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Youth Blog

Discovering healing and self-identity through consent

By Tamar
November 2, 2022

Blog Interview Series By RHEP Youth Advisory Board Member Tamar

Adolescence is tough for anyone. For those who have suffered abuse, there are even greater challenges, with greater consequences – shaping their past, present and future identity.

A member of the RHEP Youth Advisory Board (YAB) interviewed seven individuals in various stages of healing from abuse or manipulation to understand the effects of consent and lack of consent. The stories are real, but the names have been changed to protect contributors’ privacy.

Please check in with yourself before reading. The situations described below describe various forms of abuse and may be triggering.

"Coming from someone who had a child at fifteen, I feel as though proper reproduction and sexual health education lacked in my life... I can help create change for future foster youth so they have access to resources and support, which is something I did not have until I was too old."

Do you or does someone you know need help? 

If you want to talk to someone or are looking for more information about consent or abuse, check out these amazing organizations and resources:

Teen Talk: videos, games, and more to learn about and practice consent. 

RAINN: Free confidential 24/7 sexual assault and abuse hotline

988 Lifeline: For mental health support, call or text 988 or chat

NNEDV (National Network to End Domestic Violence) – information about financial and other forms of abuse.

Futures without ViolenceStart Strong Campaign, including information about building healthy relationships

CoolNotCool Healthy Relationships Quiz: What’s acceptable, what’s not? Is another person respecting your boundaries? This quiz will help you evaluate your relationships to see if they’re working for you.

Fostering Parenthood is a podcast by caregivers for caregivers promoting the healthy sexual development of foster youth. Episode 1 talks about the principles of consent and bodily autonomy with foster youth. 

Self-Taught: Former Foster Youth On Sex, Health, And Life is a podcast from foster youth, for foster youth, with unfiltered conversations about sex, health and life. These are conversations about puberty, relationships, sexual health, identity and much more that we wish were part of our upbringing.

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