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The Wellness Center
 
 

General Info
Student Wellbeing

Contact:  (713) 348-3311 or wellbeing@rice.edu; Follow us on Twitter and Facebook!
Business Hours:  Monday - Friday (9:00 AM - 5:00 PM); closed weekends and University holidays
Located:  Gibbs Wellness Center (next door to the Recreation Center)

Counseling Center

Contact: 713-348-4867 (24 hours) Get emergency information
Business Hours: Monday - Friday (9:00am-5:00pm), closed weekends and University holidays.
Located: Rich Health Service Center( next to the Brown Masters House) and Gibbs Wellness Center

Let's Talk

We're here to help. Click here for more information on how to make an appointment with someone from the Rice Counseling Center.

For answers to common questions and concerns about going to the Counseling Center, check out the Counseling Center FAQs.

Sexual Exploration

 Entering college may seem like the next natural step in your sexual growth and development. But no matter where you consider yourself in terms of sexual maturity and experience, or what kind of sexual stuff you do or plan on doing, sex is something that comes with personal responsibility and feelings. 

Every situation is different. Regardless of whether you’re thinking about having sex for the first time, or engaging in a sexual relationship for the umpteenth time, consider the following before deciding whether or not you’re ready: 

How do I know if I'm ready for sex?

Emotional Risks:
  • Are you doing this for the right reasons? 
  • Do you feel pressured into doing this? 
  • Do you expect having sex to change your level of commitment to each other? If so, how do you feel about that? What if that doesn’t happen?
  • Is having sex okay with your personal values and beliefs? 
Physical Risks:
  • Have you and your partner gotten checked recently for STDs?
  • What if having sex with your partner isn’t what you expect?
  • Have you/your partner talked about/agreed about using birth control
  • Are you ready for the possibility of pregnancy? Have you talked to you partner about what you will do if that happens?
Your relationship with your partner:
  • How will you feel if the relationship ends after having sex?
  • What do you want out of this relationship?
  • Have you talked to your partner about where you are in the relationship and what you expect from each other?  

Reasons people choose not to have sex

  • Having sex is a personal choice. You should never feel pressured into having sex if you don’t want to.
  • People abstain from having sex for many reasons – some, for personal, cultural, or religious reasons; others, only for a period of time or in a certain situation, such as getting over a bad breakup, getting over a serious illness or injury, or wanting to be in a committed relationship beforehand.
  • If it’s not the right time, person, or set of circumstances, or you’re just not feeling it, then you shouldn’t go ahead with it.
  • Part of personal responsibility means staying true to yourself and your own feelings.  

What is masturbation?

Masturbation is touching, stroking, rubbing, or massaging one’s genitals for sexual arousal and/or orgasm. Some women also use a vibrator or sex toy to masturbate. It’s a way to explore your body, relieve sexual tension, and achieve sexual pleasure.

  • It is common and normal, and you shouldn’t feel embarrassed. Almost everyone masturbates at some point in their lives, and for most adults it’s a lifelong activity.
  • Plus, masturbation is a no-risk sexual behaviour: you can avoid pregnancy and STDs, and it can also be used as foreplay with a partner.
  • It’s only a problem when it interferes with your daily life, is done in public, or interferes with your sexual activity with a partner.  

References

“Sexually Transmitted Infections.” SexualHealth.org. http://www.sexualhealth.com/channel/view/sexually-transmitted-infections/ 

 “Health Info and Services.” Planned Parenthood.org. http://www.plannedparenthood.org/health-topics/stds-hiv-safer-sex-101.htm 

 “STDs.” KidsHealth.org. http://kidshealth.org/teen/sexual_health/stds/std.html?tracking=T_RelatedArticle 

 “Birth Control.” KidsHealth.org. http://kidshealth.org/teen/sexual_health/contraception/contraception_condom.html 

 “Birth Control.” National Institute of Health. http://nih.gov. 

Sexually Transmited Diseases. CDC. http://cdc.gov 

“Birth Control FAQ.” Womenshealth.gov. http://womenshealth.gov/faq/birth-control-methods.cfm#hormet