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Dear Gay Best Friend,
I was involved with a guy earlier on this year. Later after I broke it off with him I found out I had herpes 2. I was so disgusted and hurt. We used a condom, but it came off. I still find it hard to believe I have this disease because I’ve always been careful with who I’m with. We only talked like four months. Since then I have decided to be and stay single because I don’t want to pass it to no one whatsoever. So, I stay to myself dealing with this by myself and knowing that I may be myself. I don’t know if I will ever find someone that will accept me with this.
Recently I’ve taken interest in this guy from my job. We just went on a dinner last weekend. Afterwards, I let him know that I was interested in him. I want to go out again with him, but I just can’t imagine how he will react when I tell him my situation, especially if anything sexual is to come into play. But, I will tell him most definitely. I just don’t know if he will be interested in the two of us continuing to talk. So far we’ve only kissed. But, we talk all the time and I like his personality. We just click.
So please tell me what should I do about him? I’m ready to be with someone, but scared at the same time. Reading your articles put me at ease and then some articles I feel like just be celibate and masturbate. LOL. Well, what should I do? Please help! – Ready To Date With A Disease
Dear Ms. Ready To Date With A Disease,
SMDH! I don’t understand what is in the water. I hope it isn’t that water in Arkansas where they recently found 10,000 dead drum fish. I need someone to explain that to me. But, I digress. Now, Ms. Hop-In-The-Bed-With-A-Guy-And-Don’t-Know-His-Status, you were with him for only four months and, yet, you are left with a lifetime disease. I just have a question. Was the four months with this guy worth it? Come on, girl!
Wouldn’t it be great if you could know your partner’s sexual health status before you slept with them? Oh, yeah, there is. It’s called getting tested together and knowing each other’s status. Again, and I am going to stress this point so hopefully in 2011 everyone reading this will take precautions. I don’t care who you meet, and how ‘fine’ he looks, and even if you are currently in a relationship, make an appointment for the two of you to go to the clinic and get tested for ALL diseases. You have to know your man’s health status, as well as your own.
Okay, Ms. Thing, back to you. So, you want to know about the guy in the office who you went on a date with and have an interest in, and you haven’t had sex with yet, but you want to. You want to know how to bring up the subject matter. Well, honey, there is no easy way to slide it in. What, you’re going to wait until bites in between dessert and say, “By the way, I have herpes.”
As much as you may not want to say anything, you’ve got to tell him before it goes any further. And, I suggest you tell him today. If you’re going out on more dates and your feelings are growing, uhm, sweetheart, you better open your mouth and speak up. As I’ve stated to a previous person who wrote in with a similar situation as yours, the fact that your ex didn’t say anything to you and gave you herpes, how do you feel about that? Didn’t you feel betrayed? Didn’t you feel deceived? I’m sure you were hurt, angry, bitter, and probably asked, “Why me?” So then, why would you do the same thing to someone else? Why would you not tell someone about the risks and potential harm you are putting them in? It’s called being selfish. It’s called being self-righteous, and arrogant. Girl, don’t you play Russian Roulette with someone else’s life.
I commend you on wanting to tell him, and I understand how you may feel afraid and how he will respond, but you’ve got to tell him. If you’re starting to date seriously, then he deserves to know. He has a right to know. And, I am certain he wants to have sex with you. I strongly suggest you get informed on the disease and how to protect yourself, and him, so when you have the conversation with him, you will be fully educated and can educate him.
Look, Ms. Thing, don’t you dare wait until you have sex with him, and while he’s laid up next to you then you decide you want to become Ms. Truthful and Honest and tell him, “I have herpes, but it’s all good because we used condoms and I know all about the precautions.” Don’t be surprised if he jumps out of the bed, leaves you lying there, and never speaks to you again.
You have to tell him because it’s the right thing to do. You can’t worry about how he is going to respond or what he is going to think. You can explain to him what happened, how it happened, and that you are treating your herpes. (Girl, you better be treating your herpes!) However, it is up to him if he decides to be in a relationship, or if he decides he wants to sleep with you. If you’re honest and tell him the truth, and educate him on the precautions to take, you never know how he’s going to respond.
But, you know what? I’ve heard about people who get STD’s and they develop an “I don’t care” mentality and, “I’m going to infect others because I got infected” attitude. So, they intentionally go out and infect others. They don’t tell their sexual partners about the STD they have. WOW! That’s some scary –ish right there. And, you know what? They are your friends, family members, and possible sexual partners. You just don’t know it. Some folks can be trifling and evil.
So, Ms. Ready To Date With A Disease, I’m sorry about what happened to you. Your life is not over. You can still date, have fun, and be sexual, but you just have to be upfront and tell guys before you do the do. Don’t wait, and don’t worry about what they think of you. There are plenty of men who probably wouldn’t mind dating a woman in your situation. The young woman who wrote in previously with the same situation e-mailed me after I answered her question and she said her and the guy were dating and had an active, and protected, sex life. So, know that disclosure is important in your situation. And, please, please, please use condoms at all times, as well as other forms of protection. Be a woman and be upfront about your situation. In being honest and truthful you never know how your mate will respond. Respect, love, truth, and honesty goes a long way baby – Straight From Your Gay Best Friend
Make sure to get your copy of my new book, STRAIGHT FROM YOUR GAY BEST FRIEND – The Straight Up Truth About Relationships, Work, and Having A Fabulous Life (Agate/Bolden – October 2010; $15). It is available in bookstores everywhere, and on Amazon, HERE!