amoi1It seems like everyone talks about sex – friends, TV shows, magazines, movies, family. Sometimes it’s hard to work out what’s true, or what information you need to make a decision about becoming sexually active for the first time.

It’s normal to feel excited or anxious when thinking about first time sex. Just remember that there’s no right or wrong time to become sexually active – it varies for each person. It may take time to decide what and when is right for you.

Being sexually active can mean different things to different people, and can include different activities with partners that are the opposite sex, the same sex, or both. Sex is about giving and receiving pleasure in a way that is comfortable for both people.

Am I Ready for Sex?

There may be several reasons why you might choose to become sexually active:

• Thinking it might be fun
• Feeling like you’re in love
• It feels good
• As a sign of commitment
• Feeling emotionally ready to be sexually active
• Feeling informed, and you have thought it through
• Feeling prepared and ready to practice safer sex (pop up definition as on ‘Thinking About Sex’).
• You are curious and want to experiment
• Thinking all your friends are “doing it”

There may be several reasons why you might choose not to have sex:

• Not feeling ready or comfortable yet
• Haven’t found the right person
• You have religious or cultural reasons
• Feeling more anxious than excited
• Not having the means to practice safer sex (e.g. you don’t have a condom or dam with you at the time)
• Not wanting to respond to pressure from your friends or partner
• Too young legally – for more information on consent check out
• Feeling you don’t have to prove yourself by having sex

It is really important that you feel like you are able to talk to your partner about how you feel, any worries you have about having sex and using contraception. It can be weird and embarrassing to have this sort of conversation, but if you’re not comfortable enough to talk about it, then maybe you aren’t ready to have sex.

Some Facts About First Time Sex

There may be a lot of questions that come up in your mind when you’re thinking about being sexually active for the first time. It’s not always easy to find the answers you need. Here are some common myths that people may believe about first time sex – and the facts!:

MYTH: You can’t get pregnant or a sexually transmitted infections the first time. 

Yes you can! When thinking about being sexually active, you need to consider protecting yourself against pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections by practising safer sex by using protection – this will not necessarily make sex less enjoyable. The important thing is to be safe.

To find out more about safer sex contact FPA Healthline 1300 65 88 86 or your nearest sexual health centre (check out the Finding Help section).

MYTH: First time sex will hurt.

FACT: For some people, first time sex can be pleasurable, comfortable, and fun. For some people, first time sex does feel uncomfortable – it could even hurt. Pain during sex could mean you don’t have enough lubrication or need to try a different position. It could also mean your partner is going too fast or using too much pressure or that you are nervous. It could be a combination of all of these. If it is hurting, stop and talk to your partner. Try some more lubrication or a different position or ask your partner to go slower. If it is hurting too much, then stop because it shouldn’t be too painful. It’s important to talk to your partner about these issues and work out ways to make sex more comfortable.

Sometimes for first time sex, for girls, there might be some bleeding, this should not last long. If pain or bleeding continues, it’s important to talk to a health practitioner.

It can be a good idea to talk to someone about your feelings about sex. Contact FPA Healthline 1300 65 88 86, your GP or your nearest sexual health centre.

MYTH: The first time will be perfect. 

FACT: TV and movies often glamorise the first time, which may give unrealistic expectations about what it’s really like. It’s OK if the first time is not perfect. It’s not uncommon to feel awkward or self-conscious about your body or sex. And sometimes unexpected things happen when having first time sex, so it’s good to feel comfortable enough to talk about it.

What Happens After I Have Sex?

After you have sex, especially if it’s your first time, you might experience a whole lot of emotional stuff – some good emotions, some confusing. For example, some people might feel worried or guilty, or sex might enhance your feelings of affection for the other person. If you are having trouble dealing with these issues yourself, you may want to talk with your partner, or with other people you can trust, such as friends, family members or a counsellor.