Let me start by saying, I’m not afraid of a sexual relationship. I’m afraid of what another person brings to it. If you’ve seen the pictures of the itchies and scratchies that can be passes from bumping uglies, you’d be afraid too. One does not have to be exposed to or diagnosed with HIV or AIDS to have their life turned upside down through a sexually transmitted disease (STD) or sexually transmittable infections (STI. Yes, there’s something new). I’m simply not with it – none of it.
Last year, I went to have a panel done for STDs or STIs. Not because I’ve been “runnin’ the streets,” but it’s simply good to know. As the advertisements urge “The More You Know” and “Know Your Status“. That is what I live by. Why not? I had nothing to worry about, in my mind. And the tests proved that. However, it got me to thinking about how little adults speak about sex without it being about putting what where, how it feels, and the toys that most suit them. In fact, it astonishes me to think that many people do not ask about previous partners, health history, sexually transmitted diseases or infections, and sexual habits (outside of favorite positions). It is imperative for me to ask questions, my life is on the line.
You mean to tell me that grown folks can’t talk about sex?
I admit to being relatively reserved in general, until I get to know someone. Conversations about sex are not in my regular repertoire, but I do not back down from them either. About 18 months ago my son came home with information about sex, from school. We’ve always had open communication because I want him to know his body, how it works, have knowledge, look at his body as precious, and feel comfortable with conversations about sex. How could I have conversations with him if I’m not comfortable? It makes it awkward. Our conversations are only awkward for him because he, at the time, was a preteen. And, I’m guessing they will remain so until the day one of us leaves this earth! But, my point here? He’s aware of the dangers of not just casual sex, but unprotected sex. It’s my job to prepare him for those all important conversations like, “If she’s given him a blowjob heaven only knows how many others she’s done and what she’s carrying around in that mouth!” Yes, I said it! (For real I have.) If I have to have a conversation with my son about sex, condoms, STDs, blowjobs, “going down”, and the repercussions of it all, why should I be embarrassed by having the same conversation with an adult male?
In my brief unscientific research using my memory only, I have to say that I have found most men to be open to conversations about sex and STDs, but not comfortable. Conversations about condoms can be one that becomes personal because of how it feels to go au naturel versus the latex jacket. But, my perspective is simple, it’s my life and yours. Not that I think I have anything to pass on except a good time, but you don’t know that about me and vice versa. To me, if you are that lackadaisical with your health, you sure don’t give a flying fig about me or my health, and that alone is a deal breaker for me. Why? I’m glad you asked.
IT’S ABOUT ME. ALL ABOUT ME.
Yep, I said it. It’s all about me. I would love to say I’ve always been open about sex, but that’s not my story. I’d love to say, I’ve always thought I was an amazing person. That’s not my story either. What I can say is that I’ve grown to understand my worth as a person, period. I love my laugh, smile, hair, legs, intuition, passion for people, and ability to think creatively. And, I’ve realized that I have control over my body. It’s my health, my future, my happiness, my medical expenses, my finances, my plans…it’s about me. If I allow another person to avoid a conversation, test, and a condom (my CTC Examination) then I put myself and my future in jeopardy. Not to mention, I happen to be the parent of a delightful teenager who depends on my ability to make right and healthy choices. So, I can’t afford to skip the CTC, and if he opts out of it that’s his loss. Like Dori said in Nemo, he can, “Just keep swimming. Just keep swimming. Just keep swimming, swimming, swimming, swimming.” Adios. Babay. Arrivedece. Rabb rākhā. And, buh-bye.
I wish I could give you a smooth way to have the conversation, request the test, and talk about the condom, but I can’t. That has everything to do with you. Sometimes it’s like ripping of that good old band-aid or the tape covering a wound. It’s got to be done for healing to complete and it’s going to hurt initially, but once it’s done it’s done. Just do it for you. Not for anyone else. It’s more empowering than you might think. I say this to men and women. I want my son to make the choice to be empowered, ask questions, and look at his body as precious and his health as his fortune. Without good health what do you have? And that is ultimately up to you. Am I saying not to have sex? Heavens no! I am saying be informed. Know your status and that of your proposed partner. Take your health seriously, it’s YOURS alone. And, be willing to have straight conversations about sex. Be armed with knowledge. With all the information needed to proceed without caution I say this:
SEX! It’s not dirty (uhm, well…), it’s fun, it’s exciting, and amazing….with the right person!
Know your status. Go HERE to find a location near you for testing.
Thank me later.