February/March #121 : Porn Again - by River Huston

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Table of Contents

A Positive Attraction

10 Black AIDS Warriors to Watch

Love Yourself

Why...-Feb/March 2006

Into The Genes

$ for Drugs

Breaking The Ice

Don't Let HIV Bug Your Bed

Inch By Inch

Trainer’s Bench - Feb/March 2006

Face Forward

Ask the Sexperts-Feb/March 2006

Food Play

Porn Again

The Final Score

Team HIV


Buzz-Feb/March 2006

Our Man In Africa

Earthwatch-Feb/March 2006

Mentors-Feb/March 2006

Founder's Letter-Feb/March 2006

Most Popular Lessons

The HIV Life Cycle


Herpes Simplex Virus

Syphilis & Neurosyphilis

Treatments for Opportunistic Infections (OIs)

What is AIDS & HIV?

Hepatitis & HIV

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February / March 2006

Porn Again

by River Huston

Watching erotica, River Huston developed a risky fixation

On Valentine’s Day, some men bring their women chocolates. My man would bring Tight Cheerleader Tramps in 3-D. I knew he was into porn when I met him. But he was conflicted: Was he addicted? And how would I feel about it? So he decided to kick the habit and go cold chicken. For our first four and a half years together—I’m positive; he’s negative—we ditched the visual aids.

Then, last Fourth of July, he kept calling me at work, worried that I’d be “late for the fireworks.” I arrived to a different sort of pyrotechnics: a path of vibrators and whips pointing toward a crotchless fishnet bodysuit and stilettos. Redressed for success, I found that he’d hauled both TVs into the bedroom and had them playing porno simultaneously. Thank God our finances have grown, because after that night, our cable bill did, too.

The next morning, we made a pact: We’d watch—but always together. We didn’t want the flicks to substitute for our great sex life. But before long, I became addicted—to watching unsafe sex. Specifically oral sex, the cunnilingus variety. We had long ago decided we’d have only safe sex—not low-risk sex, but absolute safe sex. It’s fabulous. But suddenly, I wanted his face between my legs, no barrier.

We don’t do the barrier thing because we don’t like it. We have plenty of hot alternatives: toys, outfits, role-playing, intercourse with a condom. But no oral sex on me. My husband watched, fascinated, as I kept fast-forwarding to the 69 scenes. I hadn’t told him about my oral fixation, because I know he’d want to please me—and I didn’t want to risk his safety. In the past, I’d included safe sex even in my fantasies (condoms don’t bother me at all; I even like them). But if I saw any barriers on the screen, I’d yawn. For the first time in 15 years, I was actually thinking about something unsafe. It was sort of liberating—but how to experience it without hurting my husband? What if I were with a woman? Would that be cheating? I could reinvent myself as a cute poz lesbian, at low risk for reinfection. But I know my man wouldn’t accept infidelity. So I suggest the dental dam again. We both groan—in dissatisfaction. I consider joining Cirque du Soleil to learn tongue contortionism.

One rainy afternoon alone, I used the motorized buddy till the batteries died. It wasn’t enough. I stared at the black TV screen. I knew we’d agreed to watch together. So I took my finger and moved it slowly toward...the play button. I began to feel sick to my stomach. I realized I didn’t like myself much. And then it hit me: Stop the nonsense. I’m with a hot, sexy man. This fixation isn’t even about sex. As a recovering alcoholic, I know it’s about wanting “what’s not available this time.” I’m not saying people with HIV don’t deserve the right to fantasize about whatever sex act they want. And for many people, of course, whether positive or negative, it’s what you can’t quite see or experience that becomes the turn-on. I had to separate the erotic from the neurotic: Not being able to have unprotected cunnilingus doesn’t necessarily make it hot. I needed to realize that violating trust—the trust my husband has placed in me and the trust I’ve placed in myself—is a huge turnoff.

One day, cherry-flavored vaginal microbicides that kill the virus will finally arrive, and I’ll buy stock in the company. Meanwhile, we’ll celebrate Valentine’s Day unplugged.

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