“So what?!” you say, “I don't need to use a barrier method to protect myself. I am very careful about NOT letting anyone ejaculate inside of me. No sperm, no foul, right?”
A penis does not go from zero to orgasm immediately — although it sometimes may feel like it does — but instead is erect and secreting pre-ejaculate long before the big release.
So even if you believe a person removes their penis before orgasm, if he has been inside of you for any amount of time, he has still deposited plenty of pre-ejaculate fluid — sperm, STI and all.
Therefore, even practiced “correctly,” the pull-out method only prevents SOME semen from reaching an egg to fertilize, or your bloodstream to colonize an infection. You are still at risk of pregnancy or STI.
OK, so you didn’t use a condom, and your partner used the withdrawal method. What do you do now?
GET TESTED for STIs. If you are concerned about pregnancy, and the intercourse happened within the last 72 hours, you may consider using Plan B.
Investigate options for safer sex practices. If your partner is reluctant to use a condom, there are many other options to prevent pregnancy and several alternative barrier methods as well.
Check out the Planned Parenthood website for more information on your MANY options. Feel free to post questions below as well! But take it from me — it’s worth the conversation and the consideration.
Reviewed March 1, 2016
by Michele Blacksberg RN
Edited by Jody Smith
1) “Withdrawal (Pull-Out Method.)” Planned Parenthood.Accessed February 26, 2016.
2) "What Is In Semen." New Health Guide. Accessed February 25, 2016.