Social distancing can be rough on your sex life.
Whether you're in a long-term relationship, starting something new, or just looking to keep it casual, here are four tips on how to navigate love in the time of COVID-19.
1. Practice safe sex.
COVID-19 or not, we should all practice safe, consensual sex -- every time. Be sure to use protection to avoid unwanted pregnancy and to take precautions against STIs. If you need birth control, we can help -- and you might not even have to come into a health center to get it (more below).
Here are some suggestions for staying safe in these uncertain times:
Exercise caution with someone new. People can have COVID-19 without knowing it or showing any signs. That means we should all stay away from large gatherings and keep 6 feet between you and all other people when possible. Social distancing is hard, but necessary if we want to successfully “flatten the curve.”
Reconsider one-night stands. Instead try virtual sex, phone sex, or sexting. It’s a safe, fun way to keep social distance.
Avoid kissing. Even though kissing is great, it’s an easy way to spread COVID-19 because the virus is spread by droplet. Try creating more intimacy by trading compliments instead.
Masturbation is not a dirty word! It’s safe, healthy, and a good way to get to know your body.
Go on a virtual date. Jump on google hangouts and watch a movie, share a meal, play a video game or virtual board game, or listen to an album or playlist with that special someone.
Finally, since we’re all stuck inside, if you want to become pregnant, call PPIL at 1-800-230-7526 to discuss your options.
2. Discover our telehealth services, like Planned Parenthood Direct
Planned Parenthood Direct lets you order your birth control, get refills, get treatment for UTI, or answer questions you may have. The app is free to download, but there is a $25 visit fee for those who are eligible for online services.
PPIL nurse practitioners and social workers are also available for phone consultations for birth control prescription extensions, recurrent vaginal infection treatment, UTI treatment, and continuation of Gender Affirming Hormone Therapy. Give us a ring at 1-800-230-7526.
3. Planned Parenthood is here for needed care.
Even though these are difficult days, our physical and virtual doors remain open for essential care. We are prioritizing the most critical appointments and asking patients who do not need immediate care to utilize our telehealth services or postpone their appointments.
You can still get abortion care, and other urgent issues at 6 health centers across the state:
We are also staggering appointment times to allow for social distancing in our waiting rooms. And we have strengthened and increased the frequency of our disinfecting and cleaning practices at our health centers.
4. Take care of yourself.
Finally, it’s important to remember to take care of yourself. Take a walk, enjoy family time, meet up with friends virtually, or enjoy some fun, safe sex. Enjoying things that make you happy can go a long way while we all figure out how to navigate this new normal.
For the latest updates on PPIL’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, or for additional information, please visit www.ppil.org.