Why do pos guys have unprotected sex with each other?

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    Apr 22, 2011 10:09 AM GMT
    So I've always wondered this, and in my opinion there are two answers...

    First, I don't think people understand that there are different strains of HIV with different drug resistances. Having sex with another pos guy without protection is like rubbing your staph infection on someone else's MRSA wound. They are both Staphylococcus Aureus bacteria, but one is resistant to methicillin and the other isn't...you're just going to catch both. HIV is the same way. If someone has been taking drugs for a long time and has become resistant to some of them, they can pass those resistant strains to someone else with HIV, effectively making them just as unresponsive to those treatments. Just because you're pos doesn't mean you don't have to worry about catching HIV anymore and having more unprotected sex just makes it worse.

    And second, I hate to say this but I think that they just don't care. I can't believe that a doctor has told a pos guy that it is ok to have unprotected sex with other pos guys. If I were pos I would do everything I could to not make my situation worse, but is it the same for everyone else? Also, aren't they thinking about other STDs? This is why I think they just don't give a fuck anymore.

    So because this is a discussion board, what do you guys think? Ignorance? Recklessness? Something else?

    And of course there are some pos guys who have protected sex, but that is irrelevant to my question.
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    Apr 22, 2011 10:34 AM GMT
    Negligence or ignorance, I suspect.
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    Apr 22, 2011 12:31 PM GMT
    You could very well be correct in that many just don't care; but also try to understand their mindset before condemning them.

    It's hard enough being rejected by society for being gay. Most of us have learned to live with that and move on with life while keeping a high self esteem. Now add to that the rejection from most people in your own community for being pos, and you end up with a very high rate of rejection. Although I haven't experienced it personally, it doesn't take a genius to realize how difficult it would be to maintain a high, or even mediocre self esteem.

    For those who don't realize how dangerous it is, encourage them to find the facts.
    For those who don't care, let them know you do care, and leave it at that.
    Condemning them will only make them feel worse.
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    Apr 22, 2011 1:55 PM GMT
    Damn it Paul...what the hell man.
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    Apr 22, 2011 2:28 PM GMT
    This is important for poz men to know, if their doctors haven't already told them. As for the emphasis in this thread, in psychological and sociological terms, I can't say. Interpretations can be subtle, and 2 guys like Paul & hazardous can mean to convey the same basic message, with slightly different nuances.

    But to reinforce the OP's original point, I went through this myself with my late partner. When we moved to a new State and he got a new HIV specialist, like his previous doctor this one wanted me present during the visits, considering me an important part of the treatment and support structure, and also a good source of patient information.

    But he also insisted I immediately have an HIV test, even though I'd had them before, to reassure himself of my current negative status. And he stated the very same concerns about different HIV strains the OP here did. Living with a poz partner I was certainly at increased risk of infection myself, if we weren't careful, and this doctor couldn't be certain how careful we were being at home.

    "I need to know what I'm dealing with," he told us both. He also gave me a complete work-up for all kinds of infectious agents, STDs and more, because of my partner's weakened immune system. "Frankly, I'm not concerned about your health for your own sake," he told me quite bluntly. "Until you become my patient, too, Tom is my primary concern, and I can't have you making him sick."

    Far from being insulted, I was impressed by his single-minded dedication to his patient, my partner, and glad we had found this doctor for him. And learned something new about the nature of HIV.
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    Apr 22, 2011 2:35 PM GMT
    hazardous said They are both Staphylococcus Aureus bacteria, but one is resistant to methicillin and the other isn't...you're just going to catch both.


    Totally read that as Staph-alicious.

    Anyway, there's this pos guy that I used to hook up with from time to time. He asked if I wanted to play raw, and I told him no, and asked why he wanted to. The way he explained it to me was, "I'm probably gonna die from this shit anyway, so there's no use in worrying about it." Fair enough. There are things that I do that I'm probably going to die from one day. That doesn't stop me from doing them. And of course, not every pos guy has this mindset.
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    Apr 22, 2011 3:04 PM GMT
    Pyrotech saidThe way he explained it to me was, "I'm probably gonna die from this shit anyway, so there's no use in worrying about it."

    I met a guy the other day, friend of my partner's from his early Boston days, who told me he's been poz for nearly 30 years. That would be at the very earliest start of the epidemic, before HIV even had a name, nor AIDS.

    But my partner believed him. And indeed we do know other HIV survivors in the 20+ range, that my partner's known since before they first contracted it. My own late partner was at 14 years before he was taken by an incurable brain virus, a sudden opportunistic thing you can't predict, nor easily guard against, despite his excellent cell counts and almost undetectable HIV load.

    Meaning that your poz friend is taking a very fatalistic view. Every year HIV survivability improves. Nothing is guaranteed, of course, and the patient has to do his part, but all is not lost, either.

    I remember I once had to explain this to a weeping mother in North Carolina, who had phoned our Fort Lauderdale gay & lesbian center when her 20-year-old son living in Miami had just told her he tested positive. She didn't know where to turn, and found our number online. In tears, she wanted to know if he would die right away. That was a tough phone call.

    But I think I managed to reassure her there was hope, this wasn't the mid-1980s, times have changed. And gave her many health agencies to have her son contact, who would help even the poor, which he evidently was, some of whom I work with and support.

    If you see this guy again tell him not to be too cavalier with his life -- he's likely got many years left, if he doesn't throw them away. And that's true for all of us, whether from illness, or heavy drinking, or drugs, or heavy smoking, or any self-abusive behavior. In the Army we'd call them a "self-inflicted wound" for which there is no excuse.
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    Apr 22, 2011 3:47 PM GMT
    I was literally just wondering this.
    I saw a guy on a site and his profile said he was poz, and he wants "BB only".
    I assumed BB means bareback.