Adapted from The Deal
you think youre not at risk for HIV, the virus that
causes AIDS, think again. In the U.S. a young person is infected
with HIV every hour of every day.
Heres a snapshot of infection rates:
Half of all new HIV infections
in the U.S. occur in young people 13-24 years of age; thats
20,000 new HIV positive youth each year.
people can live with HIV for years without knowing theyre
infected, since AIDS symptoms can take more than 10 years
There are more than 30,000
AIDS cases in the U.S. in people under 25 and many more who
are infected with HIV, but have not yet developed AIDS.
Talk About Your Risk | Chillin For
Now | Getting Serious About Safer Sex
| The Naked Truth About Condoms
Talk About Your Risk
young people, HIV is usually passed from one person to another
through sexual activity. Are some sexual behaviors riskier
than others? Not all the answers are in, but here are the
facts about transmission, as theyre understood today:
HIV is a virus that can be passed during an exchange
of blood or sexual bodily fluids (semen or cum, vaginal fluids).
Anal and vaginal sex without a condom put you at greatest
risk for HIV/AIDS.
If you have an STD (like gonorrhea, herpes, chlamydia, or
syphilis) as 25 percent of sexually active teens do
each year HIV infection is an even greater risk.
Its more common for men to infect women with
HIV than for women to infect men, but the risk can be more
equal if you have an STD.
Some studies suggest that HIV is unlikely to spread
through oral sex. Swallowing does not appear to increase the
risk. But its not impossible, especially if the person
giving oral sex has cuts or sores in their mouth. Its
also worth remembering that other STDs, like gonorrhea, syphilis
and herpes, can be spread by oral sex without a condom.
Holding hands, kissing, massage and mutual masturbation
(pleasing each other using hands) are intimate activities
that dont carry the risk of HIV transmission.
may seem like everybodys having sex, but in reality,
not everyone is. Many young people choose abstinence. You
can still have a boyfriend or girlfriend and not have sexual
intercourse, but instead do other things (such as holding
hands, kissing and touching) and save intercourse for later.
Sex is only one part of a relationship. Respect, friendship
and safety are important too.
Dont rush the decision about when and why to have sex.
The choice is up to you. And remember, since you may have
different ideas about what defines sex, be sure to discuss
this with your partner so youll be sure youre
not putting yourself at risk.
Sex means different things to different people. What do you
consider sex? See if your boyfriend/girlfriend agrees with
Any sexual contact whatsoever
Outercourse (sex without penetration)
Dry sex (sex with clothes on)
All of the above
Serious About Safer Sex
you decide to have sex, being safe can be a matter of life
and death, though it isnt always easy. For many people,
its hard to bring up the issue because of embarrassment
or fears that your partner will think you dont trust
them or that youre sleeping around. But its important
to take the initiative and be strong.
Believe it or not, your partner may respect you more because
youre showing that you care about yourself and your
Here are some pointers to help you talk about safer sex with
your partner and some examples of what you might want to say:
Dont wait until the heat of the moment. Its
easier to discuss ways to have safer sex ahead of time so
youll both be clear. It could get you in the mood!
I really want to be with you, but we havent
been tested yet. Weve got to be safe and use condoms.
Be prepared to state your concerns around HIV and/or
pregnancy and dont back down.
Even though I trust you, we cant always know
if weve been infected. If you care about me, youll
If you havent used condoms in the past and want
to start, you have the right. Try explaining what made you
change your mind a friend, magazine article or doctors
I know we havent used condoms in the past,
but now I realize that was a mistake. We need to do things
differently next time.
Offer to get HIV tested together. Testing resources
throughout the country are listed on the Info Matrix page
of this site.
Ill feel better if we know our HIV status before
having sex. Ill get tested if you will.
The Naked Truth About Condoms
used correctly, condoms are the best protection you have against
HIV/AIDS and other STDs and can also prevent unwanted pregnancies.
But people often find reasons not to use a condom every time.
Here are some real-life scenarios and solutions:
of mine have had condoms break on them.
Its a popular excuse and it can happen, but in reality
its very rare that condoms break if you use them correctly.
They have an amazing 98% success rate, in part because theyre
regulated by the federal government and tested for defects.
Here are important condom DOs and DONTs:
Use latex, not natural skin condoms, and be
sure to check the expiration date on condoms you use
Use water-based lubricants like K-Y Jelly and NEVER
oil, butter, hand lotion or aseline, which could melt the
Dont keep them in a warm environment (like near a heater
or in your pocket) since heat can dry them out
If youve never used a condom, practice when youre
alone, before you have sex so you can be sure to do it correctly;
girls can practice putting a condom on a cucumber or their
Put on the condom as soon as the penis gets hard, before any
vaginal, anal or oral contact with the penis, and make sure
the condom is right side out (like a sock, theres a
right and wrong side)
Hold the tip of the condom between your fingers and
unroll it onto the erect (hard) penis as far as it will go
(to the base of the penis near the balls); keep out air bubbles
and leave space at the tip of the condom for the cum
Withdraw from your partner immediately after you cum and/or
before losing the erection, holding the condom firmly to the
base of the penis to keep it from slipping off
Throw out a used condom right away; only use a condom
once NEVER use the same condom for vaginal and anal
dont feel good
too big and I cant feel anything
when Im wearing one.
Theres more than one type of condom and everyone can
find a brand thats right for them. Some condoms are
very thin; others are ribbed for extra sensation. Some are
designed for those who are extra large, others for smaller
guys. There are also colored, glow-in-the dark and flavored
(only for oral sex) varieties. An added plus: many people
find they last longer when using condoms!!
dont need to use one
He/she looks clean.
I would know if my partner had HIV.
You cant tell if someone has
HIV by the way they look. Symptoms of AIDS often take years
My partner and I dont sleep around, we trust each
other, so we dont need to use condoms any more.
people feel theyre not at risk for HIV or other STDs
if theyre in a faithful relationship. But even though
your partner may want to be honest with you about their sexual
past or tell you that theyre currently messing around,
honesty isnt always easy. Besides, your partner could
be infected and not know it. To be sure of your/your partners
HIV status, you should both be tested twice, six months apart,
as HIV can take time to show up. Also think about the following:
How long have you known your partner? Its wise
to take your time before trusting someone youve just
met, no matter how strongly you feel about them.
Have you ever broken up? Its possible your partner
was with someone else during that time.
Could your partner be having sex with someone else
without a condom now? Dont push away any nagging, suspicious
How well do you know their past sexual history? Your
partner could have been exposed to HIV if they had unprotected
sex especially with someone who injects drugs or has
sex with guys who have sex with other guys.
Have they ever injected drugs? If they use or have
used in the past, they are at increased risk for HIV.
Is your partner gay, straight, bi-sexual or on the down low?
Its not always as easy as you may think to tell someones
sexual orientation. Its important to communicate
carefully and sensitively.
Have you discussed being monogamous or do you just
think you are? Its possible that youre more serious
than your partner or visa versa. Make sure youre both
on the same page.