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I feel pressured to have sex

I’m really worried about Saturday. I’ve been speaking to this guy from my school for about a week and we’ve seen each other around in school but we’ve never talked in person, only online. he’s in year 11 and he’s 16, I’m in year 10 and 15 in 2 months. he wants to meet on Saturday and I agreed but he asked if I was gonna be alone and sent a wink emoji so obviously I know what he has in mind. Im still a virgin but I’m not scared to do it, I’m just really worried, especially because I hardly know him. my friends think he’s just going to have sex and leave me but other friends think he’s going to stay with me. I know it’s illegal for a 16 year old to have sex with a 14 year old, but all of my friends have older boyfriends and my family don’t seem to be bothered about his age difference to mine. obviously I know you know nothing about either of us so you can’t really say your opinion on it, I’m just wondering if you think it’s wrong to do, or unsafe because we haven’t talked in person yet and I’m going to his house on Saturday. ive already agreed to it because i really fancy him but im not sure if i should back out because i dont really want to have sex with him, but then everyone at school will laugh at me for not taking the opportunity to ‘do it’ with one of the most popular guys in school

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Sam

Hi there,

Deciding to have sex is a big step and it’s important that you only have sex if you feel ready and because you want to. No one should pressure you to be sexually active with them or with someone else. It’s your body and you can choose when to say yes and when to say no to sex.

Someone wanting sex or expecting sex doesn’t mean you have to agree, even if they’re really popular or your friends think you should. You can decide what feels right for you and no one else should push you into having sex or make you feel guilty, stupid or bad for saying no. Whether they want a relationship with you or not, having sex is something only you can consent to and having sex because you want a relationship isn’t the way to try to make that happen.

It’s okay to get to know someone before you decide whether you want to have a sexual relationship with them and talking online doesn’t always mean that you’ll feel comfortable with them in person. It can be unsafe to go somewhere that you’ll be on your own with them, like to someone’s house or to an address you don’t know, so pick somewhere you’ll feel relaxed and where other people will be around like a café or the cinema. That way, you won’t be on your own if things don't go well and you can get to know each other better without the pressure of wondering what the other person expects.

If you’ve not spoken face to face it’s always possible that the person you’re talking to online isn’t who they say they are. Think about keeping safe and if you decide to meet up and always arrange to meet somewhere public, tell someone else where you’re going and ask them to phone or text you to check you’re okay. Make sure your phone is fully charged and ask a member of staff to get help for you or call 999 if you feel threatened or in danger.

Sometimes the age gap in your relationship might not seem much of a problem but if you’re under the age of 16 it’s illegal for someone to have sex with you, whether you consent or not. The law is there to protect you and to stop young people from being pressured to have sex when they’re not ready to.

Remember, you don’t need to give an excuse if you decide to say no, not wanting sex is a good enough reason to refuse. If you think that you want sex you can still say no afterwards if you change your mind -there’s no rule that says you need to carry on doing something you no longer want to do.

I hope this advice has helped and you can talk to a counsellor at Childline more about this or anything else that's on your mind

Take care

Sam

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