Does It Really Matter How Long You Wait To Sleep With Him?

Does It Really Matter How Long You Wait To Sleep With Him?

Focus Features/That Awkward Moment

Focus Features/That Awkward Moment

Dating is kind of a dying ritual, isn’t it? These days, what’s considered “dating” is often a group of people hanging out together and then splintering off into pairs at the end of the night. Granted, this style takes a lot of the pressure off, but the group dynamic is the king of dating cop outs. It just doesn’t allow for that intimate but awkward getting-to-know-you kind of shit that one guy and one girl (or whatever combination of that floats your boat) going to dinner and a movie delivers. And even when we do go on one-on-one dates, it’s usually coffee with someone we met online—picked out of a catalog and pre-screened for your protection. So it’s hard enough to even be able to identify what constitutes a date and what doesn’t, much less when it’s “OK” to have sex.

I asked a friend of mine, a female marriage and female therapist (who’s hot as balls, by the way), how long she thought people should date before having sex. Her answer was six months, and she had that shit locked and loaded. No “depends on the situation,” no “when both parties are comfortable” or any stipulations like that. Just “six months.” Well, in addition to being super hot, I think she’s a great therapist and an extremely intelligent and empathetic person, but six months? Blow that noise. I practically laughed in her face before I realized she was serious.

Well, in my opinion, that’s extremely unrealistic. For me, the answer is two to three weeks, or a handful of dates—just long enough to know you’re interested in pursuing something long term with this person, but not so long that the withholding of sex becomes its own issue. We talked it out for a while, and our reasoning was more or less the same, but our timetables were way different. We agreed that sex too soon was always a bad idea; we just couldn’t find the middle ground on what constituted “too soon.”

Another thing we agreed on was that the woman should serve as the gatekeeper. I’m sure that seems like a double standard, and it is, so go off on me if you must, but the truth is it’s really the only workable solution. Guys are perpetually horny, and while we’re capable of stopping things before they go too far, it takes a degree of willpower that few of us possess. Women, on the other hand, are very practiced at the art of not going all the way. They have to be. If they weren’t any better at it than we are, they’d have banged pretty much every guy they’ve ever met in their entire lives. So take the lead on that one, ladies. We’ll pay you back by opening the pickle jars.

See, as much as guys want sex, when we get it, it does change our opinion of the woman afterwards. If we didn’t have to work very hard for it, then, well… our opinion of you usually goes south. Now, you can choose not to care about that, but it doesn’t make it any less true. But if we have to wait until we know you a little better, connect with you on emotional and intellectual levels, then sex amplifies that connection. We feel like you’re discerning, that you place at least comparable value on what many of us view as the pinnacle of human existence, and therefore we must be pretty special to be let into your garden of eternal happiness. So, holding out a little while not only makes us feel better about you, it makes us feel better about ourselves. Everybody wins!

Now that’s not to say the ladies can’t go out and get laid from time to time. Why the hell not? We live in a post-SEX AND THE CITY world, after all. If you’re feeling lonely or just got out of a bad relationship and need a good pounding, that’s great. Hit the bars and take your pick—we’re there for you. But if you’re trying to build a relationship, try holding out a while.

But not six months.

Chuck Henderson
  • Artisan219

    My general rule of thumb is one month. It’s not a hard set rule, and like most men, if sex becomes a real possibility, then I’m not really going to beat myself up over going a little early. Sex can be casual, and there’s nothing wrong with that, but it’s harder to turn wild night into an actual relationship. There’s a reason one-night stands are awkward the next day and its simply because the person you woke up with is really just an acquaintance, and I don’t know about the rest of you, but I generally don’t let random people into my home. At the time you were trying to get into her panties, that may not have mattered, but now you have things to do, she has to get home before work, and you realize you don’t know her last name or her favorite color. This kind of setup makes it a little socially awkward to call her up again. You just had sex, but you don’t have a deep bond, and in its own way casual sex is comparable to a firecracker instead of a candle. You light it, it burns, it pops, and now its done. You get into these mind games wondering if you call her back is she going to think you’re a stalker. You don’t know if she wants a relationship, but you had a good time and now you may actually want a date and you’re unsure of the etiquette of asking a one-time hookup to be something else. I have no idea how that goes for women, but I’m sure it’s not the most pleasant experience. Having ex too soon, it can really put the brakes on acclimating to each other as individuals. If you find out that your one-night stand is a staunch vegan and you have half a bucket of KFC and a few pounds of ground beef and bacon in the fridge, a long term relationship is probably unlikely. To go the distance in a relationship, both of you have to be moving in similar directions in life. That doesn’t mean you both have to be on the same page, to be honest I find that can actually cause more problems than you’d think, but your individual novels should probably be in the same genre. 

    On the other hand, sex too late in the relationship can be a really trying experience. It comes down to two issues: investment and intimacy. Sex is an important part of the relationship once the genie is out of the bottle, so if you do wait six months and find out that you aren’t compatible sexually, not only are you going to be embarrassed, but you’ve invested half a year into a relationship and now this has happened. Now maybe you can work out your bedroom troubles , and after six months you should at least try, but it really changes the dynamic of the relationship and will change the way in which the two of you see your future together. That segues into intimacy. Now everyone is going to have a different definition for intimacy, but for me it is the measure of the trust in your relationship. If you find out that your partner has some sexual kinks you aren’t into, it’s going to affect how comfortable you are discussing sex. Personally I like to have some spontaneity with sex and when you get into a situation where you’re having discussions and making plans, it does for my part diminish some of the romance.

    I say a month because it gives you space on the calendar for 4 weekend dates, some casual middle of the week hanging out, and most importantly, tons of texting, chatting, and communication, For me, it seems a good balance. But, ladies, if you want to have your six months, look at that objectively. The point of the rule is to make sure your boyfriend loves you before sex and not just because of sex. If he respects you, the relationship is going well, and you actually feel comfortable to have sex , holding onto a timeline may not be helping your relationship. But you are absolutely entitled to your timeline. I would just ask this if I was in that situation: TALK ABOUT IT. I know I said that over-thinking sex can take out the romance, but that’s not what I mean. Guys like to know where they stand, and if it’s been a few weeks and he’s not getting anywhere with that, he’s going to be curious what he’s doing wrong. Do I not make enough money, am I too short, does my place smell funny, did I say something about my mother? We as men only understand women so well and if we feel that we aren’t getting closer in the relationship, we come to the conclusion that A) we did something and B) that you’re not going to tell us. If this six-month rule is the only reason you’re not having sex, tell him that you’re getting excited and that he’s getting there. Talk to him early and tell him you don’t want to have sex too soon in the relationship. If he knows its not him, he’s going to be easier for him to respect your boundaries. When you get closer to having sex, maybe talk about what you do and don’t like in the bedroom. After awhile maybe try phone sex if that works for you. Personally I love foreplay and if you think you can play without going too far, then by all means. You can stick to that six months easier by giving him a little more while leading up to it.

  • Aesopsfable

    Okay.  First, it does depend on the people involved.  We are not machines and we don’t have an expiration date as to best when screwed by.  We are individuals that have different time lines.  The time line for sex is when both parties are comfortable with it.  Sometimes it’s six months and sometimes you hook up one night and then start dating.  Keep the rule simple, “when all involved are ready”  
    A person should figure out for themselves whether or not they are ready or will ever be ready for a sexual relationship with the other person/people.  Some people need more time than others to be ready, but figure out if you are just not ready or will you never be ready with that other person/people.  If the answer is never; tell them and move on to being friends if possible.  Don’t just drag it out because you’re afraid of hurting their feelings, because what you are really doing is taking up the time they could be spending looking for someone that would like to be with them in the sexual arena.

  • hittlistblog

    Artisan219 I LOVE your response. I like what you wrote better than the article! Can I share what you wrote on my blog? You can find it on wordpress. The Hitt List! Let me know..thanks!

  • Artisan219

    hittlistblog Artisan219 Sure, just link back to this page.

  • CandaceWalker

    Any man who will judge you negatively for behaviour he is happy to engage in is someone you don’t want to be with.

    Simple as that.

    The only ‘right time’ is when you’re both ready.

  • CandaceWalker

    Artisan219 ” The point of the rule is to make sure your boyfriend loves you before sex and not just because of sex.”

    I don’t think I could ever love someone after a month. In fact if I waited to feel love before sex…it would be a long time before sex!

  • Thelof

    Love is what you do, not how you feel. How you feel is the chemicals in your brain that motivate you to think and act in certain ways. In all reality, someone who is attracted to you can’t wait to jump on your bones and If a woman is making you wait some arbitrary amount of time it means that she is not really sexually attracted to you. She has to work her way up to feeling that animal instinct that she would feel if you were an alpha male. Sorry to burst you guys bubble but if she is making you wait that is the reason why.

    Look at it this way, everyone knows whether or not they would have sex with someone right away. There are no other qualifiers. Men are the most honest when it comes to our sexual attraction. Women are the most dishonest. For men, no matter how successful or accomplished as women is we have to be attracted. We just don’t really value any other qualities such as status and wealth or education like women do.

    A women tries to think things logically, doe he have a good job, is he a nice guy, does he come from a good family, is he well educated. etc… Usually after all these qualifiers and many weeks of being wooed does she “give in” and finally has sex.

    The sad part about all this is for a lot of these women, they have slept with countless numbers of men though college and afterwards that it seems kinda sad that someone would have to wait for such a women. Like their well used vagina is some kind of prize.