John Shields

Condoms and Sex

Filed By John Shields | June 22, 2009 9:30 AM | comments

Filed in: Living
Tags: condoms, HIV/AIDS, National Institutes of Health, sex, std

As an out gay man, I have a confession to make: I have had sexual intercourse with women. In college, my first girlfriend's last name was Condon. Some of her friends - before me - nicknamed her "Troj." That would be short for Trojan, as in condoms. And yes - we used them.

My second, and the only other female I slept with, was an Air Force officer - while I was also an officer in the Air Force. We were monogamous, and almost got married, so condoms weren't an issue as she was on the pill and we were monogamous.

A recent ABC report out, entitled "Why are Condoms Disliked by So Many Men?" strikes a chord - from 1979 to the present day. Why do men dislike condoms? Lots of reasons, as the ABC report indicates.

This project aims to advance our understanding of, among other factors, the role of cognitive and affective processes and condom application skills in explaining problems with condom use in young, heterosexual adult men," reads an excerpt of the study, which will be funded through May 2011.

My experience with condoms may perhaps shed some light on the study. I'm not going to go into details, but suffice it to say I don't like them, but they most definitely are a requirement if you are having sex with multiple partners.

For those of you out there that think I'm some kind of guy about town that sleeps with every cute male in sight I hate to disappoint you, as I'm mostly a monogamous type of guy. Sure, I've had sex with men from New York to California to Florida. And as for those two boys from Berlin, I have no idea what you are talking about - but we were safe, sane and consensual.

And as Saturday is National HIV Testing Day, I always recommend you and your partner(s) get tested regularly. If you don't do it together, I then highly recommend you talk about it - with those you know and those you're about to get intimately acquainted with. Communication - in any relationship - is job number one.

I drew a "line in the sand" long ago regarding safe-sex. No matter how hot the guy, no matter the situation, I held to my "line" - no matter what. Not everyone I know has that strength, or chance - due to timing, hotness, or just plain stupidity - to adhere to their own personal "line." Libido and passion sometimes rock your night - and possibly then place an earthquake directly in the midst of your life.

Trust me, I've literally hit enough of my friends upside the head for not using a condom, as they are smarter than that.

Condoms may not be comfortable, and as the study says, may get in your "way" - but they are a necessary part of sex.

When in doubt, use them. And as our own Dan O'Neill writes, use them wisely.

Please.


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Robert Ganshorn Robert Ganshorn | June 22, 2009 9:54 AM

Wonderful, necessary and true.

Rick Sours | June 23, 2009 8:47 AM

I agree, very true.