Are you Ready?
There’s more to sex than, well, sex. The fact is, sex can change everything. It can change your relationship with your partner, your emotions, and how you feel about yourself. That’s why it’s important to make sure you’re having sex because you’re ready, not just because your partner wants you to.
Talk to your partner
There’s more to talking to your partner about sex than sending a text message. Find a time when the two of you can talk without being interrupted. It’s important to have an open, honest conversation with your partner before you decide to have sex. What are you comfortable with? How will you protect each other from STIs and unplanned pregnancy? Too shy to talk? That might be a sign you’re not ready.
Just because you're talking about it, doesn't mean you have to decide to do it. Remember, waiting is always an option. Learn how to talk to your partner.
Talk to your parents
Believe or not, your parents are a great resource. They can help you decide whether or not you’re ready for sex. They can also help you figure out the best way to protect yourself from STIs and unplanned pregnancy. Learn how to talk to your parents.
Don’t feel comfortable talking to your parents? Try another trusted adult. That might be a coach, a youth pastor or rabbi, a teacher, or a mentor. Your trusted adult can also help you find a teen-friendly health center.
Visit a teen-friendly health center
There are health centers all over South Carolina where you can go to talk about your sexual health. From questions about birth control, getting tested for STIs, and even getting a prescription for birth control or free condoms, your local health center can help. Some health centers even have special hours, entrances, waiting rooms and appointment lines just for teens. That means the only adults you’ll see during your visit are the doctors and nurses.
You don’t need your parents’ permission to visit, but it’s always a good idea to talk to talk to them before you go. See our clinic locator to find your nearest health center.
There are a lot of birth control options and they all have their own pros and cons. The important thing is to find one that works for you. Learn about them all using our birth control comparison tool.
Birth control isn’t just for the ladies, either. Guys, it’s just as important for you to learn about the different birth control options so you can support your partner.
Don't skip the condom lesson
Ladies, knowing how to use a condom doesn’t mean you’re expecting to have sex. It means you respect yourself enough to be prepared. Plus it's one of the few ways you can protect yourself from STIs.
Ready to learn? Learn how to use a condom.