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12th Nov 2018

#AgonyCant Should more women be carrying condoms on nights out?

Jade Hayden

agony can't

Brought to you by Durex.

“My friends think it’s weird that I carry a condom in my handbag on nights out and have a box in my bedside locker.

“Is that lowkey sexist? Men bring condoms around in their wallet and are seen as responsible, but when I do it, I’m seen as presumptuous, or even worse, ‘slutty.’

“I can’t take oral contraceptives because I’ve tried all of them and they just don’t agree with me. So condoms really are my only answer and I don’t think I should be made feel bad for having them on me… Should I?”

Short answer: No, absolutely not. Keep doing what you’re doing.

Long answer: Despite the fact that it is is legitimately 2018 (two thousand and eighteen), some people apparently still have a problem with women wanting to have sex.

The word ‘slut’ is still used. The ‘walk-of-shame’ is still a thing. People will still judge you for having one night stands. Not a lot of people, hopefully, but some of them.

It’s annoying, it’s irritating and honestly, yeah, it’s pretty sexist.

Do more men than women carry condoms on them when they go on nights out? Yeah, probably.

But does this automatically make it weird for a woman to carry one if she wants to? No, clearly not.

Here’s a list of things that you carrying a condom on a night out makes you:

1. Smart.

2. Safe.

3. Ready for the ride.

And here’s a list of things that you carrying a condom on a night out doesn’t make you:

1. ‘Slutty.’

2. Pregnant, probably.

Honestly, you’re not the one with the problem here and you seem to know that. Your mates clearly have this warped perception of what it means to be a woman who enjoys sex.

It’s highly likely that they’re projecting some of their own insecurities about their own sexualities onto you.

Sure, some of us feel uncomfortable about being open about our sex lives, and yeah, a lot of people still think it’s awkward to go into a shop and a buy a box of condoms, but over time these things are likely to change.

People grow up, they get over things, they realise that whatever they used to feel weird about is actually grand and there was no need to get all worked about it.

This will most likely happen with your friends too, but if their attitudes are genuinely pissing you off, you could just tell them so?

If they’re actually your mates, chances are they probably don’t realise they might be acting a bit shitty – these are just attitudes they’ve had ingrained into them manifesting themselves in a few off-the-cuff comments or an unnecessary sneer whenever you open up your purse.

It’s unfair, but it’s not a negative reflection on you or your behaviour.

Tell your friends why you carry condoms and why it’s not weird for you to do so. Explain that you’re rarely in a situation where you have to stop sex because most of the time, you’re prepared.

Ask them what about you carrying contraceptives on a night out makes you so ‘slutty?’ It’s not you that’s making this an issue, it’s their questionable attitudes.

… Or, maybe they’re just jealous because you’re having more sex than they are.

Either or.

Worried about going on a first date with someone new? Got some lad onto you who won’t take the hint? Are you being ghosted, breadcrumbed, or some other new form of dating trend? Just need somewhere to vent about everything that’s wrong with your love life? Same, to be honest.

Don’t worry though because at Her we’ve been there, we are still there, and we can maybe even give you some decent advice. At the end of the day, #ShiftHappens to all of us. 

Send all questions here or email [email protected]. All submissions will be published anonymously.