency rates to sell their products.

The studies have suggested that delayed clamping, for as little as two minutes, should be implemented as standard practice, however this is yet to happen at many hospitals. Some couples choose to leave the cord unclamped until it has stopped pulsating, which could take a few minutes or it could take ten – either way, the baby is able to have his or her supply of placental blood.

You may be told that delayed clamping causes jaundice in babies by your carer or hospital. This is not true.

Babies are no more likely to become jaundiced by delaying cord clamping and there is no relation to jaundice and the time of the cord being clamped. In the studies, the bilirubin levels were within normal range no matter when the cord was clamped. (Excess bilirubin levels are what is associated with jaundice).

Here are some statements from recent studies to back this claim:

“There were no significant differences for other secondary outcome measures: plasma bilirubin levels at 24 to 48 hours, neonatal morbidity (respiratory distress, tachypnea, grunting, jaundice, seizures, sepsis, necrotizing enterocolitis), mortality (none), neonatal intensive care unit admission, length of hospital stay, disease up to 1 month of age, weight or rate of breast-feeding at 1 month, maternal postpartum blood-loss volume, and maternal hematocrit level at 24 hours postpartum.”

AND

“Plasma bilirubin values as well as hyperbilirubinemia rates were similar in the 3 groups, which goes along with other authors’ observations.”

AND

from the 2007 study at the University of Granada:

“…the clamping of the umbilical cord of newborns from full-term pregnancies, two minutes after the infant is expelled from the womb, makes no difference to hematocrit or hemoglobin levels of the umbilical cord vein compared to clamping the cord within 20 seconds. Thus, the study shows that early clamping (which is widely performed) is not justified.”

Further to this, Dr. Sarah Buckley’s well-researched article, A Natural Approach to the Third Stage of Labour’ states:

“Some studies have shown an increased risk of polycythemia (more red blood cells in the blood) and jaundice when the cord is clamped later. Polycythemia may be beneficial, in that more red cells means more oxygen being delivered to the tissues. The risk that polycythemia will cause the blood to become too thick (hyperviscosity syndrome), which is often used as an argument against delayed cord clamping, seems to be negligible in healthy babies. (Morley 1998)

Jaundice is almost certain when a baby gets his or her full quota of blood, and is caused by the breakdown of the normal excess of blood to produce bilirubin, the pigment that causes the yellow appearance of a jaundiced baby. There is, however, no evidence of adverse effects from this. (Morley 1998). One author has proposed that jaundice, which is present in almost all human infants to some extent, and which is often prolonged by breastfeeding, may actually be beneficial because of the anti-oxidant properties of bilirubin. (Gartner 1998)”

You may be wondering why delayed cord clamping isn’t standard practice around the world. Why wouldn’t it be, if it means healthier babies and has no adverse effects? The answer is very clear – most obstetricians are reluctant to take up this practice.

According to a survey done by WHO the ‘Attitude of Obstetricians Towards Delayed Cord Clamping’, as published in the Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, the results came back glaringly demonstrating that the reason obstetricians haven’t implemented delayed cord clamping is… wait for it… ‘difficulty implementing it into practice’. Yes, really.

I’m sure many of you are wondering why so many obstetricians REALLY are so reluctant to implement a simple process which has such massive benefits for babies at the very beginning of their life. Why can’t a midwife clamp the cord later if the obstetrician is too busy?

Allowing the cord blood to flow until pulsation has ceased is yet another very sensible and healthy process that was practiced decades ago, before obstetrics even existed. So why doesn’t every baby deserve at least two minutes undisturbed? What happened to The Hippocratic Oath, historically sworn by doctors and other healthcare professionals, to practice medicine ethically? First, do no harm, is what they are taught in medical school as a major principle.

Erasmus Darwin published this in 1801:

“Another thing very injurious to the child, is the tying and cutting of the navel string too soon; which should always be left till the child has not only repeatedly breathed but till all pulsation in the cord ceases. As otherwise the child is much weaker than it ought to be, a portion of the blood being left in the placenta, which ought to have been in the child.”

http://www.bellybelly.com.au/birth/cord-clamping-delaying-cord-clamping#.Ur5mIX-9KSO

(via hotdogcephalopod)

punkrightsactivist:

when my friend told her drug dealer that she was transgender he immediately started using the correct pronouns for her and her parents don’t so theres an issue there

(via bisexual-community)

new bisexual drinking game …

bisexual-community:

soloontherocks:

Do a shot every time someone defines bisexuality as being attracted to men and women. There’s no winning that game but at least you’ll be too drunk to care anymore.

When really the entire Bisexual Community worldwide has been pretty much Defining Itself more in terms of being people who have the innate capacity to ♥ people of SAME/SIMILAR Gender as themselves as well as ♥ people of DIFFERENT Genders/Gender Presentations from themselves, since the late 1960’s/early 1970’s.

But what’s erasing almost half a century of queer right’s activism and most of the gender spectrum between friends, eh?

bebinn:

ncapablog:

The South Dakota House passed a bill that would ban abortions based on the sex of the fetus, also called “sex-selective” abortions, according to an article in Mother Jones.
Lawmakers claim the bill is necessary because Asian immigrants, who they say don’t value woman and girls, are coming to their state. The Asian American community grew more than 70 percent in South Dakota in the last 10 years, according to the National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum (NAPAWF).
In the Mother Jones article, Stace Nelson, a Republican state representative running for the U.S. Senate, is quoted as saying, “Many of you know I spent 18 years in Asia … And sadly, I can tell you that the rest of the world does not value the lives of women as much as I value the lives of my daughters.”
NAPAWF launched a campaign today to take action to stop the passing of the bill, HR 1162. 

"The racism and the stereotypes and the stigma is laid so bare here," said Miriam Yeung, executive director of NAPAWF, told Mother Jones. The group has long argued that that sex-selective abortion bans perpetuate negative stereotypes about Asian American women. “We’ve been saying that these bills are wolves in sheep’s clothing. But in this case, I think the wolf has left off the sheep’s clothing.”

NAPAWF asks you to sign their petition here: “Don’t let South Dakota pass a racist anti-abortion bill!”
Follow @NAPAWF on Twitter for more information and graphics like the one posted above.

Just when you think anti-choicers have reached peak absurdity, they manage to prove you wrong.

bebinn:

ncapablog:

The South Dakota House passed a bill that would ban abortions based on the sex of the fetus, also called “sex-selective” abortions, according to an article in Mother Jones.

Lawmakers claim the bill is necessary because Asian immigrants, who they say don’t value woman and girls, are coming to their state. The Asian American community grew more than 70 percent in South Dakota in the last 10 years, according to the National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum (NAPAWF).

In the Mother Jones article, Stace Nelson, a Republican state representative running for the U.S. Senate, is quoted as saying, “Many of you know I spent 18 years in Asia … And sadly, I can tell you that the rest of the world does not value the lives of women as much as I value the lives of my daughters.”

NAPAWF launched a campaign today to take action to stop the passing of the bill, HR 1162. 

"The racism and the stereotypes and the stigma is laid so bare here," said Miriam Yeung, executive director of NAPAWF, told Mother Jones. The group has long argued that that sex-selective abortion bans perpetuate negative stereotypes about Asian American women. “We’ve been saying that these bills are wolves in sheep’s clothing. But in this case, I think the wolf has left off the sheep’s clothing.”

NAPAWF asks you to sign their petition here: “Don’t let South Dakota pass a racist anti-abortion bill!”

Follow @NAPAWF on Twitter for more information and graphics like the one posted above.

Just when you think anti-choicers have reached peak absurdity, they manage to prove you wrong.

6 Women on Their Terrifying, Infuriating Encounters With Abortion Clinic Protesters

foryoursexualinformation:

ppnne:

Great article on why buffer zones matter! This features two of our Maine patient greeters. If you are interested in volunteering, visit http://www.plannedparenthood.org/ppnne/volunteer-22021.htm

Gendered article, could have sought out people of other genders as well. I think these accounts really illustrate the need for a buffer zone.  

There is little precedent for fat androgyny. Generally our androgynous icons are svelte and lacking in secondary sex characteristics. David Bowie, Tilda Swinton, Katherine Hepburn; these small-bodied, predominately white figures of androgyny have created an aesthetic with little room for deviation. This means that for those of us with bodies that do not conform to traditional standards of androgyny, we are often misread and misunderstood, even in queer spaces.

Fat Queer Tells All: On Fatness and Gender Flatness (via disabilityhistory)

this hurts because its so damn close to home. i wish that my tender fat baby genderqueer self had seen this.

(via gadaboutgreen)

(via gtfothinspo)