sex

‘It made me feel really insecure.' 17 women get honest about the first time they had sex.

When we asked our readers to share their first sexual experiences with us, we weren't sure what to expect. 

It's a topic that is so often romanticised and fantasised about in popular culture and is rarely talked about through a realistic lens. 

So, we asked women to anonymously share their raw and real 'first time' stories. 

What happened? And how did it influence their attitude towards sex?

Many women describe awkward, uncomfortable situations. Some share traumatic incidents. Few, from the women we surveyed, tell romantic stories.  

Here's what they told us. 

1. "It was awkward, there was lots of bleeding."

I lost my virginity in a tent on a rural property at a 21st birthday party. It was awkward, there was lots of bleeding.

I felt pressure to lose my virginity. It’s only been in the past few years, now that I’m 43, that I realise it may have had a bit of a negative impact on my thoughts. The guy is now my husband but I feel a bit resentful that he just wanted to lose his virginity too, as opposed to having a slow and loving experience with me.

2. "He was cheating on his girlfriend."

I was drunk with a guy from work when I had my first sexual experience. He was cheating on his girlfriend. I have very little recollection of it.

I’m not sure how it impacted my attitude towards sex. I wasn’t traumatised or upset after it. I have a healthy sex life with my husband now and don’t feel any different to any of my friends.

I feel indifferent towards the experience. I know I was ready to lose my virginity and was mature enough (I was 19 years old). 

3. "He was really rough."

It was with a guy I had just met, when I was 15 years old. We were at his house after I had snuck out of home to meet up with him. He was 19. 

I didn’t feel pressured, but I had told him I wasn’t a virgin - so I felt like I needed to. He was really rough. He made me give him head even though I really didn’t want to. He also kept going down on me even though I kept trying to move his head away. He said I was going to “love it”. I was with him for five years after this. 

I’m lucky now I have an amazing partner who loves and respects me. But at the time I thought sex was something I had to do four times a week otherwise my partner wouldn’t love me.

I wish I had waited longer. 

4. "My first time made me feel insecure."

My first time was confusing and made me feel insecure. After that, I knew I did not want to have another sexual interaction until I found a person I am 100 per cent comfortable around.

I did feel pressure to lose my virginity, however I also felt that once I had lost my virginity that I would be deemed ‘impure’ and ‘damaged’.

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I think my experience is very similar for many women of my generation. Hopefully, through education and dialogue in the public sphere, more teenagers, specifically girls, will feel a lot more in control of the sexual experiences moving forward.

5. "I was desperate to just lose it."

I was 23 years old and desperate to just lose it. It was with a guy that I didn’t really know, he wasn’t forceful or mean, it just wasn’t enjoyable. Afterwards he acted like he didn’t know me.

I felt pressure, but not from others. I was more worried about what I thought people might think. 

I wish I had waited to be with someone I cared about. In fact, I met my husband about a month after that experience. I even felt pressure from him at the start, when I really wasn’t ready. 

I have always felt like sex has to be something I am required to do as part of a relationship. I’ve had good sex and bad sex. I still see my pleasure as secondary to that of my partner.

6. "It made me excited to explore my sexuality."

I lost my virginity on my honeymoon with my husband. It made me excited to explore my sexuality with the person I chose to spend my life with.

I didn’t feel pressure at all and I'm happy that I waited until I met someone who I knew was committed to me and made me feel safe and loved. 

Watch: What you're like in the bedroom, according to your star sign. 


Video via Mamamia

7. "He broke up with me straight after."

My first sexual experience was not fun. It was painful, embarrassing and awkward. I wasn't ready and he broke up with me straight after.

It's something that I want to completely forget. I wish I had waited till I was a bit older and more confident in myself.

It made me absolutely hate sex and now I have a fear of intimacy. 

8. "I definitely was doing it to impress him."

It was over within five seconds and I remember thinking 'was that it?' It was mostly painful and I wanted it to be over. I definitely was doing it to impress him and I also had pressure from my 'friends' as I was the last person in the group to do so. 

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It was with my boyfriend at the time, who was a lot older. I was 16 and he was 21 - I think that had a lot to do with it as it wasn't as big a deal for him as it was for me. 

I feel sad about the experience now. I wish I waited until I was ready and not doing it to impress someone. Later in life I met someone when I was ready and it was such a different experience actually doing it for myself compared to doing it for someone else. 

9. "I wish I had known it was meant to be a lot more pleasurable for me."

I was 'best friends' with him. We hung out a lot and there was always flirting between us. We were both 16 and in Year 10 at high school. The sexual tension was building and one day after a school excursion I went over to his house and we had sex. It was very obvious that was why I was going over. We weren't in a relationship and he didn't seem to want that from me. I was totally fine with that. I was super, super trusting of him even though I hadn't actually known him for that long (he was new to our school). I felt like I had a really close connection with him.

I didn't have an orgasm. It was okay, but honestly a bit uncomfortable. Also he was super into neck biting which felt a bit full on for me for my first time (it wasn't his first time). There was no foreplay and no oral sex. Looking back on it now, I really wish I had known that it was actually meant to be a lot more pleasurable for me.

I was a little bit let down to be honest. I thought after all that sex is cracked up to be, that it really wasn't that great. It gave me an insight into what sex shouldn't look like. 

Despite knowing I really liked him and had lost my virginity to him, my best friend started messaging him and lost her virginity to him too. It was a really horrible situation and of course, I felt like I had been discarded by him and was treated really poorly. Safe to say I cut off all contact with both the guy and my old best friend and haven't spoken to either of them since and it was a pretty rough time for me. 

10. "I felt a bit used."

I lost my virginity with a guy two years above me at school. He was nice but I felt a bit used.

I was a bit nervous to do it again, and didn't for 18 months.

I wish I'd waited to do it with someone I knew better.

11. "I’m lucky there was no pressure."

I was with my boyfriend (who had had sex before) and we were waiting until I was ready and then one night I was randomly like, 'LET'S DO THIS' and I lost my virginity, girl on top. I only realised afterwards that this was pretty rare. 

To be honest, I was pretty disappointed. I feel like other people said that their first time was amazing and mind-blowing, whereas I thought the whole thing was pretty 'meh'.

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Looking back now though I feel good about my experience, and I’m lucky there was no pressure or pain. 

12. "I burst out crying."

I was 19 and hanging out at my first 'proper' boyfriend's house. One thing led to another and we had sex. At the end, we realised that the condom broke. I burst out crying and raced home and told my mum. She was awesome about it. My boyfriend and I went to the doctor the next morning to get the morning after pill. We were together for six years.

I think my first experience was great - it was with someone I cared about and who cared about me and it ended with a funny story. It showed me that sex with someone you love is really heart-warming. But when we broke up, I learned sex can be a lot more exciting.

I am glad that it played out the way it did. I felt no pressure, and it was a soft entry into something that I took for granted later in life.

13. "I’d tore my own hymen prior so that it wouldn’t hurt."

I was 15 years old and it was with my boyfriend. We talked about it before. It was my decision. I was safe regarding birth control. I’d tore my own hymen prior so that it wouldn’t hurt on the day.

I didn’t feel any pressure - I’m pretty firm and staunch and never buckle to peer pressure - that’s what happens when you’re raised by a strong feminist mum.

I wish I’d known more about female pleasure and the clitoris prior though. 

14. "It was all about his pleasure."

I was freshly 18, in a university dorm room with my boyfriend of a few months and we had sex beneath some prayer flags and some glowing red lanterns. It was awkward and it was all about his pleasure - I didn't even think to ask or focus on my own. It hurt and I was super glad when it was over. I did love him though, and I felt super lucky to be doing it for the first time with someone I cared about, and who cared about me.

The boy I lost my virginity to was also a virgin, so we were two fumbling idiots. While I loved flirting and foreplay and kissing and all of that, the act of sex itself was always in my first few years about the guy. My attitude was, 'I hope he likes me,' 'I hope he is enjoying this,' 'I hope he thinks I am sexy.' I feel like those first few times set a precedent for my sex life for the next few years - which makes me fume in hindsight. 

I definitely felt pressure to lose my virginity, mainly from myself thanks to the pressure of society and the expectation that you lose it in high school. At 18, I felt "old" to have lost my virginity and felt an almost sense of relief once I had.

It makes me sad that my pleasure was not even considered once we got past foreplay.

15. "The experience gave me confidence."

My first time was nice. It was with a guy I liked, but we weren't serious. I think the experience gave me confidence that there are nice men out there, who treat you well even if they aren't in love with you.

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I look back on it fondly, even if some specifics make me cringe - just because of it being awkward.

16. "Almost 12 years later, I haven’t had sex again."

It was after my cousin's wedding. I was 19. 

I was offered to stay in a house with the bridesmaids and groomsmen. I had been assigned a bed but didn’t feel comfortable sleeping in the room because two people were hooking up in the bed below me. I decided I would sleep on the couch.

I was talking to one of the guys who was sleeping in the lounge. He was about 26. I returned from the bathroom at one point and he grabbed my ankle before pulling me down to him. 

We kissed. It was my first kiss.

It was very cold and he pulled me under the blankets. He then tried to convince me that to keep warm we needed to take our clothes off, he took his off quickly and I kept tugging mine down. Eventually he took my clothes off and I gave in... I told myself that at least I wouldn’t be a virgin anymore and maybe I would be more confident with other guys.

Before he finished he asked if I was on the pill and I said yes and he came inside me. I quickly moved back to the couch and he said he felt used. As soon as he was asleep I moved to the bed I was supposed to be in. The next morning I showered and attempted to quickly leave the accommodation but overheard him telling all “the boys” outside the bathroom window about his “score”.

The next day when I got home my mum excitedly asked me if I had had sex. She constantly asks me even now if I am sexually active. 

Almost 12 years later, I haven’t had sex again or kissed anyone else. I don’t trust males and I am afraid potential partners will judge me for not being sexually active or for being single for my whole adult life. 

I am incredibly keen to have a healthy sex life with a loving partner but need to trust them and build a relationship first. 

It was a horrible experience. I didn’t have a voice or give any sort of enthusiastic consent. I didn’t know how to say ‘no’.

17. "It showed me how pleasurable sex was."

I was 15, completely sober and it was with my boyfriend of 10 months who was the same age. It was great. It felt good and respectful. It was my decision. Within an hour of the first time I asked if we could do it again!

It showed me how pleasurable sex was for both sexes and I never settled for a partner who was sexually selfish.

I am extremely thankful for the experience.

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