Sexually Transmitted Diseases(STD) or sexually transmitted infections (STI) as popularly called are infections gotten from sexual intercourse, especially when it involves private part contact.
Discovering you have an STI while in a serious relationship can be sad and embarrassing. You may be afraid of telling your partner.
What if he/she labeled you to be a prostitute or womanizer because of it? What if you are rejected because of it? What of the stigma and rumors that can come as a result of it? Your fear is valid and you are not overreacting!
But you don’t have to be scared or afraid, there are ways to inform your partner about it without causing any breakup between you two.
Firstly, you should bear in mind that getting STI’s doesn’t imply infidelity. STI’s sometimes can take weeks, months, and even years to show you any bodily symptoms depending on your system. This is to say you may have contracted it a long time ago, without knowing maybe from your past relationships.
Here are 6 tips to inform your partner about your status without causing havoc to your relationship.
- Get tested and gather information about it: The first step is to get tested, irrespective of your conviction or symptoms you are experiencing.
Information about symptoms, mode of its transmission, and treatment options available is important also, in case your partner needs it.
- Choose the right place for discussion; After gathering necessary information about the type of STI you contacted. The next thing is to choose the right place for discussion. Choose a comfortable or private area where you can’t be interrupted. Avoid bringing the topic up when among friends, clubs, beaches or any other public places
- Choose the right time: it is better to speak up early, immediately after you get tested. Don’t delay it as it may complicate things. Inform your partner when he/she is sober and not when drunk. It’s also good to tell him or her before attempting any sex at all. When you are both clothed and not in the middle of sex or romance to prevent disappointment or embarrassment.
- Text or Call instead of nothing: It is normal to feel ashamed because it’s a humiliating situation but nonetheless, you have to inform your partner about it. Instead of procrastinating about it, text him or call him. It’s better than nothing. At least, you don’t have to worry about his/her reaction.
- Avoid Jumping into Conclusion: Your partner may become speechless after informing them or at worst act offended. Don’t jump into conclusions or rush them to make decisions about your relationship.
I understand you may want to know where you stand with them, especially if the infection is uncurable like HIV. Allow them to think and make the decision themselves without coercion.
If your partner is acting offended, do not act defensively but rather empathize with him or her. You may want to tell him or her if it’s a result of cheating or not. If you cheated on your partner, you can sort it out by telling the reason why you did that.
If you have been faithful, you can point out your motive for telling him, how you wanted to protect him from contracting it. You can also consult a relationship coach if needed.
- Be specific and answer their questions: What if the circumstance behind your STI is traumatic for you and you did not feel like sharing? It’s okay not to want to share. You can achieve that by being specific about your status without going deep into details.
For instance, you can say something like ” I went to the hospital yesterday for my normal checkup, but I found out that I have chlamydia. I have started getting treatment on it, so you don’t have to worry about it.”
- Encourage your partner to get tested: You should also encourage your partner to get tested if you have both been sexually active in your relationship. If positive, they should also seek appropriate treatment following your healthcare provider instructions.
Do you still feel reluctant to share your status with your partner? Don’t let the fear of unknown override your logic, you are on the right track. Don’t keep it as a secret.
Here are 5 reasons why you shouldn’t keep your status to yourself.
- Your partner is at risk of contracting it. If you haven’t told your partner yet, they may contact it if you have unprotected sex.
- Some people tend to keep away from their partner sexually in a bid to protect them from contracting it. They do this without informing their partner of the reason behind it. This may wreck your relationship if care is not taken.
- Your partner may have contracted it and it is important they get treated early. STI’s sometimes, have complications when left untreated. Inability to bear children and infertility, death can be the result if not taken care of.
- You can also get re-infected. Not informing your partner may put you at the risk of contracting it again. Your partner may have gotten it from you without knowing. After treating yours, you may get it back during sexual intercourse.
- It reduces trust in your relationship. What do you think will happen if your partner learned about it later? Surely, he or she won’t be happy with you for keeping it away from them. They may also find it hard to trust you on other issues. Trust is important in building a relationship, you don’t want to lose that.
Informing your partner about your contracting STI may seem uncomfortable with you. But it is a lesser evil you must do to prevent a greater evil.
Click here to Read 7 Signs That A Guy Likes You.