Making the Right Choice
Apr 2014 15

Black doctor treating patient in hospitalPreparing to receive the results after a HIV or STI test can be nerve wracking. Your mouth is dry and your palms are sweaty but you are glad you were able to work up the confidence to get the tests done. You had been concerned about one slip up without a condom a few weeks ago with a new partner and decided to go to your local clinic.

As the nurse enters the room, your gut tells you the news isn’t good. She lets you know that one of your tests came back positive and that a round of antibiotics should clear it up. Though sad, you are relieved that it is a disease that is curable and vow to yourself that there will be no more slip ups. As you wait on your prescription, other thoughts begin to flood your mind. Where did I get this STI? Should I tell anyone? How would I even start that conversation with previous or current partners?

These thoughts are very common and may be one of the toughest things you’ll have to do. In order to prevent the spread of disease, you have to let other people know that they may have been exposed. On the other hand, feelings of anxiety and embarrassment, and even anger, may make it difficult to speak about the situation.

Thankfully, with technology it has become a tad easier to deliver news that may make you feel uncomfortable. There are now several apps that allow you to let folks know they may have been exposed to a sexually transmitted infection and still remain anonymous. Below are the apps:

Don’t Spread It (email and text-based)
InSPOT (e-card based) (ecards)
So They Can Know (email-based) (email-based)

By no means is revealing something like this easy, but it is the right thing to do.

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