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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » EXPERT ADVICE » Emergencies and Crises » I'm sorry if this is frivolous, but I may have used a condom incorrectly.

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Author Topic: I'm sorry if this is frivolous, but I may have used a condom incorrectly.
randomrandomusername
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Hi, and thanks for your time. Yes, I've read pregnancy scared, my situation is just a little nuanced (although I know everyone says that). I'm afraid I fall under the "not using birth control correctly" category.
Sunday before last, my boyfriend and I had sex for the first time. It was very brief, kind of an experiment, he didn't ejaculate at all. Lasted 20 seconds max. My main question is about the condom we used. I'm not on birth control yet, but I have an appt to get it.
Anyway, I was being a klutz and when I started to put the condom on for him it was upside down, and it didn't roll down, obviously, so I flipped it over the other way and put it on correctly. I didn't realize until much later that pre-ejaculate could have gotten on the part of the condom that then went inside me shortly thereafter, because a little part of the condom was over the head before I realized it was upside-down. He says there wasn't any pre-stuff, and I believe him. However, on the off-chance there was, am I at risk? He hadn't ejaculated in days, so his urethra was probably pretty clear, and I touched the area of the latex the fluids might have touched when I put it back on the right way. I know sperm are fragile.
Basically my question is, should I look into getting a test? My period's not due for a couple weeks, but it's coming up on the two week mark where I can test. Thanks!

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Heather
Executive Director & Founder
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Well, ANY time people engage in the kinds of sex that can create a pregnancy there is always some risk of pregnancy. Even the most effective forms of birth control aren't 100% effective, so there's no such thing as a no-risk scenario when it comes to pregnancy when people have engaged in the kinds of contact that can create one.

(And just FYI, people with penises can't feel pre-ejaculate if their penis is inside someone's vagina, mouth or other orifice, so your boyfriend told you something he just can't know.)

So, in your case, you didn't use a condom properly. I'd say you're looking at a risk scenario per condom effectiveness of the typical rate, which is around 85% (in one year). If you'd have asked about this before now, I'd have said that if you wanted to reduce the risk of pregnancy, this is a situation where EC would make sense. There also are STI risks to address.

So, my advice is to make sure that if you two haven't both been recently tested for STIs, you each schedule that soon. STIs are a bigger risk with something like this than pregnancy, since he didn't ejaculate. And if you want to take a test soon, okay, or if you want to wait, you can take one if your period doesn't show up when expected.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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randomrandomusername
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First, it wasn't in any kind of orifice before or when I put the condom on. it went pants to air to condom. I realize there was some risk no matter what, but do you think the risk is high, low, what should I do? I've seen other posts where the responder said that the risk was incredibly low, pretty high, etc.

We're both totally clean from STI's, medically cleared and all that.

Therefore, if he did have pre-ejaculate and it got on the condom, is this high or low risk of pregnancy? If this happened to you, would you test?

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Heather
Executive Director & Founder
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You mean per pre-ejaculate? Thing is, pre-ejaculate isn't something that can only happen once. It can happen at any time.

Like I said, though, while there may have been some risk with pregnancy, I'd class it as a low one, primarily since he did not ejaculate. Even if there was pre-ejaculate, that's still often a low risk, and can be no-risk. We just really can't say not being able to know if there was or wasn't sperm cells in it or what your own level of fertility is like, etc.

If this had happened to me, I'd likely only test if my period was late.

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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randomrandomusername
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Sorry, typo, I meant "if he did have pre-ejaculate on him." Like, if he had it on the part of the penis the condom touched, for whatever reason.

Thanks for your insight. I'll be going the pill soon, and will keep this in mind as another way I can use it incorrectly. It didn't even occur to me as a misuse until later, hence posting outside the range of EC.

And if there was no pre-ejaculate, it would also be a pretty low risk? Just a bit freaked out and looking for scientific reassurance. Thanks again!

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Heather
Executive Director & Founder
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Do you want to go over what proper condom use is to cover your bases moving forward?

If there was, in fact-no pre-ejaculate at all, then I think it's safe to say it was as close to no-risk as it gets. Because, after all, a pregnancy can't happen without sperm cells. If and when there aren't any, there's not a risk of a pregnancy.

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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randomrandomusername
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I've done sex ed, and reviewed posts here, but it seems I could use a refresher. Got any good links?

I really appreciate your help. Thanks.

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Heather
Executive Director & Founder
Member # 3

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Of course!

And here are two links I think cover the condom bases really well:
•Condom Basics: A User's Manual
• http://www.scarleteen.com/blog/heather_corinna/2011/11/23/condoms_breaking_ur_probably_doin_it_wrong

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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randomrandomusername
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Thanks!
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randomrandomusername
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Hi quick follow-up,

Today was the day I expected my period, and all afternoon I had pinkish and brownish blood, and a teeeny bit of red too, but it seems to have entirely disappeared by tonight. Usually my period starts in full force.

I've been so stressed out recently, could that have caused it? Or is this a pregnancy symptom? I've been having the symptoms which belong both to PMS and to pregnancy, so none of those help.

I was going to see if I was late and then test, but now I can't tell if I got my period or not! I'm starting to freak out because there's so much ambiguity, and getting my hands on a test is tricky.

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