07 August 2006

Size and Shape Matter

Toni Belfield of the Family Planning Association (FPA) in the UK says:

  1. Men come in different shapes and sizes and so do condoms.

  2. Poor use of condoms can have devastating consequences on people's sexual health. Recent figures show the UK has the highest ever number of new cases of chlamydia and continued high rates of unwanted pregnancies.

  3. Problems such as condoms splitting or coming off are directly related to people choosing the wrong size and shape, or not using them correctly. When this happens, people lose trust and confidence in the method. As a direct consequence, people are then far more likely to use condoms erratically or stop using them altogether.

  4. Used correctly condoms provide the best protection against sexually transmitted infections.

[Source: BBC News, 6 Aug 2006]

In the Philippines, we have the FPOP or the Family Planning Organization of the Philippines. But I wonder whether they know what their British counterparts are talking about. Family planning here, either through the use of contraceptive pills or condoms, is not really a government priority for a variety of reasons: inaccessibility in reaching far-flung rural areas, natural disasters like typhoons and floods, and of course, intense opposition from the Catholic church, which the government encourages since it does not want to invite the clerics ire and wrath against them. Not too good if you're always running for public office and you want to court votes.

What they promote in these parts is "natural family planning," which we all know is very unreliable. How unreliable? Just look up how our population grows annually.

Condom shapes and sizes? Barmy! In general, no one cares too much about that here. Only a bloke would think too much about it. The more children you spawn, the better! I know it doesn't sound too logical and scientific or even rational, but that's reality for us.

7 reactions:

ipanema said...

FPOP clinics provide voluntary surgical contraception (tubal ligation and vasectomy) and other reversible contraception methods and natural family planning...

Whereas condom is easier to use and I think has lesser side effects(does it have any?), why do we have to undergo tubal ligation and vasectomy? Besides, condom is cheaper (I'm not sure about the branded nor the flavoured ones though).

What I can't understand is the Church stance on contraception. I was enraged at a recent news regarding resistance from the Catholic Church on Sex Education Modules by DECS.

My BBC Comment

Funny thing though, there are men who refuse using condoms saying it's different if they go all the way.

During the recent World Cup in Germany, New York Times featured an article regarding bleak business of the sex trade (Prostitution is legal in Germany). There were prostitutes interviewed and they were hoping for big business to their disappointment. They mentioned that some of their clients don't want to use condoms.

I think that is very risky. Yes, these men are courting HIV/AIDS by having unprotected sex with multiple partners. What happens if he returns to his wife/girlfriend/boyfriend for that matter? Where's responsibility?

Mec said...

a 20-yr old cousin came to me because he had a pregnancy scare with his gf... after listening and providing all the support I could give... aside from the usual reminders to be responsible... i told him that in case they decide to continue exploring their sexuality... condoms were invented for a reason...

and they should know since they're both nursing students :)

Dr. Emer said...

IPANEMA: As the links will tell you, the Philippines has one of Asia's lowest AIDS infection rates, about 10,000 cases in a country of 84 million. Simplifying those figures will give us about 1 case for every 8,400 Filipinos. 'Pretty low. Maybe that's what makes the health authorities here worry less. Of course, there are other STIs like old gonorrhea, syphilis, chlamydia, and many more, but they probably surmise they're easily treated. The real reason I think, is still fear from being chastised by the Catholic Church.

MECSY: Sometimes, we are humans first, before rational scientists. Lust and getting laid are more important than thinking about condoms. Primal desires do not know reason.

ipanema said...

True, Dr. Emer. I hope it stays that way. :)

Sidney said...

I am always amazed that even educated and intelligent people are not taking any protection when it comes to sex. You said it right: Lust and getting laid are more important than thinking about condoms.

Concerning the Catholic Church. What they preach is irresponsability! Shame on them!

ting-aling said...

When I was back in the Phils, we used to have access to Japan-made condoms. The use of condom was being promoted by FPOP. I think the size was just right..wala naman yatang pinagkaiba ang size ng japon sa pinoy (blushing). The thickness as well was perfect..skinless ang feeling.

Dito, susme ang kakapal at ang hahaba..(sheesh)..at ang mamahal pa. Meron ding Japan-made dito (kimono brand) which I prefer over other brands but you know, pagdating sa presyo, patay-patayan. Kaya kung may access kayo sa free FPOP condoms from Japan, hey, take advantage of it.

Hehe, Doc, okey bang magladlad dito?

Dr. Emer said...

SIDNEY: That's Catholic dogma for us. I'm not an expert on religious matters, but I think even God respects free will. I cannot understand why they do not want contraception when every study points to overpopulation as a vital factor contributing to poverty.

TING: Hello, Ting! Fire away! Condoms from Japan? We better ask Sachiko about this. :)