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One day we love it, the next we’re at war with it. Our relationship with our vagina is a tumultuous one but one we will be in forever, whether we like it or not. We see our vagina every day, so oftentimes we take it for granted. However, our vagina is an amazing creation that allows for us to experience things such as the birth of a child or the intimate connection we can have with another individual. From one vagina to another, here are five things we owe to both ourselves and to our most beloved of body parts.

1. Practice safe sex.

CONDOMS, CONDOMS, CONDOMS! Ten minutes of pleasure is not worth the 18 years you may subsequently spend caring for a child. And while we are in the business of practicing safe sex, consider other birth control options as well.

2. If something seems off down there, get it checked out.

If you look down there and it seems a little funky, or if it’s not feeling up to par, do yourself a favor and get to a doctor as soon as possible.

3. …and while you are getting that handled, get tested for STIs.

It can’t be stressed enough just how important regularly getting checked for STDs is. Not only do you want to make sure you are healthy, but also get checked so your partner (or whomever you partake in sexual relations with) is healthy, too.

4. Don’t hate it just because it’s your time of the month.

We groan when that dreaded week of the month comes; it means wearing white pants has the risk level of extreme sports, and acne and bloating make you wish you could just stay in bed all day. But really, we should be cheering instead, because getting your period means a) CONGRATS! You aren’t pregnant, and b) your body’s fertility cycle is still on track, which is a pretty amazing thing that should be celebrated.

5. Embrace it.

The media sets a variety of standards regarding body image, including how your vagina is supposed to look. Ladies, embrace what you were blessed with! Vaginas come in all shapes, sizes, and colors, so ignore what the media says is beautiful, and start realizing that every vagina is beautiful

For more information regarding ways to practice safe sex, STD tests, and so much more, visit Planned Parenthood‘s amazing website. Stay happy and healthy, collegiettes!

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