all things condoms

Pleasure Project in India

Posted by Condomologist on March 4, 2009

The Washington Post takes a look at efforts  in India to reinvent the safer sex wheel by making it sexy, and highlighted is the approach of The Pleasure Project (a group I mentioned earlier tonight) and its application in promoting the female condom as an erotic tool in the fight against STDs/HIV and pregnancy.The irony and genius of their approach, which focuses on sex workers, is that it doesn’t seem to have anything to do with the actual make-up or use of a female condom — which by all accounts, including my own, is not the least bit sexy and doesn’t seem to enhance pleasure — but rather how the female condom is discussed and viewed in the first place. It begs the question, and it’s one highly relevant to the debate of what creates pleasure and sexual satisfaction using certain contraceptives: How much is one’s pleasure or satisfaction during sex with a condom affected by your thoughts versus your genitals? If we’re led to believe that sex is more erotic with a female condom — because we laughed and played around with it when learning about it — or if the men who pay for sex are told ahead of time that the female condom will increase pleasure, can one’s mind then override the lack of sensation down below such that one or both partners come away giving the condom high marks? On a different but similar note, a question I posed a few days ago: Can we come away from really bad sex giving a condom high marks, or will we equate the bad sex with the condom and not be able to remain objective? Can we ever really be objective with condoms? If I’m really into my partner on a given night and we have the hottest sex of our lives, it seems to me I could be quite oblivious during and afterwards as to whether I used a Crown or a Lifestyles or a Trustex. None of this is to say that we most certainly find certain brands and styles to be more pleasureable and comfortable for both partners, but we can never discount the attitude we have before, during and after sex and how that can blur the lines of judgment. All of which is to say that having a pleasure focus from the moment we introduce contraception to youth and adults alike — as was on clear display at this youth festival in India — has the potential to work wonders and drastically improve sexual education around the world.


One Response to “Pleasure Project in India”

  1. […] Posted by Jonathan on March 5, 2009 And this perspective from a man contributing to the same discussion in which Ellen Barnard talked about her experiences as a sexual health guru over the years. It goes not only to the beauty of lube in deriving pleasure, but also to the question of whether satisfaction for a man during protected sex really has anything to do with the condom at all, a point I’ve raised recently. […]

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