Let's talk about sex: when's the right time for the first time?
You can make your own rules on when to have sex with a new partner. Your rules may be very different from what the experts are suggesting. It’s about what you and your partner need in order to have sex and understanding about how the differences in men and women play a role. When you both have what you need, it is time to have sex.
Unfortunately, the gap in understanding between men and women leads us to believe that we both need the same things to have sex. Making this assumption is where things can get messy.
There is not a one-size-fits-all solution. This three step process of questions to ask yourself will empower you to make your own personal rules on when to have sex with a new partner.
3 Steps to Make Your Own Personal Rules on When to Have Sex with a New Partner
Step 1: What does this sexual encounter mean to you?
- It's a casual encounter and you have zero expectations after it is over.
- You are exclusive and now in a relationship.
- This means you are in love.
- This means you should be getting married.
Step 2: What do you expect from your partner before, during and after the sex?
Make sure you consider the following:
- You have discussed safe sex and the possibility of pregnancy/prevention.
- You are comfortable enough to set boundaries about what you will and will not provide for your partner.
- You know what you need after sex and can ask for it. For example: sleep together and snuggle, say goodbye and not sleep together, receive a text the next day, never to talk again, go out to breakfast or that you are now boyfriend/girlfriend.
Step 3: Have you considered if you are ready to handle the hormonal side effects of sex?
- Men: Are you ready for this woman to become bonded to you and do you know that you can provide her with what she needs? Are you willing to be aware that you will likely naturally pull away and this will likely be in conflict with what she needs?
- Women: Are you ready to be more bonded to this man? Are you ready for him to pull away and that this may be in conflict with what you need?
The differences between how men and women respond to hormonal effects of sex and sexual bonding are tricky and can cause us to feel very different after sex than we had planned. These differences are also different depending on our stage in life. For more information on this check out our post on how your DNA plays a role in when to have sex.
Congratulations! After this three step process, you've just come up with your own personal rules for when to have sex.
The next step is to have the conversation with your partner.
Do not have sex without being upfront about what it means. Make sure your partner has the chance to think about what you say and agree to what you can provide and what you need. They also need the space to decide what having sex means to them and if your mutual needs are a fit.
Caution: If you're having this conversation in the heat of the moment, you are likely to agree to things for which you cannot be accountable. This can blow up! Men and women can get really burned if the other partner can’t hold up their end of the agreement.
There is a reason that so many relationship experts suggest to women that they withhold sex for a really long time. It’s because many men have agreed to a woman’s needs in the heat of the moment and then not delivered. He thought they were cool because he was cool. She needed more and waiting a while can help sometimes. But sometimes waiting a while is not right for a couple and stands in the way of the development of the relationship.
There is no rule that everyone should follow. But it's important for you to know that you are going to get what you need if you do have sex with someone.
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This article was originally published at Claudette & Shelley. Reprinted with permission from the author.