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Nervous About Having Sex for the First Time

Published: August 25, 2017
Dear TeenHealthFX,
Hi I am a virgin , I am nervous about having sex for the first time . I am very body conscious so taking my clothes off in front of a boy terrifies me ..... also I am worried that I will bleed the first time . I know it's going to hurt but the whole concept of having sex scares me . HELP ..
Signed: Nervous About Having Sex for the First Time

Dear Nervous About Having Sex for the First Time,

TeenHealthFX understands your concern, and reminds you that the emotions you are feeling are normal, especially during teenage years.

You expressed concern about potentially experiencing vaginal bleeding during your first sexual intercourse experience. Each woman’s first experience is different; while some may experience bleeding, others do not. FX suggests you read further about the relationship between virginity and the hymen.

You described feeling insecure about your body image. During teenage years, your body is still developing, and thus, undergoing many changes. Some of these changes may cause discomfort, however, TeenHealthFX reminds you that they are both normal and necessary parts of body development. FX invites you to read TeensHealth’s resource about puberty for further information. If these negative feelings increase, TeenHealthFX suggests scheduling an appointment with a therapist. If you live in northern New Jersey and need help finding a therapist you can call the Access Center from Atlantic Behavioral Health at 888-247-1400. Outside of this area you can log onto the US Department of Health and Human Services Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website for referrals in your area. You can also contact your insurance company to get a list of in-network mental health providers or check with your school social worker or psychologist to get a list of referrals in your area.

FX encourages you to not engage in sexual intercourse until you feel certain that you are ready to do so. Deciding to have sex is a personal decision that you should allow yourself adequate time to make. It is critical that you decide to have sex because it is something you want to do, rather than something you feel pressured to do. Once you reach an age where you do feel ready for sex, FX suggests that you check out the links in our Resource of the Month: Planned Parenthood Resources on Safer Sex so that you can learn about sexual readiness, how pregnancy happens, pregnancy tests, emergency contraception, birth control, STDs and more. The more educated you are and the more precautions you take when it comes to being sexually active, the less likely you will find yourself in a situation where you are dealing with an unwanted pregnancy or the transmission of an STD.

Prior to becoming sexually active, it is also important to speak to your doctor so you can learn about safer sex precautions that will help to protect you from unwanted pregnancies and the transmission of STDs. If you don't have a doctor and live in northern New Jersey, you can call the Adolescent/Young Adult Center for Health at 973-971-5199 for an appointment with an adolescent medicine specialist or contact your local teen health center or Planned Parenthood. A Planned Parenthood health center is a good option if you have concerns about cost or confidentiality issues. You can also contact your insurance company for a list of in-network providers.

Signed: TeenHealthFX

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