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Condoms: the ins and outs

Getty Image by Kiyoshi Hijiki.

Getty Images

Getty Image by Kiyoshi Hijiki.

Rachael Bayuk

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Americans as a group aren’t using condoms.

According to Statista, only 36 million consumers said they were using condoms, while 285 million admitted they were not using condoms.

Now the question is, why are we as a whole not using condoms?

We think raw sex feels better.

It doesn’t, you are just using the wrong size condom, sorry. Using a bigger (or smaller) condom than you actually need leads to unfulfilling sex. You are just sliding around in the condom. The size of a condom doesn’t actually mean anything about your sexual prowess, so forget the notion that bigger always equals better. Verywellhealth.com has a guide to finding your size. Get a size that fits and you’ll be amazed at the difference.

We believe that raw contact equates to trust.

Trust doesn’t pay for a doctors visit now, does it? Our societal pertinacity to want to feel connected has been our downfall throughout health history. Having sex with someone has everything to do with trust. A condom doesn’t mean you don’t trust someone you are sleeping with. Condom usage really shows you have respect for both you and your partner.

We feel pressured to engage in unprotected sex.

Humans are uniquely susceptible to peer pressure, especially that received from a partner. We want to feel loved and accepted. Thus, when put in the situation with a partner, that doesn’t want to use protection, we are likely to cave to the pressure. We worry that we will lose the partner if we don’t cater to their desires. Yet, if a partner isn’t respecting your desires, are they really someone you want to be sleeping with?

We don’t take the risks seriously.

STDs and STIs don’t have a particular look. You can’t tell just by looking at someone if they are carrying around an infection. The hot girl at the party is just as likely to have one as the bro you work with. Anyone who has sex could have one. Most symptoms are dormant and undetectable without medical testing. Unless you are with that person 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and you go with them for their check ups and test result screenings, you can’t know with 100 percent certainty that they are “clean.” This also means we should all be getting regular routine testing.

We aren’t responsible about getting condoms.

Lets all be honest, if it isn’t alcohol runs or getting burritos, we are all pretty lazy about getting to the stores for the necessities. Even groceries can be lived without if we don’t feel like going. Naturally, this means condoms can easily be something we don’t go to the store and pick up. It can also be awkward getting condoms from the store. The rush of nervous energy comes over you, especially when you are standing next to someone else, looking at the selection, too. Also, it is not just up to one partner to get condoms, that responsibility lies on both of you.

This is not a scare tactic about dangerous sex. Sex is hot, but also risky. You are perfectly capable of making your own informed decisions, but herpes is the unwrapped gift that keeps on giving.

Rachael Bayuk can be reached at [email protected] or @BayukRachael on Twitter.

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Condoms: the ins and outs