Essay: Free Access to Condoms

Sex plays an important role in our lives – it takes away stress and helps us relax, keep us healthy and improve the immune system. But in order to enjoy sex we have to be well prepared for it and have the right knowledge on how to behave in sexual intercourse, otherwise in can lead to unexpected and unwanted consequences, like unplanned pregnancy or infections. In recent findings, it was noted that seven in 10 pregnancies in US, among unmarried women in their 20s are unplanned, reflecting the fact that a significant proportion of sexually active, unmarried young adults – who say they do not want to be parents right now – are not fully protecting themselves from pregnancy.

It’s also important to note, that if no protection is used, a chance of sexually transmitted infections increases and these infections are: STDs, HIV, and AIDS. All these infections are very hard to cure and very painful to carry, but it only takes a condom to save you from them, so why reject the help? Teen pregnancy rates in the United States have declined substantially since the early 1990s mainly due to positive changes in teens’ sexual behavior and contraceptive use. These are good news, but there are still plenty of adolescents, who don’t care about contraceptives, as they either do not know the consequences or because they do not have a right access to them.

By furnishing condoms to teens and provide them with basic knowledge about contraceptives and consequences, it will decrease pregnancy rate even more, because teenagers will now have easy access to condoms and have necessary knowledge about protection and consequences. Finally, it’s our choice whether we want to use condoms or not, but having an easy access to them can greatly reduce teen pregnancy and prevent diseases, as it’s free, effective and we are not left wondering to find a place to get condoms from, when the moment comes.

Of no doubt, the acute and relevant question of providing teenagers with condoms has two sides. There are serious arguments against doing so, thus it would be fair to analyze them as well. First of all, free access to condoms may encourage teenage promiscuity and increase sexual activity. Indeed, teenagers may misunderstand the government message, confusing a wish to provide a free contraception with approving sexual intercourse from the early age. These two different ideas may look rather similar from the viewpoint of youngster who just came to sexual maturation, as teenagers are very much prone to exaggeration and maximalism. Secondly, children having free access to condoms may think that government welcomes sex before marriage. To teenagers who get condoms in order to have safe sex the keyword is “sex”, not “safe”. Therefore, for them it may be obvious that having sex at early age before marriage and probably even with various partners might be just okay. After all, among arguments against furnishing condoms to teenagers some activists name the lack of instruction. However, the usage of condoms seems rather intuitive and simple even if one never used it before, and this argument sounds rather invalid to me.

Furnishing teenagers with condoms, on the other hand, may be extremely helpful on several levels, protecting health and social life of the nation. Condoms are free and easy to access. Therefore, teenage pregnancy rate can be reduced significantly due to usage of condoms. Besides, such protection lowers risk of AIDS and venereal diseases. According to instruction for condoms, I do not think it is needed, still it is possible to attach a simple one to every pack. Besides, recent researches show, that condoms availability does not affect the intensity of sexual life of teenagers: in particular, it does not decrease the average age of first sex, and it does not affect the amount of intercourses among sexually active teenagers. Thus, the assumption of the impact of free access of condoms to teenage promiscuity remains a hypothesis.

To my mind, by using condoms during their first sexual experiences, teens get used to exploit them, and it becomes a good habit for them in further life. I strongly believe that first sex, just like a first sight, is very important and affects soundly the sexual life, hence it is of great importance to teach teenagers to use condoms automatically, so that safe sex is normal and familiar. This way the strategy of furnishing condoms to teens works on a long-term basis, developing healthy attitude to safe sex and, as a result, a healthy society. So yes, I vote for free access of condoms for teenagers. And for healthy and educated nation, please.

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