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Did She Have Sex Too Soon?

sex too soon


Did She Have Sex Too Soon?

When is sex too soon?

Dear Duana,

I met a guy on Valentine’s Day (through an online dating service), and we really hit it off. He is an amazing kisser, a complete gentleman (pays for everything, opens doors, whole nine), a VERY successful businessman 12 years older than me, and he really admires me and my pursuit of my career.

Problem is, we couldn’t resist having sex on only the SECOND date, which was this past Saturday!!! We had had a bit too much wine, and I stupidly went to his apartment because he had flowers that he wanted to give me, one thing led to another, and the sex was NOT good- mostly I think because it was just too soon.

It really ended up feeling like a hook-up.  I didn’t stay over, because I needed to get back to a friend’s house and didn’t want to have a discussion about it with her.

The next day he and I laughed about it, and agreed that it was too soon..

As the day went on, I started to feel anxious because he wasn’t really complimenting me or reassuring me about his attraction towards me, etc…He was not as attentive as he had been up until the sex happened.  Also, that night, I saw that he had logged back onto the dating website.

So I sent him a text saying that I had fun, but didn’t think we were a good match, and I wished him the best. Men are supposed to pursue US actively, right? He couldn’t understand why I didn’t want to see him anymore, and said I was making a mistake. The next day I changed my mind and we talked over the phone about how I felt that he just lost attraction/respect for me, how the sex was not good, and that he had been back on the site…he said he didn’t want to smother me, that he still really likes me and wants to see me and keep getting to know me, and that he checks the site out of curiosity. He has called and texted every day this week, and we have plans for Saturday night. I really like him, but I want to be with someone who is always going to express their feelings towards me and make me feel sexy, beautiful, etc….do you think I should continue to see this guy?? Or is it pretty much doomed because of the early sexual activity???

Dear Ingrid,

I have to hand it to you—you’re doing a lot right. Some stuff not so much, but mostly—yes, right. And no, I don’t think your relationship is necessarily doomed.

Right Stuff:

Being in touch with your mating psychology; YES, they’re supposed to pursue us. A man we must pursue is *not* worth having.   He Who Must Be Dragged through the courtship is the antithesis of the loving, willing and able provider and protector.  “Able” without the other two aspects is painful and, frankly, it can be dangerous.

Connecting with your emotions that he wasn’t helping you feel safe after the sex (he ramped the attention down just when you needed it turned up) and trusting those emotions.

—Realizing having sex this soon didn’t feel right to you.

Leaving rather than staying the whole night.  Nothing says “Desperation” like clinging; you didn’t.

Breaking up as soon as you got the first whiff that he’d lost any respect and/or interest.

And there’s only one Not So Much part: Having sex too soon.

BUT, since you are comparatively young and hot (a decade plus = power on your side), you may be able to get by unscathed.  On the other hand, he’s rich ( = power on his side), so you must toe the gender line more with him than with a man of lower Catnip For Women status.

Here’s what I’d advise now to save this emerging relationship so you can figure out if it’s got staying power—and feel wonderful while so doing:

At the beginning of the very next date, at a point when you two are in no danger of having sex (such as in the middle of dinner in, one hopes, a public locale!), tell him something along these lines:

“I like you, but I barely know you, and I’m not ready to date you exclusively; sex makes a relationship exclusive and serious too quickly, at least for me. So let’s just keep getting to know each other, and leave the sex out of it until we’re both really sure we don’t want to date others. Okay?”

(He might say he’s ready…you can then smile very sweetly and say that you’re not there just yet.  Because, let’s face it—you’re not.)


What this short speech does for you:

It’s honest.  Most women can’t continue dating around while having sex with a guy, and you’re not ready for a mini-marriage/monogamous commitment to this man.

It keeps you from wasting a lot of time and emotion being prematurely committed to a guy who could be wrong for you;

It prevents him from being convinced he’s Got you, so he doesn’t have to pursue or court you anymore.  Which is Wrong For You, and does nothing for *him* either, emotionally, if he really wants to fall in love.

—It puts you one-up, because you’re effectively saying that not only aren’t you having more sex with him (yet), you’re back on the mating market and open to dating other men.  Which you should be.

Men are born, raised, and work in lives permeated by hierarchy.  At the start, if you’re one-down, kiss anything worthwhile long-term goodbye.  On the other hand, your being one-up lets him figure out whether he emotionally connects with being Lucky to have you, and whether you’re worth polishing the antlers and doing battle for.

Reassures him of two things nearly EVERY man wants to know: You’re a good paternity risk (you’re effectively communicating that you don’t sleep around and that this is atypical behavior for you, as indeed I hope it is); and you’re high-status. He’s already high-status, so you can bet your sweet a$$ he’s status-driven and won’t settle for less than someone he knows to be a total catch (as indeed he should not!).

Gives you your power back. Which feels oh-so-much more secure than waiting for a guy you barely know to “lend” it back to you, right?

Ingrid, I think you could have blown this if you had clung to him like an ivy vine, but you didn’t. You bolted, which was the thing to do. And with the repair advice above, this could turn around. Let me know—I wish you all the best.


Photo By:Riley Steele in bed photo


Duana C. Welch, Ph.D., is the author of Love Factually: 10 Proven Steps from I Wish to I Do, coming in January, 2015. She also contributes at Psychology Today and teaches psychology at Austin-area universities. Get a free chapter of Love Factually!

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