Written by Emma Kenny, Killing Kittens Sexpert, www.killingkittens.com

What does the law say about sex in public?

What does the law say about sex in public?

Ok ladies, we are all grown up’s here and I think we can all agree that on occasion we may all have gotten a little hot and heavy in a public place? Maybe in the corner of a night club, maybe on a deserted beach at night, maybe whilst skinny dipping, but certainly in a place where we may inadvertently have been discovered by a third party?

So why do we take risks like having sex in public? Well the obvious answer is that it adds to the thrill, creating the delicious excitement that is aroused when we know we are being naughty. Sex is a lustful activity and has various shades of anticipation and reward and when you throw a ‘taboo’ into the mix these shades can seem brighter on a sexual level. Ironically our brains, the very things that are meant to protect us by logically secreting commonsense suggestions such as ‘wait until you get home’ seems to also lose its marbles a little where sex in public is concerned. Instead of making us apprehensive, it floods the brain with dopamine, the same hormone that is secreted when we go on a roller coaster, or jump off a zip wire, which feels pretty fantastic.

In recent years the desire to have sex in public has grown and that is why dogging, swinging and sex clubs have become a popular sub-culture within modern life.

Whilst swinging clubs and sex parties tend to offer a safe haven to those who fancy getting jiggy with it in front of the appreciative hoards, dogging is a different territory, and can result in some pretty serious criminal charges.

So what does the law say about sex in public? Well, should you have sex in a public place and be discovered by two or more people you can be charged with outraging public decency. Under section 5 of the Public Order Act 1986, a person is guilty of an offence if they use threatening (or abusive) words or behaviour, or disorderly behaviour within the hearing or sight of a person likely to be caused harassment, alarm or distress, which could include sex in public. However, should you be actively trying to be discovered, let us say you are caught having sex on a park bench where kids are playing, then you are likely to be charged under the Sexual Offences Act 2003 and that is a very serious thing to have on your criminal record and will affect every aspect of your life for a very, very long time. You will however be glad to know that the Police in the UK are a sensible bunch of law enforcers. So, even if you are caught bang to rights in the act by an Officer, so long as it is clear that you were not making it your business to be seen by others, then chances are they will send you on your way with some stern advice about how to go about your future sexual etiquette.

If you have never had sex in a public place, but genuinely feel that this could take your relationship to a whole new level, then think carefully about where and when. I appreciate that planning a sexual encounter may feel less spontaneous and more contrived, but your sexual desires should never be so selfish that they negatively affect others. Whilst you may not think that it is a big deal if some unassuming pedestrian discovers you during the act, the reality is you don't know their history and therefore you have no idea of the damage that could have for them personally. Planning where and when means you can take the measures required to ensure as far as possible that you will remain undiscovered.

If you think that public sex is for you and like the idea of being ogled whilst you show your man a fun time, then consider doing it somewhere safe. There are a whole host of safe sexual spaces where men and women can be intimate with one another without the worry of criminal consequences. Knowing that you are definitely going somewhere that exhibitionists are both welcome and valued means that you can enter the environment feeling completely secure. If you realise that it isn’t for you when you arrive, you can both have a drink and the make your excuses, after all, you can always grab a bottle of wine on the way back home where you know you won’t be disturbed.

So the answer is that sex in public can be thrilling, but it can also be downright stupid. Make your choice and do it in a respectful and accepting environment.