The cliched motto of the boy scouts is to be prepared. Now I’ve never been a boy scout and quite often I’ve been very unprepared. Never disastrously but not always to my benefit either. For the last three months I’ve been what you could say is OVER prepared.
Like a lot of other gay men in Sydney I’m taking part in the clinical study of PrEP, also known as Pre-exposure Prophylaxis. One of the brands is Truvada and in the early days of PrEP in the U.S. people wore shirts with Truvada Whore on them because of the slut shaming that seemed to go hand in hand with being on PrEP.
Now I will admit it seems that a lot, or most gay men on PrEP seem to use it as a way to ditch condoms which is not how it’s supposed to be used but that is entirely up to them. When I went on it a couple of friends got very judgemental looks on their face and started to lecture. The concern is appreciated and I understand where it’s coming from. Other STD’s are on the rise but as one friend said, “you can get all of those from oral and no one is using a condom for that”.
Whether I use condoms or not along with PrEP seems to be of little concern and the judgement seems to be a touch premature since in the three months I’ve been on the trial, I’m yet to actually have anything more than oral sex. It seems to have cemented my celibacy rather than eradicate it. Even the doctor running the trial this morning at my 3 month screening said “I hope the next three months is busier for you”.
I’m being encouraged to be more slutty by a middle aged straight man running a sexual health trial. Something tells me I’m not being a gay man very well.