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readiness

Life Lessons from TV: Dawson's Creek on How to Know You are Ready for Sex

One of my favorite TV shows when I was a teenager was the series "Dawson's Creek." The series centered around best friends Joey and Dawson and portrayed their experiences from high school and into college as they made and lost friends, entered and left relationships, and grew up. The show was aired from 1998 to 2003 and was one of the most popular drama series of its time. It dealt very realistically with many issues that teens can be faced with, from bullying to dealing with a parents' divorce, and I think it did this so well that the lessons from the show are still applicable even today.

One of these lessons was about figuring out when you're ready for sex.

We often get questions here on Scarleteen from people who are thinking about becoming sexually active and don't know how to figure out whether they are ready for that step. Like so many aspects of sex, this "readiness" is something a lot of peers refer to but few can quite explain.

If you ask most people what it feels like to be

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Off the Beaten Path

When I was growing up, I often turned to my mother for relationship advice. We had our differences, but we were close, and I valued her opinions. However, I also found myself grappling with many of the things she said, because in all of it one thing was clear: for her, the only kind of acceptable sexual relationships are monogamous, heterosexual, long-term commitments.

We first started having these conversations when I was around 14 years old, which was also when I first started to question my sexuality. From the start, I had some questions about this concept. What if I did not want to sleep with men at all? What if I did not feel interested in the marriage-and-kids thing?

A few years later, after two failed relationships (with the same wonderful person) and a lot of angst, I was fairly certain about two things: 1. I was pretty darn queer and 2. I wasn't cut out for monogamous, long-term relationships at the time. I did not feel comfortable within a relationship, no matter how awesom

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The Rules of Ooohs and Ahhhs (Hint: there aren't any)

Ohhhyess asks:

I think that I am on my way to being ready to have sex with my boyfriend but I am just worried about the whole moaning thing...during masturbation I sometimes moan, but mostly keep it quiet. Are you supposed to moan when having sex? If so, is there a technique to what you are saying or do you just do it?

I think I might be pregnant, and might have to choose an abortion.

MadsHatter asks:

My boyfriend and I have had unprotected sex and my last period was 2 months ago (in 10 more days). I've had a two week delay on my period before, and I'm pretty volatile and feeling cramps every now and then but still....no blood. I'm scared to death I may be pregnant but I absolutely CAN NOT tell my mom. I'd be disowned, without a doubt. So....please help me!! I'm getting desperate enough as to seriously consider an abortion because my body can barely support myself, never mind a baby. I heard Vitamin C helps induce a self-inflicted abortion, too. I'm saving up for a test at Planned Parenthood, but I'm still nervous and scared as all heck. Words of advice??

How should I have sex with him if I hate his body parts?

rainbowboy asks:

So I am 17, and I am a gay boy. I was talking to this guy for a while over the internet, we met, and we both really hit it off. Well one thing that I didn't really notice is how feminine his body was. Well we were texting, and he told me that he was a FTM (female to male) transgender individual. The issue I am having is that I really like this guy, but I don't like females. And while he has a female anatomy, he still acts completely male. So I was wondering what a smart way to experiment, to see if it would work, would be, while at the same time not hurting him. Please let me know... I really like this guy, but hate his body parts.

A little more background: I am a pretty sexual person, so it makes a kind of a big deal to me. I can watch straight porn and enjoy it. I can imagine having sex with a vagina. I never have experimented with a girl. I have always been with boys, and have always acted as the "bottom."

He (mostly) seems nice online: should I meet him in person?

simonewheat asks:

I'm 13 and I really need some help. I have been talking to this guy for ages on my phone and texting him. We have Skyped, and I know he might be 'one of those older people who have random children acting for them and they have voice filters' etc, but he has Facebook and I know loads of people who know him, but I just haven't met him. He is really nice and we both wanna meet each other... We decided we were gonna meet and I'm really excited. He says he wants to finger me, and he want me to give him head, that's fine because I have done it before so all's cool. Then when he asked if I wanted to have sex with him, I got creeped. Just need someone to say if I'm doing the right thing or not.

So, About That Sex You're Having While You're Saving Sex for Marriage...

As a sex educator, I don't define sex as only being about penis-in-vagina intercourse, for a whole lot of reasons.

For one, I know that a lot of people (including myself sometimes!) have or have had satisfying, full sexual lives without intercourse, either because they're not at intercourse yet in life or a given relationship, it's off the table for a while for some reason, or because they're in relationships where penis-in-vagina sex just isn't an option or possibility in the first place. I also know, as a sex educator, that some or all of the physical and emotional things that can happen with penis-in-vagina intercourse can and typically do happen with other kinds of sex, whether we're talking about emotional feelings or experiences, the human sexual response cycle, the expression of sexuality in general or possible outcomes like STIs or pregnancy. The way I define sex as a sex educator is like so:

If we say someone is having sex, or doing something sexual, we mean they are acting

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I'm asexual, but my partner wants to have sex: should I just compromise and do it?

Nehremi asks:

I'm Asexual and currently engaged in a romantic relationship with a woman. She really wants to have sex, I'm not really into it. We've done other things I really like, like making out and heaving petting. How do I tell her that I don't want to sleep with her without making her feel inferior, undesirable and bad about herself? I'm scared to hurt her. Should I just compromise and sleep with her?

I think he'll dump me if I don't have sex with him. So, should I?

i.ate.the.cookie. asks:

I'm 13 and my boyfriend is 16. I'm a virgin but he isn't and I feel like if I don't have sex with him he is going to break up with me. Should we just have oral? Also, how can you tell if someone has already had sex?

I want to have sex. He doesn't. Why not? And what do I do now?

beccaboo71 asks:

I've been dating my current boyfriend for 5 months now, and I really am ready and willing to have sex. But, he's not. He wants to, and he's curious but he feels that he shouldn't? I don't know what to do, I don't understand why he's feeling this way about it. Is there something wrong with me? Something he's afraid to say? Or is he just really scared himself? Help!

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