Should I stop barebacking?

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 12, 2010 3:59 AM GMT
    I have been in a monogamous relationship for a year and a half. We stopped using condoms after we both tested negative for HIV and other STD's about nine months into the relationship. Before this we always used condoms for anal (not for oral). Now that I have given barebacking the old college try, I would like to go back to using condoms. It's not because I believe my boyfriend would cheat on me. I just don't like the extra risk; I feel like I am not in control of my own safety. The problem is, he really prefers barebacking, both for the physical sensation and the emotional significance he gives it--he feels like it is more intimate. I get where he is coming from, since I somewhat prefer the sensation of barebacking myself. But the added risk isn't worth it to me.

    Am I being unreasonable?
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    Dec 12, 2010 4:14 AM GMT
    Barebacking offers its own problems. STDs are sexually transmitted DISEASES which are not always associated with clamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis, and or/aids. I contracted an STD barebacking which was from bacteria in the colon of the bottom (who was a female). You're taking chances without protection. Think of the bacteria effect if nothing else. But then wait for someone who is more of a medical expert than I am.........Keithicon_cool.gif
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    Dec 12, 2010 4:49 AM GMT
    I don't know enough about you and your guy to comment on that. But this,

    "The problem is, he really prefers barebacking, both for the physical sensation and the emotional significance he gives it--he feels like it is more intimate."

    ..makes me feel he has a great love for you; you in particular. And this is with the assumption on my part that you have a completely monogamous-having-tested-negative-several-times kind of relationship, right? Otherwise barebacking is a crazy risk.

    "I just don't like the extra risk; I feel like I am not in control of my own safety."

    ..means, to me, that you should talk to him about this very fear. That's that love does and is supposed to do. It's sometimes all about vulnerability as a strength.

    -Doug
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    Dec 12, 2010 9:31 AM GMT
    You are afraid of the risk of what?
  • jslifting

    Posts: 114

    Dec 12, 2010 9:54 AM GMT
    Do what makes you feel safe and comfortable. Explain to him. Let him know. This is your life and you should decide. If he loves you enough, he will understand. Never do anything you are uncomfortable with when it comes to your health and safety. We only have one life, so use it wisely.
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    Dec 12, 2010 9:57 AM GMT
    "It's not because I believe my boyfriend would cheat on me. I just don't like the extra risk; I feel like I am not in control of my own safety"

    There you said it all. If you want to be in control of your own safety, you use condoms. It's as simple as that. Go to a center of information for HIV and STD's and ask them how many couples they know who infected each other like that. Maybe that will help to make up your mind.

    Personally, I don't get the whole BB'ing thing anyway.
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    Dec 12, 2010 10:05 AM GMT
    I'm in a similar situation : monogamous, loving, no condom.

    If I was to tell my partner I wanted to go back to condom, he would immediately think I :
    had sex with someone else or
    want to open the relationship or
    suspect he may have had or may have sex with someone else

    And he would be very surprised, and I think offended, I didn't talk about the real issue before.

    We talked at length, for months, about going bareback or not. It was the result of very deep exchanges.
    Any change would take as serious exchanges, not about 'bareback or not', but about why I don't feel comfortable without condom and how we can fix that, potentially going back to condom.

    If you have no objective reason to be afraid, and that it's just a gut feeling, it's still a very valid reason to talk about it, sex is supposed to be enjoyable and natural, not anxiety generating.

    If you don't feel any longer like barbacking, then you should not, but the decision affect your couple, and you communicate until both of you understand each other.

    As much as he may enjoy skin to skin feeling and the intimacy it provide, I'm sure he value a lot more your emotional peace
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    Dec 12, 2010 3:21 PM GMT
    AvadaKedavra saidYou are afraid of the risk of what?


    That I might be wrong about him--as many people have been about their partners. That he might not tell me that he is sleeping with someone else. And then that he might contract an incurable STD and give it to me.

    I believe that I am in a monogamous relationship. But I cannot know that I am in a monogamous relationship.

    We live an hour away from each other and mainly see each other on weekends. But even if we lived in the same house, I could not really know that he was monogamous. All I know is what he tells me.

    Part of the issue is that I have a lower tolerance of risk than he does. I am also more concerned about catching diseases than he is.
  • CuriousJockAZ

    Posts: 19138

    Dec 12, 2010 3:29 PM GMT
    halfjock saidNow that I have given barebacking the old college try, I would like to go back to using condoms. It's not because I believe my boyfriend would cheat on me. I just don't like the extra risk; I feel like I am not in control of my own safety.


    You said it all right here in a nutshell. Just explain this to your bf. Tell him that it's not that you don't trust him, it's just simply a source of anxiety for you because you can never be too careful when it comes to your own health. If he truly loves you, he will respect this and go back to playing safe which protects both of you.
  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16311

    Dec 12, 2010 3:29 PM GMT
    You need to have a serious conversation with your partner. Be honest.. be thorough, work through it together with good communication... thats what it's all about.
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    Dec 12, 2010 3:38 PM GMT
    You're not being unreasonable. The vast majority of HIV+ people I've known didn't get it from being promiscuous. They got it from their "monogamous" partner. Most of them would've sworn their partner would never cheat on them.
  • DanOmatic

    Posts: 1155

    Dec 12, 2010 3:40 PM GMT
    I understand the appeal of wanting the symbolic importance and physical pleasure of condom-free sex, but unless you're in a monogamous relationship that is built on an unwavering foundation of mutual trust and respect, it's better to stick to insisting on a condom. From your post and response on here, your shadow of doubt tells me that you're going to be happier going the safe route. Keep the lines of communication open on this--you both might get to a place of trust where bare might be possible, but BOTH of you have to feel good about it.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 12, 2010 4:25 PM GMT
    Does everyone remember the monogamous relationship that Greg Louganis thought he was in?..............................keithicon_cool.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 12, 2010 4:35 PM GMT
    its ur body u can enforce whatever you want, i for one prefer condoms because like a previous poster said its not just STDs but both parties can get infections and bacteria
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    Dec 12, 2010 4:37 PM GMT
    vetteset saidDoes everyone remember the monogamous relationship that Greg Louganis thought he was in?..............................keithicon_cool.gif


    I remember it well
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 12, 2010 4:38 PM GMT
    You are NOT being unreasonable.
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    Dec 12, 2010 4:39 PM GMT
    halfjock saidI have been in a monogamous relationship for a year and a half. We stopped using condoms after we both tested negative for HIV and other STD's about nine months into the relationship. Before this we always used condoms for anal (not for oral). Now that I have given barebacking the old college try, I would like to go back to using condoms. It's not because I believe my boyfriend would cheat on me. I just don't like the extra risk; I feel like I am not in control of my own safety. The problem is, he really prefers barebacking, both for the physical sensation and the emotional significance he gives it--he feels like it is more intimate. I get where he is coming from, since I somewhat prefer the sensation of barebacking myself. But the added risk isn't worth it to me.

    Am I being unreasonable?


    Yes, reasonable because there's a very good chance of you getting a urinary tract infection!
  • neosyllogy

    Posts: 1714

    Dec 12, 2010 4:42 PM GMT
    I've heard too many horror stories on this site of people getting HIV while barebacking in a monogamous relationship.
    ... things happen, I think condoms, bummer though they are in some ways, are the smart thing to do. (Also, less cleanup icon_smile.gif)
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    Dec 12, 2010 4:48 PM GMT
    Draper said
    muscles4muscles saidYou're not being unreasonable. The vast majority of HIV+ people I've known didn't get it from being promiscuous. They got it from their "monogamous" partner. Most of them would've sworn their partner would never cheat on them.


    What you're implying is that barebacking is safer for promiscuous people. I don't buy it.



    He's implying most promiscuous people are wearing condoms, unlike many in monogamous relationships.

    We simply never did anything requiring a condom until we had fully and deeply committed to each other. This means doing things that appall many guys on RJ, beginning with the relinquishing of all privacy.


    -Doug
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    Dec 12, 2010 4:50 PM GMT
    halfjock said
    AvadaKedavra saidYou are afraid of the risk of what?


    That I might be wrong about him--as many people have been about their partners. That he might not tell me that he is sleeping with someone else. And then that he might contract an incurable STD and give it to me.

    I believe that I am in a monogamous relationship. But I cannot know that I am in a monogamous relationship.

    We live an hour away from each other and mainly see each other on weekends. But even if we lived in the same house, I could not really know that he was monogamous. All I know is what he tells me.

    Part of the issue is that I have a lower tolerance of risk than he does. I am also more concerned about catching diseases than he is.


    So you guys went barebacking for 9 months and now you are afraid that he might be cheating on you. oh uh, sounds like the relationship is getting rocky. Hey if I thought my boyfriend is cheating on me I would insist on condoms as well.
  • Arab_in_NL

    Posts: 100

    Dec 12, 2010 4:54 PM GMT
    i wonder why the idea of barebacking freaks u out guys!
    i mean since you and ur partner are in a good health and dont cheat on each other, so you dont have to worry about STDs
    think about it as married straight couple. do married straight couple use condoms?
    I dont think my parents do so icon_lol.gif
  • TxGrunt

    Posts: 71

    Dec 12, 2010 4:57 PM GMT
    simple - use a condom.

    but you need to have a serious conversation.

    he wants BB because he loves you, and because he loves you i assume he whould also be concerned about your feelings wanting a condom... because he loves you.

    the relationship and understanding of each other works both ways.

    use a condom and work out the issues honestly.

    if the partner immediately jumps to a suspicion that you cheated then i think you have a deeper trust issue in the relationship.

    i would also critically question, myself as to why i recently begun to doubt the partner's fidelity.

    i asked myself: have i always had the same level of concern about BB consequences? obviously not, and something changed that... can i identify what/why?
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    Dec 12, 2010 5:34 PM GMT
    AvadaKedavra said

    So you guys went barebacking for 9 months and now you are afraid that he might be cheating on you. oh uh, sounds like the relationship is getting rocky. Hey if I thought my boyfriend is cheating on me I would insist on condoms as well.


    No, that's not it at all. Nothing has changed. I have never felt good about barebacking. I have done it by saying to myself, "Well, I sure hope that he is as honest and faithful as he seems." I have no reason to believe he is cheating on me. I do not believe that he is.

    But am I absolutely 100% certain that he is not cheating on me?

    No. There is no way I could be without following him constantly every day.

    If he were violating our agreement to be monogamous, would he tell me?

    Maybe. But maybe he would not.

    My boyfriend has also pointed out that most heterosexual couples in committed relationships have unprotected sex. He has a point. But the odds are that if either of us did cheat, it would be with another man who has sex with men, not with a heterosexual woman. And rates of HIV are much higher among gay men than they are among heterosexual women. I don't like it, but it's a fact.
  • rnch

    Posts: 11525

    Dec 12, 2010 5:35 PM GMT
    IF you choose to not BB anymore; i suggest that you approach this topic slowly and gradually with your bf, over several times together.

    if you, all of a sudden, demand condoms, he will think that YOU have cheated on Him.

    icon_exclaim.gif
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    Dec 12, 2010 6:18 PM GMT
    halfjock said
    AvadaKedavra said

    So you guys went barebacking for 9 months and now you are afraid that he might be cheating on you. oh uh, sounds like the relationship is getting rocky. Hey if I thought my boyfriend is cheating on me I would insist on condoms as well.


    No, that's not it at all. Nothing has changed. I have never felt good about barebacking. I have done it by saying to myself, "Well, I sure hope that he is as honest and faithful as he seems." I have no reason to believe he is cheating on me. I do not believe that he is.

    But am I absolutely 100% certain that he is not cheating on me?

    No. There is no way I could be without following him constantly every day.

    If he were violating our agreement to be monogamous, would he tell me?

    Maybe. But maybe he would not.

    My boyfriend has also pointed out that most heterosexual couples in committed relationships have unprotected sex. He has a point. But the odds are that if either of us did cheat, it would be with another man who has sex with men, not with a heterosexual woman. And rates of HIV are much higher among gay men than they are among heterosexual women. I don't like it, but it's a fact.


    I totally understand your position. Better safe than sorry. However, if I was your boyfriend it would make me raise a few questions. I would never cheat on my boyfriend. If your proposal came up, I would understand your general concern about not having 100% assurance but I would wonder why it is not present in our relationship. You have to admit, although you are not doing it directly, it is kinda like implying that you do not trust him.

    I think being safe is always better than not being safe. Barebacking is a risk to your safety and if you are not comfortable taking that risk with your boyfriend then it isn't unreasonable to use condoms. You'll just have to convince your boyfriend since he is the one you don't want to take the risk with and not the posters who think your main concern is getting a urinary tract infection.