Cough Up the Condoms Fellas

This entry is part 10 of 10 in the series My Adventures So Far

Condoms are a tough topic to bring up, let alone discuss when the intensity of a date leads to intimacy for the first time. According to a study published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine, 90 percent of men over 50 didn’t use a condom when they last had sex with a date or casual acquaintance and 70 percent didn’t glove up for a stranger. Our youngsters are evidently more conscientious, with 70 to 80 percent of teens packing them in purses or back pockets to prevent pregnancy, as well as STDs. That’s quite a role reversal.

With the ‘elevator drop’ in condom use in older adults, Trojan condom maker, Church & Dwight, financed a study of 6,000 people age 14 to 94 (that the over ninety group was included perked me up). The data that emerged was consistent. It’s both encouraging when considering an increase in activity yet unsettling that STDs in those 50 and above are on the rise as blue pills keep gents rising to the occasion longer than previous generations. There are evidently a number of reasons that discourage the discussion and use of condoms in the over 50 crowd.

One is the wilt effect. Stopping the passion to put one on can sometimes wilt a Willie upon contact. I don’t need to explain a man’s reaction to that phenomenon if it repeats more than once.

Another is that they dull sensation. Ruin the ride. A wet blanket between you and your partner. It messes with anticipation, your senses, and your actions and reactions. Big stuff. But so are STDs and little bitty surprises that go “Wah” in the night. So…

You get with the only program in town, but your outfit doesn’t fit. The fitting room jitters is another big issue. This is a place that size does matter. A marketing nemesis the manufacturers face is that it’s a rare man who will plop a box of ‘size small’ condoms on the counter without wanting to say they’re for someone else…which presents another issue entirely, so they label them ‘snug’. Same issue. These glove-it-up wonders were traditionally manufactured as one-size-fits-all, and that isn’t small, and it’s a lie. Remember if you’re going to have sex fellas, she’s going to get a feel for the size and will probably NEVER read the wrapper.

But a bad fit, too small or too large can cause equipment failures that leave women trenching for debris or dealing with blowouts that blow the entire purpose. With the ability to be anonymous in this digital age of computers, the Trojan website provides a wealth of information. It stresses that girth is crucial, therefore they provide a guide for accurate measurement. Google is on board with statistics, too. “Condom comes off” will bring back 1.4 million results, while “condom too big” gets 3.9 million results.

The information on the packaging rarely helps. The Trojan Magnum, celebrated as the macho standard, is actually smaller in width than Trojan’s SUPRA Lubricated and about the same length as the Thinintensity Lubricated. So, is there an answer?

Lucky Bloke’s website, an online condom supplier, has a scale any man can use. If their pal has plenty of room inside an empty toilet paper roll, which they claim accounts for 35 percent of men, order the small. If there’s just enough room between the cardboard to be comfy, go for medium, and if it’s a tight fit, as 15 to 20 of the men will discover, go for the gold. There’s also a website, condom-sizes.org that gives tips with tools and a piece of fruit that will help with a fitting.

Europe is way ahead of us on this issue. TheyFit, based in London, makes 95 sizes and comes with a guide to get it right, but doesn’t ship to the U.S. They probably laugh at our studbludgery. Don’t bother with a dictionary. I just made that word up. It seems appropriate since bludgery indicates oppressively combative and monotonous. The British use the word interchangeably with pimp. We all know what a stud is.

We need to get with the times. We don’t just walk into a Starbucks and say, “Give me a coffee.” We add whether it will be a Tall, a Grande or a Venti. The good news is, this should be a one-time fitting room exercise where guys check their egos at the door. For goodness sake, they sell tire gauges that test the tread depth, but don’t market gauges to get a good condom fit that enhances sex, might diminish the fear of using one, and prevent disease and unwanted pregnancy.

Maybe you can start a conversation by telling your fella you’re allergic to latex, so have a product preference. We’re a new generation of hot sex scenes on pay-for-view channels, yet we don’t want to discuss that one-size-fits-all condoms…don’t?

This blows the hell out of the concept that women should buy and carry condoms, unless they market a variety pack, and she has a good eye. Also, watch the expiration dates guys and gals. Again. This isn’t about our egos.

This started out to be an article about Sexually Transmitted Disease prevention. From everything I researched, celibacy and abstinence seem to be the only alternatives to condoms, to reduce the risk of STDs and stay healthy. And no. Oral sex doesn’t mean you can go naked. Categorize it however you want, STDs don’t care. They thrive in any warm-moist environment.

No wonder talking about condoms is a tough subject to discuss with a date heading for home plate. Trust me, it isn’t any harder than waiting for the results of an STD lab test or telling your partner that they need a round of antibiotics or worse, an appointment with a specialist. Remember, men very often show no signs of an STD, but pass it back to you over and again.

And also remember, if you were healthy before you got tangled up in the sheets with them, you can’t shoot them. It isn’t worth the jail time.

So…glove up and have fun. Sex is a healthy. Enjoy your life and sexuality and all its benefits. It’s simply time to get real and speak up and glove up. We can do it!

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