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Is having sex on the first date a help or a hindrance when it comes to forming a relationship? It’s a controversial topic that’s been much discussed and opinions are constantly changing. There certainly used to be a stigma attached to women in particular sleeping with their date instantly but these views seem outdated. So what’s the verdict? We decided to approach certified clinical sexologist and sexuality educator Jeanson Benoit and hear his thoughts on the matter.
So after years of dating experience and varying advice from all different sources, what do people really think about sex on the first date? Some argue that it harms the chances of a proper relationship blossoming by putting out too soon. Others would suggest that sexual compatibility is a deal breaker to a relationship so it’s important to find out early on if you’re a match. Some people think there should be a three date rule for sleeping with someone. But what do the experts think?
Sex on the first date: What’s the verdict?
1. Do you think sex on the first date is acceptable?
Jeanson: The answer to this question lies solely with the individuals involved. You can enjoy sex on the first meeting if you are open, comfortable, and a consenting party to it. However, if you’re doubtful about the concept of sex so early on or uncomfortable with the other person, there’s no need to rush into anything sexual. My advice is always to go with the flow as long as it’s within your personal boundaries. I don’t believe in hard and fast rules about when the right time to engage in sex is because everyone’s different.
2. If there was previously a stigma attached to having sex on the first date, do you think it has been lifted or still exists to some extent?
Jeanson: There is still a big stigma about people having sex, in general and sex on the first date comes with its own set of sex-negative beliefs attached to it. It’s encouraging to see younger generations embracing their freedom of sexuality and sexual fulfilment in ways that are challenging these classic norms.
3. Do you think sleeping with someone on the first date can harm the chances of a relationship developing?
Jeanson: Indeed it can if approached from negatively affecting feelings such as dependency, fear, control, sexual ignorance or misinformation, insecurity, or deception. The most important key is to be open and honest with one another about your respective views on sex and relationships. I am a huge advocate for transparent conversations about sex before engaging in it so all parties involved are aware of how it affects them personally and how it can affect them moving forward together.
4. Do you think there is a double standard in place concerning the way in which people view a man having sex on the first date as opposed to a woman?
Jeanson: In general, society still subscribes to a double standard regarding men who have sex on the first date vs. women who do the same. For men, it is accepted as “normal”, “assertive”, and even “masculine” to not only desire sex all the time, but also to act on that insatiable desire whenever the opportunity arises. For women however, society’s thinking is that she is “easy” or “fast” if she doesn’t choose to refrain from sex “too early” in a relationship.
5. Does sex on the first date destroy the mystique and anticipation of dating, or is this a misconception?
Jeanson: I would say it’s quite a misconception because dating is so much more than just sex. Many people put sex on a pedestal and subsequently develop feelings of anxiety, fear, and overall negative emotions around the topic of sex. Sexual interaction is a form of expressing love (romantic and non-romantic), passion, desire, connection, pleasure, etc and it tends to be better suited as an ever evolving experience rather than a stagnant one within a long-lasting romantic relationship.
6. What do you think about theories/rules such as waiting until the third date to sleep with someone?
Jeanson: If it feels right for you to wait, then, by all means, follow that feeling. In contrast, if it feels right for you to move into sexual play on the initial meeting, please engage. The problem with this kind of rule, especially around sex, is that there’s no way for it to include everyone’s differences and attitudes, therefore I say “Go with what feels right for you, whatever that may be.”
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7. A common conception is that women in particular fear that men will think less of them for having sex on the first date. Is this true?
Jeanson: In some cases, it is because of the previously mentioned unequal views society carries about men and women’s sexual expression. This is another reason why talking about sex before engaging in it is so important. Also, remember to approach sex in an empowering manner so that no matter what someone else thinks about you afterward, you still feel good about your decision to fulfil your sexual desires because it is your right to do so in a safe and consensual way without shame or guilt.
8. Is it more acceptable to sleep with someone straight away if you’re older and have already had long relationships?
Jeanson: I’m not sure age makes any difference.
9. What advice would you give to a woman/man thinking about sex on the first date?
Jeanson: If it’s an idea that you have little or no opposition to and it feels right at the moment, go for it!! If it’s something you have serious reservations about or are totally against, hold off from sex until you feel good about it.
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10. How important is sexual compatibility? Is it important to establish sexual compatibility early on?
Jeanson: Sexual compatibility can definitely enhance the sexual experience within a romantic relationship, but it’s only one component of sexual satisfaction. Other factors that contribute to great sexual interaction include physical, spiritual, mental/psychological, and emotional connection (which each includes subsets of even more facets). These categories can be improved upon separately and in various ways to increase pleasure and fulfillment between lovers.
Ultimately, it would seem that having sex on the first date is a totally personal choice and it’s up to you when you feel ready and it feels right. Don’t over think it too much. If you meet the right person and you’re meant to be together, it doesn’t matter if you sleep with them on the first date or the eleventh.
About Jeanson Benoit:
Jeanson Benoit is a Certified Clinical Sexologist and Sexuality Educator who also earned his Bachelor of Science in Sociology from Florida State University. He guides lovers to the manifestation of their sexual desires through deep reconnection with themselves and others.