Will 2020 be the year that “gloryholes” make a comeback?

Wearing masks during sex seems passe! The Centre For Disease Control Of British Columbia (BCCDC) in Canada in its COVID-19 safer sex guidelines recommended, among other things, glory holes. And, netizens nodded in amused agreement.

“Sex can be very important for mental, social and physical well-being; it is a part of everyday life. People can, will and should continue to have sex during the COVID-19 pandemic,” BCCDC advisory says on its page about COVID-19 and safe sex.

It recommends self masturbation as the safest sex practise followed by virtual sex and sex with regular partner/s. It then goes on to list the ‘steps to protect yourself during sex’. What caught everyone’s attention is the BCCDC getting behind the idea of glory holes.

“Use barriers, like walls (e.g., glory holes), that allow for sexual contact but prevent close face-to-face contact,” it said.

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 The hashtag #gloryholes was soon trending on Canadian twitter.

“My favourite part of Canada’s COVID response is our government officially recommends using glory holes for sex,” a social media user posted.

Another one had a genuine query, “The BC Centre for Disease Control is recommending using “glory holes” to practice safe sex during the pandemic — and I just want to know if this is a common thing people have in their homes.”

Some trolled the US Surgeon Hall who was reminding people about maintaining social distancing, wearing masks and washing hands to prevent COVID-19. “You are waaaay behind the times. Help catch up with BC’s CDC: #gloryholes,” offered one user thoughtfully.

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 Others used the advisory as a public relations exercise. YouPorn, the free pornography video sharing platform sent a letter to Adrian Dix, Minister of Health of British Columbia, offering a $100k grant “to support the building of glory holes across the province, further promoting ‘socially distant’ safe sex’.”

For those who are still confusedwhat the fuss is all about, a gloryhole occupies a place in the gay subculture, sitting (standing?) somewhere between bathhouses and darkrooms.

A glory hole is literally a hole in a thin partition wall, usually in public toilets or in adult sex on premise venues, to facilitate sexual intercourse.

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 ACON in its advisory points out that while COVID-19 is not a sexually transmitted disease, physical intimacy carries with it a high risk of transmission.

Coronavirus is passed on through droplets spread by coughing, sneezing, talking or by contact with contaminated surfaces. Direct personal contact such as touching, kissing and other intimate interactions are key methods of transmission. Sharing sex toys could also transmit the virus. Reducing physical contact is one of the ways we are halting the spread of coronavirus – and that is why we are being asked to continue observing physical distancing,” ACON has said.

That is where the BCCDC pitches for glory holes. Due to the physical barrier it creates between people, a glory hole seems to be just the right safe sex practise during a global pandemic to prevent COVID-19.

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