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Can ‘Barebacking’ also be safe?

by Vincent van der Kraan in Health & Body , 07 augustus 2004


Barebacking is originally a term used by cowboys and means “Riding without a saddle.” With sex it means “Fucking without a condom.” The big problem is that in practise barebacking is seen as making love unsafe, while in most of the cases it isn’t unsafe. You’ve got to realise that mankind will extinct when there would be no more barebacking. Like one of the interviewed persons said: ‘For straight people barebacking is almost standard procedure.”

But if we by all means want to use the term “bare’, then it’s time to come up with two new terms, for instance BareRisking for when we’re talking about consciously fucking unsafe without a condom and BareTrusting for when we’re talking about the safe form of fucking without a condom.
Coming into somebody’s mouth is being considered by some as barebacking, what is right in comparison with blowing “with”.
Essentially the whole discussion is all about the good old concepts “safe” and “unsafe”.




Internet

It can not have eluded you, while being in a chat-box, that you are more and more confronted with the phenomena barebacking. Some are sighing: “It looks like it’s becoming into fashion”
No matter the number of dangers that come with it, yet many people are displaying it. It might be wise to analyse what it is all about.

Why the need of barebacking?

In the discussion about the causes there are some suppositions:
(a) The better medication for HIV is making people more indolent.
(b) Barebacking has been developed in the gay scene as resistance against the paternalism like prevention messages of the eighties and nineties.
(c) People have become tired of using condoms. They still have the wish to fuck and are looking for more open ways whit the lowest risks and the most intimacy.
(d) Some of them are going for conversion-sex, which means that they purposely have themselves infected. If this group really exists is not known, one suspects it’s a kind of hype on the internet and that it doesn’t go any further than a cyber fantasy. Some consider this as emotionally disturbed behaviour; others consider it to be the ultimate freedom of people in their right of self-determination.




Is safe barebacking possible?

No matter what your opinion is when it comes to barebacking, fact is, when it’s done under strict conditions, it “can” be a safe form of fucking. We mean reasonably safe because of transmittal diseases where there’s no cure for yet, HIV. All the other transmittable diseases like: Syphilis, Chlamydia, Hepatitis A and B remain a threat, but can be cured in most of the cases. Infections with Hepatitis C, where there’s also no cure for (and also with some cases of B) are even not prevented by practising “safe” sex. When we continue talking about “safe” than it’s in the light of infecting a healthy person with HIV as a live threatening disease.

When would it be possible to bareback without infecting a healthy person?
1. In case of two people who are strictly monogamous and which are both tested negative or who have never had an unsafe contacts before. They would be able to safely bareback each other. This is the only variant.
2. When two people who are infected, barebacking wouldn’t lead to infecting a healthy human. There are discussions about “re-infections” in the Medical world. Most of the Medici claim there is a chance you can catch a resistant variant of the virus when you are infected already, although it’s a small chance. Here it’s about the right of self-determination on one side and the health care on the other side.


When can barebacking infect a healthy human?

In all cases where there has not been a test and where one is not aware about his or her own status, barebacking is unsafe.

For all the feint excuses there has been a lot of writing in flyers and brochures during last twenty years.

The fact that somebody is pretty, young, clean and honest is of course no guarantee that he/she isn’t infected.

More than halve of the infected Dutch people do not even know they are infected. Still people won’t do the test, while for most of them there is enough reason to do so.


Information of the GG&GD

All together the number of infections with HIV is climbing! Of course this has to do with barebacking. The number of infections among young gays is lower in comparison with fifteen years ago; not clear is how many. Yet there is an increase of unsafe sex. In comparison to the early days, the number of partners is lowered; now it seems to be more the case of fucking unprotected with only one partner; nowadays more know also about each other’s sero status. One is very worried about sex education. Something must have gone wrong when it comes to prevention. From the “Thy shall not…”-message one should more talk about lowering risks. (“Fucking without coming inside”) and testing of spit, which in three minutes indicates your status. One is hoping for new developments at this domain.




In accordance to the prevention: never fuck bare if you don’t explicitly know the HIV-status of the other and you must always tell your status when you want to fuck bare. For anybody who would like to know more about the risks of unprotected sex, there’s a website of the Schorerstichting which is recommendable: www.gayhealth.nl/bbs




 







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