The Bill and Linda Gates Foundation is offering a $100,000 prize to anyone that can come up with a condom that will not diminish pleasure. The catalyst for this contest was the Foundation’s struggle to stop the spread of AIDS in Africa.
The Gates Foundation research shows that, Africans, like most Americans, don’t wear condoms primarily because they decrease pleasure. Of course many feel that to be true, but from my point of view safety comes first. The Gates Foundation web site states that such innovation would “lead to substantial benefits for global health both in terms of reducing the incidence of unplanned pregnancies and in prevention of infection with HIV.” This of course makes a lot of sense to me.
“Sixty percent of teenagers use condoms and fifty percent of gay men use condoms” (Atlantic, April 2013) and “the proportion of women using contraceptives who relied on condoms decreased from 20% to 16% between 1995 -2008” (Guttmacher study on contraceptive use, 2008). Another surprising statistic from the CDC is that women only use condoms consistently 21 percent of the time. Men were quoted to be using them 24.8 percent of the time.”
I do hope the Gates Foundation is successful in finding a condom that feels better for everyone but in the meantime I hope women and men can embrace the joy of sex responsibly, because the healthier you are the more of it you can have!