On the last track we discussed saying NO to sex and avoiding unwanted sexual advances. This track included three steps to not having to say NO. These three steps are plan ahead, look for signs of possible problems, and know how to communicate your feelings.
On this track we will continue our discussion on saying no to sex. This track will provide responses for your client who was unable to avoid an unwanted sexual advance and must respond to a partner who is ‘coming on strong.’ As with the last track, transference and counter transference issues need to be clearly in the forefront of the therapist’s mind to avoid violating an ethical boundary during these discussions.
For this track, let’s consider April, age 17. April had been trying her best to maintain a platonic relationship with her male friend, Ben. Ben, age 19, often found ways to get April alone and make sexual advances. April stated, "Sometimes I just want to let things happen. It might be easier that way. But I know I’d regret it."
How might you have responded to April?
17 Pressure Lines & Responses
I stated, "First, remember to think with your head and not with your heart. You already know to avoid hot spots, but if you find yourself in a situation with Ben, consider some of the following responses to pressure lines:
1. "If you love me, you’ll prove it by having sex with me."
"If you love me, you’ll prove it by respecting my feelings and not trying to make me do something I don’t want to do."
2. "If you won’t have sex with me, I don’t want to see you anymore."
"If you are only with me because you want sex, I guess our relationship really means nothing to you."
3. "If you won’t have sex with me, I’ll find someone who will."
"If you are already looking for someone else, then this relationship means nothing to you. I’m not a sex toy for you to use."
4. "Don’t be afraid. The first time is always scary."
"I’m not afraid. I’m standing up for what is right."
5. "Everybody has sex."
"I don’t care about everybody else. I care about me. I’m responsible for me."
6. "It’s a natural part of life."
"So is pregnancy and disease. I’m not ready for those things, either. It may be natural, but it’s not time."
7. "You want it as much as I do."
"No I don’t. I want to stand up for what I believe in. Aren’t you listening to me?"
8. "We had sex before. What’s the problem now?"
"The problem is that I did something I didn’t want to do and now I regret it."
9. "Just relax and let your feelings go."
"My feelings are telling me to go home."
10. "Don’t worry. I’ve got a condom."
"And I’ve got feelings. Don’t they matter to you?"
11. "Don’t worry. Nothing will happen."
You can’t guarantee that. But I can by not having sex."
12. "Don’t you want to do it at least once to see what it’s like?"
"I’ve already seen what pregnancy is like and I don’t want to see it for myself."
13. "Don’t worry. No one will know."
14. "You got me all excited now."
"I don’t owe you anything. If you’re this easily excited, maybe we should just cool it."
15. "I want to marry you. You know we’re going to get married."
"What does marriage later have to do with sex now?"
16. "I’ll always love you. Let me share this with you."
"If you love me, honor me by respecting my feelings."
17. "Making love will only make our love stronger."
"Sex doesn’t make a relationship stronger. It complicates it."
Jenna stated, "Those responses sound great, but I don’t really talk like that." I responded, "Obviously these responses are logical and well thought out. If you don’t speak that way, just say it in your own way. The important thing is that you remember to verbally and non-verbally communicate how you feel. Also, remember that you can sacrifice ‘things’ like belongings, but you should never sacrifice your principles or beliefs, even in marriage."
Think of your Jenna. How might she benefit from these responses to sexual come ons? Would giving her a copy of them from the manual that accompanies this course be productive?
On this track we discussed saying no to sex. This track will provide responses for your client who was unable to avoid an unwanted sexual advance and must respond to a partner who is ‘coming on strong.’
On the next track we will discuss avoiding rape. The focus of the next track is to provide methods for avoiding rape and avoiding date rape.
If a client feels that it might just be easier to give in to sexual advances, what coping strategies could she use? To select and enter your answer go to