One of my new favorites <3
This is amazing. I will forever reblog this cutie
This is not medical info, it’s my perspective.
I’ve lived most of my life in fear of HIV. Everything I’ve done or not done sexually was motivated by this fear - not a healthy caution, a downright fear. Irrational occasionally, severely limiting most other times. Despite everything I knew about risk and safer sex, and everything I know about HIV’s manageability, I still have long struggled with fear of getting HIV and that it would destroy my life.
Yesterday, I started on PrEP.
Truvada, a common HIV medication, was approved for use by HIV negative people as pre-exposure protection. When taken every day, it can reduce chances of HIV transmission by 99%. Combined with condoms, it makes risk of HIV transmission essentially zero.
I started on PrEP for a couple of reasons. For one, even though I don’t have a lot of risky sex, I can’t be sure I won’t in the future. Despite our best efforts, it’s easy to bypass a condom in the heat of the moment; my husband has been down this road a couple of times, and it led to difficult discussions and months condom-only or no sex. Shit happens, and it helps to have backup.
Part of me wants to have more sex, more adventurous sex, and I want to have a safety net. In the kinky world, you just never know what could happen, so why not? I already take a Wellbutrin every day, it’s easy to add a simple Truvada pill too.
But there’s another reason too - a more community-oriented one. Despite decades of condom evangelism, we still see 50,000 new HIV infections a year in the US. That’s stupid, like really. Some people are afraid of their status, some people just don’t test. But if we band together and embrace new possibilities, we can seriously diminish HIV’s reach.
I don’t like Andrew Sullivan but something he wrote recently rang true - if every gay guy with HIV took their meds and maintains an undectectable status, and every HIV negative gay guy went on PrEP, we could effectively end HIV in a generation.
So I take PrEP now for a few reasons, not all of them moral. Sure, I do it because it’s my part to reduce HIV in our community. But I also do it to assuage my fear and give myself a safety net. And part of me does it so I can have crazy parking lot sex and just enjoy it, even if I don’t happen to have a condom.
Condoms are still the rule, but it’s a looser rule. PrEP doesn’t protect against all the many other STDs out there. But having this safety net is a nice extra step toward safety - because a condom strategy alone doesn’t cut it - people forget, they break, we get drunk or high and don’t put it on.
As far as cost, it’s not cheap. But now that everyone in the US is supposed to have health care, it should be easier to get coverage for it. Most insurance companies are paying for PrEP, and if they try to refuse it, fight it - because it’s cheaper to pay for PrEP than a lifetime of actual HIV meds. My insurance knocked the price from $1,500/month to $25 - and yours should do something similar.
And to top it off, Gilead (the drug maker) offers assistance programs if you don’t have insurance (or it won’t cover it) and if you do have coverage, they even have a Co-Pay Assistance program to pay your copay. My pills ended up costing me nothing.
So you need to talk to you doctor about it. There’s an HIV blood test first, and then you can get the prescription. I think we should all seriously consider it, for ourselves, for our fun, and for our community.
Doesn’t matter how muscled you are boy, you’re still a locked little fag
This is what I like…