To Protect or Not to Protect, Where is the Love?
Translated and edited by Walter Lippmann for CubaNews.
When the wind’s direction cannot be changed, simply adjust the sails.
Protect Yourself Author: Juventud Rebelde Published: 28/01/2020 | 09:56 pm
The origin of the word condom is still unknown. One of the assumptions is that it bears the name of its inventor, Mr. Condom or Contón. Even more curious is that the advantages of this object, for which demand dates back to ancient Egypt, are still unnoticed by some young people, as archaeological evidence shows.
We spoke with students from various technology schools and from the University of Havana about this issue. Not a few said they felt more pleasure in sexual relations without a condom (even though they knew the risks of not protecting themselves). This is because “these devices reduce skin-to-skin contact. Others see it as a deterrent to arousal or are upset by the delay in putting it on at the crucial moment, so they prefer to “take a chance”, and hope that the girl is healthy and keeping track of her ovulation.
In the survey, the girls were more concerned about the issue of protection and listed short- and long-term risks, but even this anxiety does not make them buy condoms or carry them in their bags and backpacks.
“I feel very sorry for them,” one of them said with a mischievous laugh, and if it’s worrying that at this point they are ashamed because other people know that they are sexually active, much worse is that they leave the responsibility for their sexual health to their partners alone.
Of good intentions…
One of the students interviewed said she had a boyfriend for almost a year, a steady partner with whom she never had sex without a condom – allegedly. One day the boy took it off in the middle of sex without her noticing, and then she was embarrassed to talk about her lack of control, so it was doubly irresponsible.
Weeks later, she didn’t see her period and started to worry, because she used to have it every month without fail. Then she went to the doctor she found out about the unexpected pregnancy. Then the boyfriend decided to confess, but it was too late to apologize and they had to face an abortion that who knows what consequences it will bring in the long run for the girl?
“It could have been worse,” reflected other young women when we discussed the case. If the boyfriend had acquired a sexually transmitted infection (STI) in previous relationships, he would have given her one too.
This awareness of the importance of protecting yourself in all sexual relationships is the kind of life-changing decision you make, other students said.
But if you are not consistent or do not incorporate creative ways of proposing and placing it, if you think that it takes the fun out of the moment and you cling to thinking badly of it, if you hide behind the fact that it is hard to acquire because of a shortage in the market, and you do not worry about managing it, like other scarce products, it can also have a bad effect on your erotic performance, they acknowledged.
It is not the very thin latex film that interferes with the body’s sensations, but the concern, the lack of concentration to perceive stimuli. The proof is that when a person likes you and rubs your genitals over clothes (much thicker than a condom), they react perfectly.
Of the students surveyed, almost none knew about the alternative of the female condom (which is not available on the national market) or believed that it could be used with a male condom at the same time, which is nonsense because that friction can cause one of them to break.
As for the brands already registered in Cuba, Vigor and Momentos, all agreed in mentioning the first one as their favorite because the product is stronger and better lubricated. Alas, they cannot choose because both brands are in short supply in pharmacies and other alternative outlets, such as cafes and bars, a concern that also reaches this editorial office from other provinces.
Some fortunate people told about experiences with foreign condoms and those of the Climax brand (which are currently delivered in their prevention actions by Prosalud volunteers), designed to increase pleasure by incorporating irregular flavors and textures. Is it not possible to have an alternative sale of these products in the TRD, they ask?
At the end of the discussion, they acknowledged that using condoms or looking for alternatives without penetration is to think about yourself and that being you love or is next to you. You both need to trust that sex will be a healthy moment, something to remember and talk about later with a smile, not a calendar or a positive STI test in your hands.