As any single girl will tell you, an amazing first date isn’t easy to come by these days. But once in a while, it seems like everything lines up and a date goes really well. Like, really,really well. So much so that you may want to keep it going…in the bedroom. And while sex on the first date was once highly taboo — you know, the whole “he won’t want to buy the cow if he gets the milk for free” adage, which is incredibly sexist by the way — times have changed. Now, experts say if you’re down to get down, go for it.
“Sex on the first date doesn’t have to be viewed as the wrong thing to do,” says relationship therapist and expert Tyra Gardner, PhD. “It will help determine the compatibility between the two of you and shows confidence in decision making,” she explains. The big caveat is being self-aware and truly owning your decision and why you’re making it. “When you have a high awareness about yourself and your motives, along with clear consideration for your intentions in the relationship, the moment and memory will be more pleasurable,” points out relationship expert Jen Elmquist, MA, LMFT, Evine After Dark co-host.
A few key things to consider: Make sure it is, in fact, a decision and not just a reaction. Even though the attraction may be intense, make sure that you’re choosing to have sex because it is best for you, and also not just because you feel obligated or coerced, says Elmquist. “Be conscious of your motivations and know yourself sexually,” she adds. To that point, be mindful of what you want to get out of the experience. If it’s just physical for you, cool; if you’re someone who gets emotionally attached easily, keep that in mind.
So, what’s the best way to make it clear that you’re into having sex? Just say so. Communication is key, so speak up and see if the feelings are mutual, says Gardner. “If the interest is evident between the two of you, it’s okay to be the one to bring it up and confirm that you’re open to it,” adds Elmquist, who points out that this is also the best time to be assertive about using protection. (It should go without saying, but practicing safe sex with a new partner is of utmost importance, say both experts.)
Post-sex, communication and owning your decision is just as important – and can help minimize the likelihood of any awkwardness or mixed signals. “How you navigate the relationship after your sexual encounter is directly connected to you being clear about your motivations in the beginning,” says Elmquist. “If your motivations have changed as a result of your experience, be sure to express that honestly.”
Gardner agrees: “Be truthful. Don’t feel obligated to go back for seconds, but also don’t be afraid to reach out if you are still interested in the person,” she adds. Remember, it was your decision to begin with, and you can decide what is going to happen moving forward.