I'm not sure about you guys, but, personally speaking, I've never had a relationship start with a woman until we have had sex. I guess it's the thought that, before committing to someone, it's important to know if there's sexual chemistry first. That's not to say it's the right way, of course, considering those relationships ended.
And, whether you agree with my thought process or oppose it, one thing I think we can all agree on is this—sex in a relationship is important to maintain happiness. In fact, that has been proven over and over again.
However important sex it is to maintain happiness with your partner, it's crucial not to just rush into things and rely on it to get through. That's why This Is Insider offered up a few suggestions we broke down for you.
After Saying I Love You
Dropping the "L" word on someone takes a hell of a lot of courage, so it's actually a little insane to think that you need to be in love with someone prior to having a romp session with them.
However, according to an early-2000s study by a professor at Illinois State of about 300 college-age men and women, relationships that had sex first and said "I love you" after had a negative experience.
Once You've Had The DTR (Define The Relationship) Conversation
Talking to Business Insider in 2015, psychotherapist Toni Coleman said that having "an emotional connection is one of the key elements of any relationship," so make sure you both understand where you're both at before just jumping into the sack and going at it like wild animals.
If your partner has the same emotional connection as you do, things are more likely to end positively than when one person is more attached than the other.
Hold Out, Man
In 2010, Dean Busby from Brigham Young University performed a study suggesting that the longer you and your partner hold out from having sex, the higher probability it is that the relationship will be satisfying.
Said Busby: "There's more to a relationship than sex, but we did find that those who waited longer were happier with the sexual aspect of their relationship."
Some Form Of Three, That's The Magic Number
OK, so you've gone as long as you can without ripping each other's clothes off, relying solely on dry humping and high school-level stuff like fingering. Congratulations, you're both much stronger people than anyone could imagine.
However, according to the This Is Insider piece, the aforementioned Toni Coleman suggests waiting three months before sex, once the honeymoon phase is over, while a different psychotherapist, Barton Goldsmith, believes a mere 36 hours together is enough time—and there's support for that belief.
Per a 2012 study, sexual desire drops after that three-month period—especially in women—meaning 90 days may be way too late to start having sex.
Of course, the 36 hours that Goldsmith suggests don't need to be consecutively—it could mean two hours at dinner for a first date, a gym date for an hour a couple days later and then a few hours together at the bar the following weekend—so that's important to know.
As you can see, there's a ton of different support to either rush in and have sex early on in a relationship, as well as reasons to wait. Bottom line is this, though: When you're both comfortable and on the same page, that's when you should have sex. Sometimes, it's obvious you both want a "F*ck Buddy" who's just that. Other times, you both have a connection and don't want to risk going to fast by just plunging into bed together.
Whatever pace you go at, if you care about her and respect the relationship, you'll wait until you've at least both one another's friends—assuming you're both serious about where things should go.