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First Time Questions

"Do some girls bleed the first time they have sex?"

Sometimes people hear that sex for the first time is going to be really painful or frightening. Actually, for some people, having sex for the first time can be really good, and not painful or uncomfortable at all.

Sometimes the worries can be about our bodies. Boys and young men worry that their penis won't be big enough, or will be too big. Girls and young women might worry that their vagina will be stretched or damaged. In fact, having sex doesn't change the size or shape of the vagina in any way. The vagina is a bit like an elastic tube that stretches to accommodate the penis whatever size it is and then goes back to its original size and shape afterwards.

The only change that can sometimes happen to a woman after having sex is that her hymen can be stretched or torn. The hymen is a ring of thin skin which covers part of the opening of the vagina. It does not cover the vagina completely. When the hymen stretches it can feel uncomfortable or be a bit painful. Sometimes, the hymen can also tear if it stretches quickly, and this can cause some bleeding. This is completely normal and nothing to worry about.

"What does the term 'pop your cherry' mean?"

This is a slang expression that refers to a girl losing her virginity. In some cases, a girl’s hymen (thin membrane in the vaginal opening) breaks when she has intercourse for the first time.  This can cause bleeding and is sometimes uncomfortable. In other cases, the hymen rips during other sexual or non-sexual activities. Regardless, the expression “pop your cherry” refers to the act of having sexual intercourse for the first time.

 "What happens on your first time having sex?"

It's completely normal to be interested and excited by the thought of having sex and to wonder what it might be like. But it's also normal to feel worried or confused about it.

If you've never had sex before, no one would expect you to know how to do it. Good sex is more about feeling comfortable around someone, trusting them and being able to communicate with them than it is about having the perfect technique.

When you decide to have sex for the first time, you may well be nervous. But there's no right or wrong way to have sex and it is important for two people to feel comfortable and do what makes them both feel good.

It's likely to take some time before things go smoothly. So don't feel too let down if your first time doesn't go exactly as you planned, sex generally gets better the more times you do it and the more you learn about it.

Remember, even if you do decide to have sex, It is completely OK to say no or stop at any point if you don't want to continue. Nobody has the right to make you do anything you're not happy to do, so only have sex if you are really happy to. That's true for the first time and every time you have sex.

It is also important to keep in mind that you can still get pregnant or get an infection, even if it is your first time. So, it is really important to have contraception sorted first.

"What is the average age to have first time sex?"

The average age for heterosexual (straight) sexual intercourse for both young men and young women is 16.

If you haven't had sex yet, don't worry. The chances are that most of your friends won't have had sex either, whatever they say.

With sex, it's only right to take the plunge if you absolutely feel like you're ready and you really want to.

Check out the Brook website for some key messages about being ready, having sex for the first time and top tips for healthy relationships.

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