Let’s talk about sex! Apparently, we need to, because the results of a survey released yesterday by Durex Malaysia revealed that more than one-third of young Malaysians think using two condoms during sexual intercourse is safer than one.
The survey shows that a number of myths surrounding sex remain pervasive, but this one tops them all. They say two is always better than one, but in the case of condoms, two is actually less safe than one.
In its second Sexual Health and Intimate Wellness Survey, Durex Malaysia revealed that, out of the 1,089 youths surveyed, 35% believed that two condoms are safer during intercourse than one. The latest figure is a 15% increase from the 2016 survey.
The survey was conducted online from April until May 2022. Most respondents were 18 to 30 years old and the gender split was 48% male and 52% female.
The results were revealed at the launch of the #ComeTogether campaign by the sexual well-being brand, which aims to encourage more open conversations around sex.
The survey also revealed that 31% of the respondents were unaware that a woman can become pregnant after her first sexual encounter and that more than 30% of them believed the myth that a woman cannot become pregnant while menstruating.
Many of them also had little understanding of the transmission of sexually transmitted infections. In fact, compared to the results of their 2016 survey, it seems there are now even more misconceptions about STIs.
Among the respondents, 22% wrongly believe that mosquitoes can transmit an STI while 23% think that HIV can be transmitted through a toilet seat. 16%, meanwhile, believe that it is shameful to get tested for an STI and would rather not get tested. Shockingly, almost 40% subscribe to the myth that STIs are only transmitted through penetrative sex.
The poll also revealed that a significant portion of respondents engaged in their first sexual activity before the age of 23, often with limited knowledge of STIs and pregnancy. According to the survey, 62% of respondents had their first sexual experience at age 22 or younger. In 2016, that percentage was 42%.
In Malaysia, the age of consent for sex is 16 years old and above. Unfortunately, Malaysia does not have a comprehensive sexual education curriculum in its schools, so many teenagers are left to figure those issues out on their own. The current sex education curriculum only revolves around the biological function of sexual organs and abstinence.
This was reflected in the survey result showing 60% of youths resorted to online articles, movies, or videos as their go-to resources for learning about sex.
While embracing your sexual side can be a good thing, it also comes with the responsibility of learning how to keep yourself and your partner safe, educating yourself on consent, and finding out the facts instead of relying on misconceptions and myths. You can start by checking out this article for a quick intro to comprehensive sex education that includes links to other reliable resources.