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Chomi Chat: Confessions of a rookie dater: How I learned the ropes!

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Hey sis! I’m Lerato - a newbie dater, dipping my toes into the wild wild sea of umjolo! LOL I follow my heart and I know one day I’ll find my Mr Right. But sis, let me tell you something, my journey hasn't been all roses and sunshine. Oh no, sis, I had my fair share of facepalm moments.

One time, I met this really cute guy from school, yho we were vibing. He was so kind, gentle and supportive - sana I was a gone gal. So we got to the talking stage, sparks were flying left, right and centre.

A few months later we decided to make it official, and had sex for the first time, and things went from zero to 100. I must admit, we didn't use any protection.

Yho! Lerato, what were you thinking, girl? you might be asking yourself.

After the rush of emotions settled, reality hit me like a ton of bricks. Yho, like I’m not ready to be a mom yet, what if things don’t work out between me and my boo, I still want to have fun and enjoy my youth without having to worry about taking care of a baby. But it wasn't just about that sis, I also started to think about the risks involved with having an STI like miscarriage, infertility, and premature birth when I did decide to have a baby in the future.

I had heard about STIs and emergency contraceptives, and I knew I had to take action, fast.

We gotta keep our bodies healthy and our hearts happy - angisho gals??

So I went to my nearby clinic. I had to wait in a long line as it was pretty full by the time we got there and yho I was so scared that the nurses would judge me but I remembered something my chomi told me, that I had the right to get the help that I needed.

EMERGENCY CONTRACEPTIVES

The nurse, sis’ Thandi was so kind, she made me feel at home and gave me the 411 about ama-options like the "morning after pill", "Plan B", or even the IUD. But don't worry, they're all emergency contraception. It's got different names, but the message is clear: it's a safe and effective way to avoid pregnancy when you need it most.

I decided to take the morning-after pill and she explained that I have to take it soon (like within 72 hours) after having unprotected sex or a contraceptive oopsie. And what I really liked is that it is available for free at many nearby clinics. That means no breaking the bank to protect yourself!

But sis, if you need help or just want to explore your options, you can always call our Big Sis helpline on 0800 12 84 55 (Monday to Friday 7 - 7, Saturdays 8.30 - 12.30) and we’ll put you in touch with a service that can help you!

Remember, queen, your body, your choice.

I gotchu sis!

Lerato