How Long Should You Wait to Have Sex?

First of all, I’m going to eliminate any religious considerations from the equation. If you want to hold out for religious and/or cultural reasons, then I honestly believe that should be respected. With that out of the way, I know that this isn’t exactly a groundbreaking question, and it’s been widely covered in many books, magazines, and movies.
There are a lot of “rules” that have been thrown around (some of which I will give my thoughts on), but the truth is, there is no right answer. The only rule I rely on is my trusted ultimate rule: get to the bottom of it.

If you’re considering sleeping with someone, then “get to the bottom of it” by asking why you’re considering it. Because he’s smoking hot and you’re super horny? Because you think he wants to sleep with you and you don’t want to seem like a prude? Because you want to see if he’s good in bed before you pursue the relationship any further? All fair considerations.

Image: Daniel Lee via Flickr
 Ultimately, answering this question should be the guide on when you should go for it, because it places the priority on yourself rather than trying to please someone else. This leads me to why I hate rules.

Rules are stupid if they’re someone else’s rules and not your own. The infamous book The Rules by Ellen Fein and Sherrie Schneider says to wait at least three dates. Do you also want to know what one of their Top 10 rules is? If you are in a long-distance relationship, he must visit you three times before you visit him, otherwise, he’s gonzo. If I had followed that rule, I wouldn’t have married my own husband!

Steve Harvey hit a home run with his book Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man, where he advised “ladies” out there to wait at least 90 days before giving up your goods. But ask yourself this: Do Ellen, Sherrie, and Steve know you? So why would you listen to their rules? The only “rules” you should be listening to are your own, based on your own feelings and beliefs rather than a one-size-fits-all template.  Many people trust self-proclaimed “experts” over their own intuition, because they don’t trust themselves.

Rules are also stupid when the focus is the other person, particularly manipulating another person. These so-called relationship gurus are right in that sex is a powerful thing. It’s intimate, personal, and emotional, which is why the basis of these “rules” is to use sex as power and leverage. Quite frankly, I think that’s f*ed up!


This article from Cosmopolitan particularly infuriated me, coming from supposed “relationship expert” Ryan C. Browning:

“During the time before you have intercourse, he’s fully under your spell. The longer you hold off, the more intrigued he’ll become, allowing you to set the pace and control how things develop. That’s why it’s important to postpone sex for as long as you can — I say at least a month…Look, he obviously wants to have sex, but he loves a good challenge too, and the more he has to work for it, the more enticing the prize will be. If he likes you, he’s subconsciously hoping you’ll fend him off because it makes you more desirable…As long as you dangle the promise of sex in front of him, he’ll be fixated on you.”

Feel free to disagree with me, but using sex to play games with the opposite sex is counterproductive for everyone involved. The example above is wrong on so many levels. First of all, it just sounds like a painful waste of time: to “set the pace and control how things develop” – sounds more to me like “delaying the inevitable.” Any guy that is “fully under my spell” and views me as an “enticing prize” when I “dangle the promise of sex in front of him” sounds like a dreadful loser.


These “rules” are written under the assumption that the woman is trying to convert the man into a boyfriend or a husband, and must follow the rules in order to do so. The premise is that you can use sex to control a man, but that’s assuming all men are the same, which is also an unfair and ridiculous assumption.

In doing some research for this post, I actually came across a pretty good article from match.com that’s a Guy’s Eye View of what the consequences are for sleeping with him too soon. Three guys on varying ends of the “when should you sleep with her?” spectrum weigh in, from the guy who will judge a girl that sleeps with him too soon, to another that thinks it’s no big deal as long as she doesn’t, either. The article doesn’t take a stance either way, but it just goes to show that you can’t really control what the guy on the other end is going to think of your decision on how long to hold out.

So, what am I really trying to say? Sex is powerful, so why not use its power to help get to know you better instead of trying to play mind games with someone? Isn’t it about self-respect and knowing your self-worth? If you can still respect yourself after sleeping with a guy in less than three dates or under 90 days, why not go for it?

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Anika Devi received her Bachelor’s degree in Media, Culture and Communication from New York University in 2012. She began freelancing for Business Solutions BD in 2010 and joined the team as a staff writer three years later. She currently serves as the assistant editor.
Worked well for Website DA, Entrepreneurship, Starting a Blog, Payoneer MasterCard, Sex Tips, Phone Sex, So how do you think? Want to get into her pants? Read here