When Is The Right Time To Talk STDs to Your New Boo?
The romance is new. Your eyes turn to hearts when you look at him. You two love birds are flying high, feeling the warmth from the rays of happiness you bring each other. There's been a lot of holding hands, shared laughs, and “accidental” brushes of the arms. You two are intertwined and drunk off each other’s essence. Finally, a night is confirmed for a Netflix and chill rendezvous. You arrive to his house and the lights are dim, there's chilled bubbly, and lightly buttered popcorn waiting for you. The two of you get comfy on the couch with a shared throw blanket and tease each other about the movie selections. After choosing a flick that meets everyone’s needs you snuggle in and the mood is set; It's a total vibe. The opening of the movie starts and its already been forgotten. Locking eyes, he leans over ready to plant the first kiss, but you put his hand on his chest to stop him. You look down and cringe at what you're about to say… you must let him know that you are a carrier of HSV-1 virus (Herpes). The air changes immediately from romantically warm to stuffy and hot for you. How does one continue?
The “STD” talk is not easy, and it’s hard to gauge when the best time to share that information with a potential beau is. It feels like nothing can make that conversation any less awkward. There is a certain desire to be perfect for the other person. The identity created for our newly found love can't be tainted with an itch that may not go away. The STD topic for pairs is usually the pink elephant in the room. How does a hot romance go on living on cloud nine when there is an STD anchor? Allow me to uplift you with the encouragement to stay honest, be confident, and hopefully normalize the conversation that should happen between any two love-struck people.
Full transparency is what keeps a relationship healthy. If past sexual records are not discussed, the two involved are left to believe the other is clear from disease and there's nothing to note. Which brings me to my next topic, when is it a good time to share sexual health records? Honestly, there is no “good time,” I recommend if nothing needs to be shared, still bring it up. For a couple of reasons, the ice needs to be broken and it's much harder for the carrier to break the ice than the one who is clear (if there is any in the party.)I say bring it up before there is an indication of intimacy. It needs to be brought up casually and not in the heat of the moment. Discuss your sign, occupation, past dating, and then smoothly transition to the last time you went in for a check-up and look for reciprocation.
Say, perhaps you are the carrier. Queue the broken record thoughts that happen; “you should be sent off to a deserted island and you are undeserving of love.” I understand the nagging voice every time you want to be intimate. It repeats to you over and over,” you have something.” And it's only human nature to be a bit hesitant in letting your new boo know. All of that is a fallacy, you are a human being with a life that will have twists and turns. You are accepted, and you are more than what any diagnosis says; you are not the virus. Ironically, you were probably a victim of someone not telling you what was going on with them in the bedroom and that person was too before you. Let's have the chain reaction end its route with you. Because having that conversation up front is so much more respected and valued than explaining and apologizing after creating another host to any given virus. Show your boo how much they are valued, by telling them firsthand. I guarantee they will respond with respect if nothing else. As the conversation is practiced, the confidence will build. No one is perfect, but one can be perfectly honest.
cover via Psycho Central