I have been seeing a guy for six months, and we started sleeping with each other about two months ago. I did not have my period any of the times we had sex. But at some point I will, and I am not sure what to do. Is it OK to have sex while on your period? Is it safe? What if he is grossed out?
Dear Code Red,
It is more than OK to have sex during your period. There is no shame in that game, and while it can be messy, it's definitely safe. Some women say they feel hornier during that time and even prefer period sex. For starters, they don't have to avoid sex for one week out of every month!
During an orgasm, the muscles of a woman's uterus contract, then release, which can relieve menstrual cramps. That contracting can also help shed the lining of your uterus, so your periods may be shorter. Plus, climaxing increases blood flow and the release of endorphins, which make you feel great more generally.
The downside, of course, is that many women feel yucky during their periods — from sore breasts, cramps, headaches, bloating and so on. And the discharge might make you feel self-conscious or alarm your partner. Sometimes there is no mess at all, however, especially toward the end of your period.
As for safety, make sure to remove your tampon and use a condom — not only to reduce your risk of catching a sexually transmitted infection, but also to prevent unwanted pregnancy. Though the odds are low, it is possible to get pregnant when you are menstruating.
As with most relationship hurdles, talk about this in advance and prepare. Make sure your guy is OK with the idea and doesn't pass out at the sight of blood. If you decide to go for it, put a towel down and keep wet wipes bedside for cleanup. You can also have sex in the shower. Or use a menstrual disc, such as FLEX, which is worn around the cervix and doesn't plug the vaginal canal like a tampon does.
Have fun, and let your love flow!