Beyond Condoms... talking the ultimate safe sex
Some years ago I lived and worked Outback for a time as a regular remedial massage therapist and also incidentally as intimacy and relationship counselor. During that time it never ceased to amaze me the risks mature age adults were prepared to take in order to pursue sexual pleasure that was outside the normal bounds. The phenomena seems to prove the older we get, the sillier we get; at least when it comes to protecting ourselves from sexually transmitted diseases and unwanted pregnancies.
Still to this day, I am alarmed at the amount of clients I was then and still see now, suffering the tragedies that befall them when they fail to heed the warnings that they themselves, dole out to their teenage children. It seems parents have no qualms about lecturing and worrying about their sons and daughters contracting AIDS or bringing a child into the world that they cannot support; and yet when it came to managing their own sexual health and personal safety, all care and caution is casually tossed out the window.
While working out on the Western Plains in these roles, I thought that it was just the remoteness and isolation that lulled these ‘Outback Beyonders’ into a false sense that they were somehow out of reach of the Grim Reaper. Or maybe it was that they thought they were tougher and stronger; more resilient than most; having proven that they were able to battle the elements that challenged them season after season; and therefore when it came to facing the challenges of intimacy with a partner, somehow this made them immune to the usual consequences that went along with giving free-reign to unbridled passion.
Day in, day out, during the years I spent in the outback; on couch sat many a professional well-educated man and woman, wring their hands and not so uncommonly, crying their eyes out as they confessed to the most ludicrous and dangerous sexual exploits. Some were qualified Engineers, Teachers, Business Proprietors, Graziers and Property Owners; all telling me the most disturbing tales of how they had overlooked and therefore failed to protect themselves from the most tragic consequences of unprotected sex with near total strangers.
Though most went to school and also onto university, seemed few were able to comprehend how it could be possible that they had contracted a particular social disease, after just a brief encounter. Time and time again, I was utterly amazed at how complacent about their health and hygiene these secularly successful people were. Yet what astounded me most was how reluctant these otherwise learned men as well as women, were about visiting a health Professional for regular check-ups, or even to see a doctor when problems arose like rashes, warts or discharges of their genitalia.
The ridiculous truth that became evident was that most simply ignored the symptoms of S.T.D’s and even pregnancy, and hoped and prayed these would go away of their own accord. No doubt the contradictions and contrast to their professional lives was unbelievable. Certainly these men and women understood the rules and procedures that had to be followed in their various professions, but when it came to their personal and sexual lives, seemed they were clueless.
Why was it so? All I could conclude was that these professions were either in total denial that were engaging in sex at all, or otherwise that they had a total disregard and disrespect for themselves as mere mortals. Evidently their agricultural machines and four-wheel-drives, receive more care and attention then they themselves gave their own bodies, or their partners.
'Oh for the correct placement of a condom, the trouble and tragedy that could be averted.'
Months into the practice, I ordered two thousand Aids Awareness campaign stickers that read: ‘If It’s Not On- It’s Not On!’ Back then and even to date, these have been hard to near impossible to place - the stickers that is. In the very first year of starting the practice, I set up a display at the local show as an act of self-promotion for the Studio’s services, and also to do my bit for the community to educate the public about safe sex. However experience has now taught me that telling people to use condoms to protect themselves from the killer Aids virus, might makes all the sense in the world; but for all the shouting and touting, the warnings have largely been ineffective at getting the rubber on, in the right place at the right time to be effective.
Undeniably there seems to be a huge chasm to be crossed in people’s psych to get them from ‘knowing’ what they should be doing when their pants come off, to actually staying in control and utilizing their common sense, once the erotic bug bites. Seemingly, the majority of males who came for counselling and coaching during my time outback, found themselves in some sort of trouble, due to having sex without protection, with a new partner, or a casual fling – that turned in a one-stand for other reason that no one had that great a time that they wanted to come back for more.
When opportunity knocked, it never entered their head that anything untoward could come of such quick and easy liaisons. All told of how much of a dick-head they felt to be in this predicament, after throwing all caution to the wind, in the pursuit of ecstasy. Nine times out of ten, these who had been bitten, confessed that they actually had had a condom, or even a whole packet of them in either their trouser pocket, wallet or glove-box, yet just hadn’t found the right moment in crack it open and peel the plastic onto their ‘Master Piece’ to prevent an unwanted pregnancy, or shameful sexual disease.
Time and time again, I heard the excuse that the female involved, hadn’t asked them to put one on; and so they automatically assumed that she was on the pill; or that it was her safe time of her monthly cycle, or surely she would have said something before they got started.
Certainly it was a valid point when one considers that it takes two to ‘tango’ in Paris, or anywhere else for that matter. But none the less quite stupid for a man to rely on the subtly of what is not said or agreed upon, in regard to insuring the impossibility of becoming a parent, without one’s full knowledge or consent. As I see it, the number one problem people don’t seem to acknowledge is that the Pill is not a hundred percent effective means of birth control. And number two: it is utterly imprudent to take the word of a little known female lover; that they are actually on the Contraceptive Pill.
What proof does a male have that the female he is engaging with, is protecting them both from life altering as well as life-long responsibilities, not agreed upon? Thus the unsheathed Male puts himself in a very vulnerable position indeed, when all he has to rely on, is the woman’s word that she won’t be coming back on him, in nine months’ time to keep her and a child, for the next twenty years or more.
Number three on the ‘stupid list’ goes without saying; but nonetheless I’ll say it one more time in the hope that it may penetrate the gross ignorance that pervades the middle-age single’s population, of this country and abroad. The Pill, the Diaphragm, Spermicides and Oral sex, won’t protect you, or your partner, from the most serious of life threatening, sexually transmitted diseases. Believe it or not, oral sex transfers the irritating and hideous Genital Herpes virus, the deadly Aides virus as well as Chlamydia disease, which can and does, more often than not, render both the male and the female who contracts it, sterile and infertile for life.
As to whether any person can tell by visual appearances alone, as to whether they, or a potential, or past Partner is actually infected or unaffected by any type of S.T.D. is just utter ignorant nonsense. Think about it; when was the last time you halted the throws of passion, turned the light on then got out magnifying glass and inspected your own and your partner’s genitals? And even if you did engage in this highly unusual and embarrassing investigation before having sex, would you even know, want you were looking for? And precisely when was it that you last you took a full medical history of your Lover before engaging in a luscious, sexual romp?
When the average, single, mature-aged male was questioned about their adversity to being expected to wear a condom during Sex; most complained that it was an affront to their intelligence and competence to be asked to do so. Commonly I was told by clients that I was trying to encourage to ‘use protection, ‘I know I don’t have any diseases and I haven’t had sex with anyone who has; so why should I wear one when they get in the way of enjoying the sensation of being inside a woman’s hot, wet, Pussy. It’s like having a shower with a raincoat on.’
Certainly it is undeniable that a certain amount of feeling and sensation is lost when a condom sheaths the ‘Master Piece.’ Indisputably this inhibiting of sensitivity is the major drawback of the condom use. However when held up against its properties of disease protection, the argument loses all ground. For older males there definitely are major problems with being able to use condoms at all. As many of my clients would attest, the older they got, the more unreliable their erectile functions were.
As a married fifty-two year old client who got his forty-five year old housekeeper pregnant, told me; ‘I just don’t know when I’m hard enough to get a condom on. If I stop, I’m shit scared of looking like a limb dick with it going down on me, while I fumble around putting the dam thing on. My erections aren’t reliable, like they use to be. I have to work hard for them; not like when I was a young buck. Back then the mere thought of having sex, would get me hard as a rocket. Then I’d be left with an embarrassing bulge in my trousers for way too long. Life’s a cruel joke. If only I had that problem now, I would be a very happy man.’
It is precisely these types of issues that make it imperative that sensual experiences are created from inside sustainable relationships that have as their foundations, honest communication, patience and deep understanding, as well as, commitment to mutually fulfilling each other’s needs. However the fact is no one ever just walks into these kinds of relationships; they take time to build. It takes time to trust well-enough to reveal our true selves.... so what to do in the meantime?
Clearly condoms are not the answer... but what ever happened to 'Petting'? We're talking ultra-ultra 'Safe Sex' here people.
Hands down for the male and the female, everyone's a winner!