std

(one) guy's perspective on herpes

Living with herpes.  Man, that’s a tough one.  Sometimes, it is the most inconsequential part of my life.  I practically forget that I have it, because doesn’t make too many guest appearances.  

Then, one day you wake up and your back and testicles have this dull ache in them, like you got punched in the kidneys the day before and you know the storm, it’s a-comin’.  Only, even then, it’s not the worst thing in the world.  A couple sores that resemble pimples.  They just last a little longer and end up itching.  No big deal.  

I have had this for over three years and I can honestly say that the most embarassing/painful/shitty part is the stigma.  The worry that no one will ever be able to get past that with you in pursuing a new relationship.  That your friends & family will find out.  That your life is over.  I am here to tell you that YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL AND EVERYTHING WILL BE OK.  Sure, I still get depressed sometimes over it and it is incredibly easy to feel like damaged goods.  An STD means you’re a slut and a stupid one, at that, right?  WRONG.  An STD just means “shit happens.”  Honestly, think of how much worse it could have been!

As for the relationship thing, it might be the best thing that ever happened to you.  It’s an immediate litmus test for weeding out people that aren’t worth your time.  I won’t tell you it isn’t scary telling people about HSV and waiting for their response.  It’s terrifying.  But like anything, it gets easier with time.  Plus, you learn to love yourself.  You take better care of your body.  You eat healthier.  You learn that you don’t need anyone else to feel complete.  You learn that if someone immediately decides not to be with you as a result of this, their feelings were not reciprocated and they would have bailed eventually anyways.  I have been single for six months and have grown by leaps and bounds since then.  I appreciate myself in a way that I never did before.  

I feel like I’ve started rambling and lost my train of thought.  So, I will end with this:  You are not damaged goods.  You have value.  You are beautiful and everything will be ok.  And if you ever need to talk, my inbox is here.  Have a great day/night/life!

anonymous asked:

Before I go further with my boyfriend (like oral sex), I want to make sure that he doesn't have any STIs, but I'm not sure how to approach the topic without offending him. He's only been with one other person, but I don't know if he's been tested. I know some STIs are relatively asymptomatic in men. Do you have any advice about this? If he's pretty sure he's fine, should I take his word for it or insist he get tested? He's a very understanding and honest guy, but it's kind of embarrassing...

This is just like the whole shopping for tampons thing, don’t you think?  Why is it embarrassing?  Everyone knows people have periods.  It makes ABSOLUTELY no sense why we get embarrassed about staying STI negative, but it’s been drilled into us that WE SHOULD NEVER EVER TALK ABOUT SEX, so we don’t.

  1. I think you should start by taking the assumption that you won’t embarrass him.  I mean, you want to give him a blow job, for goodness sake, I think that’s a pretty big confidence booster.  I know I’d feel great if someone told me they wanted to give ME a blow job.
  2. Don’t accept “pretty sure.”  I know it’s a frustrating stance to have to take, but while you may feel ok vouching for him, you can’t necessarily vouch for the other person he had sex with.
  3. Just be straightforward about it.  "Hey buddy pal, I really wanna get frisky with you.  Let’s go to the clinic to get tested."  Even if you haven’t been with anyone else, get tested with him.  It shows solidarity, and it also will give you ease of mind to know that you too are STI free.
  4. If he’s weird about it in any way, feel free to put the brakes on your intimacy.  Now, I know that on tumblr we say a lot of “if he won’t X, dump his ass!!!!!!!!”  but that’s not what I’m saying.  You can just make it clear that you don’t feel safe being intimate with him unless both of you get tested.  In that situation, there are a few responses that are reasonable, none of which are him calling you names, belittling your decision, or forcing you to have sex.  In those situations, you dump his ass.

Read this post for a more in depth conversation about making decisions for yourself about your sexual health.

"I thought a thing like that could never happen to me…"

From a 1950s campaign aiming to bust the “nice girls don’t get VD” myth.

While most WWII and earlier public service posters focused on the “don’t get diseases from prostitutes” side of things, after the war ended, there were a growing number of men and women who weren’t servicemembers or engaged in the sex trade who were coming down with STDs.

These days, syphilis is fairly uncommon. About 3500 cases are recorded per year in the US (mostly men who have sex with men), and during the primary stage, it’s easily treatable with antibiotics.

Gonorrhea, though? Still going strong. Because of the continuously significant rate of infection over the years, there has been enough antibiotic treatment going on to create antibiotic-resistant Super Gonorrhea. It’s a bad thing. Like all gonorrhea, it can cause permanent damage and sterility in all genders, but it’s extremely difficult to treat.

Wrap it before you tap it. Don’t get you some Super STDs.

Can you get pregnant from semen in your mouth?

Someone asked us

Can u get pregent from sperm in ur mouth

Nope! You can’t get pregnant from having sperm in your mouth. And this is true whether you spit or swallow. You can, however, get an STD from giving or receiving oral sex, even if sperm isn’t involved at all. So make sure you’re using condoms and/or dental dams if you’re diving down under. And read up here on how pregnancy happens so we can wipe out myths like this one for good.

-Chelsea @ Planned Parenthood

LISTEN THE FUCK UP.

IF YOU HAVE AN STD, IT’S NOT YOUR FAULT.

SHIT HAPPENS AND NO ONE DESERVES IT.

YOU GOTTA OWN IT AND BE YOURSELF REGARDLESS.

BE HONEST WITH PEOPLE AND IF THEY DON’T WANT TO BE WITH YOU FOR IT THEN FUCK THEM, BECAUSE THEY AREN’T THE ONE FOR YOU.

IF THEY DO THEN THEY’RE AWESOME PEOPLE WHO SHOULD BE CHERISHED BECAUSE THEY KNOW ULTIMATELY IT DOESN’T MATTER BECAUSE THERE ARE WAYS TO PROTECT YOURSELF.

TO PEOPLE WHO SHAME OTHERS OR MAKE FUN OF PEOPLE WHO HAVE STD’S:

SUCK MY ASS.

STD’S DO NOT DISCRIMINATE AND IT LITERALLY ANYONE COULD GET ONE. 

I GOT ONE AND YEAH, IT FUCKING SUCKS BUT IT DOESN’T DEFINE ME.

YOUR STD DOES NOT DEFINE YOU, BEAUTIFUL MOTHERFUCKERS.

SO GET THE FUCK OUT OF YOUR ROOM, PUT ON SOME PANTS AND LIVE YOUR LIFE BECAUSE HAVING AN STD IS NOT THE END OF THE UNIVERSE. 

this has been a PSA

I was exposed to herpes, but I don’t have any symptoms. Do I have to get tested?

Someone asked us:

My significant other is HSV 2 positive, we were in an open relationship at the time, we use condoms when he has an outbreak but they always break and now I’m too scared to get tested. I’m not feeling any different than usual so do I still have to get tested?

The most common symptom of herpes (also known as HSV) is actually no symptoms at all, or very mild symptoms that go unnoticed. So even if you aren’t feeling any different, it’s still good to get tested since you’ve been exposed — and any other sexual partners that you or your significant other have had should also get tested. Herpes, both HSV 1 and HSV 2, can be transmitted even if your partner isn’t currently having an outbreak, so you should always use a condom/dental dams to reduce the chance of transmission.

Let’s talk about this “condoms always break” thing. Condoms definitely shouldn’t always break. If you’re having a problem with condoms breaking there are a few steps you can take to see what’s going wrong.

  • Quality control. Check to make sure the condoms aren’t expired and make sure to store them properly (not anywhere that’s too hot or cold, and not squished in a wallet).

  • Check the fit. Regular condoms fit most penises, but in the unlikely event that it’s too big or small, you can look for specially sized condoms or try a female condom instead.

  • When in doubt, add some lube. Lube is pretty great all around. A bit of lube on both the inside and outside of a condom can reduce the chances of breaking AND make sex feel better. Double win, right? Just make sure you’re using water or silicone-based lube, because anything with oil can make latex condoms more likely to break.

  • Leave some room for the final product. When you’re putting on a condom, make sure to pinch the tip so there’s room for semen once ejaculation occurs.

I know getting tested may sound scary, but the staff at your local Planned Parenthood health center will do everything they can to make it an easy process! And once you know, you’ll be better able to stay healthy and keep any partners healthy too. Learn more about getting tested for STDs»

-Kellie at Planned Parenthood

The only reason STDs are stigmatized and bad is because our society is so goddamn hung up on how “dirty” and “wrong” sex is, and apparently having a disease that involves your genitals is just like taking and already dirty stick and sticking it in mud.

Fuck that bullshit.