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03rd Oct 2018

‘Having a period isn’t a crime’ Youth group want Irish LGBT teens to open up about sexual health

Jade Hayden

An Irish youth group are trying to break down the stigma associated with sexual health and young people in the LGBT community.

BeLonG To’s ‘The Ladybirds’ want to start a conversation among young lesbian, bisexual, and transgender women and non-binary people about the importance of sex education that doesn’t discriminate against gender identity or sexual orientation.

The group, aged between 14 and 23, have created a series of videos tackling many issues such as consent, periods, and sexuality.

One of the videos depicts a group of students immediately disappearing from a room when the subject of uteruses and the menstrual cycle arises.

Another shows a couple of teenagers caught on CCTV exchanging a period pad.

The pair are then interrogated about what they were doing before a voiceover declares that having a period isn’t, in fact, a crime.

The group say that sexual health for lesbian, bisexual and trans women is rarely discussed, with sex education classes in Ireland tending to focus on topics applicable to straight women and girls.

BeLonG To’s executive director Moninne Griffith says that The Ladybirds are helping to “break the silence” around the often taboo issues.

She said:

“This is just the start of the conversation around the sexual health of LBT (lesbian, bisexual, transgender) girls and women.

“Help us continue it by sharing these videos online. Let’s break the silence around sex and sexual health for LBT women and their non-binary friends.”

The Ladybirds meet every second Thursday in BeLonG To’s offices in Dublin.

You can find out more about the group, and the services they offer, here.