Everybody wants sex.
(Okay, almost everybody. There are an estimated 1% of people who identify as asexual.)
But as for the rest of us, we all want to get down.
Even the people you’d least expect…
The shy guy who you think is so sweet and couldn’t possibly have a naughty mind. The religious girl who feels guilty about sex before marriage. The guy who grew up in a culture where flirting was frowned upon. The middle-aged soccer mom. Let me tell you – they’re all thinking about doing the horizontal shuffle.
So why is it so hard to admit? The truth is, many of us have deep-seated hangups about sex.
We feel wrong for desiring it. We feel perverted if we go after it. Then we feel cheap if we indulge in it too soon.
Because of these issues, we use sex as a way to manipulate or sabotage our chances for meaningful connections.
Sex should be seen as something beautiful and an exciting thing to look forward to. It should not be something to feel bad about or to hold over someone’s head.
So how do we develop a healthier relationship with our sexual desires? And how do we know the right time to have sex with someone?
We first must understand the different misconceptions that men and women have about sex.
Women and the fallacy of being too cheap or easy
The world pushes a huge amount of shame onto women. Everywhere you look, cultures tell women that embracing sexuality is wrong.
Many religions say a woman shouldn’t masturbate. She should only have sex with the man she marries. She shouldn’t show off her body and must cover herself up.
Fathers tell their daughters they’re not allowed to date until some arbitrary age.
From youth, their female peers and friends gossip about the “sluts” in school. They ridicule girls who are easy and label them as outcasts.
They read articles and books like “The Rules” that tell women to withhold sex from men they like so men will be more interested and commit.
And when they aren’t interested in someone or reject them, they often get attacked with words like “whore” and told how they’re going to go fuck a bunch of assholes.
Most women subconsciously equate sex to be a reflection of their value and self-worth.
All of this causes constant inner turmoil. So when they find someone they actually like, they have warped views on how to proceed.
Some women are distant, unable to reciprocate interest even when they want to, or hold out on sex to force a man to invest in them. Sometimes they even do the opposite and rush into sex before they’re ready because they believe a man won’t stay otherwise.
Eventually, when they have sex — they often feel bad about it, even if they did it for all the right reasons.
But if you’re actually having sex for the right reasons…
You have nothing to be ashamed about!
Intimacy is a core human need. It’s an important path to building trust and meaningful connections with our romantic partners.
If you’re super excited and ready, you can have a healthy experience even if it happens early on in a connection. You are not less valuable or broken because of it.
If a guy judges you for wanting healthy sex, then he’s not the guy for you. You shouldn’t try to manipulate his interest through the prospect of sex. You should want a partner who wants to invest in you even if you’re more comfortable with your sexuality.
I know many couples who were intimate early on and have maintained happy, long-lasting relationships (myself included).
Men and the fear of being a predator
Men have a tremendous amount of shame around sex, too. They just carry it differently than most women.
Men aren’t usually worried about being seen as too easy. Instead, they’re worried about their sexual performance and whether or not girls are going to be creeped out by them.
They’ve had their mothers telling them not to disrespect women by going after sex. They’re told that gentlemen don’t hit on women. They read extreme feminists who say men are assaulting them just by saying hello.
Their whole lives, other guys have teased them for being a pussy. Maybe they’ve resorted to reading pickup advice that sells women as sexual objects.
All they’ve heard for years is a mix of “fucking women makes you a man” and “hitting on women makes you a predator.” It emasculates them while simultaneously making them feel like a deviant.
These men end up on dates where they’ve got pent up sexual desires but are too terrified to express them. They don’t go after sex because they think it’ll turn a girl off — especially if it’s too soon. They subconsciously believe that women aren’t as interested in sex.
Of course, their lack of initiative leads to less intimate connections. They miss opportunities and don’t have their needs fulfilled. This, in turn, cultivates a burning amount of frustration and resentment towards women.
Men, you have to accept that you’re not a creep or devoid of morals for wanting that closeness with a woman. And remind yourself that she wants it just as much as you.
A woman’s not going to think you’re a weirdo for liking her if you’ve been present, vulnerable, and actually trying to get to know her. That’s the shit Hollywood romances are made of.
As long as you can learn to pursue sex for healthy reasons, you should try for it once you’re ready. And if that means within the first few dates, so be it.
When you shouldn’t have sex
There are many times I don’t think people are actually ready for sex with someone. Here are some of the most common reasons I’ve found:
To prove to yourself or to someone else that you’re worthy.
Sex should not just be a means of receiving validation. It is a deeply intimate, vulnerable experience between two people. You have a responsibility NOT to use another human being and treat them like a conquest. They are a real fucking person.
There are already too many people with emotional baggage from others who slept with them for selfish reasons. If you’re pursuing sex only to seek approval, you’re being kind of an asshole.
When you feel pressured.
Only YOU know when you’re truly ready to have sex with someone. Other people don’t have to deal with the feelings or consequences, YOU DO. Friends may egg you on but if you express that you’re not there yet, true friends should support your decision.
The person you want to have sex with should also understand your boundaries. If they’re trying to guilt or manipulate you, they’re only thinking about their needs. They don’t have your best interests at heart.
You may have very different comfort zones on sex. If you want to wait longer than they do, they have to make a choice. Either they’re willing to wait for you or they accept that’s not what they want and move on.
You don’t owe someone your body just because you went on some dates and vice-versa, they don’t owe you theirs. If they continue trying to coerce you, I would walk away from the situation.
To get back at someone or make someone else jealous.
I’m happy that I don’t see this as often because it disturbs me. You’re using someone as a pawn in your twisted game.
How is sex with somebody else going to stick it to your ex who cheated on you? They clearly didn’t value you enough in the first place. It sounds like you need to let go of a bad relationship and start loving yourself.
And what are you trying to accomplish by getting someone’s attention who’s ignored you? That person clearly doesn’t want you enough to pursue something more. If they only become inspired to chase you because you’re with other people, then they don’t appreciate the real you.
However you frame it…these are immature, borderline sociopathic reasons to have sex.
To immediately a rebound after a breakup.
Why is the idea that people need rebounds so widely accepted? I actually think it’s really unhealthy.
Most people getting out of a relationship are still hurting. Even if you’re the one who broke it off, it takes time to process those emotions. Many people aren’t ready to genuinely open their heart to someone new and give them a legitimate chance.
Instead, they’re seeking sex to feel wanted, to avoid loneliness, and to try getting over their ex. They’re doing it out of need rather than wanting a real connection with that new person.
What you’re really looking for is self-worth. And everyone I know who chases rebounds soon realizes they’re a temporary bandaid. In fact, they often make you feel worse when after that sex you still feel more lonely or hollow.
I believe most people should work through their pain internally, spend time investing in themselves for their own happiness, and be with good company. When you’re excited to get to know someone new out of curiosity and are willing to actually show up — that’s when I would pursue intimate connections again.
If you have to lie to get the other person to have sex.
Way too many people try to label connections before they’ve even gotten to know one another. I feel it’s unreasonable to expect someone to commit exclusively to you after a couple of dates. So you don’t necessarily need to go out of your way to talk about a relationship early on.
But, if someone does open up about their values and wants or asks you about yours — be real with them. This is doubly true when you have a major conflict of interest.
For example, say a woman tells me she’s looking for a potential husband and wants to have kids within 3 years. If that’s not in the realm of possibility for me, I need to convey what I’m looking for. Then it’s up to her if she wants to pursue sex with that knowledge.
Lying because you’re scared of losing sex is messed up. It means you’re desperate, don’t respect the other person, and don’t see them as a human being. You shouldn’t be leading someone on saying “who knows if I’ll change my mind” or pretending like you want the same things. You’re setting someone up for pain and putting yourself in a situation for massive fallout.
When you should have sex
So if those are all the times you should avoid jumping into sex, how do you know when you should?
You should only have sex when you’re ready.
Depending on the people involved, that could be a first date or after a month of getting to know someone.
Let me explain…
To me, being ready for sex means it can’t stem from a place of need. You can’t be using sex to feel loved or desired, to prove something, or to get back at someone. It HAS to come from a genuine place of want.
Because when you’re not emotionally healthy, how do you expect to have a healthy emotional connection?
Your primary motivation should be to connect deeper with the other person and for them to connect deeper with you. You should be passionate about having an amazing experience with them because you desire them.
You have to be excited about who that other person has shown themselves to be. You should want to have sex when you feel like they have that same curiosity and respect for you.
And yes, this even applies to casual hookups. I’m not saying they need to be your soulmate. But you should want to value the other person for their humor, intellect, perspective, or ambition as well as their physical beauty. If you can’t find something you appreciate about them, you shouldn’t be fucking them.
Again, this is a real person with real feelings. They’re not a piece of meat you use to masturbate into. Stop being desperate and needy. Go pleasure yourself or pursue other people who you can have great sex with.
For men that realize they’re ready, you need to make a move. You can’t read her mind. And if a woman’s ready as well but you’re not taking the lead, that window of opportunity may close. When women put themselves out there and give men subtle signals to escalate, they will often feel rejected or pull back when it’s not reciprocated.
Most women won’t fault you for inviting them back to your place or attempting to move things forward. If they’re not ready, they’ll let you know. They’ll only fault you when you keep pursuing sex despite them asserting their boundaries.
Leading with your romantic intentions will always be more attractive than hiding them. Convey that self-confidence and go after what you want. If she’s not ready, show her that you respect her comfort levels and are willing to wait.
Sex is an experience I hold in the highest regard. You should, too.
It will never be cheap or wrong unless you treat it as cheap or pursue it for the wrong reasons.