We know teens want accurate information relating to the issues in their lives. When it comes to relationships, sex, STIs, birth control, pregnancy, or sexual orientation, it’s important to separate facts from myths. No matter what your question is, there are resources to help.
Start Early. Talk Often.
Have meaningful conversations about sex, love, and relationships. Here are some tips for talking with parents and trusted adults, because sometimes starting the conversation can be the hardest part. We promise, it gets easier over time.
- Try using a magazine article or TV show to start talking about sex more generally. Then you can work your way up to the stuff that’s more personal to you.
- If you feel more comfortable communicating through text, messenger, or even email go for it. It doesn’t matter how you talk — just talk.
- Give your parents a heads-up that you want to talk. Say something like, “Can we have a private talk tonight?” That way you can be sure to have their full attention, and they know to take it seriously.
- Break the ice with something like, “This feels weird for me to talk about, and it may be for you, too, but I want to ask about …” Acknowledging the awkwardness can actually help make it go away.
- Think of questions you want to ask, and maybe even write them down first. You could ask them about what their parents taught them about sex, how to know when you’re in love, how to know when to have sex, and how to protect yourself from pregnancy and STIs.
- Tell them why you’re asking. Is it to try to understand what they expect from you? Is it to get some information? Is it to help you make a decision, or help a friend make a decision? Telling them why will stop them from making assumptions.
Some parents are really uncomfortable talking about sex. Worse, some threaten or punish their kids for bringing it up. If you feel that asking questions about sex will put you in danger, find another trusted adult to talk to.
If you’re very concerned about your parents’ reaction, you might want to put off the conversation until you feel you and your parents are more ready. Or maybe your parents aren’t around. In these cases, you could turn to another adult you trust, such as a family friend, relative, or counselor.
The AwkTalk™ website is a resource for teens to get answers to life’s awkward questions about sexual health, puberty, relationships, sexually transmitted infections and more from medical experts. For all things sexual health, visit awktalk.org.
Birth Control + Contraception
Birth control is a safe and easy way to prevent pregnancy.
Some types of birth control can also help treat certain health problems or provide other health benefits — like making periods lighter and less painful. There are lots of different birth control methods that work in different ways. It’s important to find the right one for you. 99% of sexually active women have used some form of birth control or contraception in their lifetime (CDC, 2013).
Most birth control methods are available either free or low-cost.
Our partner organization Take Control Initiative actually sponsors free long acting birth control options for folks in our community. They will even get you a ride to the clinic!
All FDA-approved birth control methods have gone through extensive research showing they are safe to use and effective at preventing pregnancy. Some even have other benefits, like making your periods shorter, giving you periods with less cramping, and improving acne.
Condoms are great and can be used along with any other method of birth control!
Condoms protect against STIs, don’t require a prescription, and are inexpensive or free.
You can receive free condoms at any Tulsa Health Department location.
Visit our Find a Clinic page to see your nearest location.
Youth 19 and under can receive confidential sexual and reproductive health care at all of our partner clinics.
Whether you’re looking for birth control, condoms, or STI testing, you can probably get it for free and confidentially.
Visit our Find a Clinic page to see your nearest location for confidential clinic services.
Getting tested is important for your sexual health.
Getting tested can feel intimidating, but in reality, it’s usually a quick, painless, and sometimes even a free process. STI and HIV testing is normal and helps folks stay in charge of their health. Our partners at Tulsa Health Department and Community Health Connection make it super easy to get tested and treated if needed.
It’s pretty simple, let us help!
- Visit our Find a Clinic Page and find the most convenient location for you.
- Give them a call and tell them, “I need to make an appointment with your teen clinic.”
- You will need to tell them the reason(s) you need an appointment – for example, STI testing, birth control, or a pregnancy test. They want to help you make healthy decisions! We promise they are not judging.
- Confirm a date and time for your appointment which works for your schedule.
- Set a reminder in on your phone to make sure you remember when you need to be at your appointment!
- Need a ride to your appointment? Our partners at Take Control Initiative have this covered too! Just text or call (539) 302-3615 to set up a free Lyft ride to your appointment. An agent will collect your name, phone number, and pick up and drop off location. Calls and texts are answered between the hours of 7:00 AM and 6:30 PM.
- Yay! It’s time to celebrate how awesome you are for taking control of your sexual health!
Let’s walk through this together
- Arrive about 15 minutes early so you can complete any necessary paperwork. If you have any questions, just ask!
- You may have to give a urine sample, so be sure to drink some water before you arrive.
- When you’re in the exam room, the health care provider will ask you questions about your medical history. You will also have the opportunity to ask questions about any testing or medication you need or want. Afraid you won’t remember what ask? Bring some notes!
- Depending on the type of appointment you schedule, you may have a physical exam.
- After your visit, stop by the appointment window if you need to schedule any follow ups.
- Don’t forget – if you need to take home any condoms they are available for free at our partner clinics!
Do we make it sound easy? It is! Our partner clinics in Tulsa are providing confidential and many times free services to youth. Let’s connect you with their services. Find a clinic.
Find a Clinic
Confidential and free. Seriously!
In Tulsa, we have 5 partner clinics around town which offer free or reduced cost confidential health services to youth 19 and under. No one is turned away for inability to pay. Appointments are always encouraged, but not mandatory during Teen Clinic hours! It’s super easy! Teens can get services on other days and times during the week, but they would need to call and make an appointment.
*COVID-19 Update: Teen Clinic and Title X confidential and free or reduced cost services are still available. Clinics ask for youth to call ahead to schedule your appointment to limit exposure.*
1. North Regional Health Center
5635 N. Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue
Tulsa, OK 74126
Monday – Thursday: 8am – 4pm
Friday: 8am – 3pm
2. James Goodwin Health Center
5051 South 129th East Avenue
Tulsa, OK 74134
Monday – Thursday: 8am – 4pm
Friday: 8am – 3pm
3. Central Regional Health Center
315 South Utica
Tulsa, OK 74104
Monday – Thursday: 8am – 4pm
Friday: 8am – 3pm
2321 East 3rd Street
Tulsa, OK 74104-3327
Thursdays: 1:00 pm – 6:00 pm
2. Ellen Ochoa
12020 East 31st Street
Tulsa, OK 74146
Tuesdays: 1:00 pm – 6:00 pm
First thing: You are loved and valid as you are.
Here’s a list of our favorite resources.
Local LGBTQIAA2S+ Instagram Communities
- Follow @yst_gsa on Instagram
- Follow @yst_coffeehouse on Instagram
Local LGBTQIAA2S+ Programs
- LGBTQIAA2S+ Services @ Youth Services of Tulsa (Call 918-582-0061)
- Alphabet Soup, a social program for youth 13-17 @ Oklahomans for Equality meets every Saturday from 5-8 PM
- CampFire Green Country has several programs for LGBTQIAA2S+ youth, join one here
Need a Safe Place to Stay?
Youth Services of Tulsa has a drop-in center and shelter for youth needing a safe place to stay.
- TEXT: The word SAFE to 44357
- CALL: 918-582-0061
The shelter is open to all youth, ages 12 to 18, who don’t have a safe place to go. The shelter provides warm beds, hot meals, showers, clean clothes, counseling and a caring staff who offer support and resources to help youth return safely home or to another safe, stable living situation. Open 24 hours daily, 7 days a week.
STIs and HIV affect LGBTQIAA2S+ folks as well. Stay on top of your sexual health.
It’s important for sexually active folks to get regularly tested to know their status and receive treatment if needed. We have a whole page with more information on STIs + HIV – including where to get free and confidential sexual health services!
Do you need help talking with a healthcare provider about your LGBTQIAA2S+ identity?
Have you heard of Q Cards? They can help facilitate these conversations in an non-intimidating way!
The Q Card itself has a three-panel design that lets youth fill in their name, pronouns, sexual orientation, gender identity, and provides additional space for youth to list any concerns or questions.
We have Q Cards for free at our office for you or your organization! Visit us today.
imi helps address elements contributing to the growing mental health crisis affecting LGBTQ+ youth by providing them with free, accessible, and research-backed support, built in a safe digital space. imi was created through a collaboration of LGBTQ+ organizations, and hundreds of LGBTQ+ young people from across the country – it’s a tool for LGBTQ+ teens, by LGBTQ+ teens and their allies.
You are not alone. If you are in immediate need or have suicidal thoughts, The Trevor Project has a hotline, support chatroom, and confidential texting with a counselor available.
Want more information on LGBTQIAA2S+ sexual health? Our friends at Scarleteen are sexperts and champion sex ed for the real world!