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Subconscious Death-Wish of a Gifted, Young Black Man

August 9, 2010

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As a young man, I was aware of HIV/AIDS, yet I always took on the attitude that I could get away with "just one more" unprotected sex act. One turned into hundreds, maybe even thousands. While I have no qualms about my promiscuity, I tend to question if I truly love myself, especially being a young black man who is interested in men. It simply is not accepted in our culture, although plenty of men partake in homosexual acts.

Unfortunately, those who are a bit more vocal about it, or are not attempting to hide their life, are treated like strangers. As if it's not enough moving through society dealing with the setbacks and hassles of being an "extremely strong" black man, while at the same time being forced to deal with the ignorance that is perpetuated far too often by the black community. What gives?

Wearing condoms always has been extremely tough for me. First, I ask myself, "Why the fuck would I use a condom when I'm the top man?" But knowing that the majority of men who contract HIV play the bottom role is absolutely no excuse for my behavior. Second, I can't maintain an erection in a condom, or at least, that's what I've convinced myself of. I use this as an excuse to not use them.

When I partake in a sexual escapade with another man, I need it to be fulfilling in all aspects, and utilizing a condom simply does not afford me that pleasure. In my earnest opinion, safe sex is absolutely ridiculous, yet necessary. It creates rigidity, as well as a wall in the middle of what is designed to be so beautiful. There is something about barebacking that allows me to feel close to the man directly in front of me.

As I have watched myself mature physically, mentally, and spiritually, I want so desperately to connect on a "real" level with another man, yet I continue to struggle with having "physical" relationships with men, mainly due to the fact of how I was socialized as a young child. Somewhere deep down inside, there is a voice telling me that sleeping with men is wrong.


As I continue to grow in mind and spirit, and to love and accept myself for the person that I am, I long to have a mental, spiritual and physical connection with another man -- without the guise of a gay relationship. I despise the fact that most deem men who sleep with other men as "gay," as I know this singular term could never fully describe the man that I am. I truly have no desire to immerse myself into gay culture, or anything remotely close to it. Fitting into one type of culture, group, etc., has never been appealing to me. I feel too genuine/authentic to do so.

However, I am rather comfortable in my own skin at the age of 31. So why do I continue on this path? What I ultimately desire in my heart is an honest, monogamous, fulfilling relationship with another man. What I truly desire and the way that I am behaving do not coincide. I want to connect on a deeper level so bad, but fucking a man without a rubber sometimes feels like it's as connected as I will ever get.

I know beyond the shadow of a doubt that I have an extremely long road ahead of me. However, this struggle within me to adhere to safe sex is something that seems beyond me. No matter how much education is available to us, nor how many individuals we see lose their lives to HIV/AIDS, the reality is that this behavior will continue to perpetuate itself. Sad, yet very true. Honestly, there is no explanation, other than the fact that men have a very strong desire/need to "fuck," make love, however you need to title it, without any "walls" involved. While many individuals ultimately struggle with emotion, the one thing you can count on is the fact that we are animals by nature, and will always lose inhibitions when it comes to physical contact.

So, do I possess some sort of subconscious death-wish, or am I simply being a real human? Are we simply being humans? The questions linger on, forever.

Send Terron an e-mail.

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This article was provided by Terron J. Cook.
See Also
Raw Emotion: Thoughts on Why Gay Men Bareback
Laying It Bare: Gay Men and Unprotected Sex in the Age of HIV/AIDS's HIV/AIDS Resource Center for African Americans
HIV and Me: An African American's Guide to Living With HIV
Quiz: Are You at Risk for HIV?
10 Common Fears About HIV Transmission
More Views on HIV Prevention in the African-American Community


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