What is sex?
The term “sex” can be used to define whether a person is biologically male or female. It also is a physical act that involves the stimulation of the sexual organs and an exchange of bodily fluids. Most commonly, “sex” implies vaginal intercourse, where the erect penis of the male enters the vagina of the female. Other activities, such as oral and anal sex, are also sex. While pregnancy wouldn’t result with oral or anal sex, STI/STD transmission and emotional attachment can occur.
What is a virgin?
A simple response is: someone who hasn’t had sex. However, it is more complicated than that: A virgin used to mean someone who has never had sexual intercourse. Some young men and women will engage in all kinds of sexual behavior including oral and anal sex, but still consider themselves virgins. Others believe that having sexual contact such as oral and anal sex involving the transmission of bodily fluids means someone isn’t a virgin. There can be confusion for some people if they have been sexually abused or raped.
(It is best to stress that choosing abstinence is a choice a person can make about his or her future today. And that choice includes abstaining from sexual activity including, but not limited to, vaginal intercourse.)
Can you get pregnant the first time you have sex?
Yes. Anytime you have sex, you open up the possibility of becoming pregnant, whether it’s your first time or not.
Can you become pregnant without having sex?
Yes. If semen is released anywhere close to the opening of the vagina, it is possible for some sperm to enter. This can occur with hand to genital contact or if semen is released in close contact to the vagina even when undergarments are on. It only takes one sperm cell and one egg cell to cause a pregnancy.
Can you get pregnant if you have sex while you are on your period?
Becoming pregnant while menstruating is rare but possible, especially if the woman has very short menstrual cycles.
Can you get pregnant even if you haven’t started menstruating?
Yes. Although pregnancy would be highly unlikely before a girl starts menstruating, ovulation can happen just before menarche (the first time a girl gets her period). So even if you haven’t had signs of your period yet, choosing to be sexually active can still result in a pregnancy.
What is oral sex?
Oral sex is mouth to genital contact. People who engage in oral sex are still at risk for STI/STDs.
What should you do if you don’t want to get pregnant?
Refraining from all sexual contact is the only way to ensure that you won’t get pregnant.
What are STIs/STDs?
STI/STD stands for sexually transmitted infection/sexually transmitted disease. These are a group of viral, bacteria, fungi, and parasites that are typically spread through sexual contact. Some result in symptoms such unusual discharges of the penis or vagina, or burning urination, but others have no symptoms. This does not mean that they are not doing internal damage, however.
Are STIs/STDs treatable?
Virtually all STIs/STDs are treatable, but not all are curable. For example, HIV/AIDS, genital herpes, and HPV have no known cure. If you suspect you have been infected with an STI/STD, even if you have no symptoms, it is important to be tested and to seek treatment immediately.
Can you get an STI/STD by touching, or are you only at risk if you actually exchange bodily fluid?
Anytime a body part comes into contact with semen or vaginal fluids of an infected person, you are putting yourself at risk. This means that activities other than vaginal sex (oral sex, for example) can transmit STI/STDs, as can other forms of intimate touching. For example, human papilloma virus (commonly referred to as genital warts and is responsible for over 90% of all cervical cancer) can be transmitted skin-to-skin as well as through bodily fluid.
How do you get HIV/AIDS?
The virus that causes AIDS is passed through bodily fluids like the blood, semen, breast milk, and vaginal fluid of an infected person. Having sex with an infected partner or sharing needles (for drug use) with an infected person are the two most common ways of acquiring the disease.
What’s wrong with having sex if we are both virgins and really love each other, but we aren’t sure if we’re ready for a long-term relationship?
Sex is a powerful, pleasurable activity, if it wasn’t few people would be as interested in it. You have to have a clear head to think about it. Even if both people have not engaged in any activity that would put them at risk for an STI/STD, there are other consequences to think about. There is always the chance of pregnancy and all the decisions and consequences associated with it. There are also emotional consequences such as regret, jealousy, and fear. Studies show that the majority of high school boys and girls regret their decision to be sexually active.
You also have to realistically look at how long a middle school or high school relationship lasts on the average. Just because you feel as if you love each other, it does not mean that you are ready to have sex or that the relationship will last.
What is abstinence?
Abstinence is the choice to wait to have sex, and to thus keep yourself free from the diseases, worry, and possible pregnancy. Most people agree it’s best for middle school and high school students to wait to have sex. Others see the benefits of saving sex until you are married. For a school-age person, abstinence is the surest way to stay physically and emotionally healthy when it comes to your sexuality.