The Big Debate: Is Sex On The First Date No Biggie?

Team STELLAR goes head-to-head on the issues.

On the yes side is Deputy Editor, Victoria Stokes

The saying ‘why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free’ is one that infuriates me, because it implies that as soon as a woman sleeps with a guy, she loses her worth. It’s also something that would never be said to a guy – and the comparison with a cow isn’t particularly flattering either.

There’s a definite problem in talking about sex in this way, because it suggests that sex is something women ‘give’ to men, and the idea that women should just ignore their baser instincts for fear that they be deemed ‘slutty’ isn’t just backward, it’s insulting. Where did this ‘no sex on the first date’ rule even come from? And why does it only apply to women? I’d put money on it that no single guy has ever worried about a girl thinking less of him for having sex with her too early on.

Interestingly, the tide seems to be turning in terms of opinion, with a recent survey by OKCupid finding that 46% of their users would consider sleeping with someone on the first date. Of those that said first date sex was out of the question, finding out the person was a jerk after doing the deed seemed to be the main concern, but here’s the truth: people can turn out to be jerks five dates, or even two years down the line, regardless of whether you had sex with them right away.

Really I think the big question to ask yourself is, will I feel okay if this person turns out to be different than I expected after the act or if a future with them doesn’t materialise? If the answer’s yes, and you’re happy to go with the flow in the moment, then by all means, get yours. Everyone has an opinion about when’s the right time to have sex with someone for the first time (three dates in? When you’re exclusive? Not until there’s a ring on your finger?) but really the right time is when it feels right for you… and if it feels right on the first date, then go for it.

On the no side is STELLAR contributor Genevieve Wilson

Call me old-fashioned but I personally believe that sex should be kept in the back of
your mind when it comes to a first date. If the sexual chemistry is strong on date one, then chances are it will be even stronger on date three or four, and if not, you might be happy you abstained in the first place. In my opinion, you’re better off waiting until you know the person a bit better and you’ve built up an element of trust.

This in turn will mean you feel more relaxed and at ease when it does happen and in the immediate aftermath. We live in a society that’s plagued with anxiety, and I think people are better off avoiding scenarios that trigger that. I also think that most women, whether they like to admit it or not, feel a sense of emotional attachment a er they sleep with someone
for the first time. Not necessarily to the individual themselves, but I believe that sex with someone new leaves us feeling exposed, vulnerable and quite often, a bit embarrassed. Especially when too much alcohol is involved, which in this day and age, it often is.

We each have our own individual boundaries but my self-deprecating inner voice would be multiplying my fear levels if I woke up in bed with a stranger after meeting them for the first time the night before. By the way, there’s no judgement here – I don’t think negatively about people who think differently to me, and I too am allowed to have an opinion without being considered ‘anti-feminist’. I know for some reason the same rules don’t seem to apply to the opposite sex but I believe we are programmed completely differently to men, we’re more sensitive by nature and thus possibly more open to feeling wounded after a one night stand.

Sex can be a very intimate thing, and when you let feelings for each other develop before jumping into bed, it will be all the more special. And it’s my experiences, not society, that have shaped my views.

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