Boys and Young Men

Below are issues that boys and young men may face. To read a section, simply click on the links below to be taken straight to the section.


Thirteen - Emotional Health
Thirteen - Safe Sex
Thirteen - Child Sexual Exploitation
Thirteen - Consent
Thirteen - Gambling


Emotional Health

Emotional health is about the way we think and feel, and the ability to cope with difficult things in life. When we think about poor emotional health we usually think it only happens to girls but this isn't true, it happens to boys and young men too! If something happens and we feel low emotionally, getting back on track can be difficult.

Good emotional health is important for young people as they have to make choices about studying, careers and other areas of their lives. At the same time, young people are also developing greater independence and responsibilities, and experiencing changes in the way they think and feel. Many young people have strong coping strategies and are generally resilient to these challenges, but some will need additional help to develop resilience and stay emotionally health.

For information about emotional health click here



Safe Sex

Sex can be an embarrassing subject for anyone; but it shouldn't be. If your ready to have sex then you should be able to talk about it. Looking after your sexual health is down to you.

Whenever you have unprotected sex, there's a risk of your partner becoming pregnant or catching an STI (sexually transmitted infection). So it's important to look after your sexual health.

It's easy to get free contraception, either from your doctor or from sexual health services. These are places that give advice on sex, pregnancy, abortion and STIs and most of these services are free.

Remember, you should only have sex with someone if you feel ready. Don't let anyone pressure you to do something you don't want to.


Contraception can stop you getting pregnant or getting an STI. It can be embarrassing to talk about contraception, but it's really important to talk through your options. There are lots of places you can get contraception advice and contraceptives for free.


To keep you safe we need to talk condoms...

Male condoms are the most common type of condoms and are usually made of latex, a very thin type of rubber. Condoms stretch to fit over a penis and have to be put on when the penis is erect (stiff) to make sure it doesn't slip off or split during sex. A condom stops sperm from entering the vagina, mouth or anus (bottom).

You can also get female condoms. These work by fitting loosely inside the vagina and stopping sperm entering the womb.

3 things to know about condoms:

  1. You can get condoms for free from sexual health services. Or you can buy them from pharmacies and supermarkets.
  2. Most condom packets have an instruction leaflet to show you how to use them correctly.
  3. It can help to practice with different types and sizes to make sure you're using one that's comfortable and fits well.



Child Sexual Exploitation

[ Online Movie Watcher? ]

[ Social Media Junkie? ]

[ Online Gamer? ]

Are you worried that someone is contacting you and your friends? Grooming happens to boys and young men too!


What is Grooming?

Grooming is when someone convinces you or your family or carer that they are a safe and trustworthy person so they can sexually exploit you. This can happen to anyone.

Young people can be groomed online or face-to-face, by a stranger or by someone they know. Online groomers sometimes hide their identity and pretend to be the same age as you, so you fall into a false sense of security.

A groomer can make you feel like they are the only person who will listen to you, pay you compliments, show interest in you and make you feel grown up. They may do this by offering you a friendship, a relationship or by becoming your boyfriend or girlfriend. They may attempt to groom your parents or carer too, by becoming their friends as well.


Groomers can:

  • Be male or female
  • Be any age
  • Seem like your friend
  • Offer you things that others can’t, including compliments, someone you can trust and talk to
  • Provide gifts such as money, clothes, a mobile, a place to chill or crash
  • Ask you to lie and keep secrets
  • Distract you from your real friendships and relationships


How do they do it...

A person who grooms may spend a long time getting to know all the finer details about you, for example,

  • Making friends with you
  • Getting to know you and gathering information about your interests, such as music, gaming, the school you attend, your friendship circles and your family members
  • Offering advice to you about problems you may be having in your day to day life (this may not be good advice and may place you at more risk)
  • Giving you lots of positive attention and paying you compliments
  • Inviting you to parties or trips out
  • Offering you accommodation overnight, especially if you are having problems at home


How can you tell...

Here are some warning signs that someone may be grooming you:

  • Asking you to do things you wouldn’t normally do
  • Encouraging you not to tell anyone
  • Insisting that they meet up with you when they have only just met you
  • Travelling a long way from another area to meet up with you
  • Taking you to places that you are unfamiliar with (so you don’t know your way back)
  • Encouraging you to get involved in dares
  • Asking personal questions around your sexual identity
  • Introducing sexual terminology, sending and receiving sexual images
  • Encouraging you to break the law and covering for you when you commit a crime
  • Becoming controlling and possessive of situations and making you feel bad


I am worried this could be happening to me...


If you are a young male, you may find it difficult to accept you have been or are being groomed. You may feel embarrassed, ashamed, guilty, or scared; you don’t need to be any of these things! Remember you have done nothing wrong and there is lots of support available for you. Groomers often target a number of young people at the same time. There are other boys and young men experiencing similar things as you. If you think you may have been groomed or think you know someone who has been groomed, speak to someone you can trust. This may be a relative, friend, teacher, teaching assistant,Youth Worker, Youth Offending worker, Social Worker or a Volunteer.


Top Tips

Boys and young men are often targetted through social media platforms. Make sure that;

  • You only add or accept “friend” requests from people you know in person and not because they are a friend of a friend
  • Make sure that your profiles are kept private and your privacy settings are used, otherwise this makes you an easier target
  • Don’t share any information or images that you wouldn’t share with your nana
  • Make sure your location settings are restricted making it difficult for others to see where you are
  • Always let a parent, carer, or friend know where you are and who you are meeting



It’s important!

As uncomfortable as it may be, a conversation about consent is really important if you're going to initiate sexual activity. It's important to make sure you're BOTH on the same page and you are BOTH ready. Remember if you're not ready to talk about consent then you're probably not ready to have sex. It's about respecting each other, Simples!

We need to talk about consent because sexual violence affects young people more than any other age groups. It’s a scary statistic and no one wants to be victim of sexual violence – or an aggressor. Most assaults don’t happen the way you may think, involving some deranged stranger. In most cases the victim and the perpetrator know each other. Assault is more than just extreme force; it isn’t always rape. Assault can include any unwanted sexual touching.

Assault is more than just extreme force and it isn’t always rape. Assault can include any unwanted sexual touching. Most young people think consent is complicated. It really doesn't have to be! Lets think cats.... “If the cat doesn’t want you to pet it, you don’t pet it. This is the same as sexual activity if your partner doesn't want it; don't do it".




What do young people gamble on?

Young people take part in all forms of gambling. The most common types for young people between 11 and 16 are the lottery, scratchcards and slot machines, and making bets or playing cards with friends, with either cash or other items at stake.

Can young people have gambling problems?

Anyone, of any age, can experience problems with controlling their gambling behaviour. For young people, the impact of the problem may seem trivial – there is no job, mortgage or family to lose. However, gambling problems are experienced by around 2% of people aged 11 to 15, which equates to around 60,000 young people in Britain. Problem gambling is associated with educational problems such as low attendance and truancy and can lead to emotional, social and behavioural problems. Worryingly, those who begin their gambling careers earlier in life are more likely to be problem gamblers in adulthood.




Youth and Family Support, East Riding -

Help for Children and Young People 0800 1111

CEOP - Think you Know -

Young People's Sexual Health in Hull and the East Riding -

MESMAC- The BLAST project just for boys -

Local Campaign around Child Sexual Exploitation -

National Gambling Helpline on 0808 8020 133.