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HIV/AIDS Blog Central

Banned From YouTube!

By River Huston

August 5, 2009

I woke up this morning and discovered an e-mail from YouTube in my inbox. They have banned one of my videos! I don't know what it is about me, but I seem to offend people with what I think is educational and entertaining information.

The said video, which you can view below, describes how to put a condom on with your mouth. It is done in a very direct and candid manner, but is in no way obscene. But this kind of thing has happened to me before. I was indicted in 1996 by the district attorney of New Jersey for doing the same thing at Hillsborough High School. (I had permission and I was using a demonstration penis, not a student) In the end, they had to drop all charges because it was not against the law to educate. It did not stop me from being banned from high schools for about a decade.

I think when it comes to safer sex, our culture seems to need to frame it as a punishment. Even HIV-positive speakers I have seen often give a message of -- don't do what I did or you will get what I got.

My message is: "Sex is great. Let's make it safer, functional, fun and second nature."

My whole thing about safer sex is how can I make it work and be reasonable.

Hello, female condoms, what were they thinking? I hear some people might use them, other's don't, but still defend them. I have tried female condoms and by the time you get them in, you don't want sex, you want a valium. Maybe they are a turn on if you get hot for the sound an old washing machine -- they sure are loud!

After I recovered from some of the things that I was told to use for safer sex, I can honestly say HIV improved my sex life. WHAT! Yep, it made me talk about sex. That was the best safer sex tool I ever gleaned from all those Hot, Hairy and Hard workshops from the eighties and nineties. If I am going to have to strive to be safe and get out the equipment, I might as well talk about what really turns me on.

I am being very general here -- I am sure there are some totally orgasmic babes reading this and I am sure I will hear from you -- but many women have difficulty saying what they want and really enjoy when having sex. HIV opened the door for me to experimentation and communication.

On YouTube there are many people who demonstrate how to put a condom on. I do it with my mouth for a number of reasons.

  1. You can cut out the talk if you have not reached that level where you feel comfortable talking about sex. This way you can be safe and not say a word.
  2. It's fun! And no one will ever complain! He will just be so happy you are down there!
  3. You don't have to negotiate anything.
  4. It is building the habit of safety.

If you do something consecutively for 90 days, it builds new neural pathways and becomes second nature and that is what I want when it comes to safer sex.

HIV sucks, as do all sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and most are preventable by using a condom, so why not find ways to make it fun!

I believe YouTube, Hillsborough High School and all the other people I have offended over the years have simply not been able to see the value in erotic education.

Look at the video. It is not porn or even obscene. (I think it sounds like that whacky aunt who knows her stuff and can bake great cupcakes as well.) You decide if it's obscene or educational! Vote below.


How to Put a Condom on With Your Mouth



Q: Do you think River Huston's "How to Put a Condom on With Your Mouth" video is obscene or pornographic?
Yes.
No.

To contact River, click here.

See Also
Quiz: Are You at Risk for HIV?
10 Common Fears About HIV Transmission
More Viewpoints on HIV Prevention for Young People
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Reader Comments:

Comment by: Skip (Sacramento) Thu., Sep. 26, 2013 at 1:11 am EDT
Ok I've watched it 5 times. My wife and I still can't figure out how you did it. Do you hold the condom between your teeth and lips?
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Comment by: Robert B (Levittown , PA) Sun., Jan. 10, 2010 at 5:57 pm EST
I watched the video and found it to be very informative. Sometimes people are uncomfortable not so much offended... Your an amazing woman keep up the great work :0)
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Comment by: Erik (TX) Wed., Oct. 7, 2009 at 10:34 am EDT
Your technique was interesting and sure to be a hit at parties as well as the bedroom. Obviously it didn't belong in an area for under 18s. I had to laugh reading one of the prior comments about society being up-tight and that being the cause for all our problems. One of the reasons why STDs are so prevalent is the liberalization of our moral conduct. Look at the TV, the Internet, the magazines aimed at our youth and the primary theme is sex. Sexual messages aimed at kids who's minds haven't developed as quickly as their bodies. It would have been great had you mentioned to your viewers that a healthy sexual relationship is best shared between two committed individuals and not just part of a lunch break to pass the time and satisfy the hormones.
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Comment by: Erik (TX) Mon., Oct. 5, 2009 at 10:28 am EDT
Your technique was interesting and sure to be a hit at parties as well as the bedroom. Obviously it didn't belong in an area for under 18s. I had to laugh reading one of the prior comments about society being up-tight and that being the cause for all our problems. One of the reasons why STDs are so prevalent is the liberalization of our moral conduct. Look at the TV, the Internet, the magazines aimed at our youth and the primary theme is sex. Sexual messages aimed at kids who's minds haven't developed as quickly as their bodies. It would have been great had you mentioned to your viewers that a healthy sexual relationship is best shared between two committed individuals and not just part of a lunch break to pass the time and satisfy the hormones.
Reply to this comment


Comment by: Terri (San Jose, CA) Wed., Sep. 16, 2009 at 10:08 pm EDT
If it was marked as mature 18+ on youtube, it should have been allowed to stay. If you did not, then I could see why they would want to remove it.
I agree with sexual education for minors. Going to lengths to teach people how sex can be fun should be for adults only. If minors want to learn, then they can do the research but it shouldn't be offered up front.
At my high school demo, they used a banana, not a real life looking dildo. maybe if you used a banana in your demo, it would not have been so "graphic" or pornographic.
In my opinion, yes it was graphic and pornographic. Based on this; if I were to look for instructions to put on a condom with my mouth, I would not look for those instructions at Barnes and Noble or Borders. I would go to the Adult book store for it. Youtube is catered to people of all ages, not just adults; same as Borders or Barnes and Noble.

I like your video but I agree that Youtube had a right to remove it. Keep up with your writings and good work. Education is key.
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Comment by: N.Ferran,MD (New York) Tue., Sep. 15, 2009 at 11:32 pm EDT
I find it hard to understand that with all the trash we witness in YOUTUBE they will choose to ban a message as useful and down to earth (not to mention well done) as yours. I am an HIV medical provider and can tell you that we need all the help we can get to erase or diminish the stigma associated with condom use (boring, ineffective, difficult, takes all the fun or pleasure away, etc), to the point that it erases its benefits and life saving potential. Also unprotected oral sex is pretty much the rule among our patients and the comment on flavored condoms is very useful. You do make it look fun and sexy!! I commend you for your courage, no nonsense approach and the service you are providing.
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Comment by: Heidi (Madison, WI) Wed., Sep. 9, 2009 at 6:04 pm EDT
I don't get it - YouTube already has videos of people putting condoms on with the mouth (e.g. "Sue Johanson puts a condom on with her mouth") - no more or less erotic than yours. At any rate, keep on! People need know every possible way to be as safe as possible, including every possible way to put on a condom effectively. You raised many important points in a great way. p.s. Neil, the story about the diabetic girl dying from getting strep from herself - maybe some fact-checking is in order?
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Comment by: Mon., Aug. 24, 2009 at 2:41 am EDT
I would be concerned of someone choking on the condom especially since you say "...put the nipple towards the back of your throat.." Are you holding it between your teeth?
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Comment by: Peter Sampson (Cape Town, South Africa) Thu., Aug. 13, 2009 at 1:22 am EDT
Keep going River ... how bothering that youtube has reached such a stuffy age & so quickly. You are very encouraging (& dare I add sensible!) so don't stop what you doing - Erotic Education about Safer Sex is soooooooooooo overdue ... the wrapped in bubble-wrap variety was a patent failure and must have negated any valid attempt at Safe Sex for many ... if the image of Safer Sex was erotic & fun ... more folk would practice it!
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Comment by: Gurlzone (New York) Fri., Aug. 7, 2009 at 10:42 am EDT
So much of the HIV prevention research and clinical education efforts are unsuccessful in producing effective HIV prevention behaviors because some educators remain afraid to talk about or show people demonstrating how to ENJOY sex safely. Sex doesn't happen in a lab, and people aren't thinking about diseases when they are hard and wet. When HIV/STI prevention efforts are sex-positive and the educators are very comfortable talking about sexuality, everybody gets the harm reduction message. The people who aren't willing to attend harm reduction workshops or who ban good education videos like yours also enjoy sex, but they pretend that when they get off, they do it from a higher moral ground than the rest of us. Ha! Anyone doing sexual harm reduction education must acknowledge and incorporate messages about the importance of sexual pleasure if they want to reach people. Don't worry about how receptive the audience may or may not be; just do your job. I've been doing this for over 25 years with every race, ethnicity, gender, age group, sexual orientation, and religious belief set, and no one has objected or left the room when I do sex-positive harm reduction. If you are real about sex, people listen and respond. If you are afraid of what people might think and retreat into clinical language and public health speak to respect those fears, you lose them.
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Comment by: (N. Ca) Thu., Aug. 6, 2009 at 11:00 pm EDT
I'm not any kind of expert, am not in the field but I would like to say that I dig your attitude and approach. It makes me want to go on some political diatribe about our society, how up-tight we are, etc. But I'll spare you all that. It is discouraging though that we allow ideology or religion or freaky control issues or whatever to get in the way of education, safety and ultimately public health. All I can say is don't let anyone hold you back...like you need any encouragement from me.
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Comment by: Liz (Northern California) Thu., Aug. 6, 2009 at 12:56 pm EDT
No mention or demo of pinching the tip of the condom to prevent air in the reservoir--was that done with the tongue against the roof of the mouth or what?? Would like to see this important step emphasized during the demo...Thanks.
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Comment by: john martin (Suffolk County NY) Thu., Aug. 6, 2009 at 11:51 am EDT
Phenomenal video.....speaks the language of the sexually active that makes using barrier methods fun and creative...and accurate..trojan company could use such marketing...anyone offended by this video is likely offended by sex education in general...sadly. With the under 25 crowd being the highest risk for HIV transmission, more people like River Huston, not less.....are deeply needed...!!
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Comment by: Neil IBarra (Mexico City) Thu., Aug. 6, 2009 at 11:28 am EDT
Gee, we can't make people to correctly use the condom in the traditional way, so let's try to teach them a more difficult technique. I think there is more chance to damage the condom, and there are other risks too, as to give or get an infection - too odd? There is a case documented in one of the most important hospitals of Mexico City where a girl got an infection in the genitals by contact with her own saliva... a very common infection with streptococus aureus, she was with diabetes... she passed away. We must search for the most simple way, not the more difficult one
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Comment by: Thu., Aug. 6, 2009 at 10:36 am EDT
The "mmm Chocolate" was a little odd
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Comment by: Robert Still (Fort Lauderdale) Thu., Aug. 6, 2009 at 10:18 am EDT
As educators in the community it require for us to first know what we are up against. It would be like trying to teach church goers this subject, not knowing first how receptive they will be to our message. In order to get an effective safe sex message across to anyone, you have to use "Wisdom".
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A River Runs Through It


River Huston

River Huston

River Huston is an award-winning poet, journalist, performer and activist. She travels through the United States speaking on issues related to sexuality, communication, overcoming challenges and change. She has been featured on Good Morning America, Showtime, Nightline, CNN and ABC Up To The Minute. River has written three books of poetry as well as The Goddess: A Guide to Feminine Wisdom and A Positive Life: Portraits of Women Living With HIV. She wrote and performed a one-woman show, Sex, Cellulite and Large Farm Equipment: One Girls Guide to Living and Dying off off Broadway and is currently working on a second show, The Dominatrix Next Door. For more information about River you can go to riverhuston.com.


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Articles by River:

Sex, Cellulite and Large Farm Equipment: One Girl's Guide to Living and Dying (October 15, 2008)

I Feel Good! Attaining Survival Through Illness (March/April 2008)

Goddess in a Muumuu: AIDS Changes Sexual Self-Image (December 1999)

A Positive Life: Portraits of Women Living With HIV (October 1999)


Interviews With River:

White Women and HIV (April 1999)


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The opinions expressed by TheBody.com's bloggers are entirely their own, and do not necessarily reflect the views of TheBody.com itself.

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