While the media often portrays a woman losing her virginity as some sacred, special moment between her and her partner, that’s typically NOT the case IRL. In fact, it’s far from it! The truth is, sex will most likely hurt the first time you have it, and our experts are here to tell you that that’s completely normal and even expected. The good news? There ARE things you and your partner can do to help ease the pain — and the awkwardness — of your first time. Click here to see sweet pics of some of the most adorable Hollywood couples.
When it comes to sex, Dr. Tara Solomon, OBGYN, believes most women don’t have a clue about what to expect their first time, and it all comes down to not being properly educated. In turn, a lot of women have misconceptions about sex and are simply unprepared once they become sexually active. “They really don’t have any idea what to expect unless their moms talked to them about it or they hear it from their girl friends,” Dr. Solomon explained to HollywoodLife.com EXCLUSIVELY. “They kind of just do the deed and get it over with. They know from their friends it’s going to hurt — that there’s pain involved.” However, what some girls don’t know is that there could be bleeding as well.
“Bleeding occurs when the hymen’s broken,” the expert continued. “Some girls come to me concerned about the bleeding, but it’ll go away with time and it’s not a problem. However, it’ll take a while for first-timers to get used to the pain.” On the bright side, there are ways to decrease the pain and get your body prepared for sex. “To prepare for the first time, girls can have their partner finger them to stretch them out a bit,” Dr. Solomon told us. Sex toys can also be used. Once two fingers can get in there comfortably, you can learn to put a condom on a penis and then get used to lubricant.” For Dr. Solomon, lubricant is a must.
“She’ll be scared out of her mind the first time, so she’ll be dry down there. When you’re afraid, everything gets dry — mouth, vagina, everything,” the doctor said. “So it’s really important to use a lot of lubricant the first time in order to be comfortable.” But lubricant isn’t the only way to ease some of the pain. “Hygienically, they should probably clip the hair around their vulva — you don’t have to shave, but keep it as short as possible because it’ll keep sex more comfortable,” Dr. Solomon advised.
And of course, foreplay is “a necessity,” according to the OBGYN, who made it clear that it’s also important to “get used to” your partner. Being relaxed is key as well, and foreplay will help with that. Aside from being physically prepared though, it’s essential that you’re also mentally ready — and that communication with your partner is clear. “You can use sex toys, fingers, or dildos to get comfortable. When you feel ready, you talk about it together and it happens. Let it happen as gradually as you need to, and take your time,” Dr. Solomon said.
Donnica L. Moore, MD; President of Sapphire Women’s Health Group (Chester NJ), couldn’t agree more. “Wait until you’re really ready, with a person you feel really comfortable with. Is s/he someone you feel like you can talk to about anything? Then that might be the right one,” Dr. Moore told us EXCLUSIVELY. “But talk about it first. Share your feelings, thoughts, and concerns. Talk about when and where. Talk about their previous experiences, especially about their history of condom use and whether they’ve had any STI’s. Talk about what kind of protection you’re planning to use — and be prepared.”
Dr. Moore continued, “The most important thing that women need to know to prepare for their first time is that it should only happen when you want it to, and that you can say no at any time. Planning for contraception and safe sex is also extremely important. According to the American Virgin study, 25 percent of respondents did not use any contraception the first time they had intercourse.”
Protection IS essential, and it’s something many first-timers clearly aren’t thinking about yet. Even if a woman is on the pill, she can still contract an unwanted infection. “Ask about STIs,” Dr. Solomon reiterated. “I’ve seen girls get herpes the first time they do it.” But even once all those things have been accounted for, the experience STILL may not go according to “plan.” “It might not happen the first time,” the doctor said. “Get used to it, let the sting wear off. Try it again two or three days later.” Dr. Moore “highly recommends” that all teenage girls read a book about sex — with pictures.
Luckily, sex WILL get better. “Usually what I hear is, ‘It was as bad as you said it was going to be.’ But the more sex you have, the better it gets,” Dr. Solomon told us. “It will start becoming comfortable!” Dr. Moore agrees that while it may not be great at first, practice makes all the difference. “Everyone has different circumstances and experiences. However, I try to manage those expectations by honestly saying it may not be great [the first time],” Dr. Moore explained.
“Most females lose their virginity in the US at an average age of 17.2 to a male 18 months older (who is often—but not always—a virgin himself). That means neither one of them is experienced. Like anything else, sex improves with practice. But it also improves much more with communication. Talking about what you want, what you like, what he likes, what you’d like to try (or not try) all improves the experience. So does the location and circumstances.”
Overall, sex doesn’t have to be seen as something scary. “Like anything else in life, sex is a learning experience,” Dr. Moore said. “Keep an open mind, have open communication with your partner, and if something is bothersome or less than satisfactory, identify it and try to make that better next time — either with the same partner or a different one.”
Dr. Solomon assures everything will be fine as well. “We’ve been doing this for thousands of years, you’re going to get through this, it may be painful, it may not be painful, you may bleed, you may not bleed. But you will get through it and it will get better. Relax and enjoy it — have a good time. It’s important to understand what’s going to happen before you do it so that there will be no surprises and you won’t be afraid. You want to be educated and prepared. This is apart of life.”
Tell us, HollywoodLifers — what do you think of these tips? Do YOU think it’s important to be educated about sex early on?