Despite how much the importance of safe sex is drilled into our heads from the second we hit puberty, there is still a massive stigma against actually taking the necessary steps to have safe sex. Amazing, right? Ugh. It’s like, if we don’t want a bunch of teenagers to get pregnant or develop STDs, why are people still clutching their pearls when a teen wants a prescription for birth control? Why are we shaming people who responsibly use emergency contraception? Why is it even still a huge ordeal to pick up some damn condoms?
When it comes to that last bit, you’ll be happy to know that there is, in fact, a way to get ahold of condoms without having to worry about running into your Spanish teacher or your mom’s bestie at the drugstore. Take control of your sexual health, girls! Here are seven ways you can get condoms–yes, including vaginal condoms–without your parents knowing. The best part: There are loads of ways you can even get condoms for free! Woop, woop!
Visit Some Safe Sex Health Sites To Find Free Condoms LocallyThere are so many free condom distribution centers around the world, but finding one near you might be tough because most databases are local. For example, if you're a teen in California and want to find free condoms, you can find some in your area via TeenSource.org. People in New York can do the same thing via NYC Health, and folks in DC can find condoms nearby by texting thanks to Rubber Revolution DC. But that isn't much use to you if you don't live in those areas! The most effective sites that I've found in this quest for free condoms is CondomFinder.org. If you live in the United States, all you have to do is type in your zip code and a list of participating free condom distributors are listed. These range from beauty salons to clinics like Planned Parenthood. You don't have to ask your parents for money or borrow a credit card and sneak around. Free leaves zero paper trail! Shutterstock
Hit Up The School NurseYou nearly spend more time at school than anywhere else, right? What better place to get some condoms on the DL? If your school isn't in the dark ages, you can visit the school nurse and ask for some condoms. Yeah, you're probably going to feel awkward about it, but chances are the nurse will appreciate the fact that you're being responsible about your sexual health. Think of how many students had to ask Madam Pomfrey for some contraception potion or something in the Harry Potter universe. At least it won't be that level of awkward. Harry Potter/WB
Check Out Online RetailersSites like Amazon sell everything, including condoms. So that's always an option IF your parents don't get suspicious of you using their credit or debit card. If you're in the States, you might want to consider using a condom site like Condom USA. They sell condoms AND offer free condom samples that can be sent to you via mail. So you won't have to spend a dime (except a potential shipping fee). If you order from them, the word condom won't appear in a credit card statement AND the boxes are unmarked. You wouldn't want to get a box that says CONDOMS USA all over it, right? Shutterstock
Go To A Local ClinicThis will be a goldmine for free condoms, for penises and vaginas. ALL OF THE CONDOMS! You can literally just open Google Maps (in your browser or the app), type "clinic" or "women's health center," and you'll find a place that will definitely give you all the condoms you'll ever want. Just store them somewhere discreet and you're good to go. Planned Parenthood
Get A Fearless Friend To Grab Some For YouWe all have at least one friend who will do anything without an ounce of shame. Kind of like Jay from The Inbetweeners. Find that friend and see if they're willing to go in the store and grab some condoms for you. They'll probably leap at the opportunity, even if they'll laugh at you about it later. But hey, if it prevents the possibility of running into your soccer coach in the checkout aisle...it'll be worth it. The Inbetweeners/E4
Get An Older Friend Or Trusty Family Member To Do ItYou don't have to be over a certain age to buy condoms or anything like that, but with age comes a general IDGAF approach to things that used to make you feel embarrassed, like tampons. Same with condoms. If you have an older sibling who will keep their mouth shut, a favorite cousin you can rely on, or an older friend, get them to do the dirty work for you. If they're already sexually active, like Brandy's older sis in The To-Do List, then you're in even greater luck because this won't be a very squeamish quest for them. The To-Do List
Pluck Up The Courage To Go To The Drugstore Yourself...But Proceed With CautionMaybe you're not going to risk the awkwardness of borrowing a parent's credit card for an online condom purchase. Perhaps you don't live near a free clinic. Your friends or siblings are not interested in grabbing condoms for you, either. Or, the idea of asking your school nurse for condoms makes you want to crawl into a ball in die. Looks like you're on your own. Here's how to make it work. Since you're probably paranoid AF, go to a drugstore that is nowhere near your neighborhood, school, or anywhere that your parents frequent. Consider mixing in your condom purchase with some other items you like, like a bag of chips or a copy of NYLON magazine. Pay with cash in case your parents are super shrewd about credit card payments and want to know what you bought for $10 at Rite-Aid (especially if you're a bad liar). Let the cashier know that you don't want the receipt or just throw it away immediately. Then, ASAP, stow the condoms somewhere that nobody will be able to snoop. When you get back home, put the condoms in a super safe spot; you don't want a parent to find out, which is what happened to Rae in My Mad Fat Diary when she went on a condom quest of her own. Rookie move! Once you've done that, voila, your parents are none the wiser and you've successfully put your big girl pants on. My Mad Fat Diary/E4
Are there any other sneaky yet effective ways you’ve gotten a hold of condoms? Have you been caught? Tell us in the comments!