When I was younger, one of the things I dread is when I buy contraceptives in drugstores. No one would say anything, but the cashier and the people around me would look at the condom and lube I’m holding, then give a lingering glance at me. I wouldn’t say that the looks were judgmental but I don’t think anyone would pay any attention if I fell in line holding snacks. Over time, I learned to hide my shame by burying the contraceptives among other items like chips and drinks.
It’s weird how there’s a stigma to sex (especially the pre-marital kind) and being sexual in general. Remember how in 2011, Ayala Alabang required people to present a doctor’s prescription when buying condoms? The barangay ordinance even banned teachers, social workers, and reproductive health advocates from discussing sex education unless they consulted the parents of students.
It’s moves like these that make it embarrassing to buy condoms in drugstores and groceries. By treating sex as something dirty, we don’t get to talk more about and know more about it as much as we should. We need to talk about sex and how to do it safely as doing this can avoid unexpected pregnancies and sexually transmitted infections (STIs), like HIV/AIDS.
The topic is especially timely and relevant now that we’re dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic. Married couples and domestic partners are spending more time together at home. They should talk more openly about family planning and the use of modern contraceptive methods to avoid unintended pregnancies, and, generally, to take extra care their sexual and reproductive health. A baby can put a serious dent in savings, especially for families whose livelihoods were affected by the pandemic. Ideally, a baby is planned for so parents can make the necessary adjustments and prepare themselves for the new addition to the family. Moreover, these uncertain times require us to be in tiptop shape, so now is not the best time to be dealing with an STI.
TRUST Reproductive Health Choices launched Do It Right!, a campaign to encourage proper reproductive health and family planning among Filipinos. In a time of uncertainty, Filipinos need one less thing to worry about. Anxiety and worries about the future are everywhere, but there are things that you can still “control,” like the risk of unexpected pregnancies. You can still freely enjoy sex if you do it right.
TRUST makes it easy to Do It Right by making contraceptives affordable and easy to buy. They have the most affordable contraceptive products, no matter which method you choose. They’re always available, wherever you are in the Philippines. More importantly, you can always count on TRUST quality.
Now that I’m a little bit older, I’m no longer embarrassed to buy contraceptives when I need them. I’m doing it for my safety, along with my partner’s. Couples (and even sexual partners) of all kinds should do the same because there’s already so much to worry about during the pandemic. Unexpected pregnancies and STIs shouldn’t be any of them. More than ever, being safe and responsible is a key part of life now.
An enjoyable, safe and responsible sex life is a constant in life. It is natural, healthy, and totally human. Doing it right means equipping yourself with knowledge, being responsible, and using the right tools. Through thick and thin, TRUST RH Choices remains affordable and available for you, so you can Do It Right!
Do It Right