Published in Catalogue, 2017
We have never met but I have been introduced to you in a fashion, by way of your appearance on Triple J’s Hack program with Tom Tilley late last week. The program in question discussed the concept of “stealthing”: removing a condom during intercourse without the consent or knowledge of your sexual partner. You called into the program to express your position on the matter and report that you supposedly engage rather frequently in stealthing, with little regard for your partner’s wishes or the medical safety of such an act.
Now, rather understandably, there was considerably aggressive opposition to your behaviour posited via Triple J’s text line and you were branded a “douchebag”, “dropkick”, and “an absolute piece of shit excuse for a human” by strangers on national radio – that can’t have felt great. Here’s the thing, as much as I am tempted to submit to the same vicious outrage, and I could joyously swear at you until the cows come home, I can’t necessarily perceive that as a productive response so instead, I want to discuss this with you person to person (although to be fair, judging by your general demeanour, you may well construe this as more person to woman).
You reported to Hack’s presenter, Tom Tilley that you engage in stealthing because “it just feels better when there’s no condom on”, which may well be a fair assessment (I don’t know the ins and outs of your penis function, nor do I care to). Pressed on this matter, Tilley then enquired as to why you do simply negotiate this with your sexual partner beforehand to which you replied, “I should maybe but I guess if I’ve got no reason to wear a condom then I don’t really see the problem” and Brendan my not-friend, that is a big swing and a miss at logic, and it really leads us to the crux of the argument against your stealthing tendencies: that is not your conclusion to make.
Perhaps through subconscious gender biases you have been led to believe that women and our tiny bird brains are genuinely incapable of making rational decisions and that’s an issue that you must learn to address (and quickly – because I can’t guarantee your social welfare or dating success once everybody else realises) but what you need to come to terms with is that your thoughts do not have precedence or authority in the context of sex. Both you and your female partner have equal say and to assume otherwise is to adopt a mindset that is capable of perpetrating acts far more violent and violating than the removal of a condom – but we’ll get to that later. Brendan, you are on a slippery slope.