first time frustrations

Question: Me and my boyfriend just tried to have sex and we are both virgins. But he couldn’t get it in? How come? I know it might be because we have both never done it before, but how can it be easier? We need help.

Answer: What you are describing is really common. The first time (or ten) that people have sex is rarely the stuff of legend. In fact, for a lot of people, having sex for the first time can be kind of awkward.

Here are some common reasons for your situation:

1. The penis doesn’t usually just slip into the vagina naturally. It often needs to be guided with a hand.
2. If a girl isn’t fully lubricated penetration can be tricky.
3. If a guy is not fully erect, penetration can be tricky.


  1. If a girl’s hymen is intact, there may be a barrier that prevents the penis from entering easily.

If numbers 1 or 2 are the culprits, you can solve those pretty easily by guiding the penis into the vagina with your hand and using plenty of lube.

Numbers 3 and 4 might take a little more work.

Sex can be really stressful for a guy who feels like he has to perform. As a result he might find it tough to keep it up. Trying to take the pressure off can make him feel like he isn’t failing if he doesn’t stay hard. One way to do that is to take the focus off penetration. Couples need to remember that intercourse isn’t the only important part of sex.

Another culprit can be a condom. Practicing using condoms before having sex, or using a female condom are good ways to deal with the prophylactic-phobic erection.

Lastly, if you think the hymen might be the issue, you can try to stretch it yourself with a finger or a tampon before you have sex. You can do this over a few days. That will help make sex easier and more comfortable.

It often seems like sex should be this magical experience where bodies naturally melt into each other in perfect harmony. Though that usually isn’t the way it goes for most people, with a bit of practice, sex will often become a whole lot better.

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Posted in: Ask an Expert, Health, Sex & Relationships, Hooking Up
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  • alice

    I have the same problem! We've only tried twice though, because we don't have many opportunities…but he's always SO nervous. The first time I don't think I helped much because I was super embarrassed (i don't know why…because i was naked maybe? lol) so I kinda left him on his own…xD He felt really bad afterward so I just kinda hugged him. We still haven't succeeded (he's not too eager to try again, he thinks he's a total failure). But it's REALLY important that you make sure he's not stressed or anything because it WILL not be very much fun. xD Hopefully you know how to relax your man by that time, though, lol.
    Anyways, that was our problem. Good luck!

  • reflux kid

    i highley doubt he poked an ovary
    purley because
    the falopian tubes are tiny
    no penis would fit in there
    and this is also,as if he was long enough (:
    godmi wish my bf had a big enough penis for it to poke my ovary ;] (:

  • Katie

    I have a question sort of related to this topic but couldn't find a place to post it anywhere else. If there's another place this should be posted, let me know.
    Anyway, on to my question. I just turned 17 and my boyfriend and I have been dating for a little over half a year. We are very dedicated to one another and very in love and feel that we're ready for sex. The only thing holding us back is the fact that it is SO painful for me. I assumed this was normal, but I'm not so sure anymore. We have tested things out using only his pinky finger, but he can only get in so far until it starts to sting, and it's unbearably painful. I'm a virgin and haven't used tampons before, mostly due to the same pain. Is this normal and is there anything I can do to make things better?

  • Janey

    I got a burning question
    Yesterday, my boyfriend and I have a exciting fingering session of my life.
    The part where i am worried is that is there any chance of getting pregrant if his nails has sperm in it.
    He claims that he masterbated in the wee morning but we only made it out at the evening around 9+.
    Do reply me soon yea…

  • maria

    i really really love this website and these articles, lots of stuff on here is embarassing for girls to talk about but everyone on here is so nice about it and so helpful and full of great advice. im just fourteeen and im hoping i wont need to put any of these words to work just yet but i really appreciate all that everyone puts in, it really helps for unsure confused people(like me) and virgins(also me). also, just saying, when i do have sex im gonna tell my mom about it, we made a deal and we are going to celebrate it. so thats great too.

  • dw

    I'm so relieved this happens to other ppl.
    The same thing happened to me just last night
    it went in but kept falling out!
    SO embarrassing
    so dont worry about it
    happens to pretty much everyone =]

  • ya this happend with me nd my boyfriend wen i tried to loose my virginity, he wasnt. if you let him finger you for a little while and then try to have sex it makes it easier.

  • becky

    this happened to me and my
    boyfriend the first time i was a virgen
    as was he soo it was difficult and he felt bad the first time we tried like it was his fault and he wasnt manly enough or something to that nature just make suree you tell him its ok beacuse neither one of you knew what you were doing dont make him feel bad.!