Women in history have been seen to do drastic things in their fight for equality. Feminists have walked naked. They have held rallies. They have championed sex boycotts.
All this is an effort to gain equal footing to men in our society. Milestones have been achieved- in the work-place, in leadership, and so on. Yet still we have a long way to go.
While women today are more sexually liberated than they were in the previous century, they are still expected to absorb what should be shared responsibility.
A new survey conducted on 1454 millennials had some insight on this. The respondents were sampled through the social media accounts of Esquire.com and Cosmopolitan.com.
Young women were found to be more likely to get tested for STIs than men. They were also more likely to initiate a conversation about their status.
More than a third of the female respondents indicated that they had been tested within the last 6 months, with 22% saying they had been tested more than 6 months but less than a year ago.
This was in contrast to their male peers, who cited 20% and 13% respectively. A third of the men admitted to not having ever been tested at all, as compared to approximately 10% in women.
Surprised? Here’s why
Naturally, reproductive health care is better ingrained in the women-folk as part of normal health care. As a woman, I bet you know your gynaecologist almost as well as a guy knows his barber.
Whether it’s for a normal check-up or to re-up birth control prescriptions, one is just likely to see her doctor rather often. A vaginal swab for a pap smear easily translates into a screening for STDs.
More often than not, women become the bearers of the burden to maintain the sexual health in the relationship.
Interestingly, the first contraceptive pill was approved by the FDA in 1960. This intervention was an intentional feminist effort, aimed at promoting women’s health and freedom for sexual pleasure.
More than half a century later, not a single medical contraceptive method exists for men. Is it because such a task is impossible?
Is there a way forward?
While a lot of men are busy casting stones at the self-declared feminists out there, they fail to realize that they have a role to play in solving these inequalities.
Men are encouraged to be more involved in the home and contribute their fair share to its overall wellness. This should extend to the bedroom as well. Just as sex in itself was meant to be satisfying to both partners, so should the burden of responsibility be.
No one likes to have things poked at them. It’s time that men get this and step up. Advocating for testing should be something they champion as the leaders of the home. Sexual health and parenting are issues whose veils should be torn down.
This does not mean that women should slacken up. Being your number 1 guard is crucial. But to promote healthy, satisfying, balanced relationships, team work in all aspects should be considered.
A man is the natural leader of a home. Step up in all ways, including your sexual health. Get tested. Share the responsibility. Build an equally satisfying relationship for you and your mate!
Reference: STI and STD Statistics Among Millennial Women