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Heather Corinna Doesn’t Eat Man Soup

First things first. I am dancing. Right now I am doing a little dance. Yes, it makes typing hard. It helps that I have a little song to go along with my dance. The song is “I got to talk to Heaaaaather! I got to talk to Heaaaaaa-eh-eh-ther!” It’s bound to be a big hit on the iTunes.

If you don’t know who I am talking about, Heather Corinna who in our opinion ought to win an award in every category of award winning from best web site to cutest nose scrunching is the boss lady over at, a site that has been around since 1998 and contains a crapload of information about sexual health, relationships, and often the politics of teen sex.

The thing about Ms. Corrina that strikes me the most is that she may have a passion for what she does, but she’s one of the most pragmatically passionate people I have met. Even when things aren’t rosy and bright, she’s on top of her game. for example, Scarleteen is in desperate need of financial support and she’s still got a sense of humor about the teens she is doing outreach work with.

I asked her a few questions about her work and even her playtime. I would also very much like to try her stuffing. (Which is totally not a euphemism.) Take a look.

I am sure you have answered this a billion times, but why did you start Scarleteen? Was it personal?

Before I started Scarleteen, before I worked on the web at all (as well as during), I was a Montessori classroom educator. The way things work with the Montessori model is that we base what we teach (we Montessori-heads prefer “guide” though) and how on what a student either asks for, or what we observe they’re drawn to. And that’s basically the same way Scarleteen started and has been done since.

In 1998, I was operating the first adult women’s sexuality hub online (at, which has sat dusty since Scarleteen ate my life), and started getting sexuality questions in my email from teen women. I would have loved to refer them to a website just for them, but there wasn’t anything to send them to at the time. So, at first, I began just by posting and answering their questions, but they kept on coming. So, by the end of ‘98, I put up a subdomain on that same site for the teens and younger women.

A year after, we got the Scarleteen domain, a year after that, the message boards, and it grew very fast, and has kept on growing as I’ve raced to keep up with it, no easy task for a site with 25K in viewers every day and far more than a few question-askers. :)

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