What to do when your partner wants to take your relationship to the next level…
There are lots of aspects to take into consideration before you decide what to do but the single most important thing to evaluate is how you feel about it. Do you feel ready to have sex? Do you feel at all pressurised into having sex? Are you worried that if you don’t have sex your partner might leave you? Let’s take a look at some points to consider…
Do I Feel Ready?
Only you can know if you feel ready to have sex. Maybe you have some doubts and don’t feel quite ready to take this monumental step, which is completely fine. You don’t have to do anything you don’t feel comfortable with.
You may be in a strong, healthy relationship with your partner and have engaged in other sexual activities but feel uneasy about having full sex. Again, this is fine. You don’t have to have sex just because you have been intimate in other ways. Or you may feel completely comfortable about taking things to the next level – read our I Think I’m Ready For Sex advice to find out more.
Am I Being Pressured?
Do you feel pressured into having sex? Is your partner applying pressure to get you to agree? Maybe they’ve suggested that they’ll leave if you don’t – or made a comment such as, “Everyone else is doing it, why can’t we?”. Whether it’s partner or peer pressure, being made to feel forced into something we don’t feel comfortable with is never OK.
This is your body and your decision. If your partner truly cares about you, they will respect your decision, whatever you choose. Pressure can come in many forms for example “ if you loved me you would have sex” your response “if you loved me you wouldnt pressure me”. If they continue to put pressure on you, this is a warning sign of unhealthy behaviour and might be the time to re-evaluate this relationship.
Know Your Body
A good way to gauge if you’re ready for sex or not is to pay attention to your body when you’re intimate with your partner. Do you ever feel panicky or out-of-your-depth? Does being close make you feel anxious or nervous? Do you sweat more or find it hard to breathe? Do you tense up and feel awkward? If you answer ‘yes’ to many of these, it’s a good sign that your body is telling you that you don’t feel entirely comfortable with intimacy and aren’t quite ready for sex.
Talk To Your Partner
Talking to your partner about sex, contraception and any concerns you have is really important. If you have good communication within your relationship, you should be able to speak about these things freely and feel supported and respected. If you or your partner don’t feel comfortable discussing sex, perhaps this is a good indicator that one or both of you isn’t mature enough for full intimacy quite yet and might be better left for the future.
Discussing contraception and safe sex with your partner can help to answer any concerns you might have. Honesty and mutual respect are important in a healthy relationship and you should be able to open up to your partner without fear of being ridiculed or brushed off.
Will Sex Be Legal?
Remember, the law states that you must be 16 or over to have sex. An adult having sex with someone who is under 16 is against the law and is classed as a criminal offence.
For more help and advice on sex, click here.