Dating? 6 Signs You Are Ready For Sex

Cute couple

As people are dating past their 30s and 40s, they may rethink what seemed natural when they were younger.  We know there is an increase in AIDS and STDs among older people.  I remember while dating in the '80s after my divorce, I felt okay about my sexual behavior.  I was clear then, and clear now, that I didn't want to be sexual unless I felt camaraderie, easy and open communication and the possibility of a long term relationship (which for many years meant 3 to 6 months for me).

These days, whether I answer or respond to men on OkCupid, Plenty Of Fish or Craiglist, I still want those three things.  If you are new (again) to the dating game, here are six signs you are or may be ready for sex.

1. You genuinely like the person you are dating. Also, you would be comfortable introducing him or her to your good friends (of course, that is not required but it is a good indicator).  If  have any concerns and a friend says, "What a fine man he is!" I can usually keep from dropping him or jumping into bed with him until I've given our time together more room to grow wherever it will go. Check out my article A Man I'd Like To Love.

2. You have open discussions about sex. Whenever the subject of sex comes up, you discuss your feelings and considerations and preferences.  For instance, when "L." suggested sex after two dates lasting a total of 15 hours, I already saw him as a possible "long term" partner. "Let's see how comfortable we feel after we've cuddled a bit," I said.  We were comfortable.  A week later, he emailed me saying there wasn't enough of a spark. Because we'd been very open, I was surprised but not dismayed.  A month later, to my amazement, he invited me to join him in an erotic massage class, which was a different experience because though we practiced what the leader had demonstrated, we knew we weren't a couple.  You might Google "erotic massage" for some examples of what you may not have thought of before either.

3. You have already shown affection toward each other.  A third signal of readiness is that you have already shown affection toward each other—touching his arm or knee as you talk, light kissing, holding each other's gaze, trusting your intuition when you invite his or her touch.  You have already discussed sex and have some certainty that you're both seeing intimacy from a similar viewpoint.  You may choose to notice if his or her affection seems as natural as yours.  Sometimes women have the fear deep down that "he's just out for sex." So give the affection time to feel genuine before you disrobe.  I love Laura Day's book Practical Intuition, with its many exercises and look forward to reading her book Practical Intuition in Love: Let Your Intuition Guide You to the Love of Your Life.

More dating advice from YourTango:

4. Share a bit of your history. How old were you when you started dating? What lessons have you learned? What hopes and disappointments have you experienced with intimacy? Deal breakers?  Hopefully, one of those deal breakers will be around the requirement of safe sex.  If you've been sexual and an AIDS test after several months assures you all is well, run that by your doctor if you have concerns. 

One way to explore each other verbally is using the 50-statement Compatibility Map I developed with a friend several years ago.  You can order one or more copies by sending $2 per copy to me via Paypal.  If you prefer, ask for my address and I will mail the Compatibility Maps after I cash your check.  Another alternative: search out "compatibility test" and see what you learn.  Our Compatibility Map, using "always" to "never" statements, includes living in the country, if you are happy, organized, adventurous, a good listener, how often you like sex, etc. 

I was having some questions about one man I met. When asked how often do you like sex, he chose sex every day from the range of every day to once a month.  That was enough for me to gently say, along with my current misgivings, I didn't think we were a good match.

5. You've thought about each other's comfort level concerning sex. Think out your and his or her comfort level about where you’ll have sex. I rent out six rooms in my Seattle home so my lover may or may not meet another housemate before he gets upstairs to my bedroom. If the level of neatness is important, either take time to tidy up, or say “This is how I keep my space.”  If your partner isn’t comfortable with your level of neatness, either go to his or her place or decide if it is worth dealing with the discomfort or lack of acceptance at all.

6) You've been daydreaming or nightdreaming about "doing it."  It feels right and you have no voices in your head cautioning you.  You know each other well enough that you feel trust and compatibility.  You can also make a game of it. I found "G." too serious on our first meeting, but very appealing our second time together. I felt playful and teased him, "no sex until we've been together 30 hours."  That was not a rule in my life but it made the anticipation ever so much juicier.  I'd remind him each time we hung out: "only 7 more hours; only 2 more hours," and we both had fun (before and after). 

Want to read more? Feel free to order my book or collect new thoughts before you go have more fun.
For a free 30-minute telephone coaching session around love, sex, problems, work or whatever, call me at 206-938-8385 and we'll set a time.