A woman who had an abortion when she was a teen recently said, “All of this social media hate-talk about women who chose abortion has triggered my self-condemnation again. They don’t know my story…why I thought I had no other option”.
Do these words sounds familiar? Are you or a friend triggered by the shaming of others?
There is so much in the media today with lawmakers debating about abortion. People are talking about the recent popular movie, Unplanned, that highlighted the truth about abortion procedures inside clinics.
We can’t escape the topic.
For many years, you may have stuffed away those memories of your past. All the details may now surface and your anxiety heightens. Now, what do you do? You have a choice.
Work extra hard to run from the thoughts and feelings.
Allow the emotions to come, and contact someone who understands and cares.
Fear of rejection and shame may have kept you silent for years, but there are safe and caring women who will embrace you.
Your secret is safe within a Hearts Restored support group. Everyone shares the same secret and commits to confidentiality for each other.
The “me too” about abortion can be a welcoming sound. You know you aren’t alone. You know someone gets what you are going through.
Contact Sue Ketchum by phone at 812.567.3150 or by email about the next Healing After Abortion support group.
Men need healing, too. Contact Don Stuart by phone at 812.720.0802 or by email to meet one-on-one.
**Due to the current COVID-19 restrictions, Hearts Restored group studies are not meeting in person at this time. Please contact Sue at 812.567.3150 to learn about connecting with an online support person or group.
Clarity is a non-profit organization completely funded by local individuals, businesses and churches who support our mission to compassionately engage, educate and inspire our communities with the truth regarding holistic sexual health and the value of human life. One of the many services offered by Clarity is material assistance, some of which is donated by our supporters. This is just one way our supporters can become involved in the work of Clarity!
Donations we do accept:
Maternity clothes (new or gently used)
Diapers, pull ups
Baby Food and Formula (not expired or opened)
Strollers (new or gently used)
Baby clothes (summer & winter, new or gently used)
Small gifts for Mom to place in Baby-Shower-in-a-Bag (new)
Socks and Shoes (new or gently used)
Pack n Play sheets
We do not accept:
Cribs (New or used)
Used Car seats
Tylenol, vitamins or other medications
Used stuffed animals or any stuffed animal with a potential choking hazard
Lavender fragranced wash and lotion
The above items are not accepted as they potentially present liability issues and for some items, safety issues. We want to use caution as we share what is donated to us.
Clarity has the opportunity to share many items with our clients because of the generosity of our communities and donors. In 2018, we were able to share 4,144 items with our clients throughout our six counties. (One dozen diapers would count as one item, as well as multiples of clothing would be one, but actually may be 10 pieces.)
If you are in your twenties and feel like you have should have it all together but don’t, you’re not alone. Learning to navigate through young adulthood is exciting and freeing, but can be absolutely terrifying at the same time. The latter is especially true if you don’t have that perfect job lined up, your relationship is not going where you intended it to go, or you’re feeling the weight of the world on your shoulders from the sudden influx of responsibilities that just got thrown your way.
When we’re young, we imagine what our lives will look like when we’re adults, but when that vision doesn’t play out the way we intended, it can be way too easy to fall into a season of depression or complacency. An important nugget of hope to always remember if you may be feeling this way: it will all work out. Maybe not the way you envisioned when you were younger, maybe not the way you would particularly like and maybe not without a few bumps or uphill battles along the way, but everything will work out in the way that it is supposed to. Hopefully you can find a little solace in that.
A few things to consider when you’re feeling down about the direction of your life at the moment, or if you’re looking at the future with uncertainty:
Be grateful for how far you’ve come. You were made for such a time as this and where you are is exactly where you are meant to be at this very point in time. Just think of all the obstacles and struggles you have been through to get to where you are, and remember YOU did that! No one else survived those storms in your life that once felt impossible. If you can overcome your past tribulations, you will survive the place your life is in now.
Enjoy the moment you’re in. It’s so easy to become instantly overwhelmed when thinking about all the missed opportunities or things that didn’t work out. Instead of allowing those looming thoughts to dampen your mood, turn your thoughts to the place you’re in and savor every moment. Chances are, you won’t always be in this stage of life, so don’t waste it by waiting on the next stage to get here. In every situation you find yourself, set aside a moment to fully take it in, enjoy it and create memories that remind you of the GOOD that came out of this pitstop on the road to your future self.
Talk to someone you trust. Regardless of what circumstances you’re in, speaking to someone you trust can make tough situations seem a little more do-able. Maybe he/she has been through what you are currently going through or maybe just a good listener. Either way, sometimes all we need is a listening ear or shoulder to lean on. A little word of encouragement or just the ability to share our heart is all that is needed to help us see our lives through a different lens and change our attitude about current circumstances.
You’ve recently met someone new and ended up engaging in sexual activity before you could get up the courage to suggest that you each get tested for sexually transmitted infections. If that weren’t a big enough lapse in judgment, you also forgot about the condom. A couple, slightly nerve-wracking weeks pass and you begin to experience the dreaded sensation of pain associated with a bump in the genital area. Fear and panic come crashing in like a tidal wave. You think to yourself, “This can’t be happening to me!” You wonder what to do now. Should you just ignore it and hope it goes away? Should you look online and try recommended treatments for herpes? Should you get tested?
Now, our recommendation to you is: Take a deep breath. You’ll get through this and we are here to help.
If you are experiencing something unusual in the genital area after an encounter of unprotected or protected sex, especially with a new partner, getting sexually transmitted infection (STI) testing is the best thing to do for a few reasons:
Peace of mind
Many times individuals are worried about what they might find out if they get tested. While it is true that sometimes a person’s worst fears are realized, it is also true that the visit might bring good news…no infections and nothing to be concerned about. Often, even when the news is not good, there is a sense of relief that at least the anguish of not knowing is gone. It is not uncommon for our minds to play tricks on us. When we are so worried about a possible diagnosis, it is easy to mistake normal bumps for bumps that result from an STI. It happens all the time. Allowing a health professional to perform an exam and collect specimens from any sore or a blood draw can actually bring clarity to your situation that many times also brings a reduction in anxiety.
Accuracy of results
If you are experiencing a sore that is caused by the herpes virus, the sooner that sore is swabbed for testing, the greater the chance of getting a good result. Testing the lesion directly is the best way to know if it was caused by the herpes virus. As the sore heals, obtaining enough material from the sore may be difficult and the reliability of the test goes down. Once that lesion or lesions are healed, it is difficult to know what caused that particular outbreak and it is unpredictable when another outbreak will occur. A blood test can identify if you have been exposed to the herpes virus, but cannot tell you when you were exposed or where on your body your infection is located, oral area or genital area. If a blood test is negative for herpes, it is wise to retest in three months to give the body adequate time to produce the antibodies that the test is designed to identify. If the repeat test comes back positive, then it is probable that it is a recent infection.
If your worst fears are realized and you are diagnosed with genital herpes or genital warts, the good news is that you are able to limit the spread to others. Often times something like herpes or HPV genital warts are transmitted to others when one doesn’t even know they are infected. Many are horrified of the idea of passing on an STI, as if they were being irresponsible or malicious. The truth is, you can’t fault someone for passing on an infection if they didn’t even know they had it. However, it is even better to know your status and eliminate the risk of passing anything on to your partner.
Education and Clarity about future options
It is not uncommon for a concern about a painful bump to be the reason for a person’s first visit for STI testing. That visit can help bring understanding of the risk involved in sexual activity that isn’t always presented in the steamy narratives of movies and music. Learning steps to take to reduce or eliminate one’s risk for an STI is provided to help you move forward in being the healthiest version of you.
If you would like more information about a genital herpes infection, read here. If you want more information about genital warts, read here.
Clarity Testing Clinic specializes in the testing and treatment of STIs. In addition to excellent medical care, our medical professionals provide a listening ear and positive guidance to those in need of STI testing and treatment. Patients are made aware of the possibilities available to them and helped to find a path that doesn’t lead back to the testing clinic. Make an appointment today by visiting our Appointment Page (put in link) or calling 812-418-3230.
So, you asked your date out and now you’re thinking….. “What on earth can we do on a low- or NO-budget?!” In a world of “prom-posals” and over-the-top destination dates, what is a young person to do?
The truth is, with a little effort, you can find a lot of budget-friendly options that you and your date will enjoy. Check out these easy date ideas that won’t break the bank while allowing you to have a great time and get to know your date in a no-pressure kind of way.
Check out your local bike sharing station. You can rent bikes and return them at any number of vending locations. This is a great way to see your neighborhood differently. Or take a drive to a nearby city and use theirs!
Make it a group date to the local thrift store – call out a 90’s theme with a $10 maximum. Everyone finds an outfit and then you wear them to go bowling together!
Play a Monopoly game until someone wins. Play music (not TV) in the background. You’ll have fun conversations and learn a lot about your date’ business sense while doing it.
Look up the events calendar of your local paper for free events like art shows, block parties, and festivals that you can go to together.
Take a community education class together. It can be fun to decide this together, and a great way to learn each other’s interests.
On a windy day, buy kids kites from a discount store and fly them in the park.
If you have grandparents nearby, go on a double date with them to an ice cream parlor. Get some ice cream and ask how they met and what dating was like in their day.
Now, once you are on your date, what will you talk about? Below are a few conversation starters you can use if you get stuck with nothing to say:
What fictional character most resembles yourself, and why?
What cheesy song do you have memorized?
If you could have dinner with anyone (dead or alive) who would it be, and why?
What is the best gift you have ever received, and why?
Giant house in a subdivision or tiny house somewhere with a view?
The bottom line is, you don’t have to break the bank to go on a date, and don’t stress yourself out over what to do. Find something fun and just enjoy getting to know one another. And, realize that sometimes a date may not go according to plans… you planned to fly kites, but as soon as you got out in the open field, it started pouring rain? Ask your date to dance in the rain! Life is short; find joy in the small and big things. Dance, laugh and have a great date!