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Sexual Health & Young Adults on Campus

Sexual Health & Young Adults on Campus


Recently, Sexologist Kelly McDonnell-Arnold invited me on her Rogers TV Talk Show, “Sex Talk with Kelly.” (Airing Wednesday’s at 10:30 pm, on Rogers Cable Network, check it out!) Our goal was to start a conversation around how parents might approach sexual health topics with their adult children on campus. Apparently there’s much to say on that topic, and those 7 minutes really flew by! We felt it was important to encourage healthy sexual attitudes while also keeping safety in mind. Here are a few suggestions on how to continue the conversation, as well as links to some excellent online resources.

What should parents know?

1 in 5 female students will be sexually assaulted while attending university (CFOSO, 2015). What I want to highlight even further, is that for those 1 in 5 woman – it’s likely the assault will be done by someone they know. Keep in mind that females aren’t the only ones at risk to be sexually assaulted. Everyone deserves to feel safe on campus while exploring their sexuality.

What can parents do?

Open the door for conversation. Use media and current events as conversation starters. Encourage them to talk about safety and sexual health with their peers. Are they going to party? Encourage them to talk about safety planning with their roommates before they head out for the evening. Young people are creative and they’ll make a plan that suits them best.

What could parents say?       

“I wrote down a list of all the sexual health resources on campus and I left it on your desk along with some condoms. Remember, sex should be fun but it should also always feel safe.”

This is a BIG topic, so don’t feel like you have to communicate everything about sexual health all in one conversation. Simply being a resource, or linking your children to appropriate resources is a great place to start.


Written by Bliss therapist Jenna Luelo. Learn more about Jenna and get her secret “Tips From the Couch” here.

We are thrilled that you’ve found your way to our Bliss Blog, and hope that Jenna’s article has helped you as either a parent or student, prepare for a safe experience on campus! Check out the resources that Jenna recommends below!


Resource Links:

Sex and U: https://www.sexandu.ca

Sexual Assault Center: http://sacha.ca/resources/statistics

Local Sexual Health Campus Contacts:

University of Waterloo: https://uwaterloo.ca/campus-wellness/blog/post/sexual-health-resources-or-near-campus

Wilfrid Laurier University: https://students.wlu.ca/wellness-and-recreation/health-and-wellness/self-help-resources.html

Conestoga College: https://www.conestogac.on.ca/medical-care-clinic/education/sexuality


Canadian Federation of Students-Ontario [CFOSO]. (2015). Sexual Violence on Campus. Retrieved from: http://cfsontario.ca/wpcontent/uploads/2017/07/Factsheet-SexualAssault.pdf


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