Is the statement “condoms are too small for me” actually a fact instead of a silly retort?

There is a chapter in my book that remains very close to my heart and is my favourite. While doing my preliminary work on my book, picture the scene: big dining room table littered with hundreds of pieces of information, cartoons and content and out of all this chaos, my teenage daughter and her friends kept honing in on the information about condoms and resistance to using condoms. I use this chapter in every training session that I do and honestly believe that this chapter can lead to behaviour change amongst both teenagers and adults.

My idea for this chapter came from the interaction I had with hundreds of peer educators during HIV training. I continually received the same feedback from peer educators during condom use demonstrations – some ‘wise Alec’ would always brag that condoms were too small for him. The first few times this was funny. After 50 people, I knew I had to pay attention. There were also many other concerns regarding condom use and myths. As a result, Sifiso Yalo and I designed different cartoons of different cultural groups, races and age groups from both genders asking Mr Condom questions about condom use in order to find ways to answer these questions. Mr Condom handles these queries with humorous but accurate retorts.

In this light, I was very interested to read an article in the GQ Magazine, July 2010 (British Edition) titled “Fit to Please”. I love this magazine and buy it (as well as the Playboy!) for its excellent articles.

In this article, Anka Radokovich, explores the world of “Fitted suits, fitted shirts and now fitted condoms”. She writes about CondoMania, a condom company based in Hollywood, that offers the “theyFit” condom – a custom-fitted condom or more aptly titled “couture condoms”!

Intrigued, I googled CondoMania and downloaded the CondoMania Fitkit. What a clever idea! Your print it out, cut along the dotted lines, fold it up and slide your erect penis into the “model” to get your correct measurement, length and width! The idea is once you know your “right” measurement, you can order and receive custom- made condoms.

This condom range has been in production since 2003 and with all the orders, Condomania has created a huge database in the USA about penis size. The city with the largest penises is New Orleans!

So what are the penis stats?!

Penises come in a range of sizes: the smallest are less than 3 inches and the largest 10 inches in length. In the USA, 25% of the male population is under 5 inches, 50% are between 5 and 6 inches and 25% are longer than 6 inches.

On receiving their custom-made condoms, men raved and one commented, “once you have been custom-suited, an off-the-rack condom feels like punishment”.

Wondering who will be South Africa’s first custom-made condom manufacturing millionaire?!