Friday, January 11, 2008

Water sports

A guy I met online asked me if I'm into water sports? I have a feeling he didn't mean water skiing or competitive swimming. What are water sports and are they safe? TP

A guy who is into water sports -- also known as "golden showers" -- either likes to urinate on his sex partner, be urinated on, or both. Is it safe? Well, HIV is spread by the exchange of fluids and urine is a fluid. Certainly you should never take urine into your mouth or into your rectum. Even a spray of urine could be dangerous if you have cuts or sores on your body. An HIV negative guy could conceivably pee on another man without danger. UPDATE [4/3/08]: I was wrong about urine and HIV infection. See below or click here.

I'm not into being judgmental, but water sports -- for me, at least -- are just too unsanitary. Not a turn-on. Ask this guy which of you is supposed to do the peeing, him or you? -- and if there's (hopefully) anything else he likes to do.

In other words, proceed with caution and stay safe.

UPDATE: For updated information on urine and HIV infection, please click here.


Anonymous said...

The San Francisco AIDS Foundation says that urine doesn't have enough of a concentration of HIV in it to pose a danger of virus transmission. So even though it repels you and you think it is unsanitary, is there any scientific basis for what you say about watersports and that no one should ever swallow urine?

Bill Samuels said...

Thank you for your comment. Yes, the San Francisco AIDS Foundation does list urine, along with sweat, tears, saliva and feces as "NON-infectious fluids."

According to them: "The other fluids [including urine] do not contain enough HIV to infect another person. This is regardless of how they get into the bloodstream. No cases of HIV transmission have ever been documented as a result of these substances."

So you seem to be right and I thank you for correcting me on it.

I have also contacted the Gay Men's Health Crisis in New York and am waiting for them to get back to me on this issue. On their web site they make no mention of urine either as infectious or non-infectious. I will report what they tell me once they get back to me, probably in a new post. I'll update the original post as well.

As for "golden showers" and swallowing urine, that's all up to the individual, I suppose. Urine is a waste product, after all, and I don't know if there are any benefits in swallowing it. Even if there is no risk of HIV infection, there may be other risks in being urinated on, especially if you've got open cuts or sores that can be infected with ordinary germs. At least take a good hot soapy shower afterward, which I'm sure is the norm.

If you have more information about this you'd like to share, let me know.

Again, thank you for your comment.