Waiting a Certain Number of Dates to Sleep With Someone Is a Terrible Idea and We All Need to Stop

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Forget the three-date rule: Women are now waiting a precise five dates before they have sex with someone new, reports that purveyor of truths, the Daily Mail. Apparently, ladies are “getting to realise they hold the upper hand in making the decision to sleep with someone or not.” And because arbitrarily withholding sex to get what you want from a man is both well-adjusted and adult, women are holding out on putting out.

What are these women holding out for, exactly? Lots of things, according to the Daily Mail:

  • Two gifts or tokens of affection
  • Five social media messages
  • 12 text conversations
  • Five phone calls
  • Three DVDs watched
  • Seven passionate kisses
  • Five heart-to-hearts or meaningful chats
  • Four meals together
  • One bunch of flowers

Beyond reading like some deranged version of “The Twelve Days of Christmas,” the items on this list have nothing to do with any sex-related aspects of a relationship, and thus have no place factoring into the question of when you should or should not have sex with someone you’re dating.

You know what else is both well-adjusted and adult? Not using sex as a vehicle for getting what you want out of a relationship. I used to be this person — the one who subscribes to the idea that making a guy wait an arbitrary amount of time before sex will make him perceive me in a certain, favorable light. But since I stopped being this person, I’ve called bullshit on any rule that says we need rules for when we should and shouldn’t be having sex.

If you’re both into each other, respect each other as people, and are feeling it, it shouldn’t matter whether sex happens on the first date or the tenth. I once had sex on a first date with a guy who months later told me he first slept with me because he wanted to give us a shot as a couple. Conversely, I once dated a guy I waited to have sex with for three months because I somehow rationalized that waiting would make him realize I was radiating “I want us to be serious” vibes left and right. Naturally, this strategy never changed the fact that he had no interest in being in a serious relationship with me, nor did it make him any less preoccupied with the ex who had just left him.

Making a person wait to have sex with you for no legitimate reason beyond that it’s what you think you should do probably won’t cause them to change their opinion of you, unless it’s to resent you a little. Nor is it a healthy way to cajole them into doing non-sexy activities with you, like watching three DVDs, for which they will, again, probably resent you a little (or, if any of them star Katherine Heigl, resent you a lot). Besides, the very act of planning out sex is the opposite of sexy.

So here’s a new rule: Have sex with people because you want to have sex with them, not because you’re using it to fulfill your own agenda or, even worse, trying to get things. Also, watching a DVD in bed post-sex is pretty awesome.