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Guide to Dating with an STD

Probably the one of the primary concerns after you get diagnosed with an STD is, “How will this affect my relationships?” It is completely normal to be worried about the impact of having STD in your future relationships. But just so you know, it is not like you won’t ever date again after you are diagnosed. It is entirely normal to go on dating and have sex after your diagnosis. However, you need to make some adjustments. Wink*

The first thing to keep in mind is, obviously, no one wants to get an STD. However, they do happen to everyone, so stereotyping is useless. Acquiring one is fairly common, about half the worldwide population has one or has had one. This is the reason why it is so important to get tested regularly. The more people who know they have an STD can lower the risk of contagion.

One of the best pieces of advice you can take into account is to be a bit selective. I don’t mean this in a bad way, this means you need to be choosier when it comes to with whom you share your body and have sex with. Always practice safe and protected sex! You should really consider this if you really like this person or if you really feel you should move forward with the relationship because you see a future together. Thinking about all of this will be better not only for your physical well-being but also for your mental wellness. Remember, if you don’t trust the person enough to discuss something so personal, then it is probably not worth the risk.

After you have gone through this process, you should then follow the rules for safer sex. This practice includes getting tested regularly; you should do it at least yearly. If you have multiple sexual partners, you should do it more often. Ideally, before getting into anything first, you should get tested, then, do it again after 6 months. If everything comes back fine, then get checked once a year.

The next rule you should follow is discussing how many sexual partners you have had, especially the ones you had unprotected sex with. You should always make sure to use condoms, gloves, lubrication, dental dams and basically anything to ensure protected sex.

The truth of the matter is, an STD and a relationship can go hand in hand and they are not mutually exclusive by any means. You can still have fruitful relationships, get married (if you want) and have kids (if you desire). Let’s be clear, your life will probably change a bit, as well as your dating life too. It is because you will need to be more careful and will have to talk more about it before having sex. This is the reason why I emphasized being choosy in the beginning. You may also find you don’t have to move fast into relationships as you did before. Hey, it is not a bad or negative thing by any means. Those things are part of changes and everybody goes through changes in life; nothing is static (ok, I may have gotten a bit too life coach there, but it is true).

If someone decides not to continue further into the relationship because of your STD, then it is fine. They have the right to do this. Don’t take it personally and remember there are plenty of fish in the sea. After all, people don’t continue relationships for a bunch of reasons, so it is hardly the end of the world if it happens to you. So, go, masturbate, or have some fun with yourself and get back in the game. Wink*

Having open and honest discussions about STDs and STIs helps remove the taboos and preconceptions out of our society. Informed people make better choices and have less prejudices.

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