There’s so much wrapped up in the subject of sex. The highs and lows of relationships, new experiences, your identity, expectations, keeping safe – the list goes on…
It’s normal to find this confusing and you could feel overwhelmed. It just means you’re still sorting out what you want, who you are and who you want to be. You're also probably hearing different opinions from all kinds of different places. Who do you listen to? Your mates? TV? Church? Your parents? Online? The answer is pretty simple – you.
Having a good time with your partner is all about figuring out what you’re both into. Saying what you want (and what you don’t want) is key. At the end of the day it’s your body and no-one should be pressuring you.
If you’re getting really caught up in someone, take a step back and double-check you’re actually safe and happy. Are you being treated with love and respect? Do they listen to what you say? Are they nice to you? If not, then they’re not worth it. When a toxic relationship starts making you feel bad about yourself, it could lead to bigger problems like anxiety or depression.
Feelings around sex are complicated enough, but if you’re gay, bi, transgender, or just not sure, then things can get really tricky. It’s hard trying to work out who you are and who you’re attracted to, but it’s all part of growing up and it’s totally up to you. Sometimes, though, expectations from whānau, friends and society to act a certain way become overwhelming.
Here are some more questions you could ask yourself if you are feeling pressure about having sex. If you feel like you’re worried for your safety, you can contact Are You OK or Women's Refuge. If you are behaving abusively in your relationship and want to change, with help you can. Call Stopping Violence Services 0800 4SVSSVS (0800 478 778). Or if you need sexual health advice, try Family Planning.