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The Other Change: Perimenopause & Menopause

If you've ever found yourself scratching your head over terms like perimenopause and menopause, wondering what on earth is happening to your body, you're in the right place. It is time that I talk about the world of hormonal changes, hot flashes, and everything in between. So grab a cup and let's chat about the 'other change' together!

Understanding Perimenopause and Menopause:

Picture this: Your body's hormones are throwing a wild party, and you're not entirely sure if you're invited. That's perimenopause for you—the prelude to menopause. It's like a hormonal rollercoaster where oestrogen levels decide to go on a joyride, leaving you feeling like you're on shaky ground.

Perimenopause typically starts in your 40s, but it can happen earlier or later for some people. You might notice irregular periods, mood swings, and those dreaded hot flashes making an appearance.

And then there's menopause, the grand finale where Aunt Flo takes a permanent vacation. Cue the hot...

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Body Image and Eating Disorders

In honor of Eating Disorders Awareness Week, that I missed last week , I wanted to blog about the importance of our relationship with food. 

Unlike drugs and alcohol where abstaining is the goal. You can't not eat. And every meal can be a battle for someone with an eating disorder. 

This has been more on my mind lately as this past month I have had several girls bring up their body image struggles during my Talk sex education classes. One child wrote in my question bag, 

This breaks my heart... We have to be talking to our kids much sooner than we think about their relationship with their bodies. 

When I was adjunct faculty at CSU Long Beach, I taught a course for three years on Women and Their Bodies and one of my favorite speakers was the OA panel that would share their stories. OA stands for Overeaters Anonymous, basically AA for eating disorders. One of the things they shared that stuck with me was this phrase, 

What's eating you? 

Behind most...

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Zyn Pouches

Hey there, parents!

You’ve probably heard about the dangers of vaping. But there’s a new trend among teens that’s causing alarm: Zyn.

These little nicotine pouches are getting some attention on social media with "zynfluencers" posting videos using the product and promoting them on platforms like TikTok and Instagram.

But how popular are they? 

Teens are taking notice. About 1.5% of middle and high school students reported using nicotine pouches, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Preventions 2023 National Youth Tobacco Survey. E-cigarettes (vaping) is still the most common form of of nicotine consumption for teens with more than 2.1 million youth currently using e-cigarettes (10% of high school students and 4.6% of middle school students, with more than 1 in 4 of those using e-cigs daily).

Nicotine pouch sales are booming in the United States, with Zyn leading the pack. Philip Morris International, Zyn's parent company, says it has seen...

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Mean Girls 2024 Movie Review

Hey Parents,

Just went to see Mean Girls (2024) – it's a lively and hilarious musical spin on the 2004 hit, brought to life from the Broadway show. The teens are all about phones and social media in this version, but the core of the story remains the rivalry between high school juniors Cady Heron (played by Angourie Rice) and Regina George (played by Reneé Rapp), mainly because of a boy.

Before I get into the plot further this version of the movie will feel similar to the original with popular lines and moments, however, this version offers a modern twist including viral videos vignettes and a musical aspect that brings the deeper emotions and thoughts of the characters to life. The original movie is fast and witty—and so much goes over kids heads. In the musical movie, however, those big song and dance numbers during pivotal moments provide a few extra beats for the messages to sink in. It helps teens understand and appreciate what the characters are...

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Dangerous TikTok Trends Parents Should be Aware of 🀨

Navigating through the wild, ever-changing world of TikTok with our kiddos can sometimes feel like we’re trekking through a jungle, right? Today, let’s chat about some of the trends that might have slipped into your child’s TikTok feed and how we can guide them safely through.

The Benadryl Challenge: A Risky Ride

Teenagers and challenges, they kinda go hand in hand, don’t they? But there’s this one challenge zooming through social media that’s more than just a harmless dare. First up, the “Benadryl Challenge”. This trend encourages participants to take excessive amounts of the allergy medication Benadryl to experience a high that could bring about hallucinations. It’s not only dangerous but has also been fatal. A 15-year-old girl in Oklahoma lost her life due to an overdose from participating in this challenge. The challenge generally calls for users to take at least a dozen pills, which is way beyond the recommended dose...

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Born for This?!

This is my birthday weekend!  

And I'm reminded of a story of one of my most memorable birthdays. My 13th.

Why?!?!

Well, if you've taken a puberty related program from me you have likely heard me share a personal piece of information about this specific birthday because it was when I got my very FIRST period! 

I've shared this story for years, but this past year a mother said something to me that I had never heard before.

She said, "You got your period the day you were born! See, you were born for this!"

Born for this? I blushed.

Yet it stuck with me enough that I'm telling you about it today.

Could I have been born to talk about this?

I'm going to share something very personal. There is history of sexual abuse in my family.

My mother was molested by her father and brother as a child.

My parents were surprisingly open about this with my sister and I growing up.

I have more than one memory of conversations my parents had in front of...

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How to Approach the Birth Control Chat with Your Teen

 

I know that discussing birth control with your teen might feel like navigating a minefield. But guess what? You're not alone, and I'm here to help. Watch the video above and the blog below and let's dive into this together, shall we?

Why and How to Approach Birth Control with your Teen

First off, why even talk about birth control? Well, it's as crucial as teaching them to brush their teeth or eat healthily. Reproductive health is a significant part of their overall well-being. And with so much information (and misinformation) available online, it's vital for them to hear from someone they trust -  you!

Birth control is a powerful tool that empowers individuals to make informed decisions about their reproductive health. It's not only about preventing pregnancy but also about taking control of your future. Timing parenthood can make all the difference in reaching our goals. 

When's the Right Time for the Birth Control Chat?

The answer is simple: before they begin...

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Facing Judgment: Empowering Parents to Use a Sex Educator

Empowering Parents: The Benefits of Utilizing a Sex Educator to Discuss Sexuality with Kids

Yesterday I met with a friend that made a comment that triggered today's blog post. It is actually not the first time I have heard this belief. A belief that could stop someone from taking a program like "THE Talk" or utilizing an expert to help talk with their child about sex. 

She said something to the effect of, 

"I don't understand why someone would need to hire someone to talk to their kid about sex."

It came across as a sort of judgment of a parent that would "need" to take a course like that. 

Facing Judgment

It's unfortunate that some parents might judge others for seeking the assistance of a sex educator. However, it's essential to remember that every child is unique, and every parent's journey is different. Seeking help from experts is a testament to a parent's dedication to ensuring their children receive the best guidance and information possible....

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S E X T O R T I O N

Sexual extortion or “sextortion” can take many forms. Through various ruses and exploits, victims are lured to share compromising images or engage in compromising conversations. Girls and women are often extorted to produce more sexually explicit pictures, while boys and men are commonly extorted for money.

The rise of technology and the internet has brought about numerous benefits, from easy access to information to the ability to connect with people from all over the world. However, it has also opened up a darker side, with one of the most troubling being around online predators and issues like sextortion.

Sextortion is a cyber crime involving threatening or blackmailing someone into performing sexual acts or sharing explicit material often times for monetary gain.

Watch this video from Amaze.org that explains what extortion is and common tactics.

 

We are hearing more and more stories in the news like the tragic story of 15-year-old Kaitlyn Yozviak...

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Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret Movie Review

 

A beloved and best-selling classic comes to the big screen with Lionsgate’s adaptation of Judy Blume’s Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret. Starring Rachel McAdams, Kathy Bates, and Abby Ryder Fortson as Margaret, this timeless, coming-of-age story has transcended decades and spoken to generations. The book is considered a classic, yet it has been frequently challenged due to its frank discussion of religious and sexual topics.

It came out in 1970, so some of the situations and references may seem dated to today's tweens who are grappling with social media, cyberbullying, and school shootings. But the underlying issues of peer pressure, social acceptance, and religion are still current struggles for many tweens.

At 11, Margaret is moving to a new town and beginning to contemplate everything about life, friendship, and adolescence. She relies on her mother (McAdams), who offers loving support but is herself finding her own footing in a new place, and...

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