Anything I could say here has more than likely been said by everyone who’s commented prior to now. But I just wanna say thank you for this article. I think once you get past the “poz shaming” (as you so called it in a response to someone else’s critical post), it really opens up the floor for a REAL discussion about what really happens but nobody wants to talk about. Thank you for your honesty. I’ve been so fascinated by my friends’ discussion of slut-shaming in the wake of their women and gender studies’ classes, but this article made me realize that we, as a community, do tend to poz-shame anyone who has bareback sex. I’ve made mistakes before, and can’t guarantee they won’t happen in the future even though I know the risks, as well. I definitely have worked to be smarter in my decisions of who I’ll have sex with so if bareback happens, it’s not something I’d necessarily consider a mistake. But I definitely know that if I do end up positive someday that I’d be the only one to blame. And I wouldn’t need to be poz-shamed to make me see that I’d be the only one to blame. We all make mistakes, and then some of us do our best to take calculated, thought out risks instead of more mistakes; but when it comes to guarantees, bareback sex doesn’t really have any. I think, honestly, HIV is a very scary viral infection and all of us know that. But the absolute fear of it is what causes people to react so harshly against someone whose opinion regarding condom-less sex differs from the party line. HIV most definitely is serious and life-threatening, but trying to almost verbally slap fear into someone else to prevent future mistakes isn’t the most effective way of getting the seriousness across. Honest conversation that comes from breaking down walls and talking openly and candidly and honestly are the best ways to help start constructive discussions about this topic. Thank you for not being afraid to talk about what people don’t like talking about.