Oversized condoms lead to unsafe sex


Photo illustration by Aidan Fogarty

Rachel Epstein, Contributor

DCPS has made an attempt for quite some time to prevent teen pregnancy and promote safe sex by distributing condoms, but by handing out king-sized condoms, Wilson is catering to the male ego at the expense of safe sex.

At first, Wilson provided students with condoms that would accommodate nearly all Wilson students. However, they recently started giving out king-size condoms instead. Perhaps DCPS is unaware, but when a boy uses a condom that is too large or too loose, it is actually more likely to rip or leak.

The condoms offered by Wilson are free, so naturally, the student body gravitates toward the basket in the nurse’s office instead of buying a box that on average costs $15. With the benefit of a “bigger” appeal and being free of charge, the condoms are very attractive. But this does not mean they’re effective.

“I’ve gotten a lot of complaints from students about [the old ones] being too small,” Wilson nurse Grace Echeona said, explaining the reason for the change. “We’ve got all these boxes of the old ones just laying around.” Not only is Wilson condoning the use of condoms that are too large and increasing the risks of leakage and ripping, but also they are letting the condoms that could actually prevent these problems expire in some back room. If Wilson should choose to offer them again someday, there is a real chance they will be past their expiration date, which is the greatest risk when it comes to breakage.

The Department of Health provides DCPS with regular LifeStyles condoms, but instead, Wilson made the decision to hand out king-sized ones. The contents of the basket need to be reverted, and our staff need to be educated; it is not okay to let teenagers roam around thinking they’re being responsible and safe when in reality they are at putting their health at risk.

I applaud Wilson’s attempt at promoting safe sex amongst teenagers, but an effective approach requires the proper research and the proper assumption of stature. The school is handing students a steaming bowl of false security, allowing them to think they’re being safe and protected when really, they are handling the short end of the stick.