In the past three years I have had sex with 5 guys. I’m 16 years old and I hate myself. I know every time that I’ll regret it and every time they just leave anyway. I don’t know why I do it. I just love sex and I’m sick of being alone. I have tried to stop doing what I’m doing. It’s just bad because I’ve never actually had an actual relationship and I just feel like I gotta give it up to get one.  And it’s worse because I KNOW it doesn’t work like that but something in my mind tells me it will. I wanna be someone else. I’m a slut lately and that’s honestly something I never thought I’d be. I used to have a PURITY RING. I just need to change myself but I don’t know how. I just give in too easily and I expect too much. I honestly feel like sex is something I NEED and masturbation doesn’t cut it because I like to be hit and pushed around, which I think is NOT okay. There’s something seriously wrong in my brain and I want to fix it. Someone please help.

A: I don’t think there is something wrong with your brain, but I do think you have low self-esteem and you are looking for ways to feel better. However, your behaviors only hurt you more. You are the only one who can change this, and you are worth it.

It sounds to me like you are looking for closeness and intimacy through sex. And don’t get me wrong, sexual interaction can bring feelings of closeness and intimacy, but only in the context of a loving relationship. You aren’t giving yourself a chance to develop one of those.

I hate to promote stereotypes, but most (not all) boys your age aren’t going to put a lot of work into a relationship if they can get sex without one. Other people will form their opinions of you based on how you treat yourself. If you hold yourself to a higher standard and wait for a respectful and supportive partner, you will find one. If you continue to give your body away, you will find takers as well.

I’m also very concerned that you like to be hit and pushed around. This is more evidence that you do not respect yourself or think of yourself highly. It also makes me wonder if you have a history of abuse. Either way, it is not okay and I suggest you seek out some professional help. The changes you need to make would be so much easier if you had the help and guidance of a good therapist. Please speak to your parents or your high school counselor about how to find one.

Good luck with the changes you hope to make. 

All the best,

Dr. Holly Counts