Question: I was thinking about losing my virginity to an escort, and even though I want a girlfriend, sometimes I feel like I need to get my sexual exploration out of the way before I get into a committed relationship. Should I try sex with an escort and keep my options open before I get into a relationship? Are there other options?
There are many ways for a person to explore their sexuality, including their sexual interests, desires, fantasies, turn-ons and turn-offs.
Although some choose to have their first sexual experience with a paid partner (sometimes called an escort, hooker, sex worker, prostitute or, if male, then a hustler or rent boy), most people choose to have their first sexual experiences with a romantic relationship partner or friend.
Risk Vs. Reward
Having sex has the potential to be highly pleasurable and satisfying, but it also carries risks that cannot always be prevented with the use of a condom.
Research studies are quite clear that sex workers – particularly those that are working illegally, which most sex workers in the US are doing given laws that prohibit exchanging sex for money – tend to be more likely to have sexually transmissible infections (STI) such as chlamydia, gonorrhea, HIV, and herpes.
Although the risk of some STIs, such as chlamydia, gonorrhea and HIV, can be greatly reduced by using condoms during sex, this is not the case for all STIs.
Herpes and the human papillomavirus (HPV), several strains of which cause genital warts, cannot be prevented by using condoms.
And sex workers, who by the nature of their work have sex with a large number of people – sometimes in a given day or week – carry a significantly higher risk of STIs than other people who you might come into contact with. Of course, you would be wise to ask any partner, including a serious girlfriend, to get tested for STIs before having sex together as anyone can have or transmit an STI.
What About Your Feelings
Emotional aspects of sex are also a large part of the experience for many people.
I would encourage you to consider why you feel you want to first experience sex with someone who is a stranger to you rather than someone who you might take the time to get to know and develop a sense of comfort or familiarity with.
Sometimes people are afraid to let themselves go sexually, or to tell someone who they like or love what their deepest or most arousing fantasies are. Certainly there are risks involved in sharing these feelings with a romantic partner. But there are also risks to keeping oneself closed off to relationships and love, as it is through relationships – through communication and sharing of oneself and being curious about another person – that we often grow, mature and fall in love with life.
Patience Is A Virtue
You might ask yourself, too, what the rush is? Do you feel that you should have a certain amount of sexual experience by this point in your life? Or that men and women should get exploration out of the way before committing to each other? Or that there are certain things you can do sexually with a paid partner, but not with a relationship partner? Why might you feel this way?
In fact, many people find it pleasurable to explore sexually with someone who they know well. When people take the time to know each other, it can feel exhilarating – a little scary, but fun too – to try new things together.
Even if or when a relationship ends, both people may leave having grown up in some way, or having learned about themselves through sharing of themselves sexually, romantically and/or emotionally.
The Next Steps
As you consider your next steps, you might consider what you ultimately want from sexual exploration or romantic relationships.
If you want a girlfriend, someone who you know well and will explore with, try to keep that in sight as you consider what is or is not important to you about your beginning exploration, as well as how you can minimize your health risks while pursuing your sexual exploration.
Next Question: How Do Women Experience Multiple Orgasms?
My fiancee has recently been experiencing multiple orgasms when masturbating. She doesn’t know what triggers it, but we’d like to find out because she finds it pleasurable.
Read Dr. Debby Herbenick’s response.
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