Don't let anyone push you into something you're not ready for. Use these techniques to help you stand your ground.
Step 1: Refuse to be bullied. If someone tells you they can get sex from someone else if you won't do it, tell them to go right ahead, because you'll be looking for someone who respects your decision to wait.
Step 2: Think about how you'd feel if you gave in to the pressure to have sex with someone before you were ready, and then they broke up with you. Would you want to go back in time? Sixty-three percent of teens surveyed wish they'd waited longer to have sex.
TIP: Anyone who prefaces their pitch with, "if you loved me," probably doesn't love you.
Step 3: Don't fall for the line that "everyone else is doing it," because they're probably not. And even if they are, who says you have to follow the pack? Tell anyone who tries this line that you make your own decisions.
Step 4: Don't waste your breath arguing. When the subject comes up, just say, "I've told you no, and I'm not going to discuss it anymore." Then change the subject. If they persist, end the conversation altogether.
Step 5: Think seriously about ending the relationship if the person will not stop bugging you about having sex.
Step 6: If you're considering having sex in order to hang on to a relationship or fit in with a clique, work on your self-esteem with self-help books, peer support groups, or counseling. Teens who have healthy self-images are less likely to have sex before they're actually ready.
FACT: Teenage boys feel even more pressure to have sex than teenage girls, according to a survey.