Do You Have to Wait Until the Third Date to Have Sex?

We’ve already debunked most of the dating rules of the past, and most people understand that the modern dating scene is quite different from what most of our parents experienced. Most of us aren’t meeting our significant others at a coffee shop or the gym; we’re meeting online, and a lot of our relationships don’t even begin as typical relationships.

With all these changes, how do we navigate the third-date rule? Most people have heard about the third-date rule before, but if you haven’t, it’s the basic principle that you wait until the third date to have sex with someone. Many women swear by it, saying it “keeps him or her interested,” while some say it’s a pointless measure of your connection with someone.

There are many reasons to abide by the third-date rule. People are swiping for hookups and casual partners, but what about the people who actually want a relationship? Waiting until the third date (or later) to sleep with someone means they are much likelier to be in it for the long haul, not just a casual encounter. However, be aware this isn’t the case for everyone. (Just lookin’ out for your heart, bb!) If you’re not interested in casual sex, waiting can be a way to show that to a potential S.O.

Some people say that three dates is the appropriate amount of time to get to know someone well enough to decide to have sex with them. By the third date, the awkwardness and the butterflies have gone away, so you’re able to really get to know each other. Also by this time, you’re able to enjoy the time together and feel connected to the other person.

While there are many reasons waiting to sleep with someone can impact your relationship positively, there are definitely some reasons people decide to go against it. First of all, sleeping with someone right away can be a quick insight into how much of a connection you have. If sex is an important part of a relationship for you, having sex early in the relationship can tell you if this is an area you and the other person would be a good fit for.

Not setting an intention to wait until a third date also allows things to develop naturally. If things are going amazing and you feel it in your gut that you want to have sex with someone on date two, there’s nothing stopping you. You’re also able to decide organically if the third date is even enough time. Some people wait until date five or six, and some wait until they’re engaged or married. There’s no right way to approach sex in a relationship, and the only wrong way is to push someone when they’re not ready.

Just because you don’t abide by the third-date rule doesn’t mean you have to have sex with someone upon meeting. You can decide to sleep with someone on date nine or when they walk in the door to go out. There doesn’t need to be a steadfast rule for every relationship you have. Set boundaries for yourself, not for anyone else. If having sex with a new partner too soon makes you feel icky and uncomfortable, don’t do it. You have the power to decide who you sleep with and when.

So, how exactly do you know when’s the right time? Some people know it’s the right time when they can’t go a day without thinking about the person. Others know when they begin to see this person as a long-term partner rather than just a date. Some just know because he or she is hot AF, and you are ready to get it on. There is no formula for deciding when to decide to start sleeping with someone you’re dating. This is an extremely personal aspect of a relationship, so it’s OK to take some time (or none at all!) to figure it out.

The most important way to decide is to simply talk to the person you’re dating. They might have the same fears and reservations that you are having (we’re all human!) but were too afraid to bring it up also. They could have reasons they want to wait — whether it’s religious, personal, physical, or something else — and this is a great time to discuss that with a potential significant other.

There should not be rules on how to approach a relationship, especially when it comes to something as personal as sex. Basically, the answer to this whole article is yes and no. It’s all about what you want, not some outdated rule probably created by men who had a hard time getting a second date.

Do you follow the third-date rule? Do you think there should be rules for dating?! Let us know your thoughts!

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