HOW TO KNOW IF YOU'RE READY TO HAVE SEX FOR THE FIRST TIME

Some of you little rabbits are on break from high school/college right now and may get your freak on this holiday season. If you're about to start your sexual awakening after climbing off of Santa's lap, take a peek at this list first (where there is no naughty list because sex shouldn't have a negative stigma!). 😉
  1. You've masturbated.
    You've touched yourself and figured out what feels good to you and what doesn't.
  2. You're doing it because YOU want to and not for the other person.
    I was seventeen and VERY excited to do it.
  3. You trust the person.
    You trust him/her to 1) Stop if you ever ask 2) Be gentle and patient with you 3) Not tell his/her friends about it in an act of bullshit masculinity/startin' some gossip/drama. Whatever happens between you two is not to be spoken about without the other person's consent.
  4. You tell your partner what you do and don't feel comfortable doing beforehand.
    My first time I made it clear I wasn't ready to receive oral yet, but was comfortable with manual stimulation (fingering) and missionary position. He was totally cool with that. If your partner gives you ANY grief, PEACE OUT, HOMIE.
  5. You have protected yourself in TWO ways.
    An IUD doesn't prevent against infection. Condoms break. Always have a backup plan. For me, I was on the pill for a year beforehand and we used a lubricated condom for my first time.
  6. Related: you've been using the pill/IUD/hormonal implant/etc for at least 3 months beforehand and have used it flawlessly.
    You can't start taking the pill and expect to be protected by it starting the following week. It takes time. Make sure you've been problem-free with your IUD (and had your followup appointment with your doctor to check its placement) for a while before you start relying on it for birth control.
  7. YOU HAVE LUBE.
    Lube has this weird stigma attached to it for young people. Probably because it doesn't get any screen time in sex ed. But I would say that it is just as important as protection for your first time. It will help make things less uncomfortable. Also: water and silicone-based lube is okay to use with condoms. Oil-based lube is NOT.
  8. You understand that your self-worth is NOT connected or impacted in any way by performing any sexual act.
    You will be the EXACT same person after your first sexual experience. You are NOT better than anyone who hasn't had sex yet and you are NOT less of a person for having sex; there should be no sense of shame or guilt associated with it if it was between two consenting of-age parties.
  9. Consent is an emphatic YES PLEASE and not the absence of someone saying no.
    If someone doesn't practically cartwheel at the idea of having sex with you, you don't have sex with them. And once the party gets started and your partner says no a minute, 15 minutes, a half an hour in, you still stop.
  10. You're not drunk/high.
    If you have to be under the influence in order to be comfortable with the idea of having sex, you ain't ready yet, babe.
  11. Post sex: ladies, if you're in pain, get a dilator set. They're expensive, but worth it!
    You essentially work your way up from a dilator the size of a tampon to one the size of an erect penis. Insert and use for 2-10min per day. PLUS, SOME OF THEM COME IN COOL COTTON CANDY COLORS.
  12. The best piece of advice someone gave to me: sex for the first time doesn't have to be bloody or painful for the woman if there's enough foreplay!
    I know all of this shit is exciting but take. your. time. (Also, here is a super fun/non-awkward/informational video about the myth regarding the tearing of the hymen: http://youtu.be/PM79UBTwfsg)
  13. If you're a dude and feel like you can't last for a long time or feel like you have no idea what you're doing (and how could you? it's your first time!), don't freak out.
    It'll get better. Don't worry.