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College can be an exciting time, learning new skills to help you succeed in life. It is also a time to learn skills needed to keep yourself healthy. Here are a few issues for you to consider.
Sexual Health: Just do it, or NOT!
Many young males decide to wait for their first sexual experience. The decision to not have sex (abstinence) is the only sure guarantee to avoid sexually transmitted diseases/infections (STD/Is) and unwanted pregnancies.
If you do decide to have sex ask yourself a few basic questions.
Sex between two mature consenting individuals can be enjoyable and satisfying. Learn to talk openly and honestly with your partner.
30 Seconds to Save your Life
Although testicular cancer is the most common cancer in men ages 20-35, it is one of the most easily cured cancers. Early detection is essential for successful treatment. A testicular self-exam (TSE) is the best method for early detection. It is easily learned and simple to perform. A TSE should be performed every month so you become familiar with what is normal for you and can recognize any changes that may occur. Ask your health care provider to show you how to perform a TSE.
Bulk versus Baggage Steroid Use
Steroids may seem like an easy way to get quick and impressive muscular results, but there are changes your body will go through that you may not have anticipated or considered. Side effects from steroid use can include a variety of physical and psychological problems. These include damage to your kidneys, heart, penis and testicles, ligaments and tendons, and even liver cancer. Psychological effects can include depression, paranoia, mood swings, and aggressive behavior. Before you take steroids, educate yourself on what all the effects are, and remember, some of them are irreversible.
Masculinity: Ways to Measure your Worth
strong. That's the word most people think of first when asked what it means to be a man. If you think strong means tough, muscular, aggressive and stoic, you might think you have to take unnecessary risks, engage in violent behavior and avoid asking for help to be a "real man". strong can mean doing one's best, being responsible, making difficult choices and sticking it out. Strength of character is being ethical, fair and committed to doing "the right thing", standing up for your beliefs, your family and your community. Be strong enough to walk away from fights, to risk being honest about how you feel, to give up the need to control others and to take responsibility for protecting your own health and well being. Professional counselors and health care providers can help you find positive, healthy models of masculinity.
Intimacy: So Close!
Intimacy is more than the physical part of a relationship. Intimacy reflects honest communication, equality in a relationship, mutual respect, and taking responsibility for behavior. Intimacy can occur between friends of either gender without sexual activity. However, intimacy is an important and integral part of any healthy sexual relationship. Learn to talk openly with friends and your partner about issues that make you happy, sad, angry, or uncertain. You will discover your friends or partner share similar feelings. You are not alone.
Issues for Thought
Men's health risks are largely preventable.
Compared to women, generally men:
By changing attitudes and behaviors about health and health care, these health risks can be greatly reduced. By paying attention to your mind and body and learning how to make healthy choices, you can change this outcome for yourself. Making your own decisions is part of maturing and becoming an adult. Choices determining health and quality of life should not be taken lightly. Practicing safe sex, performing self-exams, and avoiding drugs can help keep your body healthy and enable you to live a long life. You also need to maintain psychological health and be comfortable with who you are. Developing and sustaining healthy relationships will enrich your life and the lives of the people you care about.
Developed by Jill Ladner, Forrest Bright, APNP, and Marilyn Kile, CICSW. February, 2002
by Marilyn J. Kile, LCSW
Are you concerned about the way some other men talk about and treat women on this campus? Are you worried about the safety of your female friends? Have you ever gotten tired of most women looking at you as a potential rapist? What is a nice guy to do? Fight back. Reclaim your male pride and honor by actively condemning sexual violence. Make it your mission to join together with other men to stop the rapists and make this campus safe for everyone. The following ideas are from Men Stopping Rape in Madison.
Men's Pledge to End Rape
I Pledge to: