As a woman in a long term, committed relationship, I thought my days of using condoms in the bedroom were far, far behind me. I was thrilled about it too, since condoms have always represented “responsibility” to me, and while responsibility is paramount, there wasn't anything sexy about it.
Condoms were purely functional, and when my friends and I would share sex stories, not once did anyone utter anything to the effect of, “And the condom made it SO much better.”
During my carefree, single girl about town years, when I did the walk of shame more times than I'd like to admit, I always carried a standard, cheap Trojan condom in the depths of my handbag because I was a good girl, damn it. Before things could get too hot, I'd demand he put it on, and I'd pray that he wouldn't be turned off by my request, since I'd long ago been told that “men hate condoms.”
Using a condom was something I had to do, simply because I could barely take care of a puppy at that time, let alone an actual, adorable human child and that whole pesky STD thing was hard to ignore.
To me, a condom was more than just a barrier between bodily fluids though. When my partner was wearing a condom, I felt a bit detached...as if I couldn't completely “feel” him. If a condom was present, it meant that this was not someone I was serious about, and so I put up emotional and spiritual barriers of my own in an effort to avoid connecting any deeper, and quite honestly, to avoid getting hurt or feeling guilty about my actions.
Who knew a little bit of latex could have such a profound, and quite depressing, effect on my sex life?
Well, it was depressing until I received a package in the mail from Lucky Bloke! Suddenly, everything I thought and felt about condoms changed. I couldn't believe how many types of different condoms there were, and my boyfriend and I had a great time just reading the labels and basically “ooohing” and “awwwing” as we spread them out over the dining room table. It felt like a Condom Christmas, and I had most definitely been a good girl.
Still, in the back of my mind I wondered if all these brightly colored packages would end up going to waste because in our two years together, my boyfriend and I had never even used a condom, opting instead for other forms of birth control and monogamy. I thought that despite how intriguing the packaging was I didn't want a barrier between us, and I feared it would take some of the pleasure out of sex, especially for him.
Just like with anything new in the bedroom, it was a bit exciting...yes, I did just say that a condom was exciting. Our sex life had always thrilled me and we've never been afraid to think outside of the proverbial box, so it surprised me that something as simple, and seemingly pedestrian, as a condom was actually spicing our sex life up.
So we tried one, and that night another...this pattern has gone on ever since.
We don't use condoms all the time, but when we've both had a long day or are feeling a bit uninspired, we reach into the Lucky Bloke grab bag and see what we get. Trying out all the different condoms has encouraged us to talk about what's working and what's not.
One of the most surprising things I've noticed is that the Mr. has yet to say that sex with a condom sucks in comparison to sex without one. The only thing he complains about is when he says they feel too small (heh).
The most important thing I've learned from this experience is that just because you've had certain attitudes and opinions on something since adolescence doesn't mean they can't change.
Before, condoms were a nuisance that kept me safe, something I “had” to do if I wanted to go home with that hot bartender I'd just met, and a barrier protecting me from hurt when he didn't call the next day. Now, condoms are on the same level as a new sex toy, something I “want” to use in the bedroom with the man I love, and instead of being a barrier, they have succeeded in bringing us closer together.
Oh, and also?
The condoms make it SO much better.
It's about time someone said that.