According to new research released today from the makers of Trojan Brand Condoms, 80 percent of American adults say condom use is important to them, however, only 35 percent report always using a condom.
The study, which examined condom attitudes and behaviors among American adults, found that among those with a repeat partner who reported not using a condom each and every time, close to 50 percent stopped using them regularly by month one and 62 percent stopped by month two.
The research also found that while 75 percent of those surveyed agreed it’s a shared responsibility for men and women to bring up condom use, the man is largely relied on to purchase and provide them.
In addition to the early drop-off rate, the research showed that nearly 40 percent of people who didn’t use a condom during their last sexual experience reportedly did so without discussing it first, contributing to a silent problem with serious consequences.
With the CDC reporting that 20 million new STDs occur every year and with some STDs, like HIV, taking up to six months to be revealed in tests, an open dialogue on sexual health is imperative, suggests Trojan.
When asked why they stopped using condoms, study participants cited commitment, trust and exclusivity as the top reasons for discontinuing the use of condoms among repeat partners – however, the decision to stop using condoms is often made without important information.
According to the research, 60 percent indicated they had not been tested for STDs, two-thirds indicated their partner had not been tested and more than 1 in 3 are not using another form of hormonal birth control.
Concern about pregnancy and contracting an STD play a role in the ability to enjoy sex, with nearly 50 percent of all women surveyed reporting they cannot fully enjoy themselves during sex without a condom due to anxieties about these issues.
Findings also show that 60 percent of adults experience regret and stress after having sex without a condom due to worrying about STDs and/or pregnancy.
“Trust and respect for a partner are two important aspects in any relationship,” says Matthew Hussey, relationship expert and Trojan spokesperson. “Even though your relationship status may change, your sexual health status doesn’t, so it’s essential to have an honest conversation about using condoms, which ultimately shows your partner that you respect them and leads to a more enjoyable and healthy sex life.”
Realizing the importance of encouraging more conversations about condoms, especially in light of the high drop-off rate of condom use within two months of a relationship, the makers of Trojan Brand Condoms have partnered with MTV on a three-part content series that encourages the condom conversation between couples and reinforces the importance of continued usage.
Created in collaboration with MTV’s long-standing “It’s Your (Sex) Life” responsible sexual health campaign, the “Co Zone Convos” series, which will begin airing on MTV today, Sept. 10, portrays realistic condom conversations between couples among friends, helping to ease the moment of decision and remind viewers of the positive benefits of consistent condom use in a relationship.
The MTV partnership answers another need uncovered by the survey – 75 percent of adults ages 18-34 cannot recall seeing a reference to a condom across the entertainment landscape in the last year and those that can said condoms were shown as goofy or funny rather than sexy.
More than 60 percent of adults agree that media and pop culture can play a significant role when it comes to normalizing conversations about condoms and increasing people’s comfort level when talking about and using condoms with their partners.
It’s Your (Sex) Life is MTV’s long-standing Emmy and Peabody Award-winning public information campaign to support young people in making responsible decisions about their sexual health.
To watch the three-part “Co Zone Convos” series and to find more details on the campaign and research, visit the website.
The Trojan Condom Compliance Survey was conducted online from April 18 to April 28, 2014 with 1,000 single young adults. Single young adults are defined as adults 18-34 years old who are heterosexual, sexually active, single or in a “new relationship” under 2 years, and not pregnant or trying to become pregnant.
Trojan is America’s leading condom brand.
Photo courtesy: Trojan