Relationships

How Long Do You Wait to Sleep With Someone?

We’ve talked about everything from break-ups to breasts, so today let’s talk about sex…

When it comes to dating, I’ve always been super slow. I’ve waited ages before sleeping with new boyfriends. In college, I waited five months to sleep with one boyfriend; and three months to sleep with a later boyfriend. After graduating, I waited more than a year to sleep with a boyfriend I met here in New York.

By the time I met Alex, I was 28 and more confident and bold. Plus, I was head-over-heels for him after our very first date. So, for our third date, I suggested that we “watch a movie” at his apartment. We rented Chinatown, and halfway through, he paused the movie because I wanted to ask a question about the plot….yada, yada, yada, we made waffles the next morning.

I’m curious: How long do you wait to sleep with a new boyfriend or girlfriend? First date? Three dates? Weeks, months, years? Until marriage? Have you ever regretted waiting too long or too little? Spill the beans — and feel free to comment anonymously!

(Photo by Elisa/Flickr.)

  1. We waited (not easily, of course!) for our wedding night. It was originally our dedication to our shared beliefs (we’re both LDS),but now looking back, I am so grateful for so many reasons that both my husband and I were virgins when we married. (Not for lack of options, but by choice, even though it was always a struggle to stick to that choice, by human nature!)

  2. Anonymous says...

    Again, I agree that it’s different for each individual, and each relationship.

    Personally, I’ve usually only waited a couple of weeks, and sometimes even on the first date.

    My current boyfriend and I had known each other as friends for a couple of years before we got together, so that was another first date incident! But I’m happier than I’ve ever been, so don’t regret it in the slightest!

  3. Erika says...

    I have actually never had a boyfriend, I’ve never sought out to have one. Anytime I slept with a guy it was in the heat of the moment, and overwhelming chemistry attraction. Of the handful of guys I have been with, I only would take back one because I wouldn’t have done that sober. I had a hook up relationship for 3 years, and even though it wasn’t ideal we were monogamous; he just was really shy to date. lol This was all in college and after I decided that I wanted more and had time to give more I told my self that when I do find myself with guys in the future, I do not want to sleep with a guy until we have been together for a while, but it will just depend. I wouldn’t take it back but I personally have moved on and want something long lasting.

  4. Kate says...

    Great post, Joanna! Really enjoying reading these comments! Many of them so different from my own thoughts on sex and dating.

    I tended to wait quite a while back when I was dating…at least a few months. My current b/f of 4 years and I waited for 5 months. I would be lying if I didn’t say that I back then I did think about what a guy would think of me if I slept with him “too soon”. I probably spent too much time worrying about what he thought and not enough time thinking about my feelings and readiness. But, mostly I think I waited because I was a bit nervous, not super confident with men. I like the idea of waiting until there’s some trust and more serious interest developed, but ultimately I would want to know I was sexually compatible with someone before a huge commitment like marriage or kids. Glad to hear, however that the wait is very worth it for many of you!

    I WISH I could hear additional perspectives on this! Seems like we’ve mostly got straight ladies in the house.

  5. Anonymous says...

    Hey everybody ! Personally I’m 23 I’m french and perhaps I doesn’t have the same sexuality education. For the first time I waited over one year to sleep with my boyfriend. Now it depends of the situation and the man. But i think sincerely that nothing changes if you sleep with previous boyfriends the first night from the moment YOU DECIDE to sleep with him.

  6. Anonymous says...

    I don’t know if anyone can ever feel “ready” to loose their virginity. I just did it when I knew the guy wasn’t a loudmouth. I always felt that when two people have sex, it is their business and their business alone. I’m not sure how possible that would’ve been in high school, and it never really felt like the right thing to do then. So I waited, lost it when I was 18 to someone I wasn’t exclusive with at the time but to someone I knew I could trust. Thankfully, he turned out to be the most amazing man I’ve ever met. We are still together and are getting married. :)

  7. Anonymous says...

    The more I like someone, the more I like to draw it out. Unfortunately, haven’t had the chance to do that since… well, since I decided that was how I felt :) I was with my first boyfriend for four months and didn’t sleep with him, I was with the second one for 5 months… and we had sex two months after we broke up. Oops. But once that happened… well let’s just say I’ve slept with a lot of people I’ve only known for a few hours and then have never seen them again. But when I find someone special and I get to go in that direction with them… I’ll savor every step slowly along the way.

  8. Anonymous says...

    I am your faithful reader and I love the diversity of opinions on this blog. I would love to hear what you girls think when it comes to the question ‘how long do you wait to sleep with someone (esle)’ when you’ve been married for 10 years? It is a very sensitive question. Did it ever cross your or your husband’s mind? How would you handle this in the future if you fall in love with someone else? Never in my wildest dreams I thought my husband would be falling in love with other people. But it happens. And I guess it’s a part of life. Now I’m kind of wondering if I should/could/need to do the same??

  9. Anonymous says...

    I’ve been dating the man I hope to marry someday for about 7months now. Our relationship started out in a sort of crisis time in life and led to a quick phsycial relationship and intensity. If we had just gone off our feelings and desires right away we would have had sex – but it was not the right time. We know that we both want to wait to share that for marriage. I’m so glad, even though it has been very, very difficult many times, that we have communicated our intentions to wait. It lets us have the freedom find ways to love each other in other ways that are healthy for our relationship at this stage.

    It’s been difficult for me to reconcile a past one-night stand though. One drunk night with a man I had just met was not the way I had pictured. I think the intimacy of sex should be honored in a commited loving relationship and my mistake over a year ago now comes into play in my current relationship. If the two of us are truly meant to be and take the next step towards marriage, I know that the wedding night and the rest of our lives together will be so worth the wait and whatever struggle there is now!

  10. Anonymous says...

    Really interesting topic!

    I’ve never before thought of a ‘waiting time’ or attempted to wait until I reached an acceptable waiting period.

    Sex was not a taboo subject in my family and I was always empowered to believe that sex, as part of an emotional connection with someone, can be right at any time. For my first boyfriend, that was over a year. For my current partner, whom I want to spend my forever with, it was a day.

    Often the pressure I felt, was concerning ‘how long I’d waited’.

    It was when I adjusted my behaviour according to time constraints, that I regretted choosing that moment or man.

    When I went with my gut feeling, I always felt empowered.

  11. Anonymous says...

    totally depends on the people….However, if youre not careful things happen…I had a crush on this guy I met and had been talking to… we were both drunk one night and met up.. I said no sex.. but he was just too darn sexy, we ended up having sex.. AND YUP.. also the result of our decisions I am now pregnant! I am also in my mid-twenties.. but an unplanned pregnancy with your non-boyfriend is not really a good time for anyone.. so slow and steady is not a bad thing… However, the sex we did have to make our baby was 6 hours long and fricking fantastic.. BUT nothing wrong with slow and steady.. still wins the race ;)

  12. Anonymous says...

    Oh, and just to clarify, I commented earlier saying I’ve only had sex with my fiance and wanted to mention I’m not religious. Totally cool if you are but I want to point out that there are non-religious people who are monogamous too. I think each situation is different.

  13. Anonymous says...

    I’ve only slept with one guy: my now-fiance. We had been together for over two years at the time. Initially we planned on waiting until marriage but I don’t regret it at all! Seven years into our relationship and we’re getting married this summer. I think seven years would have been a long time for us to wait… So happy with the decisions we made!

  14. I still haven’t “done the deed”, as they say, and I’m almost 20 years old! Granted, I’m not in a relationship quite yet but the ones I have been in the past just didn’t feel right and I’m so glad I didn’t. I’d rather wait for a guy who I’m super comfortable with as both a friend and a “lover” (does that sound silly for a 19 year old to say?) to lose my virginity to. I’m quite literally the only one of my friends who is “holding out”, which can sometimes be difficult and annoying when they share stories about their sexcapades but I honestly think that waiting for a super-solid, grounded, mature relationship to start having a sex life is the way to go, for me at least.

  15. When I met my first boyfriend, I waited as long as I could to sleep with him; I think it amounted to a month. After him, I waited a year before having sex again. Since then? Guys rarely made it safely home from a night with me with their pants intact.
    Now I’m happily married, and my husband and I are both glad we had as much wild, crazy, awkward, satisfying and fun sex as we could before we settled down and found each other. Because sex is fun. It’s not a magical act you can use to redefine your self worth by avoiding or chasing it.
    And, as someone before me mentioned, virginity is *very* heteronormative, and a social construction that doesn’t have a real social value other than placing unnecessary pressure on people who are fully capable of creating their own sexual pace.

  16. Anonymous says...

    My husband and I waited until marriage – and regretted the ‘messing around’ we did with others before we met each other. Those who say that waiting is archaic and boring aren’t the ones waiting – and don’t know how great it is : ) Studies show women who become sexually active early and co-habitate are more likely to get divorced than those who do not.

  17. Anonymous says...

    I think it’s simple. You have sex, when you feel like it. Wait if you feel like it. Do it if you feel like it. Just don’t worry about; it it ‘s all fine in the end.

  18. Anonymous says...

    I believe that female sexuality can be such an empowering thing. I lost my virginity to my high school sweetheart after a year of dating. Since then I’ve dated casually, and had 3 relationships that lasted over a year. Some men I dated I slept with right away, others I never slept with and just enjoyed the company. I’ve only regretted having sex once, because that partner didn’t care about making sure I enjoyed our time together, he had been pretty considerate on a couple of dates though, so it threw me off a bit! For me it’s about trusting myself and my partners, and that happens at different points with different people. The serious relationships I had were so informative to me and taught me so much about communicating, compromising, and learning what I really want from a relationship, and that incudes sex. Human sexuality is an important part of any romantic relationship, and with every partner I’ve had, I learned something about what I like, what I don’t like, what makes me feel closer, more intimate etc. In my last relationship, my boyfriend and I became so in tune with one another and even after two years the sex just kept getting better and better. If I hadn’t had other experiences to compare it to, I don’t know if I would have known enough about my own body and my sexuality to be able to communicate so clearly, openly and honestly. Thanks for opening this up! (Pun intended!)

  19. Anonymous says...

    In a perfect world we would be raised in good families with morals and ethics and taught about sex in a worldly way, not just that we shouldn’t have it, that we can get pregnant etc, but that we as women can be left feeling used and abused. Sadly for some, like myself, we were used and abused and having that “first” time choice was taken away from us. Having that happen changes ones whole world, and the decisions that follow. Who knows what I would have done had I not been raped. I will never know. I will teach my daughter what I think is important and let her make her own decisions – I do however think sex is an adults game and one teenagers jump into too fast. I don’t want her to regret any decision she makes. You are lucky if you can decide when the right time is and if you indeed want to wait for marriage.

  20. I’m so incredibly encouraged by this thread of comments, so glad to know I’m not the only one out there waiting for marriage!

  21. Anonymous says...

    I am 25 and have only been with 2 people. My first time was in high school with my first serious boyfriend… we waited 5 months. We dated through most of college and broke up senior year. Almost immediately afterward I slept with my good guy friend. Today we’ve been married 2 years! So I guess I waited negative months… but iI would not change it for anything! I think it’s a very personal decision unique to every person. Makes for very fun topic of conversation though!

  22. Anonymous says...

    It seems to me that there is SUCH a stigma about sex, when there really needn’t be. As long as it is safe and consenting if it feels good- do it! Personally I love having sex, it is a part of who I am. I like feeling good, experiencing pleasure and living life. Maybe that makes me sound like a tramp, but hey, I’m pretty dang happy and just had my three year anniversary with my amazing boyfriend so… And for the record, we totally would have slept together on our first date but the universe conspired against us. (I feel the need to point out that while neither of us have any qualms about immediate sex, neither of us cheat.)

    For a lot of people sex has to be meaningful and important, and I think that’s wonderful! But causal passionate sex is wonderful too. Certain things work for certain people.

  23. bz says...

    Well call me a slut, but I took my now husband home after a brief meeting in a bar. And he just never left.

    But before that I slept with a bunch of people – some I knew longer than others and some meant more to me than others. I did it responsibly and don’t feel like those choices made it harder to find a good man to marry.

    brooklyn, 30 – with a husband, a baby, and a healthy attitude about sex!

  24. Anonymous says...

    I slept with my first boyfriend when I was 15 and we discussed it and it was great. No regrets. However have had been with 3 men since. One long term relationship and 2 short term ‘things’ where I knew the person for a while before hand although they weren’t my boyfriends as such.

    Now it has been 4 years since my last boyfriend and although the opportunity presents itself – I just havent met anyone I like very much! Hopefully it’s coming soon! Girls desire it just as much as boys! But it doesn’t mean I want to do it with just anyone. So I’ll continue to wait for someone awesome…

  25. Anonymous says...

    I wasn’t allowed to date, coming from a very strict religious home. When I was nineteen I met a guy a work, he asked me out several times, but I always said no because I wasn’t allowed to go out. So, I sat back and watched him date, breakup, and eventually become addicted to heroin because of it. After him going through his break up, we eventually became friends, kinda flirted with each other, and came to know him pretty well. He was a drug dealer, and an ex stripper….and he was my first kiss on my 21st b day. Made out one night
    not long after, he asked me to be his girlfriend, but was willing to take things slow bcuz of my inexperience.
    Made out ALOT, and experimented with fingering and
    such in the first few weeks. Had sex about three
    months into our relationship, wasn’t great, but I was
    ready to get it done. He broke up with me about a week
    later, saying he couldn’t handle a relationship right then
    bcuz of his drug issues. Managed to keep all this
    hidden from my parents while still living at home. I don’t
    regret the experience, though it was kind of awkward. Future relationships I’ll just take as they come, even though I was taught to wait to even kiss until the wedding day (which did make me feel a little dirty because of the things I had done, tho it was normal desires and hormones kicking in), I don’t think there’s a right or wrong answer, you know when the time is right, IMO.

  26. Anonymous says...

    I lost it to my current boyfriend (we’re sort of engaged to be engaged) about 4 months in, I was 19. I don’t regret that experience at all, but I’ve always wondered how my first love from high school would have panned out had I been less afraid. I wasn’t ready and that’s ok, but I sort of wish I had been. He was the perfect first boyfriend for me and had I been more ready I think we would have lasted past that dreaded summer before we went off to college. Not that sex would have kept him more interested, just that it would have definitely intensified our bond. But what’s done is done! I love my man and I still look back fondly on my first love, too. Can’t ask for much more than that.

  27. Anonymous says...

    My husband and I had each decided before we’d met that we would wait until marriage because of our faith. While it took some discipline and setting up some boundaries for the four years we dated, it was SO SO worth it and I’ve never regretted it for a second! As some commenters have noted, it’s sad that virginity has such a stigma, especially in the media. Reading through the comments was actually really encouraging to know that we weren’t the only ones who decided to wait!

  28. Anonymous says...

    of course it’s different with each guy, because the chemistry is always different. sometimes you’re just so sexually attracted to each other right off the bat, sometimes it takes a bit longer for those sparks to fly. sometimes you have a few too many cocktails and end up moving faster than you intended…

  29. Anonymous says...

    I too think that you can only listen to yourself when deciding the right moment.
    However, I sometimes make promises to myself to make sure that I don’t jump into things too quickly.
    For example, I had just started seeing this guy who was going to go out of town in a week or so. I thought that I won’t sleep with him until after his little trip (I get to see if he is in contact with me a lot while he is away, if he’s thinking about me and so on). But before his trip, we ran into each other on a night we were suppose to spend without seeing each other and one thing let to another after he and I went to his place.
    Sadly, pretty soon after he came back from his trip he broke up with me using an excuse that he was planning to travel and he cannot make any long-term commitments. That was a strange reason because I was living in that town for a shorter period anyway and I wasn’t looking for anything super serious.
    Sometimes it seems that waiting would be safer, to protect your own heart and to make sure that the guy has better intentions than just chasing tail.. but I guess us girls want to have fun too, so it depends on the person and the overall situation really.
    I don’t regret sleeping with that guy though. I always think that the best time one can have in the sack comes from love and knowing one another. Such shorter flings can be fun but they are not that meaningful to me.

  30. Anonymous says...

    I was with my ex for five years, from age 17 to 22. He was my first and I, his. We waited about two years and it was rocky and scary at first. He then cheated on me three times. We broke up about 9 months ago. I’ve slept with three people since then, two the first 2 were unfortunate never-gonna-happen-ever-again things, and the last person I was in a relationship with for a few months, who I was crazty about. With him, I waited about two weeks. The attraction was intense and I was dumbstruck by it. All in all, I think it varies person to person and situation by situation. I was with one person from such a young age for a very long time (five years) and felt free after my relationship ended to have new experiences.

  31. My choice – only after the wedding.
    I am 26 and I date with my fiance for 2 years. In a few months we’re gonna have a wedding and we will wait.
    This was my choice because of my desire to have life-long marriage. What I have noticed is if he really loves you he can stand it (dating without sex). If not – he is the wrong one. If he loves you enough to just be with you now when he is full of passion and hormones, he will not cheat on you when you are pregnant of sick because “men CAN”T live without sex”.

  32. Anonymous says...

    I wish that I had waited until marriage, or at least had less of a “if it feels good, do it” attitude, and the multiple partners that come with that mind set. This was in the 70’s, but I doubt that things have changed that much, attraction is attraction.

    My husband of 30 years and I did sleep together after a couple of dates, and I knew he was the real deal, with or without a roll in the hay. He led a more chaste life, and I really regret my having more experience that he has. And I feel bad being around my college friends who know all the sleeping around I did, and having my husband there because, even though this behavior happened before the two of us met, I don’t even want to think about it.

    This is a path I wouldn’t want my daughters to take. Having lived it, I know that it wasn’t cost free for me- and I could list about 10 more reasons. In hindsight, more hesitation and more “nos” would have been a wiser long-term course.

  33. Anonymous says...

    Surprised at how many wait. Thanks for sharing

  34. Emma says...

    Hey! Interesting comments!! I waited until I was married and have never regretted it. I’m a bit surprised by the anger of some on here towards those of us that held out. Especially those that think it’s “unnatural” to not give in to every passion. How odd! I’m pretty sure there’s a lot of things in life that we may urge for or desire, I don’t think it’s bad to wait for them! I think self-control is a wonderful thing to learn. Perhaps in our fast, google, easy credit, entitled culture waiting is going out of fashion. I, for one, will always be glad I waited. I think sex has many different purposes – comfort, pure fun, emotional bonding, steamy passion, children making, healing. And, to me, the only place where all of those sexual needs and purposes are met is within marriage. So I think that is worth waiting for, worth controlling yourself for, because the reward at the end is so incredibly powerful. I have learned everything (and am still learning) I need to know about sex from my husband. I think sex is one of those things where setting a few boundaries really sets you free in the end. I now feel completely comfortable, secure, and free to explore all my sexual desires because I am in a committed marriage where I know I will never be rejected or belittled or broken up with. I absolutely love that.

  35. :) Waited until our honeymoon at age 26. No regrets! Happily married and still having lots of fun at almost 40.

  36. I waited until marriage for faith reasons. IT was the right decision for us, but I understand that everyone is different

  37. Anonymous says...

    I waited until I was married to have sex, so did my husband.
    To respond to a few comments bashing the “waiting” crowd :) :
    I don’t think “test-driving” is crucial to a successful sexual relationship. What really stood out to me while dating my husband was how loving, patient, kind, and unselfish he is. All of those attributes translate into the bedroom too. He is the sweetest lover I could ever have hoped for. And I knew that he would be before we ever got naked because I knew what he was like and exactly how he felt about me.

    Also, I don’t personally think it’s possible to give of yourself physically without giving or losing something emotionally. That’s one of the reasons it was so important to me to wait. And, as my love and emotional connection to my husband has grown, so has the enjoyment I feel during sex. They are totally connected. There’s something so powerful about sharing everything in life, including sex, that can only be felt when you have given yourself to each other in marriage.
    I think our society is pretty hedonistic which often leads to selfishness. I have found that true sexual enjoyment is just as much about giving pleasure as it is about receiving. That’s true unselfish love. It’s hard to feel that if you barely know the person. That’s why I think sex is actually better when you are in a deeply loving, completely committed relationship.
    And, it’s important to remember that there are real consequences to sex. I am not talking scare tactics here, but pregnancies can come, stds can come. In a lot of ways I think it’s irresponsible to have sex without being married.
    Sex is not rocket science, it’s okay to wait. You will work it out together which I have found to be a very sweet experience. And I can honestly say I have never had bad sex because there has always been a deep emotional connection with my spouse. So, yeah, the first time hurt, and after I had our baby it hurt again. But sex isn’t just physical so the pain didn’t even matter. We are learning and growing together, discovering ourselves together. And i LOVE it! And, for all the awkward, hilarious, odd moments that occur sometimes during sex i have always felt SO grateful to be married to my sexual partner. He doesn’t care if my nursing breasts leak haha, or if I let out some unfortunate noises, or if I hit him in the face. They are all things that bring us even closer together.
    I have always felt a desire to belong and have a family. Sex is so central to that that I will be forever glad I waited. It is a beautifully unifying experience that strengthens our marriage and brings us so much joy.
    I don’t think there’s anything archaic or terrible about waiting. It’s actually given me a great sense of self-worth, trust, and love. I would recommend it to anyone!

  38. Susana says...

    My long lasting relationships were with guys that I had sex with on the first date. They always respected me and I respected them (this has to go both ways).
    When I’ve waited either I was not so interested or I’d start rationalizing and complicating too much.
    With the guys I slept on the first night, there was a click, some kind of chemestry. That’s why I think it lasted.
    I wouldn’t have sex with a random guy, just because.

  39. Anonymous says...

    I’ve only slept with two people in my entire life (I’m 26 now). The first guy–in college–was to “pop the cherry”, so to speak and the second man is now my fiancee. I had sex with my fiancee on our first date (8 years ago) and I don’t regret it one bit. We had and still have amazing chemistry and have been living together for 3 years. We have been completely monogamous. I have friends that span the sexual experience spectrum–from virgins to the very adventurous. I don’t ask them about their sex life because it is private and because it is not a place where someone should be given an opportunity to comment or judge. Having sex is a personal choice and people should be allowed to make their own choices, with one caveat–they must practice safe sex.

  40. Anonymous says...

    It’s not the timeline that matters to me, just that the decision is consensual. I’ve yet to regret a single sexual decision because they’ve all been decisions that I’ve made out of respect for my body, my partner’s body, our relationship (or lack thereof), and our mutual consent.

    It has been anywhere from two days to two years, and my current partner and I have been happy and healthy together for three years after three months of waiting. We’re actually in a nonmonogamous, long-distance relationship right now, and it operates to much success on totally open, honest, and forthright communication, boundaries, and respect. It’s pretty much the greatest!

    I will say that I’ve never felt that I lacked an emotional bond with anyone I’ve slept with just because it hasn’t been the first time. (For the record, I waited two years to sleep with my first love, and we were together for five.) I love my boyfriend and love the bond that we’ve created, which I don’t believe to have been much informed by our sexual timeline.

    – Kari, 26

  41. I’m old school. My husband was my first and not only was I his first sexual experience, I was also his first kiss!

    We are weird-os but I like the way we are! :)

  42. Anonymous says...

    It really depends on a lot of things. Like how many dates you have, and what kind of dates they are. Some people spend 20 years married to each other and suddenly realize they don’t know each other at all, so I don’t think there should be a certain number of weeks before doing it. If you want it and if you’re sure that your partner is not going to murder you/steal your kidneys/or do any kind of outrageous things afterwards, then do it.

  43. Anonymous says...

    so, i haven’t read all the comments, just scanned them quickly. what did strike me as fairly widely used arguments though, were the following (paraphrased for the sake of brevity):
    – you should wait until you know you’re ready
    – waiting is acceptable and doable when you’re with someone you love
    – there’s only *one* first time, so choose wisely who you “give” it to
    and a couple more in the same vein.
    many of these were referring to the actual first time one has sex.

    to me (but really, maybe that’s only me), it seems like there’s such a huge emphasis on the “loss” of virginity, it’s made so special, something to be treasured etc. i don’t know, i’m of the opinion that it shouldn’t be such a big deal – not as in encouriging people to randomly fuck everything that/who doesn’t run away, but as in making clear that purity (ugh)/virginity is not something you can actively lose, it’s not an object (let’s not talk about the breaking of the hymen here, it can happen in a lot of ways (; ), it’s a social construct. i’m pretty sure it would take a lot of pressure away. sex or no sex or sex on the first date or first time with someone you won’t marry, these things don’t really define people (they’re part of them, naturally, but not the most important). i mean, if everybody were expected to wait for the one true love (and it’s debatable whether that even exists; sorry, i’m such a cynic), many many people would never ever experience anything sexual. also, virginity is mostly mentioned regarding “conventioanl”, i.e. heterosexual penetrative sex. there are a ton of possibilities other than that.

    so, i guess i don’t really have something coherent to say here, despite all the words. i just think that humanity as a whole needs to get a grip, concerning all those centuries old ideas about what sex is supposed to be. sex is whatever you want it to be, you can choose the right time and place and people, and as long as it’s consensual, it’s all good in my book.

    lovely blog by the way. (:

    (i hope i was able to get my general idea across, as my english is pretty rusty. (; )

  44. I think I will wait to sleep with a guy until I am married. Therefore, I will be more than happy to only list one guy name that I ever slept with.

  45. I waited about 5 months with my first boyfriend but we were only 16/17. with my current boyfriend I did not wait very long! 10 days, the 3rd time we met. But I don’t regret it, I was confident, I felt ready, I was protected and I was in a whole new place emotionally and maturity wise than I was first time round. I can’t imagine waiting til marraige. I don’t understand why you would deprive yourself, unless it was to do with your religion.

  46. Anonymous says...

    My partner and I only waited a month, but we’d known each other for 4 years and had been very good friends for 2years before we got together. I think in the end, putting physical attraction aside, it’s entirely about trust. He was my first real boyfriend, and my first lover, but I trusted him entirely. I knew he respected me, I knew that we loved each other, and so it felt right for us. Of course not everyone dates someone they’ve known for 4 years.

  47. Anonymous says...

    It’s funny how different everyone is! I’ve only slept with one guy, my current boyfriend. We had been essentially dating for about 4 or 5 months before we slept with each other, and I’m glad I didn’t just rush into it. I could never regret it, no matter what happened, it was just a great experience. :)

  48. Anonymous says...

    I waited 3 1/2 years to make love on my wedding night after a long friendship and romantic courtship. My husband and I met as teenagers. We’ve been together 22 years and married for 18. It was hard (we had some serious attraction to each other), but we’re glad we waited and we enjoy each other immensely to this day. It’s changed over the years. Sometimes it is full of passion, sometimes to comfort each other, sometimes to make babies, sometimes to meet each other’s needs, sometimes it’s pure fun and playfulness. A way that I don’t connect with any other person.

    It’s interesting, the Hebrew word yada means a deep knowledge, intimacy, vulnerability. It’s opening yourself up emotionally, spiritually, and ultimately physically to another person (and also refers to a relationship one can have with God). It is all entwined together, so I only wanted to experience that deep intimacy, that bond physically, with one person. I wanted yada, to be known, by the one man I would commit my life to and have a safe haven for our children with. I love being truly known by him.

    Linda

  49. Anonymous says...

    Growing up in the South, I was always told by my community to wait until marriage. Then, as I grew up I started to think about what the concept of marriage actually meant to me, what sex meant to me, etc.

    I slept with my first boyfriend after a month (we were both virgins). For some reason, that seemed like a good boundary and when I was ready, I knew it. We dated for almost 2 years and to be honest, the sex was always mediocre. Still, I don’t regret my decision and am grateful that my first experience was with him, since he was always patient and understanding.

    SO. I am so thankful that I did not wait until marriage because I would not want the pain of the first experience to hinder my honeymoon, and most importantly, I now realize how much physical/sexual compatibility matters in a relationship, even though it almost makes me uncomfortable, in a romantic sense, to claim that.

    I am thankful (6 months after the break-up) that we did not end up getting married like we thought we would someday do. Emotional and intellectual connection can only go so far. I look forward to having sex the next time I feel ready, whether that be in another long-term relationship or just a night of fun. Sex can be an extremely emotionally resonant experience (and for us, many times it was), but I’m coming to realize that you know what? It’s okay to want to have fun physically. There is so much beauty in the world! Why not enjoy it? It all depends on what is true to you in the moment.

    I would like to think that one day I will get married or at least find someone who I can love for the rest of my life, but if things don’t work out, then I am glad that I never held myself back from having the experiences that I’ve had because of any dictations other than my own heart.

  50. Anonymous says...

    I was 16 when I lost my virginity to my boyfriend who was 17 and I think that is too young. We had been dating for a couple of weeks and our relationship lasted for only a couple of months. We were both full of teenage angst and he was depressed. I’m 19 now and I’ve slept with one other guy when I was 18. I think a lot of teenagers are pressured into having sex and make their decisions based on that. But I don’t think there is a right answer for everyone.

  51. I don’t think it’ll make a difference, whatever you choose. With my current boyfriend if happened IMMEDIATELY even though my friends warned me not to. And we’re still together 3 years later : ) When it’s right, its right!

  52. Anonymous says...

    Hubby and I waited for each other until we got married. So, so glad we did. I love that we’re each other’s only.

  53. Anonymous says...

    i don’t think it’s that there are so many people that waited for marriage on here, they just can’t wait to tell *everyone* about it. i can’t help but hear bragging to validate their decision to wait until marriage. i also think it’s preachy and naive to think that if someone has had multiple partners, they have baggage. who are you to judge? isn’t that against the same christian ideals that decided FOR you that you should wait?

    my husband and i have only slept with each other. however, we did not wait until marriage. i will not preach abstinence to my children. i will teach them about the beauty of sexual freedom and choice, and how protection and birth control empower you to have the sex you deserve.

  54. Anonymous says...

    Made my current live-in boyfriend of 2 years get STD tested before we slept together, not something many people are too excited to do, which in the end forced us to wait a few weeks longer than we would have. Him doing so without complaint or hesitation really reinforced how much he respected me and foresaw this to be a longer relationship. He is a great boyfriend and person.

  55. Anonymous says...

    We also waited until marriage, over 6 years. And had a damn good time in the meantime. Whoever said virgins were repressed had it wrong…those days were our most…creative. ;)

  56. Anonymous says...

    Counting dates is kind of an American thing in my opinion. Where I’m from we tend to hang out in groups. By the time you progress to hanging out as a pair it’s already known that both parties are definitely interested and you’re basically a couple. I had my own spin on things though. I’d make a guy my best friend, torture him with friendship, and then really the only hurdle is to actually touch each other and officially be together. So in a sense I waited many months, in another sense I barely waited a week.

  57. Anonymous says...

    I used to regret sleeping with my first boyfriend very early on in our relationship (2 weeks in I think) when I was only just 18. I always felt like I should have waited or made him wait or ‘something’.

    It’s taken me another five years to realise that I did what I wanted to at the time, it really had no negative impact on me, and it’s ok to let that one go! There’s no point regretting it, it feels like a different lifetime.

    Now, I would probably wait a little longer, just to really extend that fun ‘getting to know you’ intimacy you build before you have sex. Because that part’s fun. But who knows…if I run into Justin Timberlake at the supermarket next week, I can’t guarantee anything!

  58. Anonymous says...

    My husband and I waited until we got married because our beliefs and am so happy that we did. For me, I always knew it would be way better being with someone you are committing your life too- it just makes it all that much better!

  59. Anonymous says...

    This is so interesting and fun to read! With my current boyfriend (of almost 5yrs) we waited a whopping week! It was funny bc at the time I had gone through a promiscuous phase and told myself that I was done with sleeping with someone quickly. I was in college at the time, starting my senior year and then I met my boyfriend in class, well, saw him in class. School had just started and one night, in a bar (yes, as cliche as it sounds) we saw each other across the dance floor and it was love at first sight…ok, maybe lust! hehe, we danced the rest of the night, talked and he walked me home and kissed me goodnight on my stoop. It was like a movie. The next morning he asked me on a date, a few days after that first date, we met up at the bars again and well….the rest is history. We had an intense physical attraction from the beginning we couldn’t deny! We’ve been together ever since, we’ll be moving in together in a few months and hopefully he’ll put a ring on it soon!

  60. Anonymous says...

    Such a great topic, Joanna! I’m enjoying reading all the responses. So many commentors say they waited until they were married and they are so happy they did. My husband and I waited until we were married, and I wish we hadn’t! I feel like maybe we don’t have that much chemistry after all, but we don’t really have anything to compare it to. I was wondering if anyone else felt similarly but it seems like the others who waited had a better experience. If my friends ever ask me, I tell them, DONT WAIT!

  61. Like I’m seeing a lot of other ladies say, I would go with it just depends. Every person and every interaction is different. I’ve waited months, I’ve had trouble making it past date 1 or 2 because the guy seemed great.
    But the common trend I try to keep with me is that I wait till I’m ready and know what I want – but sometimes you have to be okay with not getting what you want.
    I’ve had date 2 sex that I thought was a great start to what would be a great relationship to explore, but it ended there. I’ve had one night stands that turned into the longest relationship I’ve had to date.
    It’s all one big adventure, a journey, and as long as you’re true to yourself and staying safe I think it doesn’t matter if you wait 30 minutes, 3 months, or 3 years.

  62. Anonymous says...

    Virgins are awesome – I think waiting is great. Don’t at all feel weird – it’s actually very sexy when considered by the right person!

    I think virgins are far sexier and actually are better in bed than people who have been *active*!

    As a virgin, you don’t have all sorts of hangups, bad behaviours or other baggage.

    I was with someone for 3 years for my first first – we waited over a year.

    There have been very few since but those partners who had “less experience” were far better experiences for both.

    I know someone who had dated a very active person and going out to dinner was awkward – half the restaurant had slept with their partner! (what a serious turnoff!)

  63. Anonymous says...

    I’m 25 and never felt like I knew anyone I was in a relationship with well enough to consider sex as a natural step.

    Somedays, I think that waiting till marriage is what is going to eventuate for me. In my last relationship ( I call it that for want of a better word), I had days where I felt like I was going to drag him home and jump his bones and other days where all I wanted was a bit of certainty from him… that he wasn’t just going to stop seeing me because I’d scratched his itch. I did have a lot to lose if things went badly though and neither of us were in good places emotionally, and these elements in addition to my fear is what ended up eroding our relationship ultimately.

    I think honestly though that it depends so much on who you are as an individual and how emotionally stable you are.

    The responses on this post are incredible. Its the kind of thing my girlfriends and I talk about a lot but never really get into the nitty-gritty of, so it’s refreshing to see so many honest responses.

    The only response that I disagreed strongly with was the one which stated that waiting till marriage is archaic. Certainly valid points- sexual mismatches could be a terrible situation to have to live with, but I think its fair to assume that people who wait to have sex till married will at least engage sensually, intellectually and emotionally prior to making the decision to marry. I come from a conservative, educated background and one of the beliefs that I was raised with is that once the initial lust dies down, there needs to be a sense of compatibility that the relationship relies on. Certainly it helps if the sex is good, but its not the be-all and end-all.

    Joanna, thank you for a thought-provoking post that draws out candid opinions!

  64. When I met guys I wasn’t sure about I waited a little longer but when I met my boyfriend now who I am still head over heals for I could barely wait a couple of weeks. I guess when you know, you just know.

  65. Suzanne says...

    I was 15 when I got together with my boyfriend. He was 18 years old. He was so sweet. didn’t want me to do it when I wasn’t ready. But I wanted it after tree months. He asked me 10000 times. Are you sure? You don’t have too. I’m happy too wait. Now four years later he is the only one I have slept with.

  66. I’m a Christian, am 27 & waiting until marriage.

    I’ve dated casually & had a two-year, serious relationship in college. I have plenty of other regrets from previous relationships, but have never regretted waiting (even though it’s not always awesome & definitely not easy :)!

    I think dating without the super physical aspect of a relationship (I’m all for holding hands & kissing! :) can be really fun & is still a great way to get to know each other.

    I’m looking forward to getting married & figuring it all out with just one guy.

    So interesting to read all your comments! Just love your blog, Joanna! :)

  67. Anonymous says...

    Lost the v-card when I was 15 to my boyfriend at the time. We only did it two times in three years (what can I say we were curious and really into each other.)

    I slept with two others. One was my first love and best friend, the other was pure lust.

    Then I met my now husband when I was 18 as a second year college student. We hit it off like whoa. I think we waited two or three weeks before rounding the bases. Either way it’s been a glorious 8 years both in and out of the bedroom ;)

  68. This comment has been removed by the author.

  69. …til there’s a ring on ya finger!! No buts about it.. and NOoO this aint “old fashioned”… its Biblical.

    Have a nice day folks x

  70. Anonymous says...

    I consider myself a progressive, feminist woman and I waited to have sex until I married. I don’t see how people can call that sad or unhealthy. My husband and I were virgins and our first few times were not “magical” in the sense that we had a steep learning curve together, but truthfully it was magical to just climb into bed together since we hadn’t done that yet. We’ve been married 14 years with two kids and I can honestly say that the sex has gotten better every year together and is crazy good to us. I feel so completely safe and we know each other so well that we know how to have incredible sex now. We laugh often about how clueless we were together in the beginning in regards to sex but we both had a healthy sex drive when we were dating and had physically healthy bodies and enjoyed kissing and making out so we knew we would learn just fine together. I don’t regret this choice. We married young- 19 and 24 years, and supported each other through college, graduate school and careers together. We were so young when we got married but it lead us to learn a lot quickly and we have a rock solid foundation together. I know others do it differently, but I’m so happy with our situation. I’m also so happy to learn that sex does indeed just get better and better- we’re definitely not sick of it after our years together!

  71. Steph says...

    I really believe there is no right answer to this one. What matters is how the woman feels about herself and whether or not she is doing something that she and only she feels is right for her. I waited to have sex until I was in university, but after that, I did what I wanted. I sometimes slept with guys after a short period, but I was very selective in who I went out with and spent my time with in the first place. The same goes for my wonderful partner. It was actually after quite a number of dates that we had sex after meeting, but in part it was reflective of other circumstances that we waited. I feel lucky that I’ve always felt confident about what I was doing and have never had any regrets in this regard.

  72. I met my boyfriend (now fiance) on Myspace- I live in California and he lived in England. We spoke online and on the phone for 9 months before we met in person… so I don’t know if that counts as dating or not! Anyway, by the time we met in person we basically knew everything about each other, and had no hesitations. Long story short- first date (in person, haha).

  73. Anonymous says...

    I have to say that if waiting until marriage feels right to you, more power to you. However, I do find it condescending to assume that having more than one partner would equal regrets. One commenter mentioned “baggage” as if connecting with another human being automatically resulted in something negative if you didn’t spend the rest of your lives together. I feel honored to have gotten to know people and shared a time that wasn’t any less special for not having lasted “forever”.

    I have had more than one partner and I don’t have regrets. I don’t feel bad about myself and I don’t “compare”. To me, each relationship is different and special in it’s own way.

    If you can find fulfillment in having an exclusive relationship, then you should. But I think that women put too high a premium on “purity” being tied to their “value” and I find that sad. I am a complex interesting human being and the fact or absence of my virginity has nothing to do with who I am as a person. I think it is fine if it’s just that you aren’t comfortable doing it before marriage for trust reasons or other personal reasons. But I chafe at the idea that virginity is a gift I am expected to give someone else. I don’t think that virginity is anything but a concept that originated with trying to make sure property stayed where it was supposed to. In addition, it ignores the experiences of whole groups of people for whom heterosexual experiences have nothing to do with intimacy.

    Women feeling shamed into following some arbitrary rule so that other women or men don’t look down on them (I can’t count how many times on this board someone has said “this is my experience, but don’t worry I’m not a floozy”-what does that even mean? Is there a number after which you magically become a slut?- it’s shameful for us to judge each other like that, everyone is different) has more to do with others than ourselves and I am a proponent of doing what is right for you.

    For the record, the amount of time I have waited is not something I really keep track of. I am in my 30’s now and I would guess it’s varied from more than 6 months to as short as the first date and I have to say the lengths of my relationships have had no correlation to this number. My current relationship has been going on 5+ years and we slept together very early in the relationship, conversely I have waited longer and had the relationship not work out. Sex is one component of a person and one component of a relationship and I encourage women not to put so high a value on any one thing. Sex and respect are not inexorably linked.

    One more thing I have to point out is that I was raised in a Christian home and at some point began to question why anyone else cared so much about my virginity. I think it’s great if you have a personal covenant with your higher power or yourself but for my parents or youth pastor or friends to care so much about my sexuality began to seem strange and more a means of control than concern. Something to think about.

  74. Anonymous says...

    I wish I had waited a bit longer to sleep with my now fiance. There was so much chemistry and tension between he and I, that we just gave into it. Now I think it would have been better to prolong the mystery.

  75. I’ve actually been thinking a lot about this topic, since the Modern Family episode aired about Virgin territory.

    Personally I’m so glad that I waited until marriage to have sex. It’s such an intimate thing.

    When in high school I worked at Wet Seal with a bunch of very sexually active girls. I candidly asked one of my coworkers (who I had become friends with), what her thoughts were on sex. I’ll never forget. She said, “if you haven’t had sex, yet. WAIT. It’s such a special thing, you’ll be glad you did.”

    That was so surprising coming from a girl who had a different guy every week or month. looking back, I’m grateful for her advice.

    I’ve got a four year old girl who’s growing up SO fast! Chris and I are raising her in a very conservative Christian home, so naturally I hope that she makes the same decision that I did to save sex for marriage. I just hope that whatever she decides that she’ll feel respected and loved enough to come to me to talk about it.

  76. Anonymous says...

    It’s been interesting to read these comments. I would say that since the age of 5 or so, I have been aware of the wonder of sexuality. No, I didn’t quite understand it fully when I was that young, but I already looked forward to the day I got to enjoy it myself, even at such a young age. Because of my early curiousity, I have always felt comfortable with sex. When I started dating my first boyfriend in high school, I waited 6 months (while doing other things to bide the time) and then I told him if he didn’t have sex with me, we could no longer date. I was 17. I made sure I was on the pill and that he used a condom, to be extra careful. It was wonderful! In college, I dated one guy, and we waited for 6 months, but again, I told him if he didn’t sleep with me we’d need to break up. I love my sexuality and at a certain point I need sex in a close, intimate relationship! I’m not super-lusty, I go through many long, dry periods, and then periods when I feel it’s fitting to have lots of sex. I had a small string of meaningless relationships at the end of college that I regret because I was partying too much and thus didn’t make conscious, rational choices about the guys I was with, but those were definitely valuable learning experiences. Right after college, I met the most amazing guy, we connected deeply in an instant, and we slept together after the first date. That, too, was wonderful and I wouldn’t have had it any other way. We dated for 4 years after that. In my current relationship, we also slept together after the first date, it was so so right and so wonderful, and the sex just gets better and better. I don’t always date someone I have slept with, because I go through periods in which I’m totally monogamous and dating long-term, then I go through a “single” period in which I usually have a monogamous sexual relationship with someone, although I don’t seriously date that person (keeping the options open while in “single” mode.) I don’t plan to ever get married, and I probably won’t have kids, so this may factor into my decisions to sleep with the men that I do. Even though I’m in a long-term relationship right now, I’m not interested in life-commitment or marriage. I look forward to learning from and with many future intimate partners!

  77. we both waited until we were married. i love knowing he is mine and i am his in such a remarkably sacred special way.

  78. Anonymous says...

    To Anon @ 4:15:

    “I waited because it was MY choice and my husband’s choice. It was what we believed was right for us. If I have faith in what the Bible says in this and I believe it is God’s will for me than who are you to say otherwise?”

    If you’re following the guidance of a “magic” book then it’s not really your choice, is it?

  79. Anonymous says...

    Well I feel like I need to provide an alternate experience as many of the comments on this page are skewing to the waiting-till-marriage side of things…
    I had sex with my current boyfriend the night we met, and I’ve never regretted it. Sex is an important part of my relationships, and I enjoy it. As long as it’s safe, healthy and consensual it should happen whenever you feel comfortable.
    I take issue with the idea that waiting to have sex is the only way to demonstrate self-respect and gain respect from others. If your partner really thinks that way, do you want to be with them at all?

  80. I’m 23 and waiting till marriage even though I’m head over heels for my studly boyfriend. I’m gonna be for real pissed if I die before having sex. :P

    I don’t regret not having sex, and I don’t think I will (I’m real excited to get to share it with only one person for my whole life), but it can be easy to get into a pity party sometimes. That’s when I have to suck it up and remind myself that the No’s I may be saying now are going to turn into a very huge, passionate, and liberated YES!!!

  81. Anonymous says...

    Well, I am 24 and still virgine. I had some doubts last time about that because you know it is very hard do keep it. But this coversation and your comments make me a little more sure it is right. I am not sure i am able to wait fo wedding night but i am trying to do that! Jo, thank you fot this!

  82. Anonymous says...

    Til our wedding night (which was his first time too). It’s hard to say if it was the best decision or not, because I don’t know what would have happened otherwise, but it’s worked out great for us. I never have to worry about being incompetent or think about him comparing me to other girls/partners. So I always feel very confident in bed.

  83. Erica E says...

    I piggy back what the majority of people have said. It depends on the relationship and on the person. I slept with my husband the first time after 2 weeks of dating (it was also my first time that had I slept with anyone). I always felt i should’ve waited a bit longer. I was only 17 at the time and he was 23. I would’ve liked to wait till i was more mature. But I felt presured to sleep with him not by him but by my friends and the last guy i dated before my husband, had dump me because i wouldn’t have sex with him. Needless to say I was heartbroken. so I figure if i sleep with my boyfriend he wouldn’t leave me (hence why i needed to be more mature). But after a few times i kind of felt regret about having sex with him and wanted to make sure that he and I was doing this for the right reasons. So I left him. But after 7 months of separtation destiny brought us back to together and it was totally different this time around. We spoke about it and we waited for about 5 months (or like he said “until you are ready”) I’m glad to say I’ve been with my husband for about 18 yrs now. all i say is make sure you follow your heart. Make sure it’s right. Whether it’s on your first date, 100th date or your honeymoon. Sex can be a beautiful thing if it’s done with a person you connect with.

  84. Nice to see so many commenters who have waited or are planning to wait until they are married. (I thought I was in a smaller minority!) My husband and I have only slept with each other and we waited until we were married. It seems old fashioned, but it’s totally worth the wait!

  85. Katie says...

    I believe the best time to wait is until marriage. Sex is made for marriage, and if we have already had sex with a person before marriage, then there is nothing to offer that person when we do marry them or to the person we do marry. Virginity is such a beautiful gift to give, and God has intended it to be given for marriage.

    I’ve been dating my boyfriend (I’m 18, he’s 20) for 4 years, and we are waiting until marriage to have sex. Although it has been extremely difficult, and we have made plenty of mistakes along the way, I have no question at all whether we are doing the right thing. I know that I will never regret not sleeping with him when we are married, and that will be such a blessing.

    I’ve also enjoyed getting to know him on a deep personal level. I’ve never known someone as deeply as I know him. He is my best friend. I am more comfortable with him than anyone else, and I know that when we do have sex, I won’t have to be nervous at all because I know him completely and feel totally safe with him.

  86. ps.. Also, I’m sorry to hear that other people regret waiting. But sex with your husband should be something special. It’s not just physical. It’s bonding with the love of your life and appreciating every part of him. I understand that sex is important in marriage, if it gets too “boring” for you, you can always find ways to spice it up. :) you can learn from each other or explore together. After all, that’s how experienced people get it right? from experimenting with other people? you can do it too! with the love of your life. :) I will always encourage waiting. Have a great weekend everyone! :)

  87. Anonymous says...

    I agree that there’s not some prescriptive answer for everyone regarding how long to wait. I slept with my current boyfriend before I even started dating him, and I’m glad I did. It’s all about one’s individual situation. However, I think that it is important to be up-front about your beliefs about sex if you plan on waiting until marriage. I once dated someone who didn’t believe in having intercourse until marriage, but who would do everything but. He didn’t tell me that he wanted to wait, and I assumed that he did not since he was always the one to initiate the the other sexual activities. Way into our relationship, he dropped that bomb on me, and it really affected our relationship. I respect him for that choice, but I wish he had told me earlier so I didn’t have these expectations that he would/could not fulfill.

  88. We all have our opinions on what is right. And we are all just human. But for me in this case, what is right is waiting till you get married. It doesn’t always happen but its also never too late to start getting it right. Your boyfriend should never lose respect or judge you because you want to wait or because you gave it up too easily. He should respect you, period. I just married the man of my dreams, I have a kid from a previous marriage.. so you see… we didn’t always do it right. But in the middle of our relationship we decided to wait.. we got engaged..got married.. and its the best decision we’ve ever made. And it’s true… it’s really worth it. So yeah, it’s never too late. You can always decide to do it right. :D

  89. Anonymous says...

    oh man… One of the comments talked about teens having sex is irresponsible. I would completely agree with that. I always grew up thinking, “Am I comfortable having a kid right now?” and that’s what drove whether or not I had sex.
    I guess I was more wise beyound my years in high school and now have a 14yr. old sister doing the deed with her boyfriends of only 2 months at a time. (eek – pretty sure those #’s will add up quickly..)
    I didn’t think women’s lib = stupidity.
    The fact is we carry a child and have to live with the descision to abort, give it up for adoption or change our entire lives to keep the baby.
    I’m just sick of hearing about so many “ooops” babies. There are controls that one can take and if you choose not to use those controls than there isn’t such a thing as an “oops”.
    Off my soapbox. This subject is something I feel strongly about and has nothing to do with any religious affiliation…just common sense.

  90. Anonymous says...

    I’m also amazed at how many of the commenters waited until marriage. I’m 29 and only know one woman who has waited, an Orthodox ex-coworker who was absolutely desperate to find her future husband so she could get it on (I happily directed her to Babeland and the best vibrators). Which is so telling: sex is deliriously fun! I lost my virginity when I was 14, have had over 20 partners, and have zero regrets. It’s only been a source of joy in my life–likely because I’ve made thoughtful choices. I slept with my boyfriend–going on four years together–on the second date. He could care less how many people I’ve been with and vice versa. While I appreciate the many reasons for waiting, I feel very strongly that the stigma around women having sex for pleasure should be dismantled. If you’re confident in your sexuality, you are more likely to be on top of birth control and condoms, and more likely to choose partners because of your considered desires, not because of pressure from others. This is the sort of message we should be conveying to teens and young women.

  91. Rebecca says...

    I am so impressed with our sex and our generation right now! I’ve skimmed through most of the comments, really listened to a few and have been touched by some. (The one right above this- Kelsi, you’re awesome! Way to not be jaded after a crummy experience with your ex husband cheating)

    I love that most of these girls seem so confident and independent in their decisions and the choices they’ve made-whether it be to wait until marriage or sleep with the guy on the first date.

    Here’s a funny personal anecdote: I remember in high school having this conversation with my girlfriends. Only me and one other girl said we were going to wait until marriage. Wouldn’t you know it- we were the first two girls in the group to lose our virginity!

  92. Anonymous says...

    I didn’t have sex until I got married. And I didn’t get married until I was 43! I had lots of boyfriends along the way. The stats about diseases always freaked me out–if your partner has had 3 partners, then you’re exposed to X people and on and on. I figured the best protection was a wedding ring! Esp. for my heart. I’ve always been a slow healer after breakups and I figured intimacy only made it more emotionally painful if it didn’t work out. No regrets at all.

  93. Anonymous says...

    I had sex with my husband for the first time about a year and a half after we started dating. We got married three years after that and we’ve been married for three years. This may sound a bit crazy but part of me wishes we had just had sex earlier. We spent so much time thinking we were respecting each other by not having sex but really we both wanted to go for it after we had been dating for a few months. We still laugh about that.

  94. Emily says...

    I grew up and currenyly live in the south where there is a huge societal pressure to wait until you are married to have sex. I completely respect that and I wanted to live up to that pressure. However, I am SO GLAD I did not wait. My first boyfriend and I started dating when I was 14. We both knew that we were going to get married. When he graduated and moved off to college I felt that he was slipping away. So I figured that if we slept together I could keep his interest. What a cute and naive girl I was. We did the deed and it was awful. Worst experience of my life. I lost all physical attraction to him. Pressure from my family and friends made me stay with him an additional two years until I could no longer stand him. A month after the break up I rebeliously slept with a guy I barely knew. It was meh, but I don’t regret it. A month after that I met my future husband. We spent the first night we met walking around our downtown area. The next night we did the deed. We’ve been together for three years and are getting married this October. I don’t regret sleeping with the other two guys because it allowed for me to grow and understand myself as a woman. All in all, it really just depends on the woman and the relationship!

  95. Anonymous says...

    I never comment but, in case the NYT gets wind of this and takes a head count, I am an almost 41-year-old with zero experience and I am gobsmacked by the numbers of others here with a similar story (if not quite as old). I truly thought I was the only one, outside a conservative evangelical enclave. For those who do not restrict their dating experience to fellow Christians, I would love to know how early one feels obligated to detail this status to a new partner. I have never quite figured the answer.

  96. I’ve known my best friend for three years, we’ve been dating a year, engaged for three months, and getting married in four. When we get married, he’ll be 25 and I’ll be 24. We’re waiting for marriage, and I couldn’t be happier. We aren’t holy rollers or prudes; we just believe that sex is sacred and personally hold it as such, only wanting to share that with our spouse (each other). We believe our sex drive was given to us before we even knew each other or were ready to get married, because it was worth fighting for. We refrained from all of those times we could have slept with someone else or each other before we enter that covenant so we could show the other how important it was to us, and because so, we abstained and were able to give that experience and privilege to the other. And not to mention, we didn’t have to make those emotional ties with others, worry about pregnancy, or STDs. To each his own.

  97. Anonymous says...

    I waited to have sex until I was married. I have never regretted the decision or felt like I “missed out” on things.

    I was lucky to find my husband who shared the same value as I did and he had waited till marriage also.

    It was a decision we both had made at young ages based on our Spiritual beliefs, but it was also a personal decision we both had made.

    Yes, we did have some funny moments on our honeymoon, and we had to figure out a few things, but I love knowing that we figured them out together, we came into this together not having another partner and I feel safe, and secure knowing that we share is ours and only ours. Neither of us have any questions in the back of our minds about exes or anything. It’s really a beautiful thing we share.

  98. Anonymous says...

    Wow, this IS a really fascinating string. I too am surprised by all the “waited til marriage” posts..no judgment here, just really amazing and in a way…refreshing to hear. I’m 42. My (now) husband and I had sex BEFORE we started dating! It was so uncharacteristic of me, but I never regretted it. We were 21 after being friends for 5 years, we suddenly found ourselves SO drawn to one another but we skirted the issue of dating for several weeks because we were afraid our mutual best friend would be really weirded out by it. We “snuck away” from a party at his house and “yada yada yada.” We made PANCAKES for breakfast. We’ve been inseparable since then (and funny, that was 21 years ago YESTERDAY). I lost my virginity with my high school boyfriend a month after my 16th birthday. I have no regrets about any of the sexual choices I made, only…having chosen my life partner so young, in a wierd way I wish I had had MORE partners before him (there were five)…not in a promiscuous way. I just wish I had been a little more adventurous.

  99. i havent never slept with anyone. this is a really strange and interesting topic for me. i enjoy reading the comments!

  100. Anonymous says...

    I dont think the amount of people here who waited/are waiting a lot reflects actually the true stats about this. I mean, if I was hungry and staring a cupcake in front of me for many years, without eating it (just fooling around sometimes as they say) because it’s Gods or because it means something absolutely abstract to me, I would be proud of it somehow, and a little desperate to tell about it to everyone I see.. When you just eat it when you’re up to, it kinda have no amazing moments of despair to make us want to talk about.. :P

  101. Anonymous says...

    I slept with my fiancé on our first date and have never regretted it! I’m an atheist (despite my Catholic upbringing) and never felt the need to ‘save myself’ for marriage, because I believe that whilst sex is GREAT, it does not define a person… I don’t believe women ‘lose a part of themselves’ when they lose their virginity. To me that view is outdated and places more importance on the sex itself than the people! I truly believe passion is central to a relationship and think it’s sort of odd that many of the Christian women above were fine with doing ‘everything but’ but not intercourse itself… well played Church, no illegitimate children came from a blowjob!

  102. Anonymous says...

    Depends upon the situation. With my latest boyfriend I knew after the first date that I wanted to sleep with him, really knew after the 2nd date after some major making out and went for it on the third date. It was great – I’d thought about going with the 3 month rule this time around but after a day spent at the beach where we literally couldn’t keep our hands off each other it just felt right :)

  103. I think it depends on what moment of your life you’re living, your partner…

    with my now husband I waited for a month or so

  104. Sarah says...

    My husband and I waited for 4 years. This wasn’t really deliberate, but it suited us. To give context I’m 36 and I hadn’t slept with anyone before, initially this was a decision inspired by teenage religious fervour, and then in my more liberal twenties, I only met idiots. So I guess you could say I waited over 30 years to sleep with someone. (I would add I am definitely not some poster girl for abstinence.It was pretty frustrating. It just kind of happened and I wore out several of battery operated devices during that time.)

    My husband has a similar faith story with some horrible experiences with unplanned pregnancy and then a miscarriage thrown in to really mess with your mind. So despite being together for 4 years, we took stuff slowly. Some might say ridiculously slowly, at times it did feel slow, but it suited us.

    Was it worth the wait? Well Yes! I am pleased to report 31 years of virginity, a further 4 years waiting with someone you love DOES result in mind blowing sex, intense connection, love, security, confidence, etc. Woop!

    However whilst waiting was what was right for us and our bent up minds, I would say the most important thing is that you find your own pace and timing – together. At least that is what worked for us.

  105. I waited a year with my first ever boyfriend, then with others, normally a couple of weeks at least.

    My most recent boyfriend, who I have now been dating for 14 months, I slept with on the second date. I just really liked him and it seemed like a great way to get to know each other. It obviously worked out. I’m steel head over heels.

  106. Marianne says...

    I met a guy occasionally at parties, so I really didn’t know him that well. But I thought he was hilarious (to me a sense of humor is the biggest turn-on) and after a year where I met him four or five times we got drunk and had sex.

    The next morning we woke up and went out for breakfast and without ever having to discuss it we just knew that we were together from then on. We were together for seven years and I never regreted that we hadn’t dated “properly”.

    I have no idea how my next relationship will begin and I don’t speculate or set up any rules. I think when I feel I can really trust the other person that’s when I go for it.

  107. Anonymous says...

    WOW! I am floored that the majority of your readers waited so long. (Or maybe they’re the only one’s commenting?) At 22, I waited years to have sex with one boyfriend, 4 months to sleep with another, and only hours before going to bed with some one night stands! I agree with a previous poster: while some readers might judge me for my behavior, I honestly feel like some of them missed out!

  108. Anonymous says...

    I don’t think there is any right time. I waited a year with my husband (we were already living together by then). I was a virgin but he had had 2 relationships before we met. We were very intimate with each other VERY quickly but waited to have sex. Probably because I was 20 when we met and we didn’t want to rush.

    I could not have waited for marriage – we lived together 7 years before marriage. Sex has always been really great and I’m glad he was my first.

  109. Yeah, there is no right answer, but it’s always better later than earlier. :) I’ve always regretted it when it was too early. When I resisted the temptation, and waited long enough it always turned out very good. Even if that means, that he gave me up. That means only that he was not meant to be. I truly believe that’s the answer for girls who are in search of a relationship. And this, not necessarily due to some moral principle (although that’s also important) but by sleeping early with each other, the energies exchange happens so fast and so abruptly that it gets lost, it leaves no energetic print on the partner so that he can miss you. Of course there are some girls out there who expect nothing less and nothing more from the “sleeping with someone” but sleeping with someone. In this case my rule above does not really apply.:)

  110. Anonymous says...

    I was 21 and waited 3 months. I felt a little pressured because he was my first boyfriend ever and was 8 years older than me. He had so much more experience and had slept with 50+ girls before me (I’m low balling the number- no joke) We’re actually still together after 5 years, but honestly our 2 extremely different sexual histories has been a real issue in our relationship. I often feel insecure and like he must be comparing me to the dozens of others before me. I also wonder if I missed out waiting so long, because I have nothing to compare to… sigh.

  111. Anonymous says...

    These comments are awesome. (I think this is actually my first comment on your blog!)

    My fiancé and I have been together for two years. We haven’t had sex yet.

    He’s had been with seven sexual partners in the past, and while I was very intimate with a good number of guys/men growing up, I never “went all the way” and had sex because I thought of it as “wrong” or “shameful.”

    Hear me out: I am not glad that I lived under a lot of stigma and shame growing up, but I am so, so glad that I am waiting to truly experience the full parameters of sex with my soon-to-be husband. It’s nice that in the end I was able to confront the negative beliefs, and find a new sort of sexual freedom in dating this wonderful man, without actually having sex just yet.

    And, it’s so beautiful to see the way he’s respected and loved and cherished me throughout our time dating. He loves that I chose to wait. Waiting until marriage to be together has been a transformative couple of years for us both, in very unique ways. I really love how redemptive the relationship is and how absolutely sure I am of wanting to be with him forever.

    And yeah, waiting is really, really hard.

  112. Anonymous says...

    This is the perfect thing to read after having a strange thing on this subject.. I was 14 when I lost mine… he was 25, looks wrong? I thought so.. and now I’m 19.. I’ve slept with 7 people, trying to pick up from the start, it’s very very hard for me.. I really value this.. ever since I lost mine at 14 I was never confident, it was awful and I regret ever talking to him.. but I had intuition after that.. and I guess… it’s become some sort of craze for me.. like I have to find someone to beat the first time ever.. to make it all go away… and I’m still looking!

  113. So funny! I appreciate that the comments I’ve been reading are open about everyone choosing what fits them best. It is so amazing to me that some people wait 6 years to sleep with their partner! It makes me curious how different relationships are when sex isn’t part of it for 6 whole years. I’ve never been one to wait, unless I was forced to by the other person involved!

  114. Katie says...

    Anonymous 12:16

    On people getting married early b/c they want to have sex…

    I went to a small Christian college, and you definitely saw that happening a lot. Many a 18/19 year old couple rushing into marriage b/c they really wanted to have sex, lol. That said, there’s equal amounts of people I know who were in their late 20’s and even early 30’s who waited/are waiting, and some of them in rather long-term relationships (2-3 years with no sex). I think it all varies as much as the comments on this post vary!

  115. Katie says...

    What an incredibly fascinating collection of comments to read! I’m another person that is truly shocked at how many people have waited/are waiting for marriage. I’m 26 and a virgin who believes God views sex as something that should be confined to marriage. I wasn’t raised in a religious household, however I did come to the Christian faith on my own, and am decently devout. I do have many friends that waited or are waiting for marriage, which is of course much more common within the Christian community.

    Ultimately, everyone just needs to do what they feel is right. No one, women or men, should feel pressured to do something, or not do something, based on anyone’s morals or viewpoints that aren’t their own. No one should ever feel any shame for their choices, no matter where they end up on the spectrum of waiting :)

  116. Ana says...

    When I am in a relationship, depending on how well I know my partner, and how much obvious physical attraction is between us (and that we both are experienced and basically on the same level sexually), I would say one month MAXIMUM.
    I don’t know why other girls hold back more than that amount of time, but I love the sex (<— say in Russian accent) and I only have sex when I am in a relationship, so I don’t hold back when the opportunity arises with my boyfriend, no matter how ‘new’ he is.
    But, I also do not date guys whom I do not know – to be in a relationship with a guy I would have had to at least be friends with him for a few months, gone on a few dates, and felt comfortable in his presence.

  117. Anonymous says...

    I completely respect the ladies who have waited until marriage. Although I did not wait, I understand how it must be incredible to discover sex together, just the two of you, no one else from the past. Sometimes I wish I had waited but there’s no point in dwelling because there’s nothing I can do to change it.

    However, (and I really do say this as respectfully as possible! I promise!) do some get married a lot sooner because of it? People in their early twenties are naturally very ummm… sexually enthusiastic and naturally look forward to the experience a lot. I had close friends in college who were waiting and confided in me that a big part of why they wanted to get married was to experience sex. And it seems like all of my “waiting” friends got married rather quickly after college and after a short period of dating.

    I personally am glad that I experienced sex with several different partners and know that the sex I have with my husband is honestly the best sex I’ve ever had, hands down.

    And as far as abstaining because of fears of pregnancy and/or STDs, just be careful and safe. We are lucky enough to live in a time where we have access to STD tests, protection, and birth control. And I do agree with “Anonymous @ 8:43” that the IUD is the way to go. I’ve had one for years and it’s fabulous!

  118. Anonymous says...

    I didn’t lose my virginity until I was 21 (not for any particular reason) and then I lost it to a friend. I didn’t feel like it was a big deal and I didn’t even tell him.

    The next guy I slept with on the first date. We’ve been together four years and we’re getting married next summer.

  119. Tracy says...

    My husband and I both waited until our wedding night and while the sex wasn’t great that night and it was most certainly awkward we are so thankful we waited for each other. Now 10 years later we are so thankful our sexual history is only with each other and yes, the sex has gotten MUCH. BETTER!!!

  120. Anonymous says...

    lol LOVE the yada, yada, yada Seinfeld reference!

    My husband and I waited years into our relationship, when we finally got engaged, to do the deed. But in all honesty, I’m not sure why I made such a big deal out of it. If we were to rewind time I would probably sleep with him within a couple of months of dating. I use to make such a big deal out of sex when we were younger that he can’t believe his ears when I say that to him now.

  121. Anonymous says...

    I am blown away by all of the waiting until marriage! Maybe it’s because I live in the Bay Area and folks are notoriously progressive here (don’t get me wrong I know it’s not all liberal floozy town out here) but WOW. So fascinating. I literally do not know a single woman who has waited, and all of them are in happy & stable relationships or marriages.

    As for the “when” of things, the timing of sex was really up to me. I’ve slept with way over 25 men, and fully believe in safe, casual, sexually based relationships (f*ck buddies or even one night stands if I felt like it.) To me, just like dating, trying out sex with different men has taught me SO many things about men, myself, and ultimately what I wanted sexually from a partner. From experience, I can say that sometimes sex simply does not “work” between two people no matter how much you care for them, or how much you try. And by “work” I mean mutually gratifying, awesome orgasmic sex.

    Just as I learned to distinguish between a lackluster boyfriend and a true gentleman via dating, I learned to love blow jobs from one man, and I learned to enjoy super slow, loving tantra from another. This would not be the case if I had not explored sex before marriage. Each experience was a true gift, definitely shaped me as a woman, and enabled me to absolutely know that my husband is not only the best fit for my heart but also for my vagina.

  122. Anonymous says...

    we waited until marriage, and thank goodness as it made it all the more special and sweet. i never regretted it, not once.

  123. Haley J. says...

    My daughter is nine months old. If I were trying to advise her in a way that blends realism an idealism, I’d say this: Wait until you’ve finished high school, and always wait at least three dates, three weeks, or when you are comfortable with it – whichever comes last.

  124. Anonymous says...

    JUST because it’s Women’s Day I will spill. I’m getting married in 79 days to my high school sweetheart after 7 years of waiting. It’s going to be epic.

  125. Anonymous says...

    I’ve only slept with one man in my entire 30 years…and the first time was on our wedding night :) What’s to be treasured most about our story is that we share this incredibly intimate thing with just each other. I love it that way for so many reasons! Were we beginners on our wedding night? Yes. Did it take 7 years of marriage and two babies to finally find our groove, yes. But we did it together and share it with no one. I love that!!

  126. My husband and I waited until our wedding night. It wasn’t easy, but I think it’s strengthened our marriage and made us a stronger couple by waiting for each other- and it has kept it fun throughout our marriage.

  127. Robin Alford says...

    I slept with my husband on the first date 12 years ago. I thought it was a one time thing so I just went for it. Little did I know he’d be the one I marry! I have absolutely no regrets.

  128. Megan says...

    I must say I´m surprised. Not only for so many people waiting until marriage, but even more for another large number expecting years until having sex with a boyfriend.
    I completely understand the idea of waiting until marriage, I think it´s absolutely related to religion, I completely respect it and I think it´s great to have such convictions.
    What really surprises me -for good- are those ones who had expected years to do it…I guess right know I´m experiencing kind of a disenchantment on men and I´m having the idea that they won´t wait that long…

  129. I’m honestly pretty quick… I’m no slut, I haven’t slept with many guys. My first we waited 2 months, and the others were mostly the second date…(we are pretty sexual people in Belgium:).
    My, now, husband was on the first day we met in person! But we knew each other from talking over the phone, skype, and chat…

    But I have slept with a guy once, on a first date. I met him at my cousin’s birthday party -we didn’t really talk to each others, but he was so hot! So I called him, asked him out, and we had sex that same night, and we said good bye the next day and told him the ” I’ll call you” typical phrase. We knew that this was a one time thing. And I wanted to do it as an experience to see how it feels … and didn’t like it so much and never did it again. I’m just the kinda girl that like to experience things in life, we live only once!

  130. Anonymous says...

    I waited until marriage and don’t feel like that in any way hindered my ability to see if my husband was the “right one” for me. I do think sex is a huge part of a marriage relationship, but I don’t think it is necessary to “test-drive” that part.

  131. Anonymous says...

    After reading all of these comments I am really surprised by how many of us have actually waited until marriage to have sex. I didn’t think it was all that common anymore, but these comments show otherwise. I also want to say how dissapointed I am by all of the commenters who said waiting is archaic, prude, weird and that we are uptight, shy or some naive Christian who is just doing what they’ve been told to do. I think that is very unfair and so close-minded, coming from people who claim to be “open-minded” and accepting. I waited until marriage but I am not going to condemn people who didn’t.

  132. Anonymous says...

    my husband and i both waited until we were married. i was only 19 though, so it wasn’t a long wait. we have been married 8 yrs, and i have no regrets.

  133. Anonymous says...

    I dated my now-husband for almost two years before having sex on our wedding night. We fooled around a lot before that though, and we both wish we hadn’t. Once you start doing stuff, it’s hard to go back! But I’m still glad that I’ve only kissed one man – my husband. No regrets there.

  134. I am actually really encouraged by this! I already commented, but reading more, I am VERY surprised by how many people did wait/are waiting until marriage. Pretty much all my friends are having sex (unmarried), and I am definitely the anomaly. They often make me feel dumb about it (unintentionally I’m sure), but I’m confident in my decision to wait…and it makes me no less sexual or less knowledgeable. Sex is gooooood. Thanks for everyone’s comments! From both sides!! Hopefully everyone feels some encouragement as well.

  135. Anonymous says...

    Wow! A lot of people are waiting until marriage!!! Are all the other women out there acting shy?

    I always had a hard time waiting. I think the longest I ever waited was 5 months, but I usually had sex within the first 2 weeks of dating (and had a lot of one night stands). I can’t say I don’t regret anything, but I can also say I’m glad I didn’t wait until marriage. Sex with my husband is the best yet, and I would’ve hated to miss out on all the giddiness and passion that happened when we were first falling in love.
    My sexual adventures have taught me that sex is definitely a personal and emotional act, but its also fun! Just go for it when you feel it’s right!

  136. Anonymous says...

    As someone identifying as asexual, I actually have no interest in ever having sex with a boyfriend, spouse, or anyone for that matter. Not that some asexuals don’t have sex (or even enjoy sex for that matter), but for me I don’t experience sexual attraction to anyone, and so the interest just isn’t there. (This is different than being celibate, which is a choice not to act on sexual urges). I’m 27 and don’t foresee my virgin status changing, but I will say, it’s really difficult to find others who want the same :)

  137. Anonymous says...

    Wow, I didn’t expect so many ‘waits’ until marriage. I am a mom of an almost teenage girl. I grew up in India where the culture is different, so not sure how to handle this topic for my daughter when the time comes. I cut and pasted some material from this post for future reference. Jet, thank you for articulating your experience. Thank you Joanna, for posting this.

  138. Anonymous says...

    My husband and I have only slept with each other, and we waited until we were married to do so. I believe this is the “right” thing to do but I’d be lying if I didn’t say that I kinda wished we did it before we were married when we were DYING to! I’m sure it would’ve been lots of fun. :)

  139. Anonymous says...

    I have absolutely loved reading through all these comments. I find each woman’s story so fascinating!

    I guess I experienced both sides of the spectrum. I grew up in a spiritual home and had every intention of waiting until marriage, but that didn’t happen. My first time was after 3 years of an on-again-off-again relationship in high school. I was 17 and he was going off to college…I definitely felt like I had to prove something before he left.

    I waiting three months in my second relationship (at 18) which in my mind is rather quick, but maybe not to others. I figured if I had already lost my virginity, what’s the point? It’s sad but I think that might be a common feeling for some girls.

    Upon entering college I wanted to take my faith and spirituality much more seriously. I started dating a great guy my sophomore year of college and we both decided to wait until marriage (he was a virgin). I agree with those that have already shared that it is HARD to be patient when there’s so much attraction/anticipation/etc. Of course I carried regret from my previous relationships, but they don’t define who I am and I like to think I have a greater appreciation for sex within marriage because of my past.

    My husband and I dated for 2 and a half years before our wedding night and it was really special. I don’t think either of us had expectations of it being “magical”, we were just looking forward to feeling close and being vulnerable.

    I would caution those who define a sexual past as “baggage”- yes it can cause guilt, but we all bring our sinful baggage into a relationship (selfishness, pride, etc).

  140. Anonymous says...

    I am shocked and pleasantly surprised at these responses. Sometimes I feel so cynical, like the whole population is just all about having sex as young, often, and freely as possible, no matter the repercussions … but to see that so many people are waiting until their wedding day is AMAZING. it is so rewarding. i waited until my wedding day, but my husband had a much different past than I, and it is one of the biggest challenges of our relationship. we are incredibly happy and close to one another, but if we could go back in time or give any advice, we would want our only sexual experience to be shared with each other and strongly suggest waiting until marriage. thanks everyone for sharing… and giving me hope!

  141. The sooner the better… so you know if the investment is going to work…-)

  142. Anonymous says...

    I’m a young woman in my early twenties and have had my fair share of partners. The longest wait was with my high school sweetheart at almost 5 months, the shortest was about 60 minutes while in college. I regret none of them because the experiences made me who I am today – even pickier about men! Each of the men were special to me for various reasons; sex is a beautiful expression of those emotions.

    Birth control is always important. I highly recommend an IUD – don’t have to think about it, minimal side effects, and cheaper than pills each month.

    No, birth control was not the reason I decided not to wait until marriage. Sex would have happened regardless.

  143. Anonymous says...

    “genetically, men are wired to spread their seed and can sleep with many women without really feeling a bond.
    as women we are genetically different, we are selective but once we “choose” and sleep with a man, i think our genetic makeup starts the bonding process whether we like it or not. the danger here for women is that we can be left heart broken (which we see so often its a cliche) bc we “chose” a man who was not deserving (a guy who wasn’t really in love with the woman’s spirit/soul)”

    And then people say it’s not archaic to wait until marriage… It’s not only archaic but also reduces us women to animals, unable to differentiate instincts from thoughts and being rational. So sorry, but I find this machist biologicalization of womens feelings outrageous. I’m a rational woman, totally capable of having sex for fun, I had around 10 partners, I regret only one, just like I regret spending too much money on some clothes or failing to study for a test. Sex is wonderful, but it’s not any eternal bondage as christian girls seems to want it to be. Sex is not about giving anything to others, sex is about ourselves, our bodies, our pleasure, we keep being ours after it!

  144. Anonymous says...

    My fiance and I were both virgins when we started dating, and we had sex after 4 months. We were both in our mid-20s. I was a late bloomer, I hadn’t really been waiting for anything in particular, and had been considering having casual sex with guys I was dating. But after I met my fiance, suddenly I wanted to wait. We fell in love really quickly and knew after our second date that we wanted to spend the rest of our lives together, and that made me want to wait until we knew each other really well, so the sex would be more meaningful. We both thought it would be really romantic to wait until we were married, but our bodies could only hold out for 4 months. By then, we were absolutely sure we wanted to spend our lives together, and we had worked out a solid plan for birth control and what we would do if we got pregnant.

    That was a year ago, and our wedding is next month. I don’t regret anything about it, and I’m also really glad that I never had sex with anyone besides my fiance. Sex with him is so much more amazing than I ever thought it could be.

  145. …I should add that it never had anything to do with the actual words “I love you”- just that I knew the love was really there. Don’t we all know before we say it, anyway? For WEEKS?! ;D

  146. With my first sexual partner, I waited two heavy-petting-and-flirting weeks. It was actually fantastic, no strings attached, and the fling was fun from start to finish. (I should point out that I was…hmm…very self-indulgent…before this, and losing my virginity wasn’t some horrible experience).

    I then waited 8 months, and met my dream man. I knew from Day One that he was perfect for me, and I wanted to make sure I could really love him before I added the physical component. 4 months later, we had sweet, special, awkward sex…15 minutes later, we had sweet, special, ROCKING sex!!! :) This July it will be 5 years going strong, with a beautiful future planned.

  147. Anonymous says...

    I am 23 and intend to wait until marriage for my first time.

    Ironically, I am an adolescent therapist that has the privilege of educating teens on safe sex/communicable diseases. My hope is that they will value sex as a beautiful, mysterious and special thing.

    Thank you Joanna for posting this topic and to all the women for sharing their thoughts :)

    —from Michigan

  148. Anonymous says...

    Interesting… it seems like a lot of the people here who waited also married fairly young. I wonder if this is a broader statistical trend.

    Someone else said she thinks she said “I love you” to get into a guy’s pants once… I wonder if this isn’t causing earlier marriages among some crowds. Not that there’s anything wrong with that! Just not for me.

    I know the one boyfriend I had that I didn’t sleep with (at least not the first time around!) I was totally infatuated with in a weird way. I was 20, and he was 24 – and I totally would have said “yes” if he’d asked, at any point past the second date. Scary!! I learned so much in the years after that; about both of us, and our marriage would likely have been very difficult. I’m so glad I got married a little later (26 – still quite young!)… and though we’re happy, I would have preferred to get married even later if we hadn’t needed the visa!