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Six-Word Advice for Anyone About to Lose Their Virginity

“Try not to laugh too much.”
Illustrations by Brandon Celi

Not all of us grew up with a cool older sibling or wise friend who could tell us what to expect the first time we had sex. So, consider us your awesome older friend. Imagine we’re putting our arms around your shoulders and sitting you down for “the talk.”

We, the deflowered, have all been there before. We’ve endured the nervous jitters and crippling insecurity that can result from the often-brief first time. We asked friends and co-workers about their best advice for someone about to give away their V-card. Here’s the best of our collective wisdom.


“Honestly, do it with another virgin.” - Joey, 24

“Have fun! It’s not a race.” - Gabriel, 29

“Orgasm then penetration. Lube, affection, respect.” - Lauren, 34

“Life will never be the same.” - Vallie, 29

“Find someone you trust and go.” - Sarah, 39

“Don't expect too much. Do enjoy.” - Shana, 35

“Don't expect it to be mindblowing.” - Beth, 33

“You deserve to feel very good.” - Jenna, 30

“Virginity is a sexist social construct.” - Lindsay, 38

“Just don’t do it in public.” - Jo, 35

“Try not to laugh too much.” - Abby, 32

“PEE IMMEDIATELY AFTER SEX! Trust me.” - Meagan, 33

“Read sex books, try some things.” - Kiefer, 38

“Be able to talk together openly.” - Kathleen, 61

“Queer sex still counts, don’t worry.” - Meg, 31

“Put down a towel for fluids.” - Rachael, 36

“Know them well, use protection. RELAX!” - Sandra, 45

“You aren’t a bad person. Promise.” - Julia, 35

“Do it on your own terms.” - Jessica, 42

“Trust first; memory will thank you!” - Tina, 46

"Pop a Xanax and just breathe." - Brooke, 28

“Don't worry about making it special.” - Molly, 42

“It gets better. Always use protection.” - Dan, 45

“Would you own a dog with them?” - Ana, 28

“It's always practice. Every. Single. Time.” - Rachel, 38

“Go down on her first. Lube.” - Sheila, 40

“It's OK, you haven't lost anything.” - Joy, 45

“It's a choice, not an obligation.” - Sarah, 38

“Doesn’t feel good? Definitely just stop!” - Sylvia, 29

“Relax, you won’t go to hell.” - Julia, 35

“Make sure it's someone you trust.“ - Mary, 37

“Stop if you change your mind.” - Carolyne, 39

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