I'm not really sure if this is the appropriate place to post this but here it is anyway:
My problem is that I've been to some gay bars lately and have been hit on by some guys. I want to go home with them but I'm really scared of getting AIDS or an STD. Not to mention serial killers and the like! What can I do to protect myself other than use condoms and is it really that dangerous to sleep with people you don't know that well? It seems like a lot of people do it. I just don't want to let these fears stop me from having fun!
I'm sure this a common inquiry but I hope you can humour me.
Yes, it is dangerous to sleep around with people you don't know. I wouldn't recommend a one night stand with someone you meet at a bar for many reasons. The first is that you are probably both under the influence of alcohol which will hinder your decision making. The second is regret, you might not feel good about yourself afterwards and may regret what happened. The third is protection, even if you use condoms you still have that chance of getting HIV if the person has it. Especially through anal sex where you're susceptible to passing fluids other than semen (blood for instance if there's a tear).
It might seem like everyone's sleeping around but they're the ones who are at risk. My advice is to find that one person you really get to know. Make sure he's clean and advance from there. It's very risky in the gay dating scene just as it is in the straight scene.
I suggest you contact a local gay support group or ask a government health department for a brochure on safe gay sex. Any sexual contact is a risk but there are things you can do to minimise the risk. People do catch aids and hepatitis from oral sex (holes in the teeth or bleeding gums increase the risk) but it is a smaller risk than unprotected anal sex. In gay sex you have to assume that your partner is promiscius and potentially infected because so many gay guys have casual sex often. Even in a one-on-one relationship you should always practise safe sex as in the gay community that sort of relationship is rare and always under threat. My gay brother-in-law once says that when gays here see a happy gay couple they go out of their way to temps one or both partners to stray.
I suggest you get to know someone before sleeping with them via dating. Regardless of sexual orientation, one night stands are dangerous. I work with a guy who has AIDS and it is a miserable, horrible disease...now he has cancer....I don't live in a huge town....it's out there, condoms break....get into a committed relationship and make sure your partner gets tested for STD's and wants only you....
My brother died of Aids at 30 tis was before it was well know and very few tratments were available he was a lucky one he died after being sick for two weeks without pain. His partner sufferd for several years before his passing. Like stated before its not only gay sex its any sex. I still can't believe even straight people take such chances with ther life