It takes 2

There are many things in life that take 2 – lifting heavy items, the Argentine Tango and Hi-fives. When two people come together, some things that simply can’t be done alone are suddenly made possible.

Being in a relationship where you and your fella are committed to one other can offer many perks such as an expanded social network, double the wardrobe/shoe collection and reduced costs of living (when you two make that move into one household).

The warm, comfortable feeling of having someone by your side is truly a joy to have, it’s no wonder many aspire to find that special someone.

But what if suddenly another person is added to the equation and then another and then another?

Let’s not be naive – us gay men can’t help but enjoy the beauty of one another. And for some of us who are in a relationship, this admiration of men other than our partner can develop and ‘open’ things up.

Is it normal? Is it wrong? The answers can be debated and are objectionable. But one thing that can’t be objected is that in NSW around 1 in 4 of new HIV infections occur amongst guys who are in a relationship.

Interesting, isn’t it?

Now before you jump to pointing the finger at open relationships and those who may cheat, consider other possibilities such as a guy not knowing he’s already living with HIV before starting a new relationship.

The fact of the matter is that the nature of gay men’s relationships – however they form and however they evolve – is far more complex than many other binary relationships.

And it is for this reason why everyone, especially and including guys in relationships, should test regularly.

Sydney-siders Blake and his boyfriend Simon do exactly that.

“I’ve been with my partner for about 6 years and it’s evolved over that time into an open relationship… my partner and I test regularly; it’s something we do together,” Blake says.

Asked why he tests, Blake responds “For my own health but also for the people we have fun with.”

The testing pattern that Blake has adopted is helping reduce the number of new HIV infections, but for him, the personal benefit he gets out of it is what really matters “You walk out with peace of mind and feel great.” Check out his video below.

Blake is one of 10 guys who’ve recently shared his experiences with HIV testing to help tackle the HIV epidemic in NSW by encouraging guys to test at least twice a year.

Because all it takes is 2; test at least 2 times a year (or even more) to help achieve a future free of HIV. That’s nothing to think twice about.