I get email:
After 5 months of being with my boyfriend we finally decided to have sex. It was totally on a whim..I was planning on waiting a lot longer. At the time I figured, I love him and want to make this commitment…now, i’m not so sure I made the right choice. I guess my question is, since we have already had sex, could “waiting” still be an option or would it be a little far fetched? I am also worried on how or if I should even bring this up to him.
Good news! Waiting is ALWAYS an option. In every encounter, you always have the right to say no–whether it’s before or even during sex. Having sex does not open any flood gate, so if you’re not ready and you’re questioning yourself, as it seems you are, then it’s perfectly OK to say no. It doesn’t make you a bad partner, and if your boyfriend loves and respects you, he will honor and respect your needs in the relationship.
You mentioned that you don’t know if you should bring it up to him. As a general rule of thumb, if you need something, it’s always good to bring it up with him. Now, as to how to do so: my recommendation is usually for people to bring up issues in bed *outside* of bed. So, next time you’re hanging out, maybe when you’re being a little affectionate with each other and you’re both in a good mood, tell him that there’s something you want to talk about. Here’s an example scenario:
You: Hey, do you mind if we talk about something for a sec that has been bothering me?
Him: Sure, what’s up?
You: You know how we had sex last week? I felt like I was ready to do it, but afterward I realized…maybe I’m not as ready as I thought.
Him: What do you mean?
You: I love you and I want to make this commitment to you, but I think maybe it’s too much for me at this point. The time might come, but I’m not quite there yet.
Him: Okay, I understand. How can I meet you where you’re at?
You: Well, do you think we could wait a little longer? I’d be much more comfortable with that.
Of course, this template isn’t exactly how it’s going to play out! This is just an example of how to get started and some directions you could go. Of the most importance is to be honest and gentle. Remember, you’re doing this to take care of yourself, and you have every right to do so. If he appears upset, remind him that you’re just trying to communicate your needs to make your relationship stronger. Make sure that he knows it’s about you and it’s not an attack on him, if necessary. Lastly, don’t let him (or anyone else for that matter!) make you feel bad about your choice or pressure you into having sex any way. It’s your body, use it however you want to.