• Grace Health

Am I ready To Have Sex? What Should I Consider?

There’s a first time for everything! Whatever stage you are in life, making your sexual debut can feel like a big step. If you are nervous, confused, or anxious about the whole thing, know that it’s totally normal to feel all the things and that you’re in the right place. A lot of misconceptions arise about sex, protection, sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and even pregnancy. If you are considering making this step, you might have questions you need the answers to. Here are some important questions for you to consider.



Is everyone’s first time the same?

Forget what you’ve seen in movies and heard from friends, people’s experiences can be different from one another. Remember that there’s no concrete definition of “virginity.” To some“losing your virginity” means an act where a penis penetrates a vagina but to some it may include oral stimulation, fingering or handjobs, or anal penetration. It’s entirely up to you to decide what you consider sex. Do away with any expectations you might have because after all, your first time will not be your best.


Is it going to hurt?

For those who go to the gym, remember how uncomfortable it was after your first session. Penetrative vaginal sex could be similar. It’s common to feel a little discomfort or pain the first time. Just like weight lifting, your body will need to adjust to the new experience and movement. What’s important is distinguishing between short-term and long-term pain. Sometimes you could get a little sore but it should never last for an extended period of time. That means that you probably missed something and will need to rethink a few things.


Will I bleed?

There’s a huge misconception that everyone with a vagina bleeds the first time they have penetrative sex which is not true. Yes, some people do bleed the first time, and that bleeding is usually caused by the stretching of your hymen—a thin, delicate piece of tissue located just a couple of inches inside the vagina. Note, that we said stretching and not breaking! But the truth is more than 50% of people don’t bleed their first time because the hymen can be stretched during regular, non-sex activities like jumping on a trampoline or riding a bike.


Is foreplay a must?

The more you try out sex, the more you’ll come to appreciate the power of foreplay. It helps a lot with getting you in the mood which helps lubrication. Spend a lot of time kissing, making out, and touching each other before you start having sex. This will make sex feel so much better, no matter what kind of sex you have.


Does my partner of choice matter?

While you don’t exactly have to be in an official relationship with the person you choose to have sex with for the first time, it is important that they are someone you trust and are comfortable with. A good partner for the first time is someone you should be able to communicate openly with. They should not be the ones who are pressuring you in any way. They should also be able to be present, go slow and pay attention to what they are feeling. Should you change your mind at any point they need to be okay with your decision.


What about consent?

Enthusiastic consent is key! Consent goes both ways. Giving and getting enthusiastic consent is a crucial way to make sure both you and your partner aren't just diving into sex because you think you "should" or to satisfy the other person. This applies to each and everything that you will do.


Do I need to use a condom?

Safe sex will always be the best sex! Before you have sex, decide which safer sex measures you’ll take. If you’re having sex that can result in pregnancy, what kind of birth control will you use? If you're having oral sex, will you use a barrier method to protect against STIs? If you decide not to, do you know the risks and are you comfortable with them? Educate yourself, talk with your partner, and prep in advance — it’s a good idea to have condoms with you just in case.


Should I use lube?

If you are planning on having sex that involves penetration, using lubrication will not only increase comfort, but also decrease the chance of any injury or pain, and even help sex feel more pleasurable. Avoid oil-based lube if you’re using a condom. Oil can cause a hole to form in the condom, making it useless. Opt for a water-based lubricant instead. Lubricants can be bought online or in pharmacies or grocery stores. If you haven’t used lube before, try masturbating with it beforehand to see what it's like.


Does the first time count if I don’t get an orgasm?

The sole purpose of sex does not need to be experiencing an orgasm, especially the first time you do it. Yes, it’s great, and it should be something both partners actively work toward as they become more familiar with their own needs, but take the pressure off that for now. Orgasms are a bit more complicated in real life than they seem in theory or in movies. For women, you might not get an orgasm the first time you have sex. But again, you could also have a smooth experience from the very first time.


Do I need to pee after having sex?

Peeing after sex is an issue of urinary tract infection (UTI). What happens is sometimes, there’s not enough lubrication, which causes irritation to the urethra, and intercourse pulls bacteria up into the urethra. Whether you use fingers, toys, or a penis for penetration, peeing cleans out your urethra after sex.


What If I regret it?

When you look back at the experience, later on, don’t beat yourself up about what you should have done or not done. Even if you waited to have sex for the first time with a long-term partner only to break up in the future, don’t feel bad for sharing that experience with that person as long as you had consensual, enthusiastic fun at the moment.


The bottom line

Sex should be FUN and pleasurable so don’t be too uptight about it but take the necessary precautions. Apart from trying to stay in the moment, know that it's OK if things don't go exactly as planned. We often have a lot of expectations about our first time when in reality it might be quick, awkward, or trial-and-error the first few times, and that's okay. Whatever glitches you face, try to laugh it off and enjoy yourself.


Stay informed, stay in control. Did you find this helpful?


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