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totally desperate
Jul 8, 2003

Hi Robert, first of all I want to thank you for this great website. There is no site like this in german so I try to get advice from you. My boyfriend was tetsted HIV+ in Decemebr 2002. Since then we have many problems with our sexual life. He doesnt feel comfortable with several things that happen (safe!)and hes always anxious about infecting me. So my questions: Is there any study about getting infected by pre-cum ? We often had unprotected (befor and after he was tetsed)oral sex and I often swollowed his pre-cum (not semen!). Im fine, Ive been tested several times -. Further I want to know if there is any likelihood to get infected if hes fingering me. Last week he dindt want to fingering me because of his anxiousness. There were nor sores or any other disease on his finger but he denied to satsfy me in that way. How can I convince him to do the (safe) things I need to have a fulfilled sexual life ? He always argues that I can call it a day if I want. But I dont want to. We love each other so much and I dont want to turn my back on him. I think you have experienced other couples that are in teh same situation. Any andvice is highly appreciated. Thanks in advance and sorry for my bad english.

Response from Dr. Remien

Let me start by saying that your English is very good and thank you for your question.

I am not an expert on the science of HIV transmission (see the "Safe Sex, Prevention and Transmission" forum of this website). However, the behaviors that you describe are not considered to carry much, if any, risk. My suggestion is that you and your boyfriend look for information on transmission risk, together. It shouldn't be about either one of you trying to convince the other about what is and isn't risky. What is important is that you discuss honestly your concerns for each other's health and also each other's comfort and pleasure. It is good that you care about each other. You can start by reading, together, some of the questions and answers about the risk of oral sex and fingering on the "Safe Sex, Prevention and Transmission" forum of this website. Then talk about what you read there. If you feel that you need to ask more questions, you can ask a question in that forum or perhaps you can speak to an HIV prevention expert or a medical provider in your community. Then you and your boyfriend can talk about what you each enjoy sexually and whether or not you can each be comfortable doing those things with each other. If there are concerns about risk of HIV transmission, be creative and think of ways of making it safer while also keeping it fun and pleasurable.

These issues are common among couples in your situation. However, in my experience, honest and open dialogue about all of your feelings goes a long way in addressing the issues. There is no good reason why the two of you cannot have a mutually satisfying and a safe sexual and romantic relationship with each other.


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