Talking about Safe Sex

By Drum Digital
15 October 2011

NTOKOZO Mokoena thought she had it all. The Tshwane nursing sister had a loving husband, two adorable children and a lovely home.

She’d been happily married for 12 years to her childhood sweetheart, Desmond*, and had a fulfilling career.

But things began to unravel when Ntokozo (32) discovered her husband had cheated on her. “It changed everything,” she says. “I thought we had a strong relationship but when I found out he’d been unfaithful, I couldn’t trust him any more.” Ntokozo suddenly realised she was at risk of getting a sexually- transmitted disease because she and Desmond didn’t use protection when they made love. She insisted they both go for an HIV test and thankfully the results came back negative, but she decided it was time to practise safe sex.

“I told him I would only make love if we used condoms. He wouldn’t hear of it. He told me that a husband didn’t have to use protection when he had sex with his wife,” Ntokozo says.

This caused more friction in their relationship as she refused to back down. The couple eventually got divorced eight months later.

While some men, like Desmond, refuse to use condoms, many others have realised that safe sex is very important – not only to protect both partners from sexually transmitted infections (STIs) such as HIV/Aids but also to avoid unplanned pregnancies.

Thabo Jozela*, a Joburg construction worker, agreed to use condoms when he and his partner, Mandisa Ledwaba*, a shopkeeper, realised they couldn’t afford to have more children.

“We have a daughter and two sons under the age of 12 and we were struggling,” Mandisa explains. “We discussed our options and decided to use condoms because I didn’t want to take oral contraceptives or have injections.”

Mandisa explained to Thabo that she didn’t want to take the Pill because of the side-effects and the injections made her feel sick.

Read the full article in DRUM of 21 October 2010

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