Islander Feminists Guest Blog for Women's History Month

Posted: March 1, 2019 9:00:00 AM CST

In honor of Women’s History Month, the library is proud to host our first guest blogger, the Islander Feminists!

This student organization has been a very active voice on campus. Dedicated to establishing an inviting and engaging culture where feminism and feminist topics are identified, discussed, and encouraged, this team has participated and hosted a variety of events; each aiming to build relationships, celebrate feminist ideals, educate the campus community, and so much more. They have initiated petitions, supported cultural events on campus, and educated their fellow students on a wide-variety of topics.

-Library Staff


Everyone hears about sexually transmitted infections (STIs), but not everyone knows the reality behind them. At the Bird's and Bee's Sexual Health Expo, the University Health Center shared that seven people tested positive for gonorrhea or chlamydia on one STI testing day. People on our very own campus have STIs, yet many will turn a blind-eye to practicing safe sex because they think, “Oh, that will never happen to me.” That statistic should prove that sexually transmitted infections do exist, and anyone is able to get one. It also shows that our campus needs more education on safe sex and access to the items needed to be protected.

To start a conversation about safe sex on our campus, the Islander Feminists have been working on educational programming and improving accessibility to barrier methods. For the Bird's and Bee's event, they hosted a dental dam demonstration and handed them out to students. Dental Dams are used to practice safe oral sex. They are a large rectangle shape made of out smooth, stretchy material that is to be placed over the vagina or anus. They are for one-time use and come in a variety of flavors. While handing out dental dams and talking with students, it became apparent that many are not aware that these exist or that they are necessary. It’s important to remember that you can still contract an STI in your mouth, throat, and anus.

When thinking about safe sex, the first (and sometimes only) form of protection people can think of are external condoms, or male condoms. While these are extremely important, they aren't always the “best tool for the job” in all sexual situations. For example, those who engage in oral play would greatly benefit from such items like dental dams. People should also be aware that internal condoms, or female condoms, are another safe sex option. Further, as a reminder, while birth control pills are a form of pregnancy prevention, they do not prevent the transmission of STI’s.

How to Make a Dental Dam from a Condom Instructions 

The officers of the Islander Feminists went on a hunt in Corpus Christi to find dental dams and internal condoms to give students. Unfortunately, they found that these items are not easily accessible in our community. Luckily, there are two known clinics in our area that offer dental dams, the Women’s and Men’s Health Services and the Coastal Bend Wellness Foundation. Internal condoms, on the other hand, are more difficult to find. There are no known stores or clinics in our area that offer internal condoms. They can be purchased online but at a high price.

Our society is big on telling people to use external condoms to have safe sex; but, as previously mentioned, these do not prevent all forms of STI transmission. Which poses the question: how are people supposed to practice safe sex if they are not given the appropriate means to do so? Some people need access to things like dental dams or internal condoms in order to be protected.

Members of the Islander Feminists Team Hosting a Table at an Event

Acknowledging that, here’s a bonus tip: if you find yourself in need of a dental dam but do not have one, there is a DIY for dental dams using a condom. You can find this information (and more) by visiting the Dental Dam Use page produced by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, or on the Islander Feminists social media pages.

The Islander Feminists are hoping to gain more access to dental dams and hand them out to their fellow students on campus. They will be hosting a sex-education week in March during Women’s History Month with events like a condom race and pin-the-clit. The goal of these events is to educate students on how to engage in safe sex and discuss female sexual health, which is often avoided. For more information on these events visit the TAMUCC Women’s History Month page. Also, be sure to check out the Islander Feminists Instagram and Facebook @islanderfeminists and their Twitter @islanderfems for even more inclusive sexual health information.

Tori Foss, Islander Feminist Officer

 

By: Guest Blogger

Category: Things to Do