Of all the STIs, HIV has truly made the biggest impact on the gay community. Looking at the devastation left by the virus and how it continues to affect the world today, it’s no wonder why HIV has taken centre stage, with other STIs somewhat taking a back seat.
Though if you love making love, then STIs are a fact of life and while you can go long periods without contracting any, sooner or later one might pop up.
While as a general rule you’ll need to avoid sexual contact until your treatment has finished, you don’t necessarily have to put yourself into a cone of isolation, AKA get thee to a nunnery.
That last line was mostly so I could include a Sister Act gif, but the advice stands! Here are some ways you can navigate the short period where you are out of the game, but still may be pursued by some doting admirers.
Do something that doesn’t involve dick
Boys are dick-stracting. And that distraction can get you in all sorts of funny business. While you’re waiting for your STI to be gonorrhoea with the wind, there are tonnes of things you could fill your time (and hands) with.
Try that new restaurant with some friends (the ones that don’t give you a hard-on)
Do something creative
Go square-eyed on a Netflix binge
Or just masturbate! AKA Netflix and Chill (the solo edition)
There is more to life than sex (shock horror!) and while an STI can be frustrating, look at it as an opportunity to do and try all the other beautiful things life has to offer. Go on, surprise yourself.
Get off the Grind
How about giving your ‘swipe left’ or ‘tapping’ skills a break and swipe out of hook-up apps for a little bit? All those boys just waiting to
eat meet you can be as tempting as a brunch session with bottomless mimosas not to mention how easy it is to jump onto Tinder or Grindr.
Save yourself the temptation; you’ll also be doing your phone’s battery life a favour! Or if temptation is too much, then at least be upfront with the guys looking for ‘Right Now’ #tapthatlater
I can’t host tonight because…
Have an excuse or two up your sleeve and when ‘the boy comes a texting’ you won’t be caught out.
Perhaps your family is visiting this week.
Or you had some food that is giving you some major gastrointestinal repercussions.
Maybe your best friend just had a bad break up?
The point is, you got this and saying no in a non-harsh way isn’t so bad.
Honesty (could be) the best policy
They say that honesty is the best policy – so if you’re pretty keen on him and he’s a decent guy, maybe telling him the truth won’t be such a big deal. You can still tell him how purdy his eyes are, and you are uber-keen to get it onnnn but you’ll just have to be patient.
I mean, if a guy were to say that to me, it would show how confident he is and that he’s looking after his sexual health. He knows about his status and getting treated, and he’s not afraid to have difficult, awkward conversations.
Good things can come to those who wait.
Have more questions about STIs?
Got a question about STIs? We have resources available to help you grapple with a surprise visitor:
- How to tell someone you’ve got an STI
- Can STIs be transmitted by kissing?
- What is the difference between chlamydia and gonorrhoea?
You can also view our frequently asked questions for information on a range of topics.