I was recently chatting with a potential partner about safe sex. I’m a very pro-condom guy, and she was talking about friends she knew who got pregnant whilst wearing a condom. She then revealed that she didn’t know that condoms came in different sizes. This is a grown woman mind you. It was so surprising, that I actually nixed the idea of us having sex – it’s not exactly enticing when a potential partner is naive about birth control. And I really don’t want any kids (for now) or STDs.
The incident reminded me of an entry I wrote for my old blog about condoms. It was one of the few entries I had the presence of mind to save before I deleted that blog. I’ve reprinted it below (with some slight edits).
The following was written around March 2014
A while back, a partner and I were indulging in some light bondage, in the form of some under-mattress restraints (well worth the expenditure if you want to experiment, but make sure you get the ones that have a clip-release system just in case – like these) when I discovered that she didn’t know how to put a condom on.
Bear in mind that we had been dating a year at this point. She was on the pill, but I’ve always been very careful. But this resulted in an interesting conversation about whether women need to know how to affix a condom. Is it a bad thing that she didn’t know how to put on a condom? Did her sex education woefully under-prepare her for life in the real world? Or is the opposite true? Should a woman not have to know how to put on a condom? Is it a man’s duty to know how, and a woman’s duty to say “it’s not happening” if he doesn’t know how (or refuses to).
My partner reminded me that preferred sexual education where she grew up was abstinence. I’m not going to go on about that issue – I’m sure everyone has their own opinions about it – but it led to another interesting discussion. I assumed, growing up and having sex from the age of 14 in a pro-abstinence environment, that guys from that era of her life would be the ones averse to wearing condoms.
But to my surprise, she informed me that it’s generally British guys who are more averse to wearing condoms. I found this very shocking. To me, even before I became active on the swinging scene and had open relatonships, a condom has always been an integral part of sex. Putting one on is as natural part of sex as undoing the buttons on my fly, and I don’t hold with any of that bullshit that sex feels better without one. As far as I’m concerned, if you’re having trouble putting one on, or it feels noticeably uncomfortable wearing one, then you’re wearing the wrong type of condom. They do vary from brand to brand, and it’s always worth experimenting to find one that you can put on almost without thinking.
Apparently, I was the exception according to that partner. According to her, a lot of British men make excuses not to wear one. Make no mistake, that partner was a very smart woman, especially when it came to medical issues. She’d quite happily tell you all the grossest symptoms of various sexually transmitted diseases which are enough to put any man off going bareback. Although we both agreed that the abstinence movement has exaggerated the spread and virility of STDs somewhat in the developed world, it was common sense to both of us that it was better to be safe than sorry – especially if you’re very sexually active.
She believed the main difference is the moderately intelligent guys from her past (she wasn’t exactly sleeping with rednecks) were more accepting of her intelligence i.e. she was probably right if she told them that it would be better to wear a condom. She said British men still look down on intelligent women, that somehow they’re an insult to their intelligence. If a woman demands they wear a condom, they don’t want to so as not to appear weak.
This is unacceptable, British guys. I don’t want to sound like I think I’m better than anyone who doesn’t wear a condom, but seriously – if a woman tells you to wrap it up, you wrap it up. If nothing else, you’ll earn respect. I guess I’m used to the swinging, kink and poly scenes where condoms are the norm, if not mandatory. I don’t actually remember physically having to put on a condom on a fake cock in my sex ed – I do remember buying a packet and learning how to put one on myself however.
Oh, and that thing I mentioned about women refusing sex if a guy doesn’t want to wear a condom? Aside from the fact that this would be incredibly frustrating for women – who enjoy sex just as much as, if not more than, men – it also places the woman at risk of being raped (something, sadly, that particular partner also had experience in).
So yes. Guys – man the fuck up, and girls – whilst perhaps you shouldn’t need to know how to put on a condom, it’s worth practicing (either on a phallic object or a willing male volunteer. I’ll happily show you 🙂 ) just in case you have to put one on a guy whose…er…hands are tied…