Knowledge of the risks concerning the sexual transmission of HIV among young heterosexuals is spreading, but controlling sexual safety can be problematic for young women if they play subordinate roles in sexual encounters. Once people have been given information on how HIV can be transmitted sexually, and advice on safer sex, they still have to make sense of what they have learned. They have to consider whether what they know has any bearing on their own lives, and how, when or whether to put this knowledge into practice. Rates of teenage pregnancy and rising rates of sexually transmitted disease indicate that, whatever women’s intentions, risky sexual practices are still widespread among young heterosexuals (OPCS, 1991; Estaugh and Wheatley, 1990).