Anyone who has contemplated becoming a bug chaser will most likely have experienced a number of different emotions, with plenty of ups and downs along the way, just like riding a rollercoaster. The thought processes involved with exploring bug chasing can become quite challenging, as there’s so much to consider and the more you think about it, the more confusing it can become. When you’re trying to understand your connection to bug chasing to help you achieve clarity, powerful emotions can sometimes take over and create the opposite effect, which can result in your thoughts becoming cloudy.
The emotional toll this can have can vary from person to person, as we all think differently and come from different backgrounds and situations, but bug chasing involves the same outcome, so it’s how we think about the impacts that can create overwhelming emotions, which is why it’s important to take your time, never rush into anything or feel pressured into doing something you’re not comfortable doing. Calm your thoughts by looking at certain aspects individually, rather than the big picture all at once. When you start to explore the different elements of bug chasing, this can help you reach a better understanding about what bug chasing means to you.
In the beginning, you might not think too deeply about bug chasing, particularly when the thoughts first enter your mind, as you’re probably not taking them too seriously. At the early stage of this process, thinking about bug chasing doesn’t really impact you, because you aren’t thinking about the serious issues that are associated with bug chasing at this point in time. But when you later discover these thoughts won’t go away, no matter how much you might want them to, is when you need to start thinking more about why these thoughts are entering your mind and what you want to do about them. It’s at this point you might learn that trying to figure things out is a little more complicated than you may have first thought.
The thought process does involve using a lot of your mental energy to figure out why something that appears to make absolutely no sense at all to most people is something you can’t get out of your head and feels so right to you. It’s almost like you are programmed to think this way and no matter how you try to rewrite the programming or take a different path, you find yourself circling back to this same point every time. If you think too much about it, you can become mentally drained, so it really is a balancing act and something you should do over time rather than trying to figure it out quickly, as it’s not so easy and takes time if you are serious about it.
There could be some contributing factors that are influencing the way you think, with academics and health professionals trying to understand the root cause and their findings can vary or even be inconclusive. You do need to be careful if you approaching people asking for their support if they don’t understand bug chasing or are unwilling to understand it, because they could harm your natural way of thinking and make matters worse, so consider who you open up to as you try to understand the way you feel. This cautious approach is also why so many bug chasers are secretive about revealing their true identity to others, which is a safeguard we use to hold this information close to us, but this protective mechanism can also jeopardise us if it makes us refrain seeking help from others.
You might also find that you feel really strongly about bug chasing one day, then the next you don’t even think about it or you might even have negative thoughts about wanting to becoming HIV-positive. These ups and downs might seem strange to you, but they’re actually a perfectly normal response pattern, because bug chasing goes against almost everything we have been told about sexual health and the importance of trying to avoid becoming HIV-positive, so when we go against the grain, we’re most likely going to experience a rough time that can only be smoothed out through taking our time to understand ourselves and where bug chasing fits into our life.
Something else you need to consider is that for many people who share an interest in bug chasing, it’s at a fantasy level only, where they are unwilling to venture further into the physical realm of actively chasing the virus. People who fantasise about HIV will often have an interest in bareback pornography with a bug chasing or gift giving focus, they want to read stories about people becoming infected, or they explore being infected through role-playing, but they might not be prepared to put their health on the line by actually doing this. Then there are others who have thought about whether bug chasing is just a fantasy or whether it means more to them where they feel as though they need to experience what being HIV-positive is like, and feel the need to become HIV-positive by having the virus merging inside their body to become a part of them and their identity.
If you are struggling right now or have struggled in the past to understand why you feel this way, please know that these emotional ups and downs are a natural part of the self-discovery process, where you’re trying to understand yourself and where you fit in with these constant thoughts entering your mind. As you explore the pros and cons, you might feel really good when you’re thinking about the pros, but feeling less comfortable with the cons. Even if you have a strong desire to become HIV-positive, but you don’t have the confidence to pursue it, you haven’t failed at becoming a bug chaser, because bug chasing is not for everyone and we need to remember we have different risk and comfort levels.
There’s no right or wrong way to think about bug chasing, because we’re all different, so you need to think about it the way you best understand it, because you do need to understand what’s involved and feel comfortable with it before you progress any further. It’s not a good idea to take the next step if you don’t feel ready or if you don’t know what to expect, as this could lead to unstable emotions if something happens that you’re not ready for. It’s kind of like skydiving, you don’t jump out of the plane until you’ve been instructed when to jump, when to pull the ripcord and how to land safely. Bug chasing is very serious, so you need to know how to handle it if you do take the next step, so be prepared by thinking about it and fully understanding it, so you know what to expect and enjoy the experience by not becoming frightened by it when the moment of infection happens.
Featured Photo: Stephen Hateley on Unsplash.
Article ID: CC061
Version Control: 1.0 – April 16, 2023: Original article published.