By RJ Dancel
College is, and will always be, the best time of your life. It’s when you’ll most likely experience your first kiss, go through your first real heartache, or have sex for the first time. Yes, sex. For most, the college hookup culture can feel so complicated. For some, sex is just “having fun,” while others see it as “making love.” Whatever the reasons, it’s undeniable that sex happens and sex could happen to you. As human beings with raging hormones, you’re just naturally drawn to it.
You could probably care less about sex or you likely feel that you know everything about it, but one thing’s for sure: it’s important to know that there’s a lot more to sex than how it’s talked about—and there are basic things you should keep in mind before giving in to your sexual urges. Read on!
1. It’s okay to explore. This isn’t saying you should sleep around. It only means you should make your own decisions based on your own judgment. Don’t be scared to live your life as you see fit, but, of course, within the boundaries you’ve set for yourself.
2. Always use protection. One of the things you shouldn’t forget ever. If you’re going to do it with someone, make sure he has condoms. During spontaneous nights out, keep a spare one in your bag. There’s no shame in carrying protection if it means safeguarding your health and, more importantly, your future. A single pack can keep you from getting pregnant and contracting sexually transmitted diseases—how is that embarrassing?
3. Consider some kind of birth control method. For girls who don’t use protection, consider taking the pill or consulting your doctor for other options. Though birth control doesn’t completely exempt you from pregnancy, it can help regulate your menstruation so you can keep track of the times you’re highly fertile a.k.a. when not to have sex. It can also ease killer cramps if you have dysmenorrhea!
4. If it smells funky, get it checked. Say, you decided to have sex. Later on, when you start noticing anything out of the ordinary, get it checked immediately. No excuses. There have been so many times that girls experience this, yet they still take a while to go to the doctor because they feel ashamed talking about their sex lives. It is of utmost importance that you break of that mentality. Disclose all important matters to your doctor, especially when it potentially means something bad is happening with your lady parts.
5. It’s totally okay to be a virgin. A prevailing thought among college students is that being a virgin isn’t cool. Don’t be pressured to have sex, even if you’re the only remaining virgin on the planet—which, let’s be real, you aren’t. Saving yourself for marriage or for “The One” is completely okay. Whether you want or don’t want to give it up to that cute guy you just met at a random bar is your choice.
6. You don’t have to have sex with someone for others to like you. Nowadays, sex has a million meanings. One-night stands, breakup sex, makeup sex, what have you—it certainly seems that this generation has been desensitized from the deeper meaning of sex. If you’re only doing it to gain others’ approval, don’t. Honestly, you don’t need that kind of validation.
7. Relationships are totally a thing. For those who think sex will always be a casual thing—well, you’re wrong. Sex exists, even more so in relationships. When you and your beau are intimate, it just means that you deeply care about each other enough to express it. This is a sound basis for any relationship and should not be taken for granted or misconstrued. When you care enough for your relationship that what each other wants matters, isn’t that love?
8. Your satisfaction matters. If you’re going to have sex, remember that your own pleasure is just as important as your partner’s. Don’t get stuck with the mentality that you have to give…rather, offer him your all.
9. Sexual assault is never your fault. Whether or not you’re wearing skimpy clothes or acting “slutty,” remember that you’re not to blame for harassment that happens to you. If your “partner” makes you do things you feel uncomfortable doing, by all means, get out. Rape is rape. If it does happen, don’t hide it. Talk about it with someone you trust, whether it’s family or friends, even authorities. You’ll need all the help you can get.
10. It’s okay to take it slow. Living in such a fast-changing society where there are always shorter and easier ways to get through life, you should always keep in mind that only you can determine your own pace. No one should ever tell you how to live your life—more importantly, you shouldn’t let others direct it. If you want to take your sweet time, by all means, do so. It’s your life, after all.
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Image by Rxandy Capinpin. Styling Red Dimaandal. Grooming Xy Eugenio For Inglot Cosmetics. Hair Jp Valera Of Triple Luck Brow & Nail Salon. Model Ale Patiu. Special thanks to Ogie Rodriguez.