IRIN Plus News recently carried an article that highlights some pros and cons of female condoms, or at least of how they’re viewed today. Let’s start with a pro – there was an article about female condoms! And not just a new technological breakthrough or design innovation, but an article about some actually using one. Woah. This article is an exclusive scoop on a “male perspective on a “first time” with the female condom”.
“I used it once with my girlfriend. I’d never considered using one before, but there were no conventional [male] condoms [in the house] and my girlfriend thought it would be cool – she will try anything because it’s new. Being the sucker for adventure that I am, I tried it; yes, I used a female condom.”
Pros: new, available, adventurous, novel! Take note, I’m willing to bet that he’s not the only guy (or girl) in the world who likes trying something new.
“My girlfriend made me hide my head under the blankets while she put it on because she didn’t want me to see her in a compromising position”
Cons: if you’re putting it on, you have to look at a vagina. Wait a minute… maybe with some practice this awkward phase can be eliminated.
“It was strange – it sticks out in a funny way and it’s like there’s too much plastic ‘there’, if you ask me. I was a bit scared for her to use it because it looked like something that would just, you know, get swallowed up.”
Cons: too much plastic ‘there’, fear of pushing the condom in. Actually, the latter point is one of the reasons I like the new style of female condom; it eliminates this fear. But again, all of these cons speak to the importance of “the rule of 3,” or trying a FC 3 times before deciding it’s not for you.
“I liked the fact that she had to worry about getting a condom, for once.”
Pros: she worries about the condom. Of course, this is the arguments that female condom advocates have been using for years – not only does she get to worry about the condom, but it’s a condom that is under her control.
In the end, the interviewee seems rather ambivalent about the whole thing. It wasn’t better, but also wasn’t worse than a male condom. Some of the factors he mentions – trying something new, adventurousness, novelty – are significant pleasure enhancers that are too often neglected. After all, most of us don’t decide to do it in the back seat of the car because it’s the most comfortable location…