Wicked Wednesday #5: Condoms

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For me, as a woman who has recently started having the occasional sexual encounter again as a part of a journey into a non-monogamous relationship , the use of condoms is non-negotiable.  I was a little naive initially. as I assumed that anyone having sex outside of a committed and monogamous relationship would use a condom without question. Sadly, I have found that is not the case and I am frequently surprised at the amount of men I talk to through various websites and social media that think using a condom is unimportant.

I wrote a blog post a while ago about the man who decided he was going to try and have sex with me without a condom. I made the assumption that he would have some condoms and would use one automatically, but I had some in my bag, just in case . He did have some in his bedside drawer,  but he had decided, without asking me, that they weren’t necessary.  I was annoyed with him, but put it down to over-excitement and nerves on his part. However, on the next occasion, he tried again to penetrate me without a condom, knowing I had not consented opreviously. I was furious, gave him a lecture on safe sex and that was the end of that friendship. He has a 14 year old son and i sincerely hope that he has been educated to treat women with more respect.   The full post is here if anyone wants to read more.

With the next man I met, I raised the issue of using condoms well beforehand, but was astounded  to hear him say that he didn’t object, but if the friendship lasted, then perhaps we could dispense with the use of condoms in the future. This is a man who had fanciful ideas of more than one friend with benefits.

Other priceless comments have included:

‘I suppose we’ll have to use condoms….’

‘I don’t like wearing condoms, it spoils my enjoyment’.

‘I knew she was ok, as she told me that she hadn’t had sex with anyone in the last few years’

‘Will we have to use condoms?’

I recall an incident back in my early twenties, when I had a short-term relationship with a man of 35. He was a local businessman and quite arrogant. His behaviour on being asked to wear a condom was tantamount to a toddler’s tantrum. After complaining bitterly about it, he reluctantly agreed and then spent the rest of that evening sulking and saying he hadn’t felt a thing due to the condom.

I really don’t understand why some people are prepared to risk not only their own health, but the health of their partners too. The usual argument is that it reduces the sensation. If that is the case, surely that’s better than potentially catching or passing on an STI that could have devastating consequences for you and others.

I realise that no method is 100% safe, and I have had experienced a couple of occasions, back in my twenties when condoms came off. This meant a trip to the local A&E to try and get the morning after pill.  On another occasion, one vanished and slipped out several hours later.

I have had sex, without condoms, with a few partners pre-marriage. These were committed relationships and I was taking the pill at the time.  Sex is fantastic when you don’t have to think about condoms and can act spontaneously. However, in the world of more casual encounters and multiple partners, I don’t see how not using condoms can ever be right. And I will not be changing my principles to accommodate sulky men.

 

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Food for Thought Friday #2: The Naked Truth

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Are you at ease being naked? Do you feel more comfortable clothed or unclothed? Can you explain why you feel this way?

For me, being at ease with being naked has three distinct elements:

Body Confidence

Putting on weight gradually over a number of years meant that I did not feel particularly confident with the way that my body looked. Part of the way of trying to overcome this was to share tasteful pictures of my body on Twitter. This was a huge step for me, as I wanted to push my boundaries and do something that would usually be out of character for me.  Baring all not only helped to increase my confidence, but also provided an outlet for my exhibitionist side.

I was overwhelmed by the kind and positive comments received in response to my nude form and it was only then I realised that you didn’t have to be thin and petite for both men and women to think your body looked OK. And the fact that you might even be considered to be sexually attractive too was a real bonus! So, this definitely made me more at ease with my own nudity.

I did write a blog post some time ago regarding body confidence and expands the point above further.

Exhibitionism

I have always been a shy person, but the underlying desire to ‘show my body off’ in some way has been there since around the age of 18. But this urge hasn’t really been allowed to surface until the last couple of years. The fact that I enjoy being naked, and now have more body confidence, helps to fuel the exhibitionist streak. Knowing that someone is sexually aroused as a result of looking at my naked body, whether that be part of a sexual encounter or by looking at photos gives me an enormous confidence boost.

I enjoy posing for photos, albeit mainly indoors by myself, and only for the camera timer, but it would be nice to have an enthusiastic accomplice for this activity.  I have taken a couple of scavenger hunt selfies outdoors, which I did get a thrill out of doing, and I hope to have the opportunity to explore this further.

Naturism

I absolutely adore being naked outside and have always found it to be an incredibly uplifting and liberating experience.   Unfortunately, I don’t get the opportunity to strip off outdoors as often as I would like due to lack of suitable locations, an overlooked back garden and the UK weather, but I have been able to visit a couple of nudist beaches over the years and have also visited a wonderful naturist spa on a  number of occasions.

At home, I don’t tend to frequently spend long periods of time naked, despite being there for long periods of time by myself; it just doesn’t  occur to me. Although, I may try and make a more of a conscious effort to strip off at home.  I do always sleep naked though – whatever the time of year.  My husband, although not  generally prudish, is not that comfortable with nudity beyond what is deemed necessary. For example, if I walked around in the nude first thing in the morning or last thing at night, he wouldn’t comment, or probably even notice!  But if I did this at other times of the day, I know he would feel  uncomfortable with it. He did visit a nudist beach many years ago with me, and hated the experience.

The feeling of the sun or a light breeze on the naked body is a wonderful experience. To be able to walk around free from clothing. To sit in a hot tub. To be surrounded by other people of all shapes and sizes who are all comfortable in their bodies.When I have been in a naturist environment, I have not found it it to be a sexual experience and certainly have never used it as an opportunity to get a thrill out of people looking at my naked form. In fact, that is far from my mind. A good description for the experience is sensual, which someone used when commenting on my previous blog post on naturism. And I genuinely think that everyone’s body is beautiful in different ways, so what could be more sensual than that?

To summarise,  I am at ease being naked and the type of enjoyment experienced depends on the situation I happen to be naked for!

 

 

Wicked Wednesday #4: Believe in Yourself

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The prompt for this week’s Wicked Wednesday is ‘Believe in Yourself’.

The beginning of a new year is a fresh start for many of us. Not everyone believes in New Years resolutions, but even so, it is a time to stop and think what you want to accomplish, what you want to try and what you want to stop with. Even if you don’t have any resolutions or ideas for this year, I want to say: believe in yourself! Let’s start this year off on a positive note.

I am conscious that I am opening this post in a negative way… but believing in myself is something that I struggle with immensely. I don’t tend to say much about the way I’m feeling on my blog or on Twitter, as I like to, at least, look positive, even if I don’t feel it.  Low self-esteem and anxiety have both been a big shadow over my life since childhood ;  ‘self-deprecating’ was an expression someone used to describe me very recently. The anxiety has been heightened in the last few years by medical and career issues, which has forced me into a vicious circle of exhausted emotions. I know that a few people I follow on Twitter also experience anxiety and self esteem issues. so I know that I am not alone and among good company!

What I would like to accomplish during this year is to be able to manage these two issues more effectively, to stop being my own worst critic and start believing in myself more. I am not sure that I will ever be able to eliminate them completely, but to be able to make them less intrusive would be an achievement.  I also desperately need to make career changes and try and reduce the anxiety I have surrounding this.

I made some major changes regarding the sexual side of my life in 2015, but I need to ensure that my confidence issues don’t cause this to stagnate, which could happen very easily.

I enjoy writing my blog, and am delighted that people take the time to read it, so I shall endeavour to continue. However, I probably won’t  be blogging about this particular topic very frequently, if ever again!

To finish on a a positive note, this prompt has provided a good opportunity for me to write about something that I would normally avoid sharing with people.  Hopefully, kicking myself up the arse ‘publicly’ will  ensure that I deal with it appropriately and make believing in myself one of my key accomplishments for 2016.

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