Lately one of those times where several disconnected conversations have all centered around the same topic. This past week, it’s been condoms. While the year is 2011 and plenty of people are having sex that would necessitate the use of a condom, the stigma of buying or having condoms seems to still rage on like it’s the mid ’50s.
In conversations with male strangers and friends alike, they often comment how embarrassed or shamed they are when they buy condoms. Really, dudes? You’re embarrassed that you’re A, most likely having sex, and B, doing something healthy and responsible in regards to it? Where does the stigma come from? I can understand the deep-seated idea that having sex for pleasure and not solely to reproduce might stir up some latent religious guilt, but that only goes so far. The idea that condoms are something to be ashamed of needs to be railed against.
Unfortunately, some men aren’t really helping the cause. Will.i.am of the Super Bowl worthy Black Eyed Peas was interviewed in Elle recently sharing his disturbing and, if I may borrow from him, straight up tacky views about women who keep condoms in their own homes. They’re not supposed to, guys! It’s tacky for women to be responsible about their own sexual health! Feministing ran a great commentary in response, quoting Jamilah Lemieux:
“Keeping condoms in the house is not the signature behavior of a slut; it is a responsible action taken by a sexually active person. Whether you are in a monogamous relationship, sleeping around all over town or simply open to the possibility of having sex at some point, it’s good to be prepared. Men have been known to keep condoms not simply in their homes, but in their cars and wallets. This isn’t about suggesting that the onus of providing protection should be on the part of the man (or that a couple should purchase all prophylactics together); this is basically saying that women should not be able to make the decision to have sex as casually as men can. And that’s nonsense.”
Guys, let the ’50s attitude toward sex go. Being less ashamed of your own sexual responsibility might even get you laid.