If you are experiencing a sexual response to your closeness with each other, you need to set your physical limits more broadly.
If you find that you and your sweetie are struggling in this area (and if you are, you are in good company – many are), find a faithful friend, pastor, or mentor to hold you accountable.
While intimacy is not solely a sexual issue, physical connection does play a role.
And when you meet and start dating someone new, addressing the “how much, how soon” topic can be intimidating.
If they respond favorably, working to meet your needs as well as expressing their own, you’re well on your way to building a solid foundation of intimacy. If and when red flags reveal themselves or you begin to feel unsafe or uncomfortable, stop. Proceed with caution until you have a clearer understanding of whether to continue building trust with this person or protect your heart and walk away. For example, a first date is most likely too soon to talk about being exclusive.