Methods of promoting safe sex behaviors utilized by men who have sex with casual sex partners

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HIV Infections -- prevention & control, HIV Seropositivity, Health Behavior, Health Promotion, INterviews as Topic, Qualitative Research, Risk Reduction Behavior, Safe Sex, Self Disclosure


The purpose of this article is to report results of a qualitative investigation into the methods that HIV-positive men who have sex with men (MSM) use to initiate safer sex with casual sexual partners. In-depth, qualitative interviews were conducted with 57 HIV-positive adult MSM living in a large midwestern city. Using an inductive approach to data analysis, participants revealed a typology of safer sex strategies that can be placed into four primary categorizations: having a nonnegotiable sexual behavior policy, behaviorally controlling the interaction, being verbally direct, and being verbally indirect. Strategies varied by degree of explicitness and partner involvement. Men in this study often employed multiple strategies if their partner was not initially receptive to engaging in safer sex behaviors. The strategies described can be especially beneficial to those working in the area of HIV prevention. Providing MSM a variety of options to initiate safer sex may enhance current prevention efforts.