Should You Have Sex Before Age 18?

Teen sex is common these days – you see it on television and in movies, you hear about teenage celebrities getting busy and kids at school are trying it too. But is it right for YOU? Should you do it, or should you wait?

Legality

Let’s face it – it’s not legal for people to have sex if they’re under the age of eighteen. You can’t buy porn or sex toys if you’re underage either. While tons of underage boys and girls still do have sex before they’re eighteen and never get caught, it’s important to know the basics of when it is actually legal for you to engage in sexual activity.

That said, if you and your partner are both underage, it becomes less of a criminal issue and more of an issue with your parents. However, if you are underage and your partner is over the age of eighteen, or vice versa, you can get into a LOT more trouble. The older person may be charged criminally if it is ever reported that you are having sex with them, and they will be required to register as a sex offender after any jail time, probation or community service that is issued.

Being registered as a sex offender will haunt them for the rest of their lives and make it difficult for them to buy a home, have a job, have children and visit their children’s schools, and even impact their ability to vote. It’s not something that goes away after a few years – it’s a lifetime of being on a list with pedophiles and rapists. Think twice about having sex you or your partner are underage!

What Are You Waiting For?

If teen sex isn’t something you want to be involved in, think about the “why.” Are you waiting for marriage? Are you waiting until the age of eighteen to do it so you or your partner don’t get into trouble? Whatever your reason for waiting is, it’s a good reason – and it’s important that you fully understand the reason why you’re waiting so you can stay strong and continue to abstain.

If you’re not “waiting” but you just haven’t had sex yet, think about some of the reasons you should wait. Are you in a serious, committed relationship? If not, perhaps you should wait until you’re in love. Think about possibly getting yourself or your partner in legal trouble, or going against your personal beliefs. There are lots of good reasons to abstain and there are many of them that will apply to you and you alone. Perhaps you don’t want to abstain until marriage, but you just want to abstain until you’re older, smarter, more confident and ready. Every reason is a good one!

Considering Consequences

No one likes to think about the consequences of teen sex, but it’s a must if you’re considering losing your virginity. Having sex is an adult activity, and if you feel like you’re adult enough to handle it, then you’re definitely adult enough to think about the possible consequences beforehand. A lot of teenagers are afraid that if they think about the consequences of teen sex before they have it, they might talk themselves out of it. That’s not necessarily a bad thing!

If you’re sure you want to do it and “being talked out of it” isn’t something you feel will happen, considering the consequences will help you effectively plan for anything that might happen as a result of your decision. Think about the possibility of getting an STD – and all the different ways that they can be transmitted – and think about what you can do to reduce your risk as well as what you’ll do in the event that it does happen. Unwanted pregnancy is similar – before you have sex, think about how you can prevent an unwanted pregnancy and how you might deal with one should it actually happen.

Staying Safe

If you’ve thought long and hard and have decided that now is the right time to have sex, take the time to look into all safety options that you have available to you – and there are a LOT! Think about going to your doctor and getting on birth control. If you’re too young to go to the doctor by yourself and can’t tell your parents that you’ve made the decision to have sex and want to get on birth control, you don’t need to be having sex.

Also, think about using condoms and spermicide. Get flavored condoms and dental dams for oral sex. Talk to your doctor about other ways you can practice safe sex. Sex isn’t fun if all you’re worried about is getting pregnant or an STD. It’s also not fun if you’re worried about your partner going to jail.

If you can’t get it on with a clear conscience, try waiting until you can!


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