There are a lot of rules to sex. Some of them are tricky because they're different from person to person, like how to stimulate the g-spot. Others though...they're pretty constant. These are the five most important rules of engagement in sex.

  • 1

    Get consent!

    This means before you touch your partner for the first time, before you kiss them, before you take their clothes off, before you take your clothes off, and before you have sex, you make sure they're absolutely into it. Ask them if you're not sure. Hell, ask them even if you are sure just to be safe. Nobody wants to be an accidental rapist.

    You also need to be sure they're sober enough to consent. I'm looking at you, college kids! If they're slurring their words, stumbling, throwing up, or passed out, they are not sober enough to consent. If they're displaying no signs of intoxication (which is rare, but does happen), but you've seen them toss back quite a few, better to err on the side of caution.

  • 2

    Get yo'self tested

    Like, today. Right now. This minute. GO! There are some places that will do it for free. Others will do it on a sliding scale. There is no excuse for not knowing your status.

  • 3

    Wear a condom

    I cannot stress this enough.

    “But Rayne, they're constricting!” Which do you think is more constricting? A condom during sex, or 18 years of child-rearing? A condom, or herpes for the rest of your life? Don't forget; you're more likely to get an STD in the Albany area than you are in New York City!

    “It doesn't feel natural.” Use lube. You should use lube with a condom, anyway, to reduce friction and prevent breakage. But if that doesn't help, give lambskin a try.

    “It makes it harder to get off.” Are you kidding me? With all the men who are self-conscious about how long they last, you're going to try to tell me that taking longer to get off is a problem? Slow down. Focus on the act, not the finish line.

    “They're pricy!” Pfffft! A lot of bars and clubs in the Albany area give condoms away free! Liquor stores, corner stores...even some barbershops and beauty salons! Check out this list.

  • 4

    Pay attention to your partner's reactions

    They might change their mind and not want to say something, feeling that if they've come this far, they have to finish it. They do not have to finish it. And neither do you if you change your mind.

    But besides that, everyone reacts differently to the many different sexual techniques. You don't want them walking away dissatisfied. You know that knowledge spreads like wildfire. You want to have sex again, right? Focus on your partner and do what you can to increase their enjoyment. You'll be glad you did in the end.

  • 5

    Have fun!

    Whether you're a virgin, in love, or having a one night stand, don't forget to enjoy it. Sex is one of the most glorious human interactions we have. Don't muck it up by spending too much time in your own head, and not enough in the moment.