For those leading the polyamorous lifestyle, practicing safe sex is extremely important. After all, when you have multiple partners, what affects one of you generally affects all of you, and sexually transmitted diseases are no exception to the rule. The good news is that practicing safe sex isn’t really any harder in a non-monogamous relationship, it’s just all the more important that you are consistent and vigilant about protecting yourself and your partners.
First, make sure that you carry condoms with you at all times. This isn’t to suggest that you’re necessarily likely to have sex every time you leave your house (but a guy can dream, right?), just that if you make a point of always having protection with you, then you will never lack it when you need it.
Second, don’t make the mistake of thinking there’s one partner who you don’t need to use protection with. Even if you’re “right” in the sense that this partner might be free of STDs, using birth control and taking other precautions, the decision to go bareback is not yours to make, or even you and this particular partner’s to make. There are other people involved, other partners who have placed their trust in you to do the right thing, and unless they all happen to be present to give their explicit OK, you can’t presume to know how they feel about it.
Finally and most importantly, use your head and don’t put yourself in situations where you can do something unsafe. Get tested regularly, and ask your partners to do the same. And again, make carrying condoms an automatic practice – you can’t forget it if it’s always there, after all.
Practicing safe sex with multiple partners isn’t difficult, it really just comes down to consistency, commitment and preparedness. All you need to do is make it a part of your routine – even if your sex life is anything but routine.