Across Australia, guys are using different methods to stop the spread of HIV. Gregory and Michael use condoms to keep themselves, each other and other guys safe.
Gregory and Michael’s story
A brief conversation with Gregory and Michael is all it takes to see how much they care about each other. After 10 years together and happily married, it’s their love and thoughtful consideration that really shines through. From finishing each other’s sentences to treasured memories shown in photographs around their home, they’re a joyful couple to spend time with.
Intimacy with each other is even better for knowing they have each other’s safety at heart. And that care extends to the other guys who sometimes join them. While they both rely on each other’s trust for safety within their relationship, their preference is to use condoms when having sex with other guys. Even if condoms aren’t somebody else’s choice, Gregory and Michael are experienced enough to know great sex can still happen without penetration.
“If a person didn’t want to use condoms or didn’t want to have intercourse, we could negotiate around that and say ‘well, we could do other things as well.'”
Both Gregory and Michael are aware of other methods to prevent HIV such as PrEP, an undetectable viral load and PEP in an emergency. So they’re well positioned to have informed discussions about sexual safety practices with new partners. And if a condom ever did slip or break, simply knowing about PEP means they can act fast to make sure everybody stays safe.
It doesn’t matter what prevention methods other guys are using. Gregory and Michael make the choice to use condoms every time — it’s important to them and their safety choices are built on a fundamental trust they have with each other.
“We don’t mind what prevention that they’re using. That doesn’t stop us still explaining what our standards are, what we expect and what we’re prepared to do.”
Gregory and Michael are very comfortable with choosing condoms. It all comes down to knowing they’re confident to negotiate using a method that works for them, as well as their dedication to use condoms every time they have sex with other guys. New cases of HIV in Australia are decreasing thanks to the ongoing efforts of guys who are choosing and combining the various different ways to prevent HIV — Guys like Gregory and Michael. Guys like you. Guys like us.
Real guys making real choices
Guys across Australia are using different methods to stop the spread of HIV. We caught up with other guys around the country to find out how they each make choices, and how that can sometimes change based on the circumstances. Check out their videos here:
- Guys like Wade use condoms to prevent HIV
- Guys like Jason and Jeff use PrEP to prevent HIV
- Guys like Johann stay undetectable to prevent HIV
- Guys like Tom use PrEP to prevent HIV
- Guys like Carlos stay undetectable to prevent HIV
Many ways to prevent HIV
From using condoms to highly effective preventative medicines, different methods work for different guys, and that can all change depending on the circumstances. Discover more about this in Using four great options to prevent HIV: a combination for success
So whether you rely on PrEP, an undetectable viral load, condoms, an emergency course of PEP when it’s needed, or even a blend of options, having real conversations about real choices is the foundation for everyone’s safety and enjoyment.
For more information on HIV prevention methods, check out these articles:
- Undetectable viral load : UVL 101: Undetectable = Safe
- PrEP : Introducing PrEP – the little blue pill making a big impact
- PEP : PEP: Protecting you against HIV when you need it
- A guide for comparing options : Wanna compare tools? Here’s how safe sex choices measure up down under
Discover more about sexual health topics by checking out the Facts section of Emen8’s website. And if there’s anything you’d like to know or discuss, send us an email or start a conversation on Facebook Messenger.
If it’s been more than three months since you last had comprehensive HIV and STIs tests, our interactive map will help you locate testing services nearby and across Australia.
You can also reach out to your local HIV/AIDS or LGBTI health organisation as well as community groups providing support to people living with HIV, and for people considering PrEP. You can find their details in our national network of partners.