Condomless AIDS Protection?

Science Daily reported on this advance in modern biotechnology in December of 2006, stating the 'molecular condom' would take a minimum of five years of testing and another ten before it would be readily available, but this week the news has changed. According to several sources (Globe and Mail, Macleans,'s Guide to Sexuality) this medical marvel might be available to the public in the next three to five years after human trials have been conducted.

How does this condomless protection work? Researchers from the University of Utah have developed the chameleon-like gel. When it comes into contact with semen, the gel turns into a more solid formation that encapsulates the AIDS virus completely. Created to assist women in African countries where AIDS is at an all time high, the gel would cost approximately 0.10 cents a dosage to manufacture, as compared to male condoms (0.o3 cents) and female condoms (0.60 cents). Several of the reports also stated that the gel may be used to reduce pregnancy or the risks associated with other STDs, but the researchers hadn't tested it for those purposes yet.

This gel has received a lot of press these past few days, some of which I found incredibly distasteful - the worst being the Globe and Mail's first line in their coverage of the story:

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Reader Question - He Doesn't Want Kids But I'm A Single Parent

Ashley asks: "My boyfriend told me he never wanted kids. It wasn't very surprising when he told me that his ex wife stopped taking birth control pills so she could get pregnant. It also wasn't surprising when he told me that he signed all of his parental rights for his own child away and got a divorce. The thing that surprises me is that we met through an online dating site. He knew from my page that I had a child that lives with me part time, yet he pursued me anyway. I do not try and force him to spend time with my child, but at the same time it would be great if he did. Is this relationship worth staying in?"

It depends on what your definition of "worth" is, as well as what your relationship expectations are. If you'd like your boyfriend to one day become your husband, then yes, I'd say you and him need to have a talk pronto. If you want him to be a more active role model in your child's life, once again, the two of you need to discuss your wants and needs. But if he's already been married and chosen to divest himself of all parental responsibilities, then its highly unlikely he's going to change his mind now - although of course, anything is possible.

There is also the chance that this man may see your relationship a means to an end: he needed to rebound, learn to trust again after such a horrible betrayal, and/or (maybe) see that raising a child isn't so bad. He likely doesn't see your relationship as being something lifelong however, but rather one to help him through a difficult time in his life with someone he cares about, and with someone that doesn't pressure him into dealbreaker situations.

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Does Facebook Create Jealous People?

Its the age-old chicken or the egg question - what came first? And in this case, the debate is regarding whether or not Facebook creates jealous people, or attracts already jealous people to their folds. Case in point: a recently released Canadian study found that the more time users spent perusing Facebook, the more jealous they were.

Now, the sample size was small (just over 300 people), and used a young age range (17-24). But the 'Facebook jealousy scale' that they created seemed very, very real, dishing out questions - such as how much of the green eyed monster a person felt when their significant other befriended someone of the opposite sex that they didn't know. However no conclusions were drawn regarding whether or not Facebook created jealous people or not, saying the options were "inexorably intertwined". I'd be interested in seeing a study showing how jealous you are before using Facebook, and then measuring jealousy levels again after signing up.

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Do You Believe You'll Find Your Soulmate?

Last month's Cosmo found that 70% of their readers believed it important to marry their soulmate, but more that 50% of the respondents thought it would be impossible to find that person. I'm not sure how many of you feel this way, but I'm of the opinion that that's an awful lot of pressure to put on someone you're dating.

Is there really only one person out there for all of us, or are we able to connect deeply and intensely with more than one human being? Fans of [polyamory]( think its entirely possible - even while in a relationship and/or in love with someone else - and the experts interviewed in the Cosmo (Buy Direct) article I read also felt the concept of one soulmate didn't exist in reality. If anything, those interviewed for the article felt that people who believe in The One and one and only, were doing themselves a disservice by either staying in a relationship that wasn't a good one for them (because they'd convinced themselves there were no other options), or were so picky that they'd overlook their soulmate because they didn't immediately fit.

How about you? Do you believe you'll find your soulmate? [Have you found your soulmate]( already? Do you think soulmates exist? Why or why not?

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Reader Question About Dating Younger Women

The dating younger men posts have a significant number of readers chiming in on their thoughts, so it was only a matter of time before a male reader asked about dating younger women in response. This comment was originally posted in the dating younger men blog thread, but I've moved it here because, to me, its a whole different conversation and deserves its own response.

Bryan asks: _"Since this thread seems to be only women responses I would like to ask all of you for your opinions positive or negative. I am a 53 year old recently divorced man getting back in the dating game. My problem is I can easily pass for being in my late 30's. I am fit, toned and dress younger than most men in their 50's. Honestly, I don't feel much different than I did when I was 30, and younger women are attracted to me. Should I start dating younger women? What happens when they find my true age? I find myself resenting having a number placed on my back by society. I really don't know how to get older, and am confused by all this. I am attracted to younger women because I still have the vigor and attitude of a younger man. Am I an old fool? Thanks in advance."_

I've got a personal take on this question, which I've answered in [Dating Younger Women]( But what you do think readers? Is it possible for this man to start dating younger women? Why or why not?

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Spiritual Relationships and Christian Soul Mates

A whole lot of Christians want to know about spiritual relationships and soul mates. Like is it possible for Christians of the opposite sex who have a close spiritual relationship to be Christian soul mates. Many people feel the best determining factor in determining a successful marriage (or dating relationship for that matter) is how close the couple is spiritually. Studies show that those couples who experience close spiritual relationships with each other have a much greater chance of staying in that relationship. For example, if a Christian couple prays and goes to church together, they reduce their chance of a break upby at least 14%. So, while you may have found a soul mate you feel connected and attracted to emotionally and physically, but what about the spiritual component?

Spiritual Relationships and Soul Mates Podcast

In today’s Christian podcast, the issue at hand is what makes for a good spiritual relationship and soul mates. If you are in a dating relationship or are waiting on God for one, this podcast will be quite uplifting and helpful. What is your take on spiritual relationships and soul mates?

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Reader Question About Attraction For Married Coworker

Jennifer asks: "I need tips and hints for an attraction I have to a co-worker that's married. He's made comments to me and to others at work that things are not great at home. I don't want to be a home wrecker but I also don't want to pass on a chance with a great guy. We've only flirted with each other, nothing serious has been said or done between us."

Jennifer, I'm going to be frank with you, and I'll hazard a guess you won't like my response by the way you've phrased your question. But here it is: there are oodles of single, _available_, attractive, 'great' guys. Why would you put yourself out there for someone who is obviously, completely unavailable, and may never be anything else as it stands now?

It sounds like there is a lot going on behind the scenes with this gentleman, most of which already says a lot about who he is, and what kind of person he'll be in a relationship: he openly talks to coworkers about his personal issues (would you want him to blab about the two of you at the office?), and he is using the attraction between you to take the edge off of the unhappiness in his marriage (would you feel comfortable if he flirted with other coworkers when things were rough, if you ever got together?).

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Reader Questions Whether Or She Can Work Through Her Fiancee's Lying About Online Contact

Heartbreak asks: _"A few weeks ago, my boyfriend and I got engaged. The past year of our relationship has been nothing short of amazing, and we've both often spoken about how truly special our love is for each other. Last night, we got into a bit of an argument (which happens every few weeks or so), and when it was clear that nothing constructive was being said, I grabbed my laptop that he had been using and went upstairs to be alone for a while. When I opened my laptop, his online social network account was open and in the "messages" section. To my utter shock and dismay, there were messages that he sent to almost 10 RANDOM, foreign women, introducing himself and saying he would "like to get to know them better".

I confronted him about the messages which, at first, he denied being anything more than spam, but when I showed him the impossibility of the messages being spam since HE INITIATED THEM, he fell silent. I packed up my things, hysterically crying from heartbreak, and went to stay at my friend's house. When I got back in the morning to grab my toothbrush, he tried hard to reconcile. I told him that I didn't know if I could get past his lying to me and what it meant regarding the commitment we'd just made to one another.

He insists that he's had this "problem" for a while and that its started up again because he's not getting the [affection]( that he needs from me. He brought up wanting me to be more "effusive" with him in the past, maybe a few times at most, and never let on that this inadequacy was driving him down an old vice of his. I am lost and heartbroken and don't know if I can believe him or trust him ever again. Can someone please lend any advice on what I should do? Has anyone experienced similar lying and, if so, was a reconciliation possible and how?"_

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And The Top US City For Singles In 2009 Is...

In [2007]( it was San Francisco, and [2008]( found Atlanta taking the top honors. But this year New York was crowned he winner, according to a [Reuters story from]( Boston, Chicago, Seattle and Washington, D.C. were the other top five contenders this year.

How does a city earn high rankings for singles? A variety of factors are taken into account, such as 'coolness' factor and the cost of living alone. But this year New York edged out the others because it had the highest number of singles using online dating sites. What do you think? Previous years readers have stated they thought New York was the best city - do you think the Forbes ranking got it right this time?

[And The Top US City For Singles In 2009 Is...]( originally appeared on [ Dating]( on Tuesday, July 28th, 2009 at 23:21:46.

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