Mother’s Day is that one day of the year where mothers endure a range of gifts chosen or made by over-enthusiastic kids or sheepish partners who left it til the last minute to hit the shops and grabbed something wildly inappropriate in their panic. Sometimes, the gifts have thought behind them but don’t exactly hit the present thrill-o-meter. Like the time my Mum complained about the iron, so Dad considerately gifted her a new one. He almost wore it in a very uncomfortable place.

It seems like a gift guide of what NOT to give might be helpful to the gift-giving-challenged among us.

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Sex is an amazing part of life. Some people say otherwise, but in reality, these days sex is primarily about pleasure and enjoyment. I think most young people figure that out fairly quickly, so there’s no need to hide it. Sex can be part of a powerful connection to another person. It can heighten emotions and feelings of intimacy. Conversely, it can be something shared between relative strangers. Something exciting and new and maybe never to be repeated.

When you are young men, out in the world, it’s only natural that sex will be something you seek. You might chase it quietly, wanting the love and affection that comes with it in a committed relationship. Perhaps you will pursue it with an appetite, wanting to experience all the variety that life can offer you in this area. You might hold out for that special someone or you might have two dozen someones come into your life at various times, all special in their own way. Whichever way you decide to run your sex life is fine by me, but there are things you should know.

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I was 12 when I got my first period. I was well-prepared. By that, I mean that I had sent away all the coupons in my Dolly and Girlfriend magazines to get free samples of all the pads and the kind of tampons that came in what appeared to be a cardboard launching tube; what a marvel of engineering that thing was. I had also been to the vague and mysterious talk that all the girls at school went to (no boys allowed), given by the school nurse. Periods, until the age of 10 or so, had been a complete mystery to me.

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