It’s Friday night. You’re in the mood. You have a partner in mind and you would really like to get laid. But wait—you’re on your period! Can you even have sex while you’re on your period?
The short answer is yes! While period sex isn’t for everyone, it’s entirely OK to have sex on a period. It can even be exciting! Some people enjoy sex even more when on their period. Orgasms can help relieve cramps, and some people find that menstrual fluid makes a great natural lube.
Like any kind of sex, there are many ways to have period sex. There are also lots of ways to make it safer. When you and your partner(s) agree on how and if you want to protect yourselves, sex on a period can be safe and fun. It can even distract from period pain!
Can I still get pregnant or get an STI when having period sex?
Because of the blood, there is a higher risk of getting or passing on HIV or Hepatitis when having sex on a period. Using condoms, gloves or dental dams can help prevent getting or giving STIs during penetration or oral sex.
Although it’s not common, it is possible to get pregnant when you’re on your period. There is a higher chance of this if you have a shorter menstrual cycle (around 28 days instead of 30). Condoms and other forms of birth control, like the pill, can help prevent pregnancy on or off your period.
Tampons and menstrual cups should always be removed before any penetration, but oral sex is possible with these in.
My partner is squeamish around blood. Can we do anything to make period sex more enjoyable?
It’s common for people to feel squeamish about blood for different reasons. If anyone is worried about staining sheets or general messiness, putting a towel down can help. You can use waterproof sheets to protect your mattress, too! Some people who don’t want to touch blood might be more comfortable using condoms, gloves, or dental dams. Wearing a menstrual cup or tampon can keep menstrual blood under control during oral sex.
Period sex doesn’t sound like it’s for me. Can I pass?
A period is a common bodily function. But it’s OK to not want to have sex on a period for any reason, or no reason at all!
Some people might feel ashamed of periods because of how they grew up, what they learned from family, or other reasons. Trans men and trans-masculine folks might feel dysphoria around it. Folks with chronic illnesses like endometriosis might be in too much pain to want to have sex on a period. Some people are turned off by the sight, smell, feel, or taste of blood. Some people might not want to have sex on a period just because!
Just like with any other sex act, the most important thing is that you and your partner are both excited about it and have a good time.