Dear Dr.Love,I have been dating my ‘new’ boyfriend for about six months now. At the beginning we exchanged our ‘limits’ sexually. Where I have had two sex partners in the past, he has none.He is of a different religion than I am and firmly believes in waiting until marriage. I completely respect his decision and have wanted him to keep it. Although we have fooled around’ many times before, though without the loss of any clothing or anything like that. Just this weekend he started getting really physical, such as un-hooking certain pieces of clothing, and having his hands on places he hasn’t done with me before.I stopped him, even though I don’t mind this sort of activity, I don’t know how far to let him go. Has he changed his mind or is he possibly getting carried away? I’m not sure how to bring this up to him.I thought he wanted to wait, and because of that so did I, but now I don’t know. . .
When you say, ‘I don’t know how far to let him go, ‘ you are assuming the role of his sexual monitor, which is dangerous close to the role of caretaker. He needs to be his own monitor, not you.The way to bring this up is to simply say, ‘The last time we had sex you went farther than you said you wanted to allow yourself to go. I am in a bind now because I welcome the activity, but I know that you have set your own limits. I wonder if you have changed your mind or if you simply got carried away?’Then sit back and let him talk. If he’s changed his mind and lowered the sexual bar (or raised it) let him tell you. If he hasn’t changed his ‘rules’ and simply became carried away, then I would ask him how he wants you to respond the next time this happens. Should you remind him of the rule or does he want you to respond to the other side of him that is allowing himself to get carried away?You are right to not give in so easily since there is so much at stake here. The last thing you want is for him to go too far and then resent you for allowing it and/or punish himself for falling.Keep talking and you will arrive at a plan that doesn’t put him and the relationship in jeopardy.