Encouraging your partner to ask questions is a great way to start a conversation about sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). As you talk, provide your partner with information about the STD. If you don't know the answer to all of their questions, that's okay. Let them know that you don't know and then suggest that you look for more information together at a health clinic or online.
It can be easier to talk if you remember that STDs are medical issues with serious health consequences. To make the conversation easier, it's important to learn as much as you can about STDs. Knowing the facts can give you confidence and help you answer your partner's questions. It's also important to know what you want from the conversation. You can't tell if someone has an STD just by looking at them, so it's important to make it clear that both of you should get tested before having sex.
You should also make sure that your partner is okay with using condoms. Ask your partner if they've ever had an STD. If you have an STD, it's important to tell your partner before having sex. If you think it will be difficult to talk, try to figure out why. Is it because you feel embarrassed or shy? Or is there something else? Thinking about what makes it difficult for you to talk about STDs can help you prepare for the conversation. You can't write out the conversation word for word, but you can prepare yourself by writing down the most important points so that nothing is forgotten.
Take your notes with you in case you forget what you wanted to say. You can also prepare yourself by finding nearby places to get tested, such as a doctor's office or a sexually transmitted disease clinic. Having a plan in place can make the conversation easier. Think about what you want to say and what information you need from your partner. One way to start is to talk about the most recent STD test and ask if your partner has had one recently, suggests Planned Parenthood.
Suggest that they get tested together or that they make plans to be tested separately and agree to share your test results before having intimate relationships. The negative connotations surrounding STIs and STDs can make it difficult for people to talk about them with their partners for fear of being judged. To prepare for the conversation with your partner and let them know that they may have an STI, do some research on the topic. Some people are very confident and have no problem talking about STDs with their partners. If you're shy, for example, it might be easier for you to put your ideas in writing and send them to your partner. Stick to the facts and try to be understanding and understanding, and hopefully you and your partner can find a way to work together on this health problem. What at first might seem like a resistance to being tested for sexually transmitted diseases could turn into a concern because of what it might cost.
And once you know your status, don't stop talking about STDs; it's best to have this conversation before having sex with a partner, says Julia Bennett, MPH, director of learning strategies for education at the United States Planned Parenthood Federation. Talking about STDs can happen at any time, whether it's with your long-term partner or in a new relationship. All couples who enter into a relationship, whether serious and long-term or more casual, need to have a conversation about STIs if they want to protect their own health and the well-being of their partner or partners. That's why doctors recommend that people who have sex (or who have had sex in the past) get tested for sexually transmitted diseases.
Talking about testing and status can help prevent STI transmission and lead to earlier detection and treatment, which can help avoid complications. If you approach the conversation with candor and a relaxed attitude, you'll ease any tension you and your partner may feel when talking about sexual health. With good preparation and understanding of both sides of the issue, talking about STDs doesn't have to be uncomfortable or awkward.