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The Question of When to Say Yes

Being newly single means having to sooner or later face the delicate question of whether or not to have a sexual relationship before commitment. As a mature single, the rules and guidelines that guided you in your early single life may no longer apply or they might need updating. For the person whose personal, religious or moral convictions dictate sex within marriage only, there is no answer but one: NO!! Not unless we’re married. For the vast majority of singles the issue of when to enter into a sexual relationship is much more complicated.

These are more sexually liberated times than years past when women were admonished to save themselves for their husbands. Not all women did, but if they didn’t, they were extremely discreet. Accidents happened and, depending upon the circumstance, there was either a quick, quiet marriage or the girl left town for a while “to visit her aunt.” Sex was so very hush-hush. Learning about sex didn’t happen in the classroom or at home but in the backseat of a car at the drive-in movie.

The 60’s and 70’s brought sexual liberation. Free love, Woodstock and the hippie generation tore a path through the moral fiber of the new generation. As with anything previously forbidden, sex was the password to freedom. Sex since the 80’s has been mellowed with the introduction of HIV and AIDS. A disease not limited to any one category of people, AIDS has forced responsible adults to focus on the nature of a relationship prior to beginning a physical relationship.

So – just when does one say ‘yes’?

The answer will not be the same for every person or every relationship.

Will a man think less of a woman who is ‘too easy’? It’s possible. Despite the equality gained by women in other areas, sexual equality is at best an ‘iffy’ situation. The older the man, the more he will hold the belief he grew up with – ‘nice women don’t.’ The truth is, ‘nice women’ do. ‘When’ is more the question.

NEVER on a first date. No matter how liberated he is, if she goes all the way with him on a first date, he’ll never believe it’s the first time she’s ever done such a thing – even if it is!

NEVER on a second date. He might be insisting and she might want to respond but the second date is too close to the first date for him to have much respect later.

And NEVER on a third date. If he says he’s spent enough without a return, this is not a good reason to become intimate! Now is the time to decide if he’s worth seeing any more. Is this the way he treats all his dates? She can do better.

When to begin a physical relationship is strictly between the two people involved and absolutely only when BOTH are comfortable enough to take this giant step that should strengthen their entire relationship not doom it to failure.

Sex without commitment? Risky.

Sex without protection? Deadly.

Sex that compromises your personal convictions? Foolish.

Sex – yes or no? YOUR choice. YOUR decision.

© Pat Gaudette