Myth Debunked: Bisexual Men Don’t ‘Spread HIV’

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In the early days of the HIV epidemics the disease had a label of a ‘gay-only’ thing but after it became clear that this is not the case the media started targeting other marginalized groups. The ‘first wave’ were the African-Americans, and in the 2000s the bisexual men.

The myth took a root in the society to that women started avoiding bisexual men out of fear they will get AIDS from them since they are bisexual. It went to that extend that bisexuals were stigmatized for ‘transferring the virus to women’. The recent study showed that bisexual men don’t ‘transfer’ the virus nor pose any threat.

The study compared the HIV prevalence between men who have sex with men and men who have sex with men and women and find no evidence that can prove that bisexual men can transfer the virus to other groups. “The general storyline of bisexual bridging has been a popular one in media accounts that favor simple narratives that play on fear,” says M. Reuel Friedman, Ph.D., MPH from Pittsburgh University. “Whether it is fear of gay people, fear of bisexual people, fear of black people, and/or fear of HIV not being a purely ‘gay’ disease. Mass media, and even scientific literature, has not always reported in an unbiased way on bisexual people; then, when you bring in a sexually transmitted infection that is almost always fatal if untreated, and a highly disproportionate infection rate among African-Americans, you have a sort of jet fuel for incendiary press.”

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