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College and Your Sexual Health

Now that you’re settled back in school, it’s as good a time as any to take stock of your sexual health and your relationships, and work out any lingering anxieties.

If you’re in a relationship, what’s your current status? Did you spend time apart over the summer? Were you dating long distance? Did you take a break? What’s it going to be like when you’re both back? What’s going to happen when you both start having lots of other obligations again?

Is it time to get tested again? Is your vaguely defined summer “thing” reaching that point where you’re actually going to have to talk about it? And what about that roommate who acts totally passive-aggressive every time you have someone over?

There might be a lot of noise in your head about this stuff right now. Relax! Here are two checklists to help you sort it all out.

Relationship Anxiety Toolkit

  • Is it time to DTR (Define the Relationship) or re-DTR? Talk to your whatever they are about whatever you guys are. This can seem like a tricky conversation, so try framing it in terms of past/present/future tenses.
  • “We were _______, we are _______, I’d like us to be ________.”
    (Fill in the blanks: just friends, non-exclusive, exclusive, etc.)
  • Readjust to the amount of time you’ll be spending with each other, whether that’s more or less. Set expectations about how much time you each have for the other person.
  • Talk to that roommate about what general rules you can set about having company. Put it all out there, and set some boundaries about what you’re each comfortable with, so you know what to do when the moment and/or mood strikes.


Sexual Health Checklist

  • University health centers are often a really great resource for sexual health care. Make an appointment at your university’s health center, or at your local Planned Parenthood. While you’re there, pick up a handful of condoms.
  • Think about getting tested, and about how you feel about your current birth control method. Is it working for you, or have you been thinking about switching? Our My Method tool can help you consider your options. So can a consultation at your health center.
  • See what, if anything, has changed at your school’s health center in terms of what’s covered. Birth control and other preventative services might be free or a lot less than you think.


-Nina at Planned Parenthood

Just in time for back-to-school, Planned Parenthood of Southwest and Central Florida and The SOURCE Teen Theatre have created Freefall, a new web series that follows five friends through the ups and downs of their first year of college. It’s an emotional punch to the gut that tackles the issue of college drinking and its sometimes explosive interaction with drugs, sex, academics, and relationships. Watch the entire series at freefallthewebseries.com

Ready for a change?

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