Ask Sam letter


To Sam

Pressure and frustration

I'm 15 going on 16 and I've never had any form of contact with a boy apart from talking. And at the moment people my age are starting to get a little bit more serious about getting boyfriends and having sex. I am absolutely petrified about having  a boyfriend and I'm scared that he'll pressure me into sex. I don't want to follow through with it unless I'm comfortable or that I've been with the person for a while.

Also I'm scared about the whole process. Does it hurt if you're a virgin? And I don't want to bleed or do something that they want me to do if I don't want to do it. I've tried masturbation but I'm scared to hurt myself. I just really need some advice

Ask Sam


Hi there,

It’s good to hear from you and I’m glad you’ve got in touch. 

It sounds like having sex is on your mind and something that you have some worries about. Lots of people worry about having sex for the first time and what it will be like.

It’s good to recognise that it’s important to feel safe and comfortable the first time you have sex. Lots of people get ready for sex for the first time by talking to their boyfriend or girlfriend about their hopes and fears. Sex should be a joint decision and trusting the other person is an important part of making that decision.

I want to let you know that you have the right to say no at any time and stop sex if you don’t feel ok with how things are going. It is wrong for one person to pressure another into sex. If you are in a relationship where this is happening it can be really important to get support, and to keep yourself safe.

I can hear how scared you're feeling about the idea of sex. That makes me think that at the moment, you might not be ready for sex, and that's absolutely fine. It's really normal to have worries about first time sex, but when you are with someone that you trust and it feels like the right time for you, then those worries will seem more manageable.

Sex for the first time is different for everyone so it is hard for me to say exactly what your first time might be like. For some girls and young women sex for the first time can be uncomfortable and some people may experience a painful sensation. Other people will find it doesn't hurt at all. It's the same with bleeding; it will happen for some people but not others. Even if you do bleed a little bit, that doesn't automatically mean it will hurt.

Masturbation can be a good way for young people to get to know their own bodies. I can hear that you’re a bit worried about this too and that’s ok. There is no right or wrong way to masturbation it’s whatever feels right for you. If doing it hurts or is uncomfortable you can always slow down or stop. Often people explore their bodies’ in a safe private place.

Brook is a really good place to get more information about things like sex and sexual health, their website has a section on each of the things you mentioned and they have a free and confidential phone. There is also information in the Explore section of ChildLine website and ChildLine message boards.

I hope this information helps. If you had questions or wanted to talk these things over you can get in touch with a ChildLine counsellor on the talk section of the website or on the phone

Take care,


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