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Self-Taught: Former Foster Youth on Sex, Health, and Life
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Self-Taught: Former Foster Youth on Sex, Health, and Life

Author: National Center for Youth Law

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Welcome to Self-Taught: Former Foster Youth on Sex, Health, and Life, a podcast from foster youth, for foster youth, with unfiltered conversations about about puberty, relationships, sexual health, identity, and much more that we wish were part of our upbringing. When you are in foster care, there aren’t always people to answer the big questions or to make it easy to open up about sensitive stuff. That’s why we’re bringing these conversations to you. We hope these episodes spark questions and provide resources —for you,— to find answers, feel empowered, and have community. Self-Taught: Former Foster Youth on Sex, Health, and Life is hosted by the youth advisory board of the Reproductive Health Equity Project at the National Center for Youth Law and supported through agrant to the National Center for Youth Law from the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation. Please like and subscribe to our podcast to get future episodes. Learn more about the podcast and the Reproductive Health Equity Project at www.fosterreprohealth.org. ©National center for Youth Law
13 Episodes
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Send us a Text Message.Kat, Elyzabeth, Alexis, and Esme talk about the unique challenges (former) foster youth face when accessing the mental healthcare services they need. Esme, Community Policy Associate, Mental Health Team at National Center for Youth Law, points to key resources that you might find useful, drawn from “A Young Person’s Guide to Accessing Affordable Mental Health Care.” Guests share their stories, including the little and big ways that they take care of themselves. As alway...
Send us a Text Message.RHEP Youth Advisory Board members Tamar, Phillisha, and Cody discuss abortion care in this open, unflinchingly honest episode. They share what went into their own decisions when they were pregnant, expand on different kinds of abortion (medication or procedural), explain how to weigh your options, lean on supportive people & more. Alex Morse, Planned Parenthood Community Health Educator, joins the conversation and gives accurate, easy-to-understand abortion ca...
Send us a Text Message.What should foster youth expect from pregnancy and prenatal care? Kat, Cody, Phillisha and Sarah talk about getting the care you need leading up to birth, which is known as prenatal care. They dive into getting the support you need from the medical system, building your own support system, and exploring the parts of pregnancy or starting a family that people who have been in foster care might experience differently. Plus, they share helpful pre and post-natal...
Send us a Text Message.Let’s talk about how to stay safe and prevent sexually transmitted infections (STIs), also known as sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). We discuss methods for safe sex, relatable accounts of what it’s like to navigate the healthcare system with an STI, shaking off stigma, being open and feeling safe with partners, and more. Tamar and Cody of RHEP’s Youth Advisory Board are joined by Lonnell Schuler, Black Women for Wellness, program lead for Get Smart B4U Get Sex...
Send us a Text Message.How do hormonal and non-hormonal birth control methods work? How can you properly use birth control? As a young person in the foster care system, how can you advocate for yourself? The good news is there is no one-size-fits-all approach. It’s all about what works best for you. Kat and Brandy of RHEP’s Youth Advisory Board talk about their personal experiences with birth control and provide an overview of the variety of birth control methods available. Content...
Send us a Text Message.Did you know that there is a Foster Youth Bill of Rights? These rights ensure that foster youth have the opportunity to get the healthcare they need and deserve— including sexual & reproductive services.Tamar and Alexis of RHEP’s Youth Advisory Board sit down with Rebecca Gudeman, a lawyer and the Senior Director of Health at the National Center for Youth Law (NCYL), to highlight many of these rights for youth in California and to talk about what often gets in the w...
Reparenting

Reparenting

2023-04-0328:32

Send us a Text Message.Phillisha and Tamar are all-star moms who happen to be former foster youth as well. Hear how they each actively sought to reparent themselves - filling in gaps from their own development - in order to be the best parent for their child. Plus, they share how their upbringing taught them some do’s and don’ts now that they’re in the parent role. Guests: Phillisha (she/her), former foster youth, RHEP Youth Advisory Board memberTamar (she/her), former foster youth, RHEP...
Send us a Text Message.Fitting in, being yourself, belonging… no matter what you call it, it’s hard to not feel like an outsider when you’re in foster care. Add to that Alexis’ experience being multiracial and coming from a background not often associated with the foster care system, and there’s a lot to navigate as a young person. Kat and Alexis talk about how they have found a sense of belonging throughout various parts of their lives. Guest: Alexis (she/her), former foster youth, RHEP...
Consent

Consent

2023-03-0633:59

Send us a Text Message.Tamar and Kat dig into consent as an important component of any healthy relationship - not just sexual ones. Join them to explore crucial questions like: What does a healthy relationship look like with a partner? How do you spot unhealthy relationships with peers or adults when you’re a youth in foster care? How can you be your own best advocate? No tiptoeing around it, Tamar and Kat share their experiences navigating these questions and more. Guest: Tamar (she/her), fo...
Finding Myself

Finding Myself

2022-11-0431:17

Send us a Text Message.Daniel doesn’t sugarcoat anything in this discussion about hiding certain parts of himself while he was in foster care, and becoming more of his full self each day now that he is an adult. He shares why he didn’t feel comfortable coming out as gay when he was growing up, what motivates him to be an advocate for the gay community now, and what he means by bringing “me and all of my selves.” Guest: Daniel (he/him) former foster youth, RHEP Youth Advisory Board member, Adv...
Send us a Text Message.What’s it like as a non-binary teen to be in a group home structured for boys and girls? Emilio talks about their intersectional identity, including being non-binary and neuro-divergent. Hear how they found allies in the court system as well as advice for youth who don’t fit into the structures around them. Guest: Emilio (they/their) former foster youth, RHEP Youth Advisory Board memberContent warning: This episode touches on topics that may be upsetting ortrigger...
Send us a Text Message.Kat and Phillisha get personal about having “the talk,” puberty, birth control, and finding the right doctor while growing up in foster care. With shoutouts to Planned Parenthood, Teen Talk, and an above-and-beyond doctor, they share stories and lessons learned along the way to adulthood.Guest: Phillisha (she/her) former foster youth, RHEP Youth Advisory Board memberContent warning: This episode touches on topics that may be upsetting ortriggering for some listeners, in...
Send us a Text Message.Kat, Phillisha, Cody, and Sarah share stories and tips about the ups and downs they faced when accessing prenatal care (medical care for someone who is pregnant or planning to become pregnant). The team talks about little-discussed topics— like caring for yourself after the baby is born and struggling with postpartum depression as a young parent. We created this bonus episode just for you and all the expectant and parenting youth in need of relatable, informative i...
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