I received a text last night from a friend and former lover. It wasn’t positive.
Taking a step back: he had texted me last week about finding a new sexual partner during his vacation, and they had had the STIs discussion. He thought I would have been proud of him, as that is a talk that I stress in my own life. I was proud of him for talking, but apparently the talk was brief (and worthless in my opinion).
A week later she had texted him asking if he had come inside of her, to which he replied he did, and on several occasions. I’m unclear why days later this would concern her. But she responded negatively towards this admittance.
He texted that he was nervous, that he felt that during the STI talk that he was thorough enough to dispel any concerns.
Maybe for STIs, from him. But how does he know that she is clear of any? I require my partners to be tested, to show me that test. I want to go into an intimate situation clearly informed. Him telling her that he is clear, that he’s been tested, doesn’t protect him.
And the idiot (don’t worry, I still love the idiot) didn’t even consider pregnancy it seems. STI talks are not pregnancy talks, though they can easily segment into them (which apparently they didn’t). He didn’t even think to ask about birth control. She didn’t even think to ask for him to wear a condom.
I think condoms are a must to such an extent that it has to be negotiated out of the equation, not into it.
He’s beating himself up over this, and I think he should, because I’m mean like that. Hopefully he’ll learn from the experience, and hopefully without long term consequences. But I don’t think he’s entirely to blame.
Women cannot be so passive as to place all the blame solely on their partner. They are just as responsible for their sexual well-being. I told him that “she can’t shift all the blame to him, unless she told him to pull out. She allowed sex without a condom as much as he did. She’s as much to blame as he is, and if she’s not adult enough to own up to it, then he shouldn’t be doing adult activities with her anyhow.”
I had a few follow up questions like: “is she on birth control?” and “how did you guys negotiate the no condoms?”. This really should have been a part of their talk beforehand, but maybe he’ll remember them for next time.
Women aren’t the only ones, however. I cannot begin to count how many men have told me, when a partner gets pregnant, “but she said that she was on birth control,” or “but she said she couldn’t get pregnant,”. While men have far less options to avoid pregnancy than women, they can always put a condom on. No matter how much they trust their partner, if they don’t want to have a child, they can take precautions to avoid it.
I am aware that my own viewpoint of sex and sex talks will be different than other people’s. That having these talks aren’t going to cover everything, like non-monogamy, condoms breaking, cheating, and other scenarios (though, seriously, I discuss issues like that as well). I may be a bit fanatical in my discussions and suck all the romance out of it.
But I am in charge of my sexuality, of my body. I am. No one else.
And it pisses me off when I see people of any gender pointing the finger at someone else if they consented to the activities. They need to own up to what they allowed, what they liked, what they consented to, what happened. It’s not a blame game.