Slut-shaming has recently become a hot topic within the gay community with the increase of gay men on PrEP.
Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis, or PrEP, is a new HIV prevention strategy in which HIV-negative people use HIV antiretrovirals (ARVs), drugs usually used to treat HIV infection, to reduce their risk of becoming infected with HIV.
Protecting yourself from a disease that has claimed the lives of many is what is important. However, a community of men has made it less about protection and more about the potential removal of condoms during sex.
Whether you like it or not, gay men have been having unprotected sex for years and whether you consider it a risk or a personal choice the option of protection with PrEP is one way to go. Personally speaking I don’t believe it’s the wisest to entrust one’s life solely on a pharmaceutical company.
PrEP has been shown to reduce risk of HIV infection through sex for gay and bisexual men, transgender women, and heterosexual men and women, as well as among people who inject drugs. However, when I read statement’s like this, “It does not protect against other sexually transmitted infections (STI) or pregnancy. It is not a cure for HIV” and “There are not enough data available to provide specific timing guidance on non-daily use” is why PrEP is just an additional precaution; a precaution that should be accompanied with a condom.
Data analysis from the iPrEx study found PrEP to be effective:
• For people who take 7 PrEP pills per week, their estimated level of protection is 99%.
• For people who take 4 PrEP pills per week, their estimated level of protection is 96%.
• For people who take 2 PrEP pills per week, their estimated level of protection is 76%.
Frequently mentioned reasons among men who have sex with men (MSM) for non-condom use include dislike of condoms, enjoyment of skin-to-skin feeling and concern about diminished pleasure (Carballo-Diéguez and Bauermeister 2004). There are also fears the condom will either break or come off.
Interestingly the “SLIP GUARD” recently hit the market and it’s going to save a few more lives. With “SLIP GUARD” you no longer have to worry about your condom ever slipping off and lodging where it should not be lodged. It holds the condom in place. It’s like a smaller version of a cock ring but with a purpose.
For the younger generation HIV/AIDS is viewed as nothing more than having a common cold. However, it’s still a disease we’re struggling to combat. Any added protection is always good. We all have choices and as long as we’re knowledgeable about protecting ourselves and the options we have, we’re making progress.
The decision to play safely, bareback, or start PrEP is a personal choice, so whatever a person decides let’s not judge or slut-shame each other. Let’s be sure to make informed choices that will save our lives.
Learn more about Slip Guard on YouTube