Do the bump. The booty bump that is…

French version/Version française:

Consuming a substance anally, often called booty bumping, is an under-discussed and under-researched topic when it comes to PNP. With booty bumping, the taboo of substance use intersects with the taboo of anal sex, and often this method of consumption is only talked about in PNP spaces and by 2SLGBTQ+ organizations, but booty bumping isn’t exclusively a “gay thing”.

So what is booty bumping exactly? Booty bumping is the method of consumption where you dissolve your substance in water, put it into a syringe or lube injector, and then insert the syringe into the anus. It’s important to note here that booty bumping is really only for water soluble substances like tina or crack, and not for substances like GBL, which can damage the lining of the rectum, and heroin which needs to be dissolved in an acid.
There have been some ideas floating around that booty bumping can be a form of vein maintenance for folks who typically like to slam, or inject, their substances. Vein maintenance is the idea of moving around injection sites in order to protect the veins from collapsing, and giving them a chance to heal between consuming. Since the tissue in the anus is great for absorbing nutrients and getting them into the bloodstream, booty bumping is similar to slamming in that the effects are usually felt in five to ten minutes. Meaning that booty bumping could be another alternative that allows folks to consume, with a similar experience, while giving all their veins a break from injecting.

Because booty bumping is the often overlooked and understudied combination of substance use and sexuality, with a connection to anal sex, there haven’t been a lot of studies on the long-term effects of booty bumping or complications that can arise. That’s not to say booty bumping can’t be fun and done in the safest way possible, I just want to be upfront that our scientific knowledge around booty bumping is, let’s say, somewhat limited.
So, say I wanted to try booty bumping. What would be some things I would want to keep in mind?
That’s a great question. There are quite a few things we can do before trying booty bumping for the first or even the first few times.

First thing’s first, what can I consume through booty bumping?
Well anything that is water soluble like cocaine or crystal meth in it’s powder form. Substances that need to be dissolved in acid, like heroin, or ones that cause burns, like GBL, shouldn’t be consumed anally. GHB, you might want to avoid booty bumping altogether, just because sometimes folks get GBL thinking it is GHB and you definitely wouldn’t want to have that burn your rectum.
What tools should I use if I am going to booty bump?
One of the best options is to use a lube injector syringe. These are smooth and designed to go into the anus. Plus if you get the ones with the cap on the tip, you can mix your supply in the syringe itself by keeping the cap on and removing the plunger. Just be careful when you put the plunger back in, to flip the syringe to point upwards, carefully remove the cap and push out the extra air. This may take some practice, so try a few times with just water until you get the hang of it, that way you don’t waste any of your supply.
These syringes can be bought online, at local sex shops and given out through some harm reduction dispensing programs (MAX’s Tea 2 Go programs offers them for free with lube, sterile water and an instruction guide in English and in French).
Other than the syringe, you want lots of lube to help the injector syringe to go in smoothly and prevent any kind of dry friction or tearing. If tearing and bleeding happens, it’s probably a good idea to stop, wait about a week for it to heal and try again. 
How much should I use if I’m booty bumping for the first time?
That’s the $100,000 question and not an easy one to answer. Since everyone is different, and has different tolerance, it’s difficult to give safe suggestions to this fairly common question. What I can say are two things; start with what you would see as a small amount, and be ready for the reality that the first time might not be the best experience. As you learn more about how you handle booty bumping you can increase the amount and find out how much works best for you. This reminds me of my favourite expression around substance use, “You can always have more, but you can’t have less.”
How do I booty bump?
All of our booty bumping kits come with instructions if you need to have them handy, but for anyone curious, here are the instructions in our booty bumping guide
Wash your hands thoroughly. Take out the syringe, lubes, sterile water and your substance of choice and set them up somewhere clean.
Dissolve the substance in sterile water, or water that has been boiled first (but let it cool down to room temperature before using, otherwise you could scald your rectal lining). 
*You can do this in the lube injector included in this kit.
*Keep the cap on so you don’t lose any of your substance. 
Apply lube to you ass, then wipe the excess lube off your hands with paper towel or toilet paper.
Point the syringe upwards and remove the cap. Apply lube to the top of the syringe. Push up on the plunger to remove excess air before inserting.
Find a comfortable position where you will be able to reach your ass. Standing works, but also laying on your side if you are at home. (Avoid squatting as it may cause you to accidentally lose some of your substances after injection.)
Place your pointer and middle fingers on the handle at the bottom of the syringe and your thumb on the plunger.
Insert slowly into your ass. This will help minimize tearing.
Once you feel your knuckles against your ass, slowly push the plunger until the syringe is empty.
Wait a minute, then pull out and dispose of the syringe. It may help to clench your ass after. Imagine you are trying to hold in a fart.
Wash your hands thoroughly. You were just touching your ass after all, and it is possible to spread bacterial infections like shigella and giardia.
Any other tips for first timers?
Absolutely. Here are some tips from our Booty Bumping guide, which comes with each of our booty bumping kits:
•   If this is your first time, try doing it once with just water. That way if you spill, or miss, you won’t have wasted any substances.
•   If you have never douched before, the feeling of water in your ass may be weird, or cold. If it’s too cold, hold the sterile water containers for a few minutes to help them warm up, as really cold water can cause cramping.
•   If it is your first time, or a new supply, start low and go slow. You can always have more, but you can’t have less.
•   Wait at least an hour between doses to see how the substances affect you.
•   Booty bumping can cause substances to absorb faster and more efficiently, meaning you could feel the substances kicking in harder.
•   Putting substances up your ass without dissolving them in water, “dabbing”, or wrapping substances in rolling papers before inserting them, “stuffing”, can cause damage to your rectal lining, so these are not recommended.
•   Try to consume with folks you trust; keep each other safe!
•   Always carry Naloxone.
What if I am bottoming after booty bumping?
That is totally a thing you can do. There are some things to consider when having sex after booty bumping. 
•   Take some time, approximately 60 to 90 minutes, between consuming and bottoming. You want to let your body absorb the substance before having sex. Sometimes small bits of your substance may stay in your butt and these can be irritating, so having sex right away might cause irritation or small tears. 
•   If you are bottoming after booty bumping, try using lots of good lube to avoid rips and tears. Condoms can also be helpful to prevent STBBI, HIV and Hep C transmission if rips or tears do occur.
•   Substances can sometimes numb your butt, so be cautious when bottoming. Just because you don’t feel anything, doesn’t mean there is no damage.
•   Booty bumping can cause haemorrhoids, rectal pain and bleeding. If you are bottoming, please keep that in mind as these things can increase transmitting and acquiring infections.
•   If you want to try fisting after booty bumping, take all the same precautions listed above, and be extra mindful of the numbing effects, especially if this is your first time fisting. You might want to wait and try fisting without using substances in order to better gauge what it feels like and where your limits are. Fisting, much like booty bumping, is more of an art than a science and are activities that can take some time to figure out before you know what works best for you.

With all that being said, booty bumping can be a fun new way to consume if it is something you might want to try. Hopefully in the future we will start to see more conversations and research go into booty bumping, which will give us more answers to the many questions those new to this method of consumption may have. Unfortunately, seeing as booty bumping is connected to the anus, it is likely to face an uphill battle as it deals with the homophobia that often comes with anything to do with guys’ butts. 

Lastly, if 2SGBTQ guys are going to have to pave the way for conversations about booty bumping, then we should do it enthusiastically and in the great tradition of everything “gay” that the mainstream doesn’t or won’t acknowledge; let’s talk about it.

Matt Adams (He/Him)
Harm Reduction Programs Coordinator