Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Bareback: An Original Gay Slang


(Note: "Bareback" is not recommended for anyone who engages in an sex act - see: AIDS)

Bareback is a term that originated in gay slang to describe acts of unprotected sex, especially anal sex.

The term's usage, however, has crossed-over to more mainstream slang to describe any type of penetrative sexual act without the use of a condom.

Before the mainstream awareness of HIV/AIDS in the early 1980s, the distinction between anal sex with and without a condom was not as prevalent in communications among men who had sex with men (MSMs).

Sexually transmitted disease (STD) prevention campaigns encouraged condom use but an urgency arose once transmission of HIV/AIDS was somewhat understood (see HIV for more information). Researchers encouraged condom usage as an effective way to reduce HIV transmission. Condoms are now known to be an effective barrier against HIV, as well as to herpes simplex, Cytomegalovirus, hepatitis B, chlamydia and gonorrhea.

The gay male community, having been affected the most by the pandemic, mobilized quickly and the practice of unprotected anal sex quickly became taboo within the community. This was the time when the need for a term to describe the difference between "protected" and "unprotected" sexual acts arose.

Barebacking as a practice is claimed to have become increasingly common again among MSMs in the mid-1990s.

Reasons for this are varied, and include correlations based on: an "upswing" in the level of new HIV infections amongst gay men in younger age groups cited by the CDC and WHO, a more public presence of "bareback" literature, personal ads, and publicity of rebellious attitudes towards the practice; the increased effectiveness of HIV/AIDS treatments and the decline of people with AIDS being highly visible and physically compromised as a result of the disease.

The later two rationales held in comparison to the 1980s in the gay community when those infected were often visibly sick and their health rapidly declining coupled with mainstream attention to the "new" disease.

Heterosexual bareback
Condom use amongst heterosexual people has dramatically increased during the last 20 years as groups respond to health messages about HIV/AIDS prevention. In some groups, the use of a condom has become the norm, and the use of the word "bareback" has gained utility as a way to describe sex without a condom.

Regardless, bareback heterosexual sex without a condom has not created the moral panic that gay barebacking has. This can be attributed to the fact that gay men have become more organized in STD prevention.[citation needed] Furthermore barebacking is gaining popularity amongst the swinging arena whereby organizers are offering a vetting service for members to reduce the risk of STIs.

Prostitution
In the sex trade, the willingness to bareback is a selling point for sex workers to their clients despite the increased risks implied to the client. A "girlfriend experience" (GFE) was coined to reflect "a real relationship for the moment with a sincere women who enjoys the experience, not just mechanical sex" but has been assigned an alternative implication of a lack of barriers.[4] Many prostitutes are willing to perform a bareback blowjob (BBBJ) because it is less risky than other forms of unprotected contact with body fluids.

Read more about Bareback


Source: wikipedia

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