How far from bed to keep condoms?
October 7, 2006 12:16 PM   Subscribe

How far from my bed should I keep my condoms in order not to seem like a man-whore?

The problem is I have no nightstand, or bedframe. Condoms are currently in the crevice between mattress and wall, and on more than one occasion women have given me a look to suggest they found the positioning a little too convenient. In other words, how much hassle does a man have to go through to find a condom for an imminent conquest not to feel like she's merely the latest in a long, regular stream?
posted by gelcap to Human Relations (55 answers total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
5 feet from potential coitus.
posted by geoff. at 12:19 PM on October 7, 2006

Wha? I don't see any point of having them outside of arm's reach from the bed. I don't think it suggests anything about man-whoreism. I know dudes who haven't gotten laid in a year, but they still keep their condoms in arm's reach. Nobody wants to jump out of bed and run across a dark room with a boner.
posted by ludwig_van at 12:20 PM on October 7, 2006 [5 favorites]

The problem is I have no nightstand

I think you have succinctly outlined both the problem and the solution here :-)
posted by advil at 12:20 PM on October 7, 2006 [8 favorites]

What about "whatever the nearest drawer or box is to your bed where they would not be in the plain sight of maiden aunts and inquisitive children."
posted by TheophileEscargot at 12:23 PM on October 7, 2006

How about a shoebox under the bed?
posted by gfrobe at 12:26 PM on October 7, 2006

I think the look probably means something more like "The crevice between your mattress and the wall? Dude, where's your sense of style? Go buy yourself a bed table".
posted by iconomy at 12:27 PM on October 7, 2006 [9 favorites]

having condoms next to your bed is responsible, not whorish.
posted by krautland at 12:28 PM on October 7, 2006 [1 favorite]

I (as a woman) see nothing at all wrong with having them within arms reach of the bed. Anything that adds to the convenience factor is a Good Thing.
posted by tentacle at 12:28 PM on October 7, 2006 [1 favorite]

women have given me a look to suggest they found the positioning a little too convenient

Am I missing something here? Isn't the idea that condoms should be conveniently located so that the mood is less likely to be broken? Sounds like they'd be as close as a nightstand...but maybe that's a more socially acceptable place to keep them?

I suppose, in that respect, I agree with advil.
posted by Brak at 12:30 PM on October 7, 2006

What about "whatever the nearest drawer or box is to your bed where they would not be in the plain sight of maiden aunts and inquisitive children."

yeah but then, as ludwig van points out, you're talking about the potentially catastrophic Boner Dash. i guess i was hoping for a stream of females saying "no, no, it's fine--we respect you for being so responsible." failing that, do you think it helps if i keep them in the original cardboard packaging rather than loose, as now?
posted by gelcap at 12:32 PM on October 7, 2006

Well I mean, if she's in your bed, isn't there already kind of an understanding? Is it really that big of a surprise? And damn, you're being safe. I think it's more of a mood-killer to have a "hey, let me go to the other room and get the protective appliance" kind of interlude than to have it right there.

Also, nightstand = $30

The comfort of the shared lie that you "didn't know this was going to happen" = priceless
posted by kookoobirdz at 12:34 PM on October 7, 2006 [1 favorite]

kookoo, you've nailed it. i need the shared lie. i didn't before but i've met a potential keeper.
posted by gelcap at 12:36 PM on October 7, 2006

Wait, here's what you do. Create a condom collage or mobile and hang it just above the pillow area. It gets the issue right there out front. You can always pretend like it's just art. And it'll give her a comfortable segue to give you the go-ahead. Scene: "What a nice piece of art. Say, are those detachable?" I totally see this going well.
posted by kookoobirdz at 12:38 PM on October 7, 2006 [11 favorites]

Also, nightstand = $30

Yeah, but you wouldn't need an entire nightstand just for some condoms. You should get a plinth.

A condom plinth. It would be very stylish.
posted by Robot Rowboat at 12:38 PM on October 7, 2006 [2 favorites]

i suppose maybe something that involved breaking glass might indicate the depth of my affection.
posted by gelcap at 12:43 PM on October 7, 2006 [2 favorites]

Condom collage/mobile. PRICELESS. This is what the internets were made for!
posted by SpecialK at 12:49 PM on October 7, 2006

yes, i think the problem is that they are actually IN your bed, potentially just still there from last night? you should get a nice box and put it right by your bed. like bamboo or something. boxes are hot.
posted by octavia at 1:16 PM on October 7, 2006 [2 favorites]

While we're speaking of $30 nighstands, I feel it is my duty to mention that you can get a bedframe for 25 freaking dollars! A mattress on the floor is so frat-chic.
posted by folara at 1:24 PM on October 7, 2006

Bamboo box, then put a candle on top of the bamboo box. That way the condoms are even more "away." It's the "away" that's important. You want to avoid giving the impression that you already got them out (from wherever you usually store them, of course) before going to meet up with her. In my opinion, the look is not "you man whore" but "you assumed this would happen?"
posted by ruff at 1:29 PM on October 7, 2006

Seconding what iconomy said. Get yourself some furniture for crying out loud. It will make you seem like an adult, which will go a long way to suggesting that you're capable of a serious relationship.

Also, consider the possibility that in general seeming like a man-whore is virtually never a bad thing, regardless of whether you're interested in a serious relationship or not. Despite modern advances, sexual experience remains a favorable characteristic in men and more of an issue for women.
posted by drpynchon at 1:31 PM on October 7, 2006

Just as far as you need to keep the lube, the vibrator, and the feathers.

What? A lot of people have tickle toys.
posted by paulsc at 1:38 PM on October 7, 2006

everyone lay off my decor. it's adult minimalist.
posted by gelcap at 1:57 PM on October 7, 2006 [3 favorites]

I have to imagine the look has to do more with it being on the floor between the mattress and the wall rather than the proximity.
posted by grouse at 1:58 PM on October 7, 2006

Seconding what iconomy said. Get yourself some furniture for crying out loud. It will make you seem like an adult, which will go a long way to suggesting that you're capable of a serious relationship.

Exactly. Time to grow up. The point is not that you look like a man-whore, the point is that if you're reaching into the crevice to pull out a condom, what else do you keep in there? Your underwear? A ham sandwich? Gals don't like guys who live like slobs—not as a long-term proposition, anyway.
posted by languagehat at 2:00 PM on October 7, 2006 [1 favorite]

1. Get these denim sheets.
2. Tuck your ManSaran inside one of the pillowcases, making sure the circular outline is barely visible.
posted by rob511 at 2:07 PM on October 7, 2006

right. so just to recap, the secret of adult style is: denim sheets, a $30 nightstand, a bamboo box with a candle on it--oh and a condom hidden inside the denim pillowcase.

classy. thanks a lot guys!
posted by gelcap at 2:14 PM on October 7, 2006 [2 favorites]

I suggest mounting a toilet tissue roll just above your bed and wrapping a roll of condoms around it for easy dispensing.
posted by Thorzdad at 2:16 PM on October 7, 2006 [1 favorite]

Yeah, what iconomy said.

And... I used to date a girl who kept her condoms and other sex things on a shelf about 3 inches from the ceiling. Next to the shelf was an antique apple picker's ladder (wood, cute, stylish). The point was to make an effort.

She woo'd the hell out of me, that one.
posted by dobbs at 2:20 PM on October 7, 2006 [1 favorite]

Get a box...or, you know, a nightstand. Keeping the condoms between the bed and the wall—and not even in the box!—gives off that "I live in my parents' basement and never learned social graces" kind of vibe. Sure, you may have your own place, and you may be going for an "adult minimalist" style, whatever that is—but it's just a little scary to imagine someone pulling condoms out from among the dust bunnies and other detritus between the bed and the wall. Maybe it's clean there, but the woman doesn't know that.

I'd personally never keep condoms somewhere like that, because I'd be afraid something might puncture the wrapping or—worse, obviously—the condoms themselves. I keep mine in the box in the drawer of the bedside table, and so should you.
posted by limeonaire at 2:21 PM on October 7, 2006

If the feeling is mutual, why would she care? If you're really concerned that she be'll nonplussed, get a little box, as suggested.
posted by oneirodynia at 2:30 PM on October 7, 2006

"everyone lay off my decor. it's adult minimalist."
posted by gelcap at 4:57 PM EST on October 7

If it's as adult minimalist as traditional Japanese decor, take a hint from them, and keep a small, elegant vase, with all your adult necessities, secreted out of sight in a closet, or in your dressing area. When you undress, retrieve it from its storage spot, and bring it to the side of the bed, without particular comment. Or, if it is as decorative as a Ming vase, you might want to leave it out, next to your prized bonsai.
posted by paulsc at 2:30 PM on October 7, 2006 [1 favorite]

everyone lay off my decor. it's adult minimalist.

You're the one concerned about how these women see you. If you don't want to listen to us, that's your prerogative. To answer your question without suggesting any interior redecoration: put the condoms as close as you can to the bed while still having them in some other sort of container. If you don't have any containers anywhere near your bed, then don't keep your condoms there.

Or just put up with the skeptical looks.
posted by grouse at 2:30 PM on October 7, 2006

there we go. small elegant vase. thanks paul.

the rest of you just wait. adult minimalist is sweeping the globe. next year you'll be begging me for advice on proper crevice-maintenance. mark my words. oh, and wish me luck. everything goes according to plan and i'll be getting my hand irretrievable wedged in the vase by, i'd say, tennish this evening.
posted by gelcap at 2:38 PM on October 7, 2006 [2 favorites]

If you're going the little vase route, may I suggest a vessel from Wunderwurks? Get a matching lamp and maybe she'll let you chunker her because you're so damn stylish.
posted by dobbs at 2:45 PM on October 7, 2006

dude. i chunkered just looking at that thing. no thanks.
posted by gelcap at 2:46 PM on October 7, 2006 [3 favorites]

I'd be a lot more worried about the structural integrity of individual condoms shoved between the mattress and the wall than I would your intentions or psychology. Worried to the point I might not put out any more. Condoms and friction really really don't go together.

Put them in a box. Even the box they came in is better than nothing, although something made of wood or metal would be even better. Feel free to shove the box behind the mattress, it sounds like as good a place as any, but please please give those condoms some protection. Even if they're fine behind the mattress, it sounds unsafe and looks like you don't think they're overly important or needing of care. They are.
posted by shelleycat at 2:52 PM on October 7, 2006 [2 favorites]

looks like you don't think they're overly important or needing of care. They are.

Oh. I don't mean to imply you actually don't think condoms are important. It's great that you're using them. It's just that this is the impression you're giving your partner(s) by putting them somewhere that looks unsafe.
posted by shelleycat at 2:54 PM on October 7, 2006

Go Gelcap, it's your birthday. Go Gelcap.

Thorzdad, you win the guffaw award for this thread. Had I been drinking milk, I'd have gotten a dairy nasal irrigation.
posted by kookoobirdz at 3:13 PM on October 7, 2006

This thread just gave me a great idea. I have a wall-mounted emergency call box that I "came across" when I was at college. It says "EMERGENCY" in big blue letter on the door of the box. Remove the electronics, mount it on the wall above the bed, and it's an instant storage unit for condoms.
posted by backseatpilot at 3:14 PM on October 7, 2006

I prefere the minamalistic look as well, very much like paulsc's reference. While this is perhaps a bit too expensive to buy just for the "best place to put your condom" thing, but in terms of minimal and functional Wall Mounted Headboard which you can buy at Design Public.
posted by Sevenupcan at 3:19 PM on October 7, 2006

shelleycat wrote...
Condoms and friction really really don't go together.

I think I've been using them wrong.
posted by tkolar at 3:30 PM on October 7, 2006 [1 favorite]

I'm talking about in the packet before use. As in the whole 'don't carry them in your wallet for years' thing. I don't think there's any issue of safety here, more a perception of lack of care and attention to the safety aspect. But when it's someone you haven't known for long amounts of time these perceptions are important.

(Even once being used surely continual, unlubricated friction over a period of hours would wear away at the rubber and cause problems?)
posted by shelleycat at 4:35 PM on October 7, 2006

Get a small decorative box and put the condoms in the box. Lots of places to get these - gift shops, home decor shops etc. Or a used cigar or candy box. I use an old box that my dad's business cards came in which I have since decorated with a flowery collage. Avoid the box the condoms came in. Think romantic. And not too big.

Keep the box in the bathroom with your other personal hygiene items during down times. The box can be brought out and placed near the bed before or during the big night.

Don't over stuff the box nor let it run too low. Keep a small variety of condoms in the box to allow for some choice. If your condoms come in strips, seperate the condoms into individual units before you put them in the box. Keep surplus condoms in the bathroom.
posted by shoesfullofdust at 4:40 PM on October 7, 2006

The problem is them being carelessly stored. If a woman is asking her bedpartner to use a condom, she wants it to work.

Put them in some sort of receptacle with hard sides to protect them from damage. It doesn't matter what sort, although classy or funky-kitschy is better than merely utilitarian.
posted by joannemerriam at 5:21 PM on October 7, 2006

Doesn't everyone keep them in a walk-in closet with the whips, cock-rings and ball gags?

Just kidding.

I am married, so I usually know when I am probably going to have sex. Before we go to bed, I retrieve a condom from the dresser where I hide them from the kids and discreetly place it near the bed. If things work out like I hope they will, it is right there. If they don't, it stays out of sight.

I really do like the box/vase idea for a single guy.

BTW: A guy that isn't afraid of furniture seems to be a big plus to the ladies but what you do with/in your bedroom is your business.
posted by SteveTheRed at 6:22 PM on October 7, 2006

Obviously, the solution is to get a USB-controlled Missile Launcher connected to a PC set up in the corner of your bedroom. You tape a condom onto each missile. Then you wire up a remote trigger button somewhere discreetly near your bed. When coitus is imminent, push the button, and the missile with condom payload is delivered directly into your waiting hands.

If you're good with wiring you may even be able to configure a Clapper to be your trigger mechanism.
posted by Brian James at 8:25 PM on October 7, 2006 [2 favorites]

Close enough to reach without putting your feet on the floor. Use a box or something to hide them and then it's not an issue at all.

OTOH, I think it'd be cool to have a wall-mounted dispenser like those "take a number and sit down" devices at the free clinic :) Not that I've ever been to a free clinic, mind you. Never.

...shut up...quit looking at me...
posted by Kickstart70 at 10:21 PM on October 7, 2006

On the subject of a variety of condoms, it's not a bad idea to know before the big moment whether your keeper (or overnighter, anyway) is allergic to latex.
posted by caitlinb at 10:41 PM on October 7, 2006

The location of your condoms does suck. But beyond that, when you're having new company, it's a good idea to have them in an unopened pack. That way there is even less speculation about what happened to the other condoms in the pack, and when.

Of course, if you're in college and are bringing home guests who implicitly don't care, then that may not matter. But it sounds like it would in your situation.
posted by bingo at 12:02 AM on October 8, 2006

If you are in a basement, like I am, an ideal spot is above the suspended ceiling tiles - I keep a small stepladder handy to climb up and get one when needed. It's not as bad as it sounds, as the stepladder is also a great way to keep clothes off the damp musty floor.
posted by Flashman at 3:38 AM on October 8, 2006

You may wish to consider the availability of towels at the bedside, discretely. Perhaps you can find some low to the floor piece of furniture, keeping the minimalist theme, which has room for a couple of towels?
posted by unrepentanthippie at 8:48 AM on October 8, 2006

Every time I try to get out of bed with a bone I end up tripping over the damn thing. Defintly keep the condoms within reach!

Get one of those plush animal things that have a stash intended for pajamas. Perfect place for condoms :-) I think the ladies would enjoy it, and you can keep lube with it as well.

Hiding them in the dresser, "from the kids"? LOL! Were you ever a kid? This hiding place only works until they are adolescents. Then you keep them in the bathroom, in case the 'kids' need one.
posted by Goofyy at 9:01 AM on October 8, 2006

As a general rule of thumb: Keeping anything of any sort in any kind crevice is not going to impress anybody.

If you absolutely refuse to get a nightstand, or at least some sort of decorative box/basket/organizer, then put the condoms in whatever drawer you have - hopefully you have a dresser. Or whatever drawers you keep your underwear and socks in.

A 'minimalist' room might be okay, if your guests are allowed to beleive that there is some sort of streamlined functionality to it... Keeping stuff stuck in crevices indicates instead that your cheap/lazy/messy/don't know how to live like an adult.

(As another alternative, if you're at all willing to buy any kind of furniture, getting a miminalist bed frame with under-bed-storage would allow you to maintain your design 'aesthetic' without coming off like such a skeeve during condom retrieval.)
posted by Kololo at 11:30 AM on October 8, 2006

Retrieving contraceptives from a crack between your mattress and the wall is definitely Hobo Nouvel, not Adult Minimalist. So go get yourself a $30 nightstand with a drawer, and stuff it full of Happy Bed Funtime props. It's the grownup thing to do, and it doesn't involve you rooting around in the mattress like a squirrel when things go beyond vanilla.

(In college I used to have an ashtray by the bed filled with condoms with a single lollipop on top. It didn't project "good person," but that was kind of the point. But, you know, "put away childish things" and such.)
posted by Coda at 6:56 PM on October 8, 2006

Oh my, that was a good read. Coming to it belatedly but yeah please no rooting around in crevices for condoms. Within arm's reach is good since I'm always a little dismayed when my partner has to get out of bed, cross the room, burrow into a drawer, and find the condom. All that time, I have to sit/lay/stand there looking desirable and desirous and it can really spoil the moment. Get a freakin' nightstand.

But umm, I do have condoms stored in a dresser that's not next to the bed. But that's 'cause I'm a girl and it somehow seems different. If I know for certain something's going down that night, I'll move them to the table next to my bed.
posted by otherwordlyglow at 5:20 PM on October 10, 2006

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