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How Many Dates Before You Have Sex?

So, how many dates before you have sex with your new guy?

Most dating coaches say that you shouldn’t have sex until you’re exclusive, but is this good advice?

how many dates before sleeping with someone

Dating Rules Change

I’m a millennial dating coach, which means I know what it’s like to date in the modern world. This includes the swiping, the ghosting, and the friends with benefits relationships.

So do I think you should be exclusive before you have sex?

Yeah, hell no!

Don’t listen to “relationship gurus”

If you are a woman who is actually looking for a relationship, these three words will help you discern: close thy legs. –Elite Daily

That’s a pretty blunt way to put it. It’s wrong… but blunt.

Renowned relationship expert and dating coach Evan Marc Katz gives us a bit more insight on the above statement by saying:

You want to find out if a man is serious about you? Wait to have sex with him. If you don’t – because you’re a liberated woman who can have sex whenever you damn well please – don’t be too surprised if a decent percentage of those men never call again. Again, I’m not remotely judgmental of those who have sex without commitment; I will only point out as a dating coach that it tends to lead to sub-optimal results from men because they didn’t have to do anything special to get into bed with you.

That advice is rock solid. It’s great, but it misses just one thing…

Having sex early with a man who wants a relationship and really likes you is NOT going to turn him off.

If he’s interested in your personality, he’ll keep calling. Regardless of if you had sex.

The advice that Evan and other dating coaches are giving is just their way of filtering the bad guys, but you can filter them out pretty easily without withholding sex.

If he doesn’t call, he’s not interested. Period, end of discussion. 

30 flirty texts

Waiting until you’re exclusive is old school

The fact that it’s old school doesn’t make it bad advice.

At the end of the day, the number of dates you should go on before you sleep with someone will be different for everyone.

I would say that sure, it’s a good rule of thumb to wait until you’re exclusive if you want to play it really safe.

But millennials and younger people don’t really work this way anymore. It’s not advice that is easily integrated into our modern lives.

If you follow this advice, you might find yourself “slipping up” and having sex before you were exclusive. Now what? Are you doomed?

This is where I come in with the practical advice that you can actually use if you find yourself in this situation.

We live in a world of instant gratification and sex is no different. 

I think most statistics are against me on this one but I strongly believe it’s because the data hasn’t caught up to modern times. One of the more recent statistics I found on this topic was from a survey taken by Match.com in 2016 that said:

 Furthermore, the longer you wait to have sex with a partner, the happier you are; those who wait to the fifth date are 35% more likely to be happy than those who have sex on the first date.

See? If you wait 5 dates you are 35% more likely to be happy. It said nothing about exclusivity. 

My fiance and I had sex on our third date. I had sex within the first couple of weeks with both long-term boyfriends that I dated before him. Having sex before exclusivity is the general rule, not the exception for me and for most of the women in my millennial age group.

It’s just the way we do things nowadays!

Having sex before you’re exclusive doesn’t turn away a man who is actually into you.

It’s not what you do before the sex, it’s what you do after that matters

Once you decide to have sex with a guy you’re seeing, the ticking clock begins and he better turn into your boyfriend within the next two months. 

If you have been seeing a guy casually for more than two months and he is making no effort to become your boyfriend, run away and run away now.

Ask him where the relationship is going and if he is vague or doesn’t want to commit, leave.

It’s totally possible to fall in love and start getting close to each other while also having sex, but your new guy should be starting to treat you like a girlfriend.

He should text you often, make plans to hang out and he should generally enjoy spending time with you outside of the bedroom.

The sex should feel relationship-y not hookup-y

Does he put on his clothes and head home after or does he enjoy post-sex cuddles and sleeping over?

Did he come over only to watch Netflix for an hour, hook up and then leave or did you spend the whole day together?

If your new guy sees you as a potential girlfriend rather than a booty call, you’ll be able to tell.

If he wants to be your boyfriend he will act like one.

He’ll take you out to dinner, take you to a comedy show or a picnic. He’ll take you on real dates if he’s really interested. If these things aren’t happening, it might be time to move on.

So, how many dates should you go on before you have sex?

  1. Wait a minimum of 5 dates (ok, I only waited 3 but 5 is a really good general rule)
  2. Once you start having sex, make sure he’s treating you like a girlfriend, not a booty call
  3. Do not casually see him for more than two months.

There you have it! That’s how you can navigate seeing a new man, and not waiting until you’re exclusive before you have sex.

How To Attract A Man That Is High Quality

I hope you found this article helpful but it does you know good if you’re not attracting High-Quality Men.

Find out what High-Quality men look for in a woman, check out my Free Guide “How To Attract Higher-Quality Men”. It’s free!


Lana Otoya

21 thoughts on “How Many Dates Before You Have Sex?”

  1. How many dates before having sex? How about abstaining from sex until marriage, as God commands us to do? Think of how many problems would be solved if everyone lived the law of chastity. Don’t have sex until marriage – I guarantee you won’t regret it.

  2. HI. After a 9 years relationship, which was ended by cheated (she cheat on me). I started to date a lot of woman. My rule is 3 dates. I’m 27 and I’ve been with only 2 girls before the breakup. After that in two months I had sex with 7 girls. If she don’t want it at the 3rd date, I won’t meet her again, but that’s just because now I feel so free and want to “explore”. When I will find “the one” I will happily wait 10+ dates to have sex with her, even if I’m not currently search for “her” and I’m happy with my decisions and sex life.

  3. Data or not, it’s going to depend on the people involved. Personally, it’d probably damage the long-term prospects if we didn’t have sex within 3 dates. If she can hold herself back from me for that long, how could there be enough passion to still want to enjoy each other sexually regularly 20 years from now? Part of it is that my love language is touch and I want somebody who is into frequent sex.

    Maybe my circles have been different, but per all of my conversations with close guy friends it’s not that having sex in less than 5 dates makes a guy less likely to want to be with you long-term. It’s that a guy who is only sort of interested will act the same to get sex, and will wait for 3 dates but not 10. So the disadvantage of how things have been for me is there’s a higher risk of having more lifetime partners. To me, that’s not a bad thing as long as no STDs/unintended pregnancies are involved. But some people feel differently and the risk is always there. But no, there’s no increased passion/success for waiting longer at all, coming from a group of non-religious people.

    You’re completely right about how guys act after sex indicating their intentions, though.

  4. Let’s say 10 out of 50 men a woman dates would want to marry her after getting to know her well. If she holds sex for a bunch of dates, the she’ll end up marrying the one of out 10 she likes the most. If she doesn’t hold sex, she will still find the same man, but will get scored on a lot more. Now you might say that in this age of equality, score does not matter. That’s when I want to see those liberal SJW type men scoop up all the hot strippers, prostitutes and escorts. Until then, the score matters
    Also, women do get psychologically damaged by casual sex. Part of the reason more women are heartbroken is, women date up and men date down. Also the rejection for marriage after sex builds up as numbers go up – even if the score part did not matter.

    1. Hi Billy, while I don’t agree with your comment, I thank you for leaving it and for reading my article. One thing I will remind you is that this “score” you speak of is only ever known by the woman herself, unless she chooses to reveal this information. The men she dates never have to know how many men she has slept with and therefore the number becomes kind of irrelevant.

  5. More than two-thirds of divorces are initiated by women and it has little to nothing to do with sex. A very misguided conclusion on this article – It has everything to do with the FINANCIAL INDEPENDENCE of women. They are more able to take care of their children on their own if they have to and will spend less time in a marriage that isn’t working out. So on one hand, it’s great they can leave an abusive marriage, but on the other hand, I would say they are less likely to want to salvage a marriage even if it were possible. Money is one of the #1 things that couples fight about so the more education and financial security they have, the less likely they are to divorce. From what I have been able to find, the first-marriage divorce rates peaked around 2000 and have been declining somewhat.

    1. I wish people would think about their children more if their marriage falls into the “salvageable” category. One other thought is the divorces could be declining because Millenials are less likely to marry in the first place….

      PS: No offense, but why do you have a heading “Don’t Listen to Relationship Gurus” and proceed to cite a relationship guru right after?? Maybe I read it wrong? Just thought that was weird, as a reader

      1. He Andy,

        Thanks for your reply. I actually agree with what you’re saying about the divorce rate and the reasons why women get divorced. This article isn’t about marriage/divorce though it is about sex and dating. It’s about determining when is the best time to have sex when you start seeing someone new.

        Also I have listed quotes from relationship gurus after I said “don’t listen to them” because those are quotes I do not agree with and the rest of the article outlines why I think those quotes are wrong.

  6. Very silly article full of wishful thinking. The one statistic provided didn’t even have any substance. Happier doesn’t equal relationship longevity, nor is the comparison between sex after one date vs sex after five meaningful unless statistics about waiting even longer are included (and it’s been supported time and time again, statistically speaking the longer you wait, the longer the couple stays together). 5 dates > 1 date…. but 10+ dates/marriage >>>> 5 dates. And anecdotal evidence from the write is a terrible way to support your argument if you have no solid support. Millennials are doing things differently, but the divorce rate in the US is growing and self-reported life satisfaction is at its lowest (for women, anyway). I don’t have all the answers or connections, but include actual evidence in your article rather than what makes sense to you at the surface. Oftentimes that’s not the case.

    1. Hi Yyvonne, thanks for taking the time to post your opinion on my article. I agree that referencing scientific articles would have made my point stronger. I didn’t list statistics in my article but the science leans more toward proving my point than it does to yours. The divorce rate has been significantly dropping over the years and this is because Millennials are doing things differently. Here is an article that shows the decrease in divorce rate: https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2018/10/divorce-united-states-dropping-because-millennials/. You might think that waiting until marriage before you have sex is better than 5 dates, but I disagree. I think if you try to hold off having sexual intercourse with a new partner just for the sake of prolonging sex, you might be pressured into making commitments (like marriage) before you’ve spent enough time with that person to really know if you’re a compatible match. The true answer lies somewhere in between 5 dates and marriage, that’s for sure 🙂

      1. Hello, Lana,

        Have you considered that the divorce rate is dropping because millennials are marrying at a lower rate than previous generations? Boomers married because of cultural expectations (and a higher percentage were actively religious). Millennial women have learned that they don’t need a husband to be “fulfilled”— that they are capable of having rewarding, successful lives outside the bonds of marriage. Boomer women grew up being taught they had to “catch their man”.

        With fewer millennials marrying (while still leading rewarding lives, professionally and sexually), the divorce rate is going to go down. Couples still break up, but they aren’t included in the statistics.

        Millennials haven’t somehow broken loose from untold millennia of human history. Couples that have sex before they have solidified their relationships are just as likely to break up now as they were 30 years ago. By not marrying, millennials have simply ensured that their breakups aren’t counted in the statistics.

        1. Hi Francis,

          Thanks for your thoughtful comment. Yes, I have considered that millennials are marrying at a lower rate and thus the divorce rate is lower but that doesn’t disprove what I am saying in the article. The article is about sex and dating, not marriage. The time at which you have sex with your partner when you’re first dating has a very small impact on whether or not you’ll get divorced if you ended up marrying them. Things that have a much bigger impact are: how old you are when you got married, your financial status, whether or not your parents were divorced etc. etc.

          So yes, millennials are getting married (and thus divorved) at a lower rate but that’s kind of a statistic that is out there floating on it’s own and has little to do with when sex was introduced to the relationship. It would be different if the millennials getting married were postponing sex until marriage but that’s just not the case. So the statistic is true, but also irrelevant to this article.

    2. I appreciate this advice. The divorce rate is growing because people don’t communicate. Pheromones drive us to copulate, period. Getting to know someone is the importance. Understanding the glitter fades and not everyday is happy. That is reality. Today’s world is spoiled.

  7. Generally agree with your posts but not this one. Really research guys’ position on this. No girl, ok maybe one, who is worth her salt should sleep with a guy before exclusivity. Now some relationships may come out of this but it will usually be a couple of months. I think this is a major reason there are now more unmarried women in their 30s than married. They’ve had plenty of short/medium term relationships. Sleeping with a guy before exclusivity will always be hookup-y except for the most pretty or gems of girls.

    1. Hey Youngman, thanks for your comment! I agree that waiting until you’re exclusive is top-notch excellent advice. The problem is that many young women end up having sex early on in the relationship because we want to – equality am I right? But then we get stuck with guys who aren’t interested in anything more than sex and we don’t know how to recognize that and get out right away. This is why it’s important to know and recognize the signals and signs after you have had sex.

      I kind of compare it to how religious people teach abstinence in order to prevent STD’s and pregnancy. It’s like yeah, it’s good advice but when you inevitably don’t follow that advice – what now? I like to teach that if you have sex with someone early on, you have to recognize if the relationship is moving forward or if you’re stuck being a booty call. I think that’s really important advice that women these days could really use while they’re out dating.

      1. I agree but unfortunately today’s guys use sex to manipulate relationships , for a girl she’s stuck if she doesn’t put out he may leave and also to see if the relationship is going somewhere .

        1. Thanks for your comment Mark! I agree that many guys will just peace out and leave you don’t introduce sex into the relationship, but those kinds of guys are not really long term relationship kind of guys. I wouldn’t worry too much about impressing those men unless you’re only interested in a casual relationship. Guys who want to be more committed are usually fine with waiting.

        2. Yeah pos guys that haven’t realized what they need to make them happy. I’m perfectly fine waiting 4 – 6 dates and longer if that’s what she’s comfortable with. I feel like once you’re in your 30’s this is WAY more common as well.

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