How to Tell Your Partner You Have an STD

How to Tell Your Partner You Have an STD

Meeting a new romantic partner is a fun and exciting time, but it can also be uncomfortable if you have a sexually transmitted disease (STD). At some point you’ll need to tell your new love interest about your STD, but it’s hard to know when or how to do it. These tips can get you through this difficult conversation a little easier.

Educate Yourself
It’s always a good idea to get an STD test before embarking on a new relationship. If you’re test results give you a clean bill of health, you can move forward with confidence. If it turns out you do have an STD, try not to panic. Instead, set an appointment with your doctor to get more information.

Your doctor can cure some STDs, including gonorrhea and chlamydia. Simply follow the treatment plan your doctor gives you and then continue on as usual once your doctor confirms you’re cured. If you have a disease your doctor can treat but not cure, such as herpes, you and your doctor will need to have a longer conversation. Learn what treatment you need to control your STD and what steps you must take to minimize your risk of giving the STD to someone else. An STD may change your sex life a bit, but it need not end it.

Pick a Time
When you tell a new romantic partner about your STD is largely up to you. You don’t need to reveal your condition on a first date or add it to your online dating profile! You do, however, need to tell your date before sexual contact of any kind takes place, including oral sex. Remember that you have both a moral and, in some cases, legal obligation to tell your partner about an STD before being intimate. Don’t wait until just before when things are getting hot and heavy. Discuss the situation when the other person will have time to ask you questions and process what you’re telling them.

Keep it Positive
When telling your partner, stay as matter-of-fact as you can. Having an STD doesn’t make you a bad or dirty person. In fact, people around the globe acquire one million STD infections every day. Remind yourself that, although you’re probably not happy about having an STD, you’re not confessing to a horrible crime. You don’t need to be meek, coy or apologetic.

You can also keep things positive by making sure your partner understands that you’re telling him or her about your STD because you care about and respect them. Explain the ways that the two of you can work together to prevent sharing the STD and express your commitment to doing so.

The chances are high that your new partner will appreciate your honesty about your STD. Once they understand the infection and how to protect themselves from it, your relationship can move to the bedroom. There is a chance, however, that your partner will decide they don’t feel comfortable moving the relationship forward. This is disappointing, but it’s their decision to make. Hold your head high knowing you were honest and up front. In time, you’ll meet someone who values that trait a much as you do and is happy to be your partner. 

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