By: Cheryl Sloane
Negotiating sex may sometimes be intimidating. However, learning to speak to your lover openly and honestly will heighten your experience of pleasure. Try having the condom conversation before you’re in the throes of passion. If wearing a condom is a deal breaker then figure out what other ways you can make love without a penis being inside of you. Above all else, when it comes to condoms, stick to your instincts and don’t give in. If there is respect in your relationship, then you should both appreciate the importance of taking care of your health. It is your right to say no to nocondom sex. This is part of the consent in your relationship.
Why use condoms? Condoms are the safest way to prevent pregnancy and STI Sexually Transmitted Infection. In fact, when used correctly, condoms are 98% effective in preventing pregnancy. Whenever a penis comes in contact with a partner’s genitals, mouth or anus, there’s a chance that an STI will spread. Some STI’s can be detected by testing. Others such as HPV Human Papilloma Virus might not be detected until it’s too late. If you’re in a new relationship and/or unsure about other partners, condoms take the worry out of sex. Condom use is a decision that you and your partner make together. Safer sex is your right, your responsibility, and a good choice.
If a partner attempts to coerce you into not using a condom or shames you when you bring up the subject, they are inflicting abuse. You should never feel badly about requiring condom use in a relationship. “Stealthing” or taking off a condom when your partner’s not paying attention or in the heat of passion, is sexual assault. When you consent to something, you need to know what you are consenting to. No changing the stakes in the middle of play.
Why people don’t use condoms? There are lots of complaints about condoms. Too tight, too loose, too thick, too thin. Here are a few condom tips (pun intended) that may help you on your path to safer sex.
Thinner condoms will give you more sensation during intercourse.
Condoms come in many sizes and styles. If one is uncomfortable, try a different style.
Keep condoms handy so you don’t have to get up and rummage through drawers to find them.
There are nonlatex condoms for those with latex allergies.
To stay away from glycerin and paraben packed lube, buy nonlubricated condoms and add lube.
Überlube is compatible with natural rubber latex and polyisoprene condoms. Überlube is not compatible with polyurethane condoms. Even if you’re using a lubricated condom, a little überlube will make everything work better.
A bit of knowledge and some experimentation will help the condom conversation result in agreement and consent. You will be more confident with your sexual safety and still enjoy the pleasure you deserve.