Kissing and caressing can not only bring great pleasure, closeness and good feelings; they may also lead to difficulty. Some boys quickly become so aroused sexually that they lose their willingness to control themselves, and girl may have difficulty in controlling them. It is also just as possible for some girls to become so involved that they, too, loose the will to stop, especially if earlier experiences have taught them how pleasurable sexual feeling is. In other words, if you have not decided for yourself, and in advance of a petting experience, where you are going to stop, or even whether you are going to start, you may find yourself involved in situations where your physical feelings overwhelm you.
You may find yourself engaging in sexual intercourse when you would not have choosen to if you had thought about it. When that happens, and yor are unprepa- red, both emotionally and with contraceptives, the long-term results may be tragic. Of course, the situation may be quite different if both partners are physically and emotionally mature enough to manage the powerful feelings and effects of intercourse, if both intend and want to have sex, and both are prepared for it - that is, have communicated with each other long enough and deeply enough so that they understand and consider each other's feelings, and have agreed upon using an effective means of contraception.
Each partner needs to be aware of the possibility that some boys and girls may try to 'use' a partner of the other sex - or sometimes the same sex - in order to satisfy only their own needs - needs to feel important, to feel that they have made it or 'scored' that they are keeping up with their friends or competitors, that they will have something to boast about. People whose feelings of insecurity give them a lot of trouble, or who are extremely selfish, may become very persuasive in trying to argue a partner into having sexual intercourse.
They may pretend to be in love, or even persuade themselves that they are in love; they may threaten to cut off a relationship unless their partner will 'go all the way' with them; they may try to make their partner feel small or immature or afraid of not going along; or they may say, in effect. 'if you love me, you will prove it by having sex with me.'
* A fact to remember about heavy petting is that it is possible - although such a happening is rather rare - for a girl to become pregnant even though she has an intact hymen and has never had intercourse. There is the natural opening in the hymen through which menstruation flows. If, in the course of heavy petting, the boy ejaculates near this opening, sperm may make their way into the vagina even though actual intercourse has not taken place. It is because sperm are such active swimmers that they may cause a pregnancy in a girl who is technically still a virgin.