Getting Intimate On First Dates Is More Common Than You Might Think

First dates can be daunting, to say the least. It can sometimes feel like there are a million things to do in preparation for the big night. You need to pick the perfect outfit that's not over-the-top but sexy and classy while still matching your vibe. You have to think about conversational topics that help you get to know your date while letting them get to know you. You have to work with them to pick the perfect date spot that enables you to have fun without being too loud, so you can actually have a conversation. And then comes the hardest part: actually going on that first date.

Just when you think it's time to relax and let all your prep get you through a successful date, you get the usual curveballs thrown at you, and things get awkward. But remember: awkwardness on the first date is actually a green flag. If you manage to get past all that and the outing seems to be going well, you begin to consider if you should kiss your date at the end to seal the deal for the next time. However, if the date is going really well, you might even find yourself asking if sex is on the table for the night.

When it comes to sex in dating, you may think that people tend to wait until the third date to get things going, but a recent survey found that many jump on board a lot sooner.

Getting intimate on the first date can be good for you

Lovehoney surveyed a group of 2,000 adults and found that 49% of them have had sex on the first date. The survey even delved into the reasons why people chose to get intimate on the first date. Approximately 53% of respondents chose to have sex on the first date because they simply enjoyed it, while 46% got it on to determine sexual compatibility early on in the relationship.

Despite these statistics, it's normal to have qualms about having sex on the first date because of the preconceived notions that portray sex in a negative light. We've been made to believe that having sex on the first date means you're not partner material but a one-night stand, or that we should make our potential partners "work" to earn our sexual love, or a partner might leave after. But these beliefs aren't necessarily based on fact but on outdated personal biases toward sex.

You may be pleased to know that sex on a first date can be a good thing. As Shannon Chavez, a psychologist and certified sex therapist, explained to Cosmopolitan, "[Having sex on the first date] can help you break down your own personal biases around sexuality, heal [the] shame from the past, and improve your sexual self-esteem." So, if you're having a great time and want to take things to the next level, don't talk yourself out of it to meet societal notions.  

It's important to go with the flow

While it's good to have a positive outlook on sex in general, know there's no set formula for how many dates you should go on before having sex. If it feels right and the first date is good but you want to get to know the person well, that's great, too! As Vanessa Marin, a sex therapist, explained to Cosmopolitan, "It all comes down to knowing your own comfort level and what you're looking for. It's worth taking the time to explore your feelings about one-night stands before you're in a situation where you could potentially have one."

It's important to never feel pressured into having sex on your first date. Sometimes, your date could want to get intimate, but you might not feel the same way. Be honest about how you're feeling, and try not to use sex to get someone to like you more on a first date — you might regret it later.

There are several reasons for not wanting to have sex on the first date that have nothing to do with societal expectations. Maybe you feel like it's not a good idea to make the decision in the spur of the moment. Maybe you're unsure what you want out of the relationship, and having sex on the first date can complicate things. Maybe you're afraid things can get awkward because you don't know the other person well. All of these reasons (and many more) are completely valid! Do what feels right.