Dear Shelby,

How much sex is normal for a couple?

Dear numbers,

According to the General Social Survey, which has tracked American sexual behavior since the 1970’s, married couples have sex on average 58 times per year.

However, this study, prepared at the University of Chicago, does lump together young and old couples. But recently they released a new study showing that couples in their 20’s have sex 111 times per year on average, while dropping 20 percent per decade.

However, if you’re above or below these numbers don’t be concerned. Human sexual arousal patterns have vary widely in terms of what people like to do and how often they like to do it.

Dear Shelby,

What is the best type of birth control for women?

Dear Safe,

There is a variety of options when it comes to birth control for women.

Most common is the pill. You can choose between progestin only, or a combination of estrogen and progestin.

However the pill has an eight percent failure rate due to the fact that it is crucial to take the pill at the same time every day.

Another option is the female condom, which is inexpensive and provides protection from STDs and HIV. However, for birth control they are only 79 percent effective in most cases.

The IUD is the most effective option with pregnancies occurring in less than 1 in 100 women.

A copper IUD can be left in for 12 years. The downside is it can increase cramping and if you develop a sexually transmitted infection at the time of insertion your risk for pelvic inflammatory disease increases.

There are plenty of options. Do some research before deciding what’s best for you.

Dear Shelby,

Why do you have to write about sex? Sex is a private matter; I don’t want to know about other people’s sex lives.

Dear conservative,

I believe that a sexual relationship is a private matter, and what happens in the bedroom should stay there.

But there is still a lot of questions that go unanswered because either some parents skipped the sex talk, or sex education was lacking at school.

If someone is able to learn about proper protection, or how to say no to something they don’t want to do then it’s worth writing.

Sex is still considered a taboo subject to discuss, however it’s a big part of peoples’ lives. Without sex, you wouldn’t be here.

Dear Shelby,

How do I tell my “friend- with-benefits” that I’m pregnant?

Dear Girl with benefits,

Be blunt and get straight to the point.

The faster he knows, the quicker you two can discuss the future you want to have.

Depending on the options you want to look at, time is crucial when it comes to planning for a baby, adoption, or using other options.

You may be really nervous or even scared about telling your partner, but it’s better to tell the truth and be able to discuss a future for you, for him and for the unborn child.

Talk with a counselor who is well-informed about all options.

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