September 20, 2014
Let’s be honest, everyone is looking for a reason to ditch condoms as quickly as possible after meeting a new partner. It’s just too easy to get swept away by optimism when you think you’ve met the ‘right one.’ But the reality is someone may be perfect for us in every way, yet still carry a sexually transmitted disease.
According to the CDC there are over 20 million new STD cases each year. In other words, that’s a LOT of misplaced optimism.
STD’s can happen to the best of us, but they’re not a sign of poor character, and certainly not detectable at a glance. In most cases, they’re a result of choosing not to take precautions.
If you are planning to toss out the condoms, make sure your reasons are based on fact, not faith. Both partners should first get tested and then openly share the results.
Here is our list of common (and totally illogical) reasons for quitting condoms before both partners have been tested:
1. You’ve been dating for over one month.
2. You’re in love and feeling committed.
3. You think you’re exclusive.
4. You trust him/her.
5. No one spoke up – so clearly there’s nothing to worry about.
6. You’ve been hanging out with his/her close friends, or met the parents.
7. They have exceptional fashion sense and impeccable grooming habits.
8. He/she has an advanced degree from an Ivy League school, is the CEO of a hot new start-up, or commands a six figure salary.
Sorry – but educational status, job title, or personal income are not reliable indicators of sexual health. The only sure way to know that you and your partner are healthy is to get tested.
9. She’s on the pill or some other form of birth control.
Hormone-based birth control may prevent unplanned pregnancy but it does not prevent STD transmission.
10. You’re over 35. Better yet, you’re over 55. With age may come wisdom, but it doesn’t protect you from acquiring an infection.
Believe it or not, according to the AARP, STD’s are on the rise among the Boomer generation, and even in retirement communities! Single, sexually active seniors should consider carrying an extra life insurance policy – in the form of a condom.
11. You were previously in a monogamous relationship.
To locate free testing near you, visit the CDC’s HIV and STD Testing Locator.