The Non-sexual Needs of Men that Motivate them to Engage in High-Risk Sexual Practices with Other Men

Percy Fernández-Dávila


Currently there is a growing trend toward high-risk sexual practices with casual partners in the group of men who have sex with men (MSM) in many industrialized countries. This study offers some understanding of why a group of men had unprotected anal intercourse (UAI). A grounded approach was used to analyze 20 interviews with MSM from Barcelona between 18 and 40 years of age who had at least one episode of UAI in the past three months. The results reveal that many respondents had UAI practices with casual sexual partners because they were in search of experiences that were not directly tied to sexual relations: reaffirmation of a sense of personal worth and of their own physical attractiveness, offset shortcomings and feelings of emotional loneliness, the search for connection and intimacy, being in love, conversion of the risk into pleasure for the forbidden and a desire to rebel against established rules. In these cases, concerns about sexual and health care seemed to overwhelm and were not taken into account when having UAI. It is important that HIV prevention programs include in their messages the power of these motivations that lead to practices of UAI.
URN: urn:nbn:de:0114-fqs0902219


men who have sex with men (MSM); sexual risk behaviors; gay men; HIV; AIDS; qualitative research


Copyright (c) 2009 Percy Fernández-Dávila

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