Hitting it off with someone you're attracted to can be a really exciting experience, but sometimes our emotions can take over and cloud our judgement.

So if you're thinking about having sex with someone (or someone has suggested that they might want to have sex with you), what should you consider to make the best choice?

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Communicate Your Thoughts And Expectations

Whether you have a long-term partner, or are flirting with someone you just met, have a conversation to make sure you understand each other's expectations.

For example:

  • "I like where this is going, but I want to talk more before doing anything else."

  • "What are you comfortable doing?"

  • "How far do you want to go?"

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Consent

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Before you have sex with someone, you need to make sure the activity is consensual: both parties need to enthusiastically agree to it!

If you decide you don't want to have sex, your partner needs to respect your wishes - and you should do the same for them.

"Yes" should look like:

"No" might look like:

Quiz

Manuel has previously said he's interested in having sex with Jada. Today when Jada and Manuel meet up, Manuel says he wants to "just hang out" instead. Has Manuel given consent?

Is It The Right Time?

Is it a good time for you to have sex? This includes:

  • Prior commitments

  • Responsibilities

  • How much free time you have

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Is It The Right Place?

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Are you in a safe and private place? For example:

  • Are you comfortable in the environment?

  • Are other people around?

Am I Prepared?

Sex is fun, but it also has risks, like:

  • STIs

  • Pregnancy

  • Emotional consequences

Make a plan for these potential consequences, and be willing to talk about them!

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Quiz

What is important to talk about before having sex with someone?

Am I Emotionally Ready?

Because sex can be an emotional experience, it might be important to bring up the topic with your partner. Do they seem equally interested? Are either of you expecting an emotional investment?

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Setting Boundaries

Once you have decided what you are comfortable doing and not doing, your potential partner needs to respect any boundaries you set.

You can decide at any point, for any reason that you don't want to have sex - it doesn't matter if it is before sex or during sex. If your partner doesn't respect your boundaries, they are violating your consent.

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Summary

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As you reflect on this Byte, think about your boundaries when it comes to sex.

Some things to think about:

License:

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This Byte has been authored by

SS

Silvan Spicer

higher education instructional designer