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To Sam

consensual sex

why is it the law chooses the age of sex and nt the people doing it, say for example two 14 year olds want to have sex, they're both consenting yet it's still illegal. i know it's to protect underagers of sexual predators but two people of the same age should be allowed to have sex shouldn't they?
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Sam

Hi there,

The law is there to protect people, rather than to punish them. As you’ve said, the law protects young people from being taken advantage of by adults. It's not there to punish young people thinking about sex.

In the United Kingdom you can legally have sex after the age of 16, which is called the age of consent. It is the same for heterosexual sex (between a male and female), or homosexual or gay sex (between two members of the same sex). 

Although you can legally have sex at these ages, you should only have sex when you are ready. You should never feel pressured or forced into doing it, sex should be something that you enjoy and can have safely.

You've asked about two 14 year olds consenting to have sex. This is illegal because they are both underage. And having sex comes with a lot of responsibilities such as getting contraception advice on how to protect yourself from unwanted pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections.

If a 14 year old has had sex they can usually get confidential information from Brook.

There are also lots of emotions around sex and even if you feel physically old enough to have sex, it may be that you are not emotionally ready. And that’s okay, it’s usually better to wait until you are, so you can enjoy it.

It’s also important to remember that consent isn’t just about age. A person needs to be able to make reasonable decisions to be able to consent to sex. This means it they are drunk or high on drugs, they may not be able to consent to sex. And it’s always okay for people to change their minds after they’ve already said yes.

You could always talk to one of our counsellors or find out what other young people think on our message boards if you wanted to.

Take care,

Sam

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