What are we really taking about when it comes to barebacking? This was the question PositiveLite.com, in a video interview, posed to social worker and ACT TowelTalk bathhouse counsellor Rahim Thawer, following his presentation on this topic at the 9th annual Gay Men’s Sexual Health Alliance of Ontario summit, held in Toronto in May 2013.
Putting barebacking into context is important now that we’ve begun to have more open discussions about the reality that gay guys aren’t always using condoms, despite the inherent risks. Yet, often, we still seek simple explanations for matters that are complex and varied, from “guys are using too many drugs and drinking too much” to “guys are depressed” and that these are the reasons that lead some of us to take risks. Although there may some truth in these explanations, they alone do not explain why guys sometimes dispense with condoms when they have anal sex.
As Rahim pointed out during our discussion, we need to have a different, less stigmatizing kind of conversation among ourselves about the kind of sex we’re having and the risks we take. Watch and hear him talk about these issues in the video interview below.