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YOUNG, GAY, SCARED AND SUICIDAL
May 21, 2002

Dear Sir,

I am young gay man just coming out of the closet. A while ago I had my first sexual experience with another man, he performed oral sex on me with a condom and stimulated (massaged) my prostate and Anal opening THERE WAS NO FINGER PENETERATION. How ever initially he scratched his arm where there was some red dry skin. I did examined the skin. it appeared to be dry and there was no blood or discharge present. I am still concerned; what if some tiny skin parts with tiny blood drops attached to them had got stuck to hiss fingertips? And then the very same fingertips came into contact with my anal opening? I am going nuts since I have no one to talk to (Young gay man in a small town , you figure!) I have been thinking about killing my self. Tell me I have nothing to worry about please. Thanks so much and God Bless. JUST YES OR NO THAT WILL DO.

Young Gay, scared, and SUICIDAL

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hey Young Gay and Suicidal,

OK. Take a couple of deep breaths and relax. You are absolutely fine. The chances of you getting infected from the activity you described - oral sex with a condom, finger play at the anal opening - is zero, zip, zilch, nada! OK. Now, a couple more deep breaths, relax, smile, and feel all the worry and anxiety drift away. OK? Feel better??? The skin scratch, skin flakes with tiny blood drops on his fingers finding their way into your anus and infecting you is quite impossible. By the way, it's also impossible to massage your prostate without penetration, but that's a different anatomy lesson.

So, no more talk about suicide, OK? Remember, I've been HIV-positive for over a decade and I very much enjoy every single moment of every single day. Then again, I also live in San Francisco and have been out of the closet for many years. Small towns can be wonderful, but also can be difficult for gay folks coming to grips with their sexuality. Close the closet door behind you. You'll be glad you did. Consider getting away from the small town, if necessary. You need a supportive community, some positive role models, and some additional information about safer sex. Is there a compassionate, nonjudgmental therapist in your town or perhaps a nearby city? Counseling may help you with your coming out process any suicidal thoughts, and dealing with irrational fears.

And remember, as Tony Bennett frequently sings, "You can lose your heart in San Francisco!!!"

Stay well.

Dr. Bob


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