I was in 10th grade when one of the smartest girls I knew, B, cautiously revealed to a small group of friends at lunch that she had taken a pregnancy test over the weekend in one of the various big box stores of our rust belt hometown.

Poor B. Having to do that weird pee hover move in a retail store restroom while fearing for her young promising life because she had…wait for it… given someone a blowjob and swallowed. Now, the receiver of said blowie didn’t think it was possible but urged her to take a test or two that day. Her cousin didn’t know either but suggested that maybe they could go to that clinic on Market Street (you know- the one with all the old men posted up, drinking coffee next to 7 ft tall pictures of aborted fetuses) to get an abortion for her just. in. case. They settled for a trip to see to the boys in blue (vests, that is), pissed one horizontal line (NOT PREGNANT, B) and the rest is sex education failure history!  B went on to be a badass woman of STEM so I’m sure she finally got the reproductive education she deserved. B’s story has stuck with me and has been on my mind a lot while we worked on this month’s coverage. It's a funny story but also a tragic one worthy of reflection. One that highlights that even the “smart girl” doesn’t easily come into knowing about sex without difficulty. This September, we’re going to explore all the nooks and crannies of sex ed and why it’s so important to being a safe and healthy adult.

We want to talk about more than the ol’ bananas and condoms show that your 9th grade health teacher put on or the talk you may or may not have been lucky (unlucky?) enough to have with your parents. We’re talking about the whole picture- from the moment you became aware of sex to where you are today and every lesson, memory, warning, operation or old wives tale in between. We all still have so much we can learn about sex and there is so much we can learn from each other.

We have so many fun things in store for this month and enough cannot be said about the amazing women we’ve worked with. From the dreamy sex ed graphics by designer, Anna Sudit to telling the stories of our readers’ sexual awakening with help from illustrator Grace Miceli aka @artbabygrace. We'll explore modern sex ed programs and how to educate your partner on your own personal pleasure. We'll hear from a trans woman as she explores the world of sex toys for the first time post gender affirmation surgery (also known as sex reassignment surgery) and we'll share so many stories we heard from readers about their sexual awakening experiences. Time to hit the books, babes! We can’t wait to share it with you.

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