Q: -I have been dating this guy for four and a half months but we made bad decisions when it came to being sexually active and so my mom made us break up since I’m just 15. We both had strong feelings though because he was my first boyfriend and I lost my virginity to him. We broke up in March and then for about a month we were friends with benefits at school. We had sex at school and did other things. Then he started liking this other girl so we stopped being fwb and he started dating her. It was really hard for awhile but then I started to deal with it. His new girlfriend is really nice but Istill miss him. On the last day of school my ex and I didn’t go to our last class and instead hung out. we ended up having sex and he told me that he feels really bad for his girlfriend and I do too. He said he is going to try and forget what happened but it’s not that easy for me. He says he isn’t going to push his girlfriend into having sex and that makes me feel like he cares more for her than he did for me because he kind of pressured me into it after3 wks of dating. He told me not to tell anyone about what happened on the last day of school or he wouldn’t talk to me anymore. I feel super bad for his gf and I don’t know what to do. Please help me figure it out.
Sincerely, mixed emotions

Q: The fact that you are feeling bad about all this says that you are a caring, decent person. You aren’t comfortable with casual sex. And you aren’t okay about hurting another girl that you like. You are learning the hard way why sex is such a loaded issue. It’s very, very hard for most women to detach emotional involvement from sex. You have made yourself vulnerable and opened your heart to a man who isn’t respecting you. You deserve better — much better. For that matter, so does the new girlfriend. This guy seems to think that having sex with a girl doesn’t involve much responsibility.

My best advice to you is to slow down and find a man who deserves your love. Wait at least three months before having sex. That way you will see if he is really interested in you as a whole person or only as a way to get physical.

Another thought for you: Just because you are no longer a virgin doesn’t mean that you can’t be a virgin again in spirit. Lots of girls get pressured into sex as young teens and decide it isn’t worth it. It can be a big relief to take sex out of the picture for awhile. The sneaking around, the worrying, and the confusing feelings that go with teen sex can take all the fun out of dating. Best of all, when you make it clear that sex simply isn’t going to happen, you’ll know that any boy who wants to be your boyfriend really, really likes you.

I wish you well.
Dr. Marie