With your partner
Educate yourself about your options, and if you decide to have sex make sure you’re aware of the consequences, as well as your contraceptive options. Talk to your doctor, your parents, and partner and familiarize yourself with contraceptives, the risk of pregnancy and STDs before you approach your partner. This is a critical step! Don’t overlook taking charge of your sexual health by making informed decisions.
Don’t be afraid to talk about STDs with your partner. Ask if he or she has one (remember you can’t tell by looking at someone if he/she has an STD) and tell him or her if you do. Aren’t sure? See a doctor and don’t be afraid to ask your partner to get tested. Talking about STDs and condoms is a sign that you want to stay healthy and keep your partner healthy. Remember, if your partner doesn’t want to protect you from a possible unintended pregnancy or STD, you shouldn’t be with him or her anyway.
Before talking to your partner, establish your boundaries for sex. A person who loves you won’t pressure you to go farther or faster than you are comfortable with. Make time to talk in a quiet and comfortable place, and don’t wait until “the moment” is about to happen. Don’t forget about your partner. Openly talk about your relationship and comfort level with sex. Honesty and communication are important parts of building trust in your relationship.
Be prepared for excuses not to be safe, and plan your responses ahead. No excuse on the planet is worth your sexual health. If your partner says he doesn’t want to use a condom because it will make sex less pleasurable, remind him that you can’t have pleasurable sex if it isn’t safe. If your partner says condoms don’t fit right, remind him that there are different sizes to fit everyone.
Other topics you should discuss before you decide to have sex: your values and how having sex will make you feel, how having sex will affect your relationship with your partner, the proper way to use contraception, what would happen in the case of an unintended pregnancy or STD and your relationship expectations of what happens after you have sex.
No excuse on the planet is worth your sexual health.