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Mark S. King

Mark S. King

Mark S. King and his very funny site "My Fabulous Disease" must share some DNA with Positive Lite, because his light-hearted approach to living with HIV feels just like family. "My Fabulous Disease" has the authority of Mark's lifelong HIV activism mixed with the wit of your favorite gay uncle.

Apr29

NEGATIVE: HIV negative gay men speaking for themselves

Tuesday, 29 April 2014 Written by // Mark S. King - My Fabulous Disease Categories // Gay Men, Features and Interviews, Sexual Health, Health, Opinion Pieces, Population Specific , Sex and Sexuality , Mark S. King

Mark S. King with a must-see video that features negative gay men talking about their sex lives, their fears of becoming infected, and, perhaps most surprising, what they really think of HIV positive guys

NEGATIVE: HIV negative gay men speaking for themselves

“Talk to me like you talk to your friends when no one is around.” 

That was my only request when I sat down with each of four HIV negative gay men to create a short film about their lives and attitudes (video below).

They held back nothing, sharing details of their sex lives, their fears of becoming infected, and, perhaps most surprising, what they really think of HIV positive guys. I couldn’t believe their candor, and have worked to distill two days of explicit conversations into ten minutes of brutal honesty (the language is sometimes NSFW).

They don’t speak for every gay man, only for themselves, and the differences of opinion between them is really striking. It really is a snapshot of what it means to be a negative and sexually active gay man these days. No matter which of these men you might relate to the most, there’s no doubt they are all just trying to carve out a satisfying sexual existence during a pretty confusing time.

I couldn’t help thinking of The Golden Girls when I was editing, because all the archetypes are here: the reserved one, the sensible one, the endearing one, the man-eater. Just saying this makes me guilty of the very thing the video is meant to address: how easily we label ourselves and others, and how we try to assign the same perspective to entire groups of people.

I deliberately produced this without any particular context. No one is presented as right or wrong. It is meant to provide a forum for these men to speak their truth without interruption — and perhaps help us see them as men stumbling through life as we all are, trying to make the best decisions they can with the information they have. I refuse to judge them for that.

If there is anything to be learned from this video, it is that there is no monolithic “HIV negative perspective.” Gay men are far too diverse for that. That’s a lesson our community seems to have to learn over and over again.

Mark

This article previously appeared on Mark’s own blog My Fabulous Disease here.

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