Social Question

wundayatta's avatar

Do you think there's a relationship between how quickly you have sex with someone and the quality of a subsequent relationship?

Asked by wundayatta (58625points) September 3rd, 2012

There was a story on BBC today that it took me a while to track down. They said that early sex caused poor relationships. I finally found the study here, and as usual, the claims of the study are much more modest than the headlines say.

The study is about low and moderate income cohabiting couples with children. It is not about every relationship. We know that children cause pressure on all relationships, as do lower incomes. So I’m not sure the study says all that much new, but I am sure that the English paper (The Daily Mail) wrote a sensationalized headline that was quite misleading.

Still, I wonder if any of you have noticed a difference in your own lives depending on how quickly you had sex with a new partner, and the eventual quality of the relationship. What do you think?

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18 Answers

CWOTUS's avatar

Not any more. I tell prospective relationships (when we start to get near a point of intimacy, this isn’t “first date” information!) that I won’t sleep with her unless I already love her. And that doesn’t happen in the blink of an eye.

It scares some away, I guess. But it also seems to attract “the right ones”. And I’m sticking to my guns, even if I haven’t been laid awhile now. Other stuff has happened.

I don’t think I have any “bad” relationships, even with former failed relationships. That is, I’ve had some people drop out of relationships, and I’ve done that, too, but it has never been done with obvious bad feeling, recrimination and abuse. Some relationships don’t work out, and we both walk away with our dignity and respect, for each other and for ourselves.

Mostly I’m friends with all of my exes. And I have the best relationships of all with my kids.

Does that answer the question?

Coloma's avatar

I had sex with the turbo jets in my hot tub on our first date after installation. Our relationship has only deepened the last 6 years. lol

whitenoise's avatar

First… I have not read the study so I shouldn’t comment on it.

However… I feel that there maybe a lot of coinciding factors that could influence the outcome.

Besides, I wonder… Most of us have a lot of long and also (more) short relationships in our lives. The short ones would normally just pass and be forgotten and likely be the poorer ones. The relationships that last longer should be the better ones.

If I were to have sex relatively early after initializing my relationship with people, then I would likely have more poor relationships in which I had sex than if I would wait. I hope this makes sense still.

(I have had a lot of different short relationships in which I didn’t wait and I feel that I never looked back with regrets, nor have I ever thought that it was sex that ruined the relationship. Well… maybe once, but that would also have ruined it, had I waited any longer.)

wonderingwhy's avatar

Only when sex was the basis of the relationship in the first place and sometimes not even then.

Earthgirl's avatar

The timing is inconsequential. To me, if sex is the whole reason for the “relationship” then it will not last. You could have sex sooner or later in the relationship and it doesn’t matter. What matters is that you love the whole person, you are not just out for physical pleasure without loving and respecting the whole person. It’s a gamble whether or not it will last. It’s always a gamble. It doesn’t matter whether or not you have sex sooner or later. What matters is respect and attraction and growing the relationship.

ragingloli's avatar

Only for very short periods. Unless you chain them up in your cellar.

deni's avatar

I just feel like not having sex with someone allows you to remain clear headed regarding the way you feel about them. Sex does make things more complicated, not 100% of the time, but for most people it does fairly often. That’s not even necessarily a bad thing. But waiting also builds up anticipation and lets you focus on other things and those are both good for the long term well being of your relationship with this person. Thats my personal experience. The anticipation can be half the fun, and you only have it once really.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Well, the benefit to waiting is you find out if the guy is really interested in your and your personality. If he isn’t, and all he wants is sex, he’ll drop out before long.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

Nope. In fact, in a few instances where I purposely waited to feel more secure about the guy, those guys turned out to be the most troubled, warped, wastes of time.

Aethelflaed's avatar

In the relationships where sex happened later, there was a lack of passion and emotional intimacy that hurt us. In one, I never really felt like I was with them, instead always feeling like our relationship was something that would happen eventually instead of something that was happening right then already. It made it harder to get out of the relationship, because I kept thinking it would get better.

Blackberry's avatar

Relationships fail due to things like cheating and one person gambling away the savings. I’m sure the date sex occured has nothing to do with these situations lol. Waiting to have sex seems like an old tradition from the 50s or something.

Blackberry's avatar

@deni I can build up ample anticipation from the bar to my apartment…..

Ba Dum Chh

Ponderer983's avatar

@deni Sex has a lot to do with the way I feel about someone. If it’s bad, or the sex isn’t compatible, then I’m out! So for me, I need it for me to be clear headed about my feelings for someone.

augustlan's avatar

Not at all. I’ve had sex both sooner and later with people I’ve had both good and bad relationships with. I slept with my husband on our first date, and we’re still madly in love.

tedd's avatar

I have several personal experiences I can relate here.

There was a g/f who I had sex with on the very first night we met (barely 6 hours later). We went on to date for almost a year. We fought a lot about stupid little stuff, but I think that had very little to do with the early sex. In the end I would say that we broke up in part because we had sex too soon and our relationship didn’t develop fully as a result (or at least not properly). That said though, it was hardly the only or biggest reason we broke up.

Conversely, my next long term g/f and I didn’t have sex for almost 9 months. This wasn’t really through a lack of trying on my part. I am always cool with waiting til someone’s ready, but in particular this time I waited longer than I probably normally would’ve because she was much younger (18) and a virgin. We were legitimately in love and saying it before we ever had sex, and I feel like the relationship really developed in all aspects. We went on to date for almost 2 years all together. In the end what tore us apart was the age/life phase difference and being long distance. Sex and a lack of relationship development never played into us breaking up.

But honestly, I would hesitate to say it’s a “rule” that early sex ruins relationships. I think it can have a negative side effect if both parties end up being lazy and don’t develop the other aspects of the relationship. My current g/f and I had sex fairly early (several dates in), and I think our relationship developed more slowly than some others I’ve had. But in fairness I was also still hung up on my X, and I wouldn’t say it developed “poorly” just slowly. (we’ll be two years in November)

OpryLeigh's avatar

My boyfriend and I have been together for more than 5 years but we had been friends for a good few years before that. We had sex on the night we decided to turn our platonic relationship into a romantic one. If we were to break up now I wouldn’t blame it on the fact that we had sex early in our relationship.

Crumpet's avatar

From a male perspective I would say that after a few weeks of being in a new relationship and the girl is putting off sex, would start to put me off her. I’d start thinking she didn’t find me attractive, or that the relationship wasn’t going anywhere.
I think once you’ve had sex with someone, you feel like you know them more.

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