Fear of judgement has pushed us to never honestly divulge this number. Even so, this has not deterred most men from still wanting to know how many people you’ve slept with. “The reasons why men ask this question are based on their partner’s understanding of sex, sexual health and their level of maturity,” Dr Babalwa Funda ka Mabhoza, an educational sexologist and a member of the Southern African Sexual Health Association, explains. “Keeping in mind that the question can be destructive, considering that there are people who believe myths that label women as sluts and that the vagina becomes loose the more people they have sex with,” Dr Mabhoza adds.
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EINTLIK, WHAT’S THE REAL CONCERN?
When dudes ask this question, is it really out of concern for their health or to feed their curiosity? “Definitely both,” Fortune Yaka, a Pretoria-based sexual health educator, says. “In most cases, women with more experience are the best to have sexual encounters with. Unfortunately, some men are intimidated by sexually experienced women because they tend to be vocal about what they like and don’t in bed. Men feel that asking the body count question will give them an idea of what they’re getting themselves into,” Yaka explains.
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Practising safe sex does not prevent all sexually transmitted infections. “Using a condom or simply practising safe sex doesn’t always keep you safe. This has nothing to do with the number of people you’ve slept with but, the larger the number, the more chances there are that a person could be infected,” Yaka adds. This, he says, is the reason why the question seems important to men.