Sex is still not talked about as openly and honestly as it should be, even though the subject is an important one. By talking about sex, we can ensure that more people enter and enjoy the bedroom with the information they need to make healthier decisions.
My sister and I are lucky to have a nurse for a mama, so we were always encouraged to talk about anything and everything related to our health – including sexual health.
Yup, talking to your mum about sex is as weird and (sometimes) uncomfortable/embarrassing as you could imagine but, even when we did feel uncomfortable, we knew that no matter what we had to say or what we had potentially done, we would be given the answers and important information needed in order to make better decisions.
And of course it was hard to have those conversations at the time. But no matter how kak it was sitting there talking about sex, vaginas, penises, breasts and numerous other things with the woman who gave birth to me, I have always been thankful for those talks.
Why? You’re probably asking with a grossed out/confused face. Because, given all the info and important talks, I was able to make decisions about sex that I would never have made without them.
So, thanks mama, I can only hope to deal with things as taboo/embarrassing with our child the way you did.
Now, on to the nitty-gritty…
Why is safe sex important?
Safe sex is important – regardless of whether you’re straight, bi-sexual or gay – simply because without it, you are exposing yourself to the risk of contracting STIs and HIV.
There are numerous precautions you can take – not only to prevent pregnancy but STIs/HIV, too – and here are a few ways you can get busy, safely:
Talk about it
Not just with your mum, but with the person you intend to have sex with. It’s important you know more or less about your partner’s sexual history (you don’t have to go into detail) – including whether or not either of you has had any STIs.
Of course, there will be instances where you might have casual sex when you feel like you might not have the time to talk about it. But even then, it doesn’t take too long to ask the questions you feel you need to in order to make sure you have the safest sex poss.
It always surprises me how few people know what a dental dam is, especially seeing as it plays a very important role when having oral sex with a woman.
Dental dams are thin pieces of latex (with quite a large surface area) that are placed over the vulva, enabling you to give oral stimulation without transmission of bodily fluids or direct contact.
Unfortunately, dental dams are not as readily available as condoms – especially in South Africa – but they can be obtained on the internet.
We all know about condoms and the huge role they play when it comes to safe sex in gay, bisexual and straight relationships, however, the only way to ensure you’re having safe sex – even with a condom – is to use it correctly.
In order to use a condom correctly, you have to:
- Check the expiry date,
- Choose latex (as latex condoms are thought to be the most effective in preventing STI transmission),
- Keep them away from light and heat,
- Use only water-based lube (as others can start to break down the condom),
- Use your hands not your mouth to open the packet,
- Choose a condom with a reservoir tip (which catches semen after ejaculation). Lightly pinch the top of the condom and place it at the top of your (or your partner’s) penis. This gets rid of trapped air, which can cause a condom to burst – so this step is really important,
- Roll the condom down until it’s completely rolled out. If it’s inside out, throw it away and start over,
- When done, you (or your partner) should withdraw while holding the condom at the base of the penis. This prevents the condom from slipping off.
I came across this product by Lorals the other day and posted the link on my Facebook group. I think the idea is very cool and would give both parties in the bedroom one less thing to ‘think about’.
As I said above, Lorals have created underwear that not only acts as underwear but as protection during oral sex, too. Yes, it’s as cool and clever as it sounds and this is what Lorals has to say on their website:
If you’ve ever said no to oral sex when you really wanted to say yes, you’re not alone. And now you have a solution. Introducing Lorals: The thinnest, most-sensitive underwear you’ll ever wear. Designed to be worn during oral sex, Lorals help you love oral with slightly less intensity. If you experience hesitations to oral and want to say yes more often, Lorals are for you.
Now, Lorals is not FDA-approved as a dental dam alternative yet, but we are crossing our fingers and hope that it will be soon, so we can say “cheerio” to dental dams and “hey bae” to this freaking amazing alternative.
Do you have any other tips regarding safe sex? Or have a missed something? Then please let me know what they are in the comment section below.