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Ask Dr. K
SERO-DISCORDANT PARTNERS

QUESTION
I started to see this guy and he informed me that he is HIV+ and has been for 17 years. I'm HIV- and quite healthy. I really like this guy and think he is relationship material. What is the safest way to have sex to protect myself? Is casual kissing safe? How safe is deep kissing? What about semen on hands? I'm not promiscuous -- just looking to find a mate. Unfortunately it may be one who is infected with the HIV virus. Please help. Thank you.

ANSWER
Kissing, deep kissing, mutual masturbation, erotic massage, bathing, sex video watching, etc., are all safe sex.

Oral sex and anal-oral are safer sex activities and actually have a very low risk of transmission of HIV. Other STDs like gonorrhea, chlamydia, herpes and syphilis can be transmitted via unprotected oral sex, though, and these STDs can increase your risk of getting HIV from an infected partner.

Insertive anal sex (top) with a condom and lots of lube is less safe. Receptive anal sex (bottom) with a condom and lots of lube is even less. Not using condoms for anal sex (either position) would not be advisable with a known HIV+ positive partner.

The most important thing will be honest communication with your sexual partner. If you want this relationship to last, it would be wise to start the conversation sooner rather than later. Talk about what activities you're comfortable with and what he is; where you would like the relationship to go; what risks you're each willing to take and what each of you needs. Good luck!

To your health,
Dr. K


   
 
Last modified on Thursday, November 19, 2009.
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