Q: My girlfriend said she was a virgin, but when we had sex the first time there was no blood. Is she lying to me?
A: It's actually a myth that women always bleed the first time they have sex. Many people think that the first time women have sex, it will break their hymen, which causes pain and bleeding. However, this is only true if women have sex when they're quite young (14 years old or younger). By the time a woman is 17 - 18 years old, her hymen has likely degenerated (broken up) on its own. This happens naturally over time as women get older. So, by the time women typically have sex for the first time (around age 17 in the U.S.), they likely don't have a hymen anymore. While there may still be some pain, it's rare that they will visibly bleed as a result of have sex for the first time.
For more information about the hymen, check out this cool video by "Adam Ruins Everything."
Answers provided by Dr. Ross Avilla
Dr. Ross Avilla has been teaching Human Sexuality since 2013 and has a PhD in psychology from UC Davis. Dr. Avilla is not a clinician and all information and advice offered on this website is for educational purposes only.