Sexual Health

Fucking safely is the only way to reduce your risk of contracting HIV or avoiding it's ownard transmission. Knowing your HIV status and that of your sexual partners is the first step in reducing risk. If you’re needing some peace of mind so that you can fuck with glorious abandon then it’s either PrEP or condoms (best practice would be both of those simultaneously). 

If your choice is to fuck without PrEP or sans condom then consider using other practices, known as risk reduction strategies to preserve the sexual health and wellbeing of yourself and your lovers.  It’s important to note that Risk Reduction Strategies are used to reduce the risk of HIV - not eliminate it. Each option will have a varying degree of effectiveness and this effectiveness is based on specific conditions. These are not fail safes.  

PrEP

PrEP stands for Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis. PrEP is a prevention method in which people who do not have HIV take daily medication in order to reduce the risk of HIV transmission. PrEP is a pharmaceutical drug known as Truvada and it contains two antiviral medicines that are used in the treatment of HIV for those folk who are currently living with the virus.

BENEFITS: So far the numbers are looking pretty good for PrEP and this method is particular beneficial for serodiscordant couples.

WATCH OUT FOR: All the other STIs. PrEP is not some sexual health miracle force field. It’s not going to stop you from getting The Clap or Syphilis so be mindful and continue to test with regularity.

WHO SHOULD TAKE PREP?

The effectiveness of using HIV medications as PrEP has now been established through clinical trials in MSM, heterosexual adults and injecting drug users. PrEP may be a consideration for those people in populations who are higher risk - like MSM with multiple partners having frequent condomless sex.

HOW CAN I ACCESS PREP IN AUSTRALIA?

If you are considering PrEP then you should begin discussions with a doctor experienced in HIV or sexual health services. For more information, please visit VAC's PrEP page. Also download the ENDING HIV PrEP access guide below.

UNDETECTABLE VIRAL LOAD

The practice of partners with different HIV status who decide not to use a condom based on the viral load of the HIV positive partner.

BENEFITS: Some studies have shown that when a HIV positive person has an undetectable viral load for at least 6 months and no concurrent STI - the chances of him passing on HIV are small. This means that having condomless sex with someone who is certain that their viral load is undetectable reduces the risk of contracting HIV. However, if you are HIV negative, the best measures are to get onto PrEP and/or to use a condom.

WATCH OUT FOR: Even if you or your partner has an undetectable viral load, fucking without a condom will increase the chance of transmitting other STI’s such as gonorrhea, syphilis or HEP C.



STRATEGIC POSITIONING

This one is likely to be way sexier in practice than it sounds but strategic positioning is the decision to either Top or Bottom, depending on your HIV status. It operates on the theory that if you’re fucking without condoms and you’re a Top, then your risk of HIV transmission is lower than that of the Bottom.

BENEFITS: In theory it is more effective than withdrawal on decreasing the risk of HIV transmission.

WATCH OUT FOR: HIV is present in anal mucous. Tops can still get HIV by the virus entering the bloodstream through the urethra. PrEP and condoms are the only safeguards.

Check out Top2Bottom for more information.

SEROSORTING

The practice of engaging in condomless sex with people who have the same HIV status as you. It’s a given then that serosorting will only be effective if you know your HIV status and that of your partner. This means regular HIV and STI testing because just assuming is not enough.

BENEFITS: Serosorting allows you to fuck safely without a condom if you’re certain of your partner's HIV status.

WATCH OUT FOR: It’s impossible to know if a casual fuck is HIV negative. In fact, transmission of HIV often happens when someone thinks that they are negative when in fact they are not. In addition, serosorting doesn’t protect you from catching any number of other STIs

WITHDRAWAL

Pulling out before coming is NOT a reliable way to reduce the risk of fucking without condoms. This is because:

  • Pre-cum (the fluid that leaks from the tip of the penis during stimulation) can also contain HIV and can pass it on long before anyone has come.
  • The guy doing the fucking may accidentally come before he has a chance to withdraw.
  • A casual sex-partner may not honour an agreement to pull out before he comes.

If you’re fucking without condoms, just because the top doesn’t come, that doesn’t mean that the bottom couldn’t pass on HIV to the top if he’s HIV-positive. HIV can pass from the bottom’s arse into the top’s cock via the opening at the tip of the cock or through the skin of the cock through tiny cuts or abrasions caused by friction during fucking.

Having a sexual transmitted infection (e.g. gonorrhoea or syphilis) makes an HIV-negative person far more vulnerable to getting HIV and an HIV-positive person far more infectious.

NEGOTIATED SAFTEY

A relationship agreement between HIV-negative partners who know their status (and their partners) and agree to regular testing, discuss any risk and minimise additional by using condoms when fucking outside of the primary relationship. Want more information? Head on over to Let’s Talk About It!

And if this if your strategy, then make sure you both get tested every 3 months.