When is it okay to have sex? How do I know when I’m ready?

27. October 2009


When to have your first sexual experience is a personal decision that no one can make for you. Generally, you should be mature enough to fully understand and accept the possible consequences of sexual intercourse (pregnancy, STDs and their possible long-term complications, a change in your reputation or self-esteem, etc.). We can give you a few guidelines. Never have sex if you feel you are being pressured. On the flip side, never try to pressure anyone else into having sex. Never have sex just to keep your girlfriend or boyfriend. If his or her staying is contingent on your having sex, then you’re not getting the respect that you deserve – get out of the relationship yourself. Never have sex out of curiosity, boredom, or because your friends are doing it. These are very poor reasons to risk a pregnancy or a life-threatening illness. Don’t have sex if you can’t talk to your partner comfortably about sexual limits, birth control, and reducing STD risks. Most adults believe that young people should wait (at least) until after they graduate from high school to begin having sex. Some adults believe that sexual intercourse should be saved for marriage. Talk to your parents or another caring adult and find out how they feel. Love is a wonderful feeling. But, you don’t have to have sex to show your love for another person. Waiting is sometimes the most mature and loving choice you can make.

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