About Staying Negative

Staying Negative aims to emotionally engage, inspire and facilitate imagination in sexual health practices. The campaign profiles the real life stories of gay, bisexual and trans men who have sex with men (MSM). Men talk about all aspects of their life from coming out, relationships, sexuality and a broad range of other topics. While HIV and safe sex is an important part of all stories, it is not the exclusive focus.

Prior HIV prevention campaigns have traditionally focused on providing gay men with information that will encourage them to adopt safe sex behaviours. In reality, safe sex practices are influenced by a whole range of environmental and cultural factors. The campaign also provides an opportunity for HIV positive men to talk about their lives and discuss how their strategies to staying HIV negative were not successful. We understand that there is more than one way practice safe sex and adopt healthcare seeking behaviours, so let's be creative about it!

There are no real criteria for participants other than that they are MSM and happy to have their stories appear as part of the campaign. In addition to the personal stories, the website provides information on HIV/AIDS, sexual health, relationships and broad of the other relevant topics including domestic violence, drugs and alcohol and depression.

Party and Play

When people talk about “party and play” in the gay community, it refers to drugs (party) and sex (play), usually consecutively or at the same time. People use drugs for different reasons, whether it is to help them relax, enable them to last longer, increase sexual arousal or help with erectile dysfunction. Using drugs can spice up your life and make things pretty exciting, but whatever drugs you decide to partake in, try and be as safe as possible by always ensuring condoms and lube are being used, drinking plenty of water and letting someone else know what and how much you’ve taken. Remember that drugs will affect other people differently so be prepared that you may not feel the way you expect to. Due to the illegal nature of some of the drugs used, there aren’t exactly ‘warning labels’ you can read up on so just be smart about what you’re doing.
A lot of drugs used on the party scene can make it pretty hard to get a hard on so people combine it with erectile dysfunction drugs such as Viagra. Since the other recreational drugs can make you feel a bit numb and make it harder to cum, this combination is quite dangerous as you can end up fucking for longer without realising it. This ends up causing chafes and abrasions on your cock or the lining of your arse (rectum) as you keep on going, when you would normally stop. These open wounds create a very high risk of HIV transmission so take steps to ensure your own safety and safety of others.


Viagra are pills that can be bought in pharmacies, online or at sex shops in Australia. They help with erectile dysfunction problems by pumping blood into your cock to maintain an erection. It often leaves you with an erection even long after you’ve cum (ejaculated), or you may not be able to cum at all. It’s really important to follow the instructions on a Viagra packet as it can mess with your blood pressure and other medications which is very dangerous. It would be best to consult your doctor before taking Viagra or Viagra-type medications as there are all sorts of drug interactions that could be bad for your health.

Amyl Nitrate

Amyl (aka Amyl Nitrate/poppers/rush) is quite commonly used in the gay community and can be bought at sex shops. You sniff the fumes from the bottle and it acts as a muscle relaxant and helps to relax the circular muscles (sphincters) in your arse (rectum). This usually makes it easier for a cock to slide in your arse and increases pleasure from fucking. It’s common for bottoms or people who enjoy fisting to use this because you can take more for longer periods of time. It can make you feel pretty horny too but at the same time can make it a bit hard to get it up. Be weary about sniffing amyl in saunas as the heat can make it a lot more intense than it’s meant to be.
Even though it is seen quite a bit, mixing Amyl with Viagra is extremely dangerous. This is because both these drugs cause vasodilation of the blood vessels, which is when your blood vessels increase in size causing your blood pressure to drop. This can lead to heart attacks or even heart failure so be wary of this danger.


Marijuana (aka green/pot/ganja) is usually smoked but can be blended down into cakes or brownies. Some people get very sexually aroused on marijuana whereas some shy away from sex and want to be left alone. It usually increases sensitivity and the sensual feeling of touch. It tends to dull the mind so that more focus is put on physical touch, feelings and smell making sexual feelings quite strong. It’s not hugely common for people to face erectile issues when on it but it can lower your blood pressure significantly so if you already have a low blood pressure, bear this in mind.


Alcohol is probably the most common drug that people use as it’s become such a social component in many scenes. Alcohol can give you a little bit of “liquid courage” whereby you feel more relaxed in a social situation and perhaps more adventurous sexually. Alcohol makes some people feel horny and get more sexually aroused when they’re ‘on the piss’. It can however, cause issues with getting a hard on which can be a bit disappointing. It also tends to compromise your decision making abilities and alter your risk perception.
Drugs such as cocaine, MDMA, ecstasy, GHB, GLB, crack and meth can be used in party n’ play and usually make people feel hornier. It tends to increase sexual arousal and intensify the sensuality of touch on the skin. It also gives you a feeling of strength and lots of energy so you can last a lot longer than usual, cumming later. However, it can cause erectile issues where it gets difficult to maintain a hard on. Mixing any of these drugs together or even with alcohol or speed can cause high strain on your heart and could even lead to heart failure.
These drugs are often mixed with alcohol, but because you get high they counteract the feeling of being drunk, but they don’t actually stop you from getting drunk. You would tend to drink more than you normally could handle and these can have bad effects on your body such as possible alcohol poisoning or erectile dysfunction. Combining alcohol with any depressants such as marijuana Ketamine can be risky because it slows down your breathing so much that you could pass out and there are dangers of death associated with this as well.

Tell us your story

Tell us your story


Come and tell us your story! We would love to hear from you! If you want to find out a little more about how it all works, give Jessie a call at VAC on (03) 9865 6700, or email staying.negative@vac.org.au