*DISCLAIMER* This article is not an excuse to go out and be like "Hey I'm Alli, how many people have you hooked up with?" No. That's sexual harassment, none of your business, and just a general dick move, pun intended. This is just a one gal's thoughts that will hopefully open a channel of conversation between some consenting parties. So, without further ado, things you're not supposed to talk about, and why you should anyway:
This is a biggy. If you think about it, there are very few safe spaces to talk about sex. Kids learn the basics in health class but a lot of information is left out, and it's considered 'inappropriate' to talk about it. People often can't talk to their friends, family, heck, some people can't even talk to their sexual partners about it. How sad is that? How can you be having sex if you can't even have a comfortable conversation about it? So, if you feel the need, get verbal about your sex life, and if someone needs it, lend an ear.
Mental Health Issues/Health Issues in General
Health issues, especially mental health issues, are a huge taboo in today's society. There are such negative stereotypes related with some disorders. Additionally, there are negative connotations related to people who have to take prescription medication to get through the day. These people need this medicine to function daily, and just because someone can't see their illness on the outside doesn't make them any less ill. So if you hear someone talking about their illness, or taking Ritalin, or Vicodin, or any other prescription medication, take a step back and remember they're doing this in order to be healthy - not because they're inferior, and they have every right to talk about that part of their life.
OK so the fact that women aren't 'allowed' to talk about their periods, reeeaally grinds my gears. We friggin shed the inside of our uterus once a month in order to sustain the human race, and we get shamed for it? COME. ON. And this isn't just aimed at men, women are just as bad. I don't know how many times I've overheard a woman shaming someone for posting on social media about bleeding or cramps or whatever. If you are so uncomfortable with the human reproductive system that you can't hear/talk about menstruation, you're weak and natural selection is coming for you. Not to mention, talking about your period with other women can be SO important. You may have irregularities in your cycle or symptoms that are bad for your health or can be regulated for your comfort. So the next time you overhear someone talking about their monthly gift, close your mouth and just listen!
Okay so birth control has been around since the 60s, is widely used, and we still can't talk about it. If you're against contraceptives because of your religion or some other reason, that's fine. If you think birth control is the best thing since sliced bread (like me) that's also fine. What's not okay is the amount of misinformation surrounding birth control because we, as a society, are so afraid to talk about it. I know college-aged women who come and ask me questions about birth control, because they're so uncomfortable talking to their own families about it. And here's another thing: birth control does more than just 'control birth.' Birth control can regulate heavy periods, reduce cramping, clear up acne, and much more. Yet, there are still girls out there suffering from these discomforts because they're too afraid to ask to be put on it. So talk about birth control, ask questions about it, and never shame someone for wanting to protect themselves.
There are some things that we as consenting adults need to be comfortable talking about. So, don't let society control what you can and can't feel safe talking about. Ask questions, express your opinion, and be as respectful as you can, and we can end this cycle of suppression and apprehension.