Let’s Talk About Sex

To quote the iconic Salt-N-Pepa song, “Let's talk about sex, baby, let’s talk about you and me.”

As someone who grew up in a small town, sex was always treated like a crime. My parents never had the sex talk with me and my school did not do the best job of teaching about it either. Basically, I was told “females only have sex because they’re insecure and want a guy to like them.” It didn’t take long for me to realize that wasn’t true and, while I love to complain about how horrible my sex education was, I know I'm not the only one who went through this, and I know that many others had it far worse.

I remember being in high school and hearing so many rumours about people’s sex lives. I can vividly recall how mean people were when they thought someone was a little too promiscuous.

But now I can’t help but look back and wonder, why the hell did we all care so much? Why were we ever concerned with random people’s sex lives? And why did most people have experiences that turned out badly? The answer: we were uneducated and didn’t know any better.

I volunteered at a youth center throughout high school and some of the most common discussions were about sex. While listening to people talk about their experiences, it seemed like many had the same stories - they were told women didn’t want sex and were confused when they were hormonal. Many of these young people had sex with someone and then becmae attached to that person and had their hearts broken.

Before we go any further, let me clarify, I’m neither encouraging or discouraging you from being sexually active. I’m only encouraging you to be informed and educated before making any decisions.

We all know hookup culture is pretty common in university, especially if you are living in residence. Whether you’re the type of person who wants to wait until marriage, or the type to be with a different partner every night, make sure you have all the information you need to know about sex first. 

  1. 1. STIs

    STIs are way more common than you think. One in four teens will contract one at some point in their life. So no, birth control and the pull out method are not good enough reasons to not use a condom. So wrap it before you tap it! 

    Now before you panic, most STIs are often treatable and you can sometimes even curable. However, if you don’t find it fast enough, it can result in a disease way worse than an STI - so make sure to frequently test your sexual health. If you have been tested before but are still sexually active, make sure to get tested every six months.

    The possibility of contracting STIs also means you should be using a condom for all types of sex, regardless of whether or not you can get pregnant from it.

  2. 2. You can become addicted to your hookup partner - and not in a sexual way.

    Infatuation actually stimulates the same part of the brain as addictions do, meaning hypothetically, you can become addicted to your partner. 

    Have you ever known someone who drops all their friends whenever they are in a new relationship? Or starts acting differently when they’re with them? Well, this may not be their fault.

    While sex does not necessarily cause you to become addicted to your partner, it does release a chemical called oxytocin, which signals an attraction to your partner. This can heighten any infatuation you may have already had for them. 

    The older you get, the less of an effect this will have on you, and the impact significantly lessens every time you have sex. This might not happen to you, but if it does, it can cause things to get messy, with the possibility of ending in heartbreak. 

    While you cannot necessarily stop this from happening, you can be aware and be careful of who you hook up with. For example, don’t hook up with a good friend and expect things to be casual between you two after. Most importantly, be honest with yourself and whether or not you think you’re ready for this kind of relationship. 

    There is no shame in having sex, but there is no shame in not having it either. If you don’t think you’re ready or are worried about what happens after, then wait until a time that is right for you.

  3. 3. The pregnancy scare

    You might not get pregnant, but you will probably have a scare -  regardless of whatever precautions you used. Sometimes your brain can even trick you into believing you have the symptoms of a pregnancy, even if you don’t. Now, this probably doesn’t sound too bad (after all, it’s just a scare, it’s not like you’re pregnant) but this can cause major stress and anxiety regardless. Be careful and make sure you think rationally instead of jumping to conclusions.

  4. 4. Consent, consent, consent

    Consent is the most important factor when it comes to having a sexual relationship. If you lie to someone or trick them into sleeping with you, then you are in the wrong. Both parties must give consent to having sex. The most important thing you need to remember is to be honest and open with your partner.

  5. 5. If you can’t talk about it with your partner, you’re not ready. 

    Talking about sex can be awkward. If you can’t speak to someone about it, then you shouldn’t be having sex with that person. Communication is vital and whether it’s someone you’ve been dating for a while or someone you just met at a bar, you need to be able to talk to them about it. If you can’t speak to them, then you probably shouldn’t be having sex with that person.

  6. 6. Sex and dating

    The whole, “no guy will like you if you sleep with them right away” thing is a myth. If a guy likes you, it won’t matter to them. If it does, then they’re probably not the type of person you want to be with anyways. It is a sexist double standard. After all, they are also having sex with you on the first date.

    With that being said, the first date is usually a trial run and sometimes you aren’t compatible with a person regardless of how great you may be.

    So if you hook up with someone on the first date, make sure you are okay with the idea that you may not hear from them again. If you’re not okay with that, then it might not be the best idea to do so.

  7. 7. Know your boundaries

    If you’re too awkward to tell someone you don’t like something in the bedroom, then you probably shouldn’t be having sex. Remember it’s your body and your choice. You have the right to change your mind and you have the right to tell someone you don’t like something they are doing. 

    Never worry about hurting their ego. If you’re not comfortable with them doing something, or vice versa, then you and your partner should both respect those boundaries. 

Who you hook up with is your choice and nobody else’s business. 

It’s important to know all the facts before hopping into bed with somebody. If you would rather wait, then that’s okay, but if not, that’s okay too. Make sure you are staying safe and not doing something that could hurt you or your partner.

Sex-ed class dismissed.