What are my rights in regard to sexuality?

Your rights in regard to sexuality are derived from human rights. Human rights have been signed by most countries of the world. Germany has signed them too and must respect these rights.

The right to make your own decisions about sex

You have the right to make your own decisions about your sexuality. This means that you also decide for yourself whether and how you want to live out your sexuality.

All sexual acts - regardless of the age at which they're carried out - must be voluntary; this means that no one can force you into carrying out sexual acts.

You are free to choose your partner.

No one is allowed to discriminate against you or attack you because of your sexuality.

The right to equal treatment

In Germany, everyone has the right to be treated equally. No one is allowed to discriminate against you because of your gender, origin, religion, world view, age, state of health (e.g. HIV positive, physically/mentally disabled) or sexual orientation.

The right to marry or not to marry

You have the right to decide for yourself whether you want to marry, whom you want to marry and when you want to marry. No one is allowed to force you to marry a particular person. You can also decide that you do not want to marry.

If you are married and no longer want to be, you can get divorced.

The right to family planning

You can decide for yourself how many children you want to have with your partner. No one is allowed to force you to have children. Ideally, you and your partner will talk about it and decide together.  

The right to be informed about contraceptives and to use them

Condom

You have the right to be informed about contraceptives. Children and young people get information about contraceptives through sex education at school, for example. Adults can get information from counselling centres or doctors. Moreover, the German Federal Centre for Health Education (BZgA) offers brochures and online resources on the subject.

You can decide for yourself whether or not you want to use contraception. Ideally, you and your partner will talk about it and decide together.

Rights for girls and women in the event of an unwanted pregnancy

In Germany, girls and women have the possibility of terminating an unwanted pregnancy in the first twelve weeks. This is not punishable. However, there are legal requirements which must be observed for an abortion

Counselling and support are also available after the abortion.

Forcing girls and women into terminating a pregnancy is not allowed.

The right to be protected from sexual violence

You alone are in charge of your body and you alone decide who can touch you and who cannot. This also means that you alone decide whether or not a family member or people you know can touch you. If someone touches you against your will or forces you into carrying out sexual acts, this is sexual abuse. Talk to someone you trust about this.

If you do not know whom you can talk to, go to a counselling centre. Girls, women, boys and men can all be affected by sexual violence.

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