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We need sex education that's inclusive, informative, and effective.
Planned Parenthood
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In This Issue:
Gun Control is a Feminist Issue + What's Endometriosis? + National Day of Appreciation for Abortion Providers

We are tired of being ignored."
Emma González, a bisexual Cuban-American activist fighting for gun control and a senior at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School
Gun violence in America is deeply rooted in toxic masculinity, white supremacy, transphobia, and queerphobia, and disproportionately threatens the lives of women, LGBTQ folks, people of color, people with disabilities, indigenous people, and so many others. Planned Parenthood is standing in solidarity with students and young people who are fighting against gun violence in their communities — from #BlackLivesMatter to #SayHerName to #WeCallBS. The next walkout is March 14. Read more here or find an event near you.

"What's endometriosis?"
Endometriosis is a condition in which tissue from the uterus grows where it shouldn't. You might never have heard of it, but endometriosis affects about one in 10 of those of us with a uterus of reproductive age. Common symptoms include chronic pelvic pain, heavy or very painful periods, and sometimes pain during sex.

Heavy periods and cramps during your period are common, but if you're experiencing intense pain around your period that gets in the way of your day-to-day life and responsibilities, it's a good idea to talk with a doctor or nurse, like the staff at your local Planned Parenthood health center. They can help you figure out the cause and work with you to find a good treatment option.

— Sarah at Planned Parenthood
March is Endometriosis Awareness Month. Learn more about endometriosis at plannedparenthood.org.

Have a question of your own? Chat with one of our health educators or send TBH suggestions of topics to cover.

Medical Biases + Pain
People experience disparities in health care depending on their gender, race, body size, and more. This is especially troubling when we look at differences in the way clinicians respond to patients who are in pain.

Patients who have visited health care providers because they're experiencing painful periods have reported being told that they're "fine," that painful periods are "a part of being a woman," or that they are being "overdramatic." Other patients find that their identity is blamed for being the source of their symptoms. For example, trans patients report that their doctors are quick to pinpoint their trans identity or gender-affirming hormone therapy as the source of their pain — even before examining them.

Black patients' health care experiences are compounded by racism. Believe it or not, lies used to justify slavery are still present in our health care system: In a study done of White medical students, 40 percent of first and second-year students answered that they thought Black patients had thicker skin than White patients. Others believed that Black patients' nerve endings were less sensitive, none of which is true.

Every patient deserves to be listened to and taken seriously, and to have their symptoms thoroughly investigated. Anything less is dehumanizing. For medical providers (and the rest of us), self-awareness is an important first step — get educated, ask other people about their experiences receiving care, and remember that you can advocate for yourself.
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Get the Details:
+ My Doctors Said My Debilitating Menstrual Pain Was 'Fine'
+ Transmasculine Pelvic Pain: It's Time To Deepen The Conversation
+ White Doctors In Training Believe Some Disturbing Stuff About Black Patients

Planned Parenthood Presents:
Why are you thankful for abortion providers?
Today is the National Day of Appreciation for Abortion Providers. Join us in celebrating the compassionate and courageous doctors, nurses, physician assistants, and health center staff who work every day to ensure patients have access to the reproductive health care they need — including abortion!

Defiers of the Month

Hofstra University NY

Two of the PP Generation Action chapters at Hofstra University — Campus Feminist Collective and Student Advocates of Safer Sex — are working in coalition with other campus leaders to address sexual assault both on and off campus. Their goal is to establish a caucus of student advocates committed to promoting a safer campus for those most vulnerable to sexual and gendered violence. These advocates will be trained in both Title IX policies and the sexual misconduct policies enforced by their campus. Their hope is to promote transparency and to provide resources to survivors of sexual violence. For this, they're our Defiers of the Month.

We need sex education that's inclusive, informative, and effective.
The Trump-Pence administration is trying to rebrand "abstinence-only-until-marriage" programs as "sexual risk avoidance" programs, but the risks of these programs remain the same — they don't provide people with all of the information they need to make decisions about their bodies and lives. They're not only medically inaccurate and ineffective, but they also neglect, stigmatize, and shame students who are LGBTQ, sexually active, pregnant or parenting, living with an STI, or survivors of abuse — all while perpetuating harmful gender stereotypes.

Tweet your members of Congress and tell them: We need sex education that's inclusive, informative, and effective.
Patients can access abortion services via video chat.

A Planned Parenthood program now makes it possible for patients to securely video-chat with a doctor who can authorize a medication abortion. It's a safe, legal, and simple way for patients to get the care they need, even if they don't have an abortion provider in their area.

Learn more here or call 1-800-230-PLAN to find out if this option is available at your local Planned Parenthood health center.
TBH (To Be Honest) is a monthly newsletter dedicated to learning about our bodies, talking about sex and relationships, and challenging health inequity and injustice. Send us your feedback.

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