H Mates Living with STDs
Finding out that you have herpes or any other STD can be an extremely emotional and embarrassing experience. Having to live with it and treat it after discovery can also be very stressful and alienating. If you are dating when the diagnosis that either you or your partner has an STD comes to light, it can put a major strain on your relationship and you can be plagued with questions of what you should do next and how you should deal with it. Before you make any rash or major decisions here are some things you should know and things to consider.
What you should know about herpes and other STDs
First and foremost, if you are planning on being sexually active you should get tested for STDs to ensure that you are both healthy and STD-free. If your partner does test positive for an STD it does not, however, mean that he or she was necessarily unfaithful or sexually active in the recent past. Common STDs like herpes and HPV can be contracted from skin-to-skin contact and HIV/AIDS is transmittable by any bodily fluid you come into contact with. Some STDs, like herpes, HIV/AIDS, gonorrhoea, chlamydia, syphilis and HPV have an extended latency period and some can also lie dormant for months or even years. You might have the disease without showing any signs of it. For this reason regular testing for STDs is recommended if you are a sexually active individual with new or multiple partners.
Each STD has its own specific signs and symptoms. Herpes, for example, can include symptoms like blisters and ulcerated blisters in the affected area, swollen lymph glands, headaches, body aches and fever. There are some general symptoms we can look out for like painful urination, discharge from the vagina or penis, bumps, sores, warts and painful sex. These symptoms should not be an immediate cause for concern but if you see or experience them, you should consult a doctor.
I’m positive and want a relationship – what can I do?
Testing positive for an STD does not mean that your love life has to come to an end. Unfortunately, some STDS, like HIV/AIDS is a condition you will live with for the rest of your life and you can infect any person you are sexually active with. For this reason it is absolutely essential to disclose your condition to any partner you may have in the future as he/she has the right to know and make decisions about their health with this in mind. Luckily there are dating websites, positivesingles.com, that know how difficult it can be to live with an STD and find a partner that understands it and accepts you. This website caters to people that are positive and looking for love. It has many success stories but also provides support in the form of blogs, dating advisors and Q&As.
I’ve tested positive and I’m in a relationship – what do I do?
If you have tested positive for an STD and you are in a relationship where you are sexually active with your partner or you both want to become sexually active, communication is your first responsibility. You have to tell your partner that you have an STD for a number of reasons. Your partner can contract the STD from you if you make the decision to become sexually active. On the other hand, if you and your partner are already sexually active he/she might already have it and not know. It is essential that your partner also goes for testing. With treatment and STD like chlamydia can be cured and you will have to get retested after some time. Other STDs like herpes is something you will have for life but treatment can help you manage it.