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View Full Version : If someone gives you an STD, do you blame them?



esperance
02-06-2003, 06:34 PM
I was listening to a radio interview of a woman yesterday on Power 99 (Phila). This woman was telling her story of how she contracted HIV from a former boyfriend. A few key points that I remember her saying were:

1. the guy was involved in gay sex on the down low

2. the condom broke because he didn't put it on correctly

3. the guy knew he was HIV+ but chose not to disclose it

Just my own opinions:
The guy could have just as easily contracted HIV from a woman. His 'gay activities' may not have been the vessel through which he contracted HIV. In regards to both the condom not being used correctly and him knowing that he was infected but not telling her, there was a lack of sexual responsibility on her part and she put way too much trust in him to take care of things that could affect her body and health.

While I am not looking down on this woman, and I'm sure that she has learned quite a few life lessons through this, I wish more women would take more of an active role in or just take charge of the sexual situations that they get involved in.

For instance,
-make sure you and your potential partner get tested for EVERYTHING and know the results of the tests BEFORE you engage in sex

-decide if you even WANT to engage in sex by accepting and realizing ALL of the possible consequences of sex (pregnancy, STD, emotions, your partner's sex history coming back to bite you, your own sex history coming back to bite you, etc.)

-double or triple up on protection if you want to reduce (not eliminate) your risk of unwanted pregnancy and STD

-make sure you AND your partner know how to properly use the chosen protection, and know the failure rates of the protection

-don't rely on the guy to handle everything for you. This is your body and no one is going to protect like you can.

When I met my husband at the age of 18, I was aware enough of the AIDS and STD epidemic that I had no problems discussing it with him. We both got tested before we even engaged in sexual activity. I'd love to see more women, young and older, being more aware and concerned about what is out there and caring more about their bodies when it comes to sex. Especially when you consider the fact that the radio station stated that 50% of all reported HIV cases are women.

When are we going to take more responsibility for our bodies? When are we going to stop leaving it up to the men (using male condoms ONLY)? When are we going to stop acting like AIDS does not exist? Are we talking to the young people in our families about this? Girls and boys? Is it sinking in? Do we still see AIDS as a 'gay disease'? A Haitian disease? An African disease? The OTHER person's problem?

I'm just afraid that STD, HIV and AIDS awareness has fallen by the wayside, along with countless bodies of women, young and old, who have been stricken by the diseases.

GalaxyGirl2010
02-06-2003, 06:52 PM
I agree with you that some women dont take an active role in their sexual well-being. Id like to say that maybe that comes with age but we all know that there are some women who are old enough to know better who dont do better. I talked to a friend of mine who's seeing a married guy who's also seeing other girls if she's worried about getting STDS or HIV from him and her response was that she really doesnt like to talk to him about the other women??!! because she'd rather avoid getting into an argument.

Maybe the woman on the radio show saw AIDS and STD's as something that cant happen to her; my friendis definitely under that assumption. I think that happens to alot of people too.They just sort of assume that since it's only one time or one accident then what are the odds?

Unfortunately I think the majority of people still think of AIds as a gay or druggie user disease. Of the 6 people that Ive known so far with AIDS/HIV only one of them was gay, none were drug users and the rest were hetero..

Twistie74
02-06-2003, 06:58 PM
No, I wouldn't blame them because many women should take more of an active role in their sexual health.

Just because a guy tells you he got tested - that don't mean he got tested within the last six months. Also, if he cares about you, then he should be happy to go with you so you both can be tested and abstain if necessary :)

It takes two the tango.

esperance
02-06-2003, 07:01 PM
Also, if he cares about you, then he should be happy to go with you so you both can be tested and abstain if necessary :)

It takes two the tango.

You can say that again!

LotsOfLocs
02-06-2003, 07:06 PM
I heard a quite a bit of the interview. I prefer to listen to 103.9 with Jonsey, so I dinnt hear the ending. I didn't get the impression she was blaming it totally on him. She was just saying that he was not honest about his sexuality and never told her he had AIDS. Many gay men are bringing AIDS to the straight community it seems. I'm in no way saying its a gay thing. All you can really do to not get AIDS is abstain because using condoms are not 100%. They have microscopic holes and they break sometimes, whether properly on or not. You can only hope your husband is not cheating. So many married women have AIDS. Then you have to worry about being injected with it. Its a sad thing, test dont always even pick it up. Some people are carriers of the disease. Its one of the chances you take with being sexually active.

Twistie74
02-06-2003, 07:07 PM
Also, if he cares about you, then he should be happy to go with you so you both can be tested and abstain if necessary :)

It takes two the tango.

You can say that again!

You know, it's always so INTERESTING how a guy can and will get defensive when you bring up the topic of getting tested for STD's - like it's only for YOUR benefit. For all HE knows, you could be infected with syphigonaherpaidsia, but he's blind to it because he thinks you don't 'trust' him :roll:

LotsOfLocs
02-06-2003, 07:07 PM
No, I wouldn't blame them because many women should take more of an active role in their sexual health.

Just because a guy tells you he got tested - that don't mean he got tested within the last six months. Also, if he cares about you, then he should be happy to go with you so you both can be tested and abstain if necessary :)

It takes two the tango.

Right!

Just because your test is negative, does not mean you are. It can take years to appear.

esperance
02-06-2003, 07:09 PM
Unfortunately I think the majority of people still think of AIds as a gay or druggie user disease. Of the 6 people that Ive known so far with AIDS/HIV only one of them was gay, none were drug users and the rest were hetero..

And I really hope that there are not too many people who are still under this disillusion. Sad to say, I know that there ARE people out there who have honestly convinced themselves of this.

And how about people who don't want to get tested because they 'don't want to know'? I suppose the fear is getting the better of their common sense. Not knowing is not going to stop the symptoms from coming. Not knowing is not going to prevent the spreading of the disease. Not knowing is not going to make anything any easier to handle. Not knowing will delay treatment. Not knowing will ruin a potentially good relationship. Not knowing will prevent support from others. Get tested and know for sure, one way or another!

Medusa Negrita
02-06-2003, 07:11 PM
When we know we've done wrong in either hurting, injuring or putting ourselves in danger or a hazardous position, it's hard to take responsibility for it. So quite naturally we want to blame it on anything else and get someone else to accept the responsibility of what happened. So yes, while he made have engaged in all those activities and passed her HIV, truth of the matter is that maybe she could have taken more precautions and active role in protecting herself on angles - but most likely you won't hear her say that.....at least initially.

On the most basic level, it's hard to hard to admit when you did something wrong like hurting one's feelings and putting up a personal apology for it, so when it gets to be much deeper than that, to think you can also be responsible for what happened to you or someone else is probably a.......(this is going to sound big for this sentence, but)...a tumultuousu undertaking. We're scared for a lot of reasons, least of which is how we and other people will feel about what we done and what we are responsible for.

LotsOfLocs
02-06-2003, 07:11 PM
One more thing AIDS is a more of a political issue than a health issue. The so -called facts the health industry chooses to tell. Is just that, what they choose to tell. Dont forget the Syphillis experiment. Look how long it took them to admit AIDS existed. They didnt want to tell us about AIDS until the politics of who would get to name it, who discovered, etc. was resolved. The cure will have the same politics involved. The cure will not be giving out anytime soon. At least not until AIDS wipes out the intended people. I believe there is a cure for a disease made in a laboratory.

esperance
02-06-2003, 07:17 PM
I heard a quite a bit of the interview. I prefer to listen to 103.9 with Jonsey, so I dinnt hear the ending. I didn't get the impression she was blaming it totally on him. She was just saying that he was not honest about his sexuality and never told her he had AIDS.

I only heard the first 10 minutes or so because I had to get to my doctor's appointment. So, I only heard her say what I mentioned in the original post. I didn't get the impression that she blamed him for everything, but it did come off like she was blaming him for the homosexual activity (which she believes is how the disease was contracted), the improper use of the condom and for not telling her that he was infected. And if I was that woman, I would blame him for those as well. At this point, I think her stance was more of trying to educate other women, moreso than blaming him for giving her the disease. And I applaud her for that. Since I didn't hear the rest of the interview, I don't know if she specifically stated that she accepted part of the responsibility as well.

But there are plenty of women out there who don't take ANY responsibility for diseases that they may 'catch' while having sex. And that's just sad.

CocoBudda
02-06-2003, 07:18 PM
I think both are to blame. Taking an HIV test together still will not guarantee that you would know the results if they were positive. It would still be up to the guy to tell you since they don't release that info to anyone but the person being tested. The last time I was tested for HIV, I didn't receive anything in writing. My Doctor told me the results while I was in his office . I don't know if this is how it is normally done, maybe it's just because of the relationship that I have with my doctor. What about these women who have been married for years, been tested with their partners and their partners suddenly decide that they are bi-curious or gay or whatever and then end up infecting their wivfes later on. Who is to blame in that situation or are married couples still to get HIV tests every six months and use protection.

LotsOfLocs
02-06-2003, 07:21 PM
Most HIV results are giving in person, most are not allowed to give you the test over the phone or by mail.

Deej
02-06-2003, 07:25 PM
Just thought I'd throw this statistic in, something I heard on the radio too.

Men are more likely to give the Aids virus to women than the other way around, only 4% of the women with Aids has given it to their partner the other 96% is transmitted by men.

Deej

esperance
02-06-2003, 07:29 PM
What about these women who have been married for years, been tested with their partners and their partners suddenly decide that they are bi-curious or gay or whatever and then end up infecting their wivfes later on. Who is to blame in that situation or are married couples still to get HIV tests every six months and use protection.

A spouse who cheats .period. (whether through homosexual or heterosexual sex) and spreads AIDS or other STD to their spouse should be thrown in jail!

BTW, is there a law for knowingly spreading STD's to people? Does anyone have any info on this?

MsTam
02-06-2003, 07:45 PM
Only some states have laws against knowingly transmitting STD's to a partner. It is not a federal law and also some of those laws don't necessarily include HIV/AIDS.

happilynappy
02-06-2003, 08:02 PM
If you are married yes, blame your partner but if you are not then you should take the responsibility of protecting your ownself.

Wendy
02-06-2003, 08:09 PM
That depends on the situation. If you get it from some guy you met a party and didn't bother to use protection. You set yourself up. No, it's not fair but it's life.

But then there are situations like this. Let's say you've been married for a few years have a couple of kids and has no reason to believe that your spouse is being unfaithful. But he or she is and he or she catches something and brings it home. Are you wrong for having unprotected sex with your spouse whom you beleive to be faithful? I don't think so. But these things do happen. In that case I feel the one who brought the STD into the relationship is fully to blame. They should not only be blamed but prosecuted for involuntary manslaughter.

ashrob123
02-06-2003, 08:13 PM
In the instance in which you were talking about it would seem that the guy would be more to blame, not because he put the condom on incorrectly, but because he didn't give her the choice of deciding whether or not to have sex with someone who was HIV +. If she asked and he didn't disclose, how is she to blame? He took away her choice to put herself at risk. Now some will say that you should always assume that something will happen (pregnancy, STD), but if you've built a relationship with someone and they lie, does it still continue to be your fault?

esperance
02-06-2003, 10:58 PM
In the instance in which you were talking about it would seem that the guy would be more to blame, not because he put the condom on incorrectly, but because he didn't give her the choice of deciding whether or not to have sex with someone who was HIV +.

That's one of the horrible thing about this. People will only tell you as much as they want you to know. With that in mind, people should probably always assume the worst, and they'll never be disappointed.


If she asked and he didn't disclose, how is she to blame? He took away her choice to put herself at risk. Now some will say that you should always assume that something will happen (pregnancy, STD), but if you've built a relationship with someone and they lie, does it still continue to be your fault?

I see your point. But I honestly don't see him as taking away her choice. He deceived her, yes. But he did not force her to have sex with him. And when it comes to a life and death matter, I don't think any woman should solely rely on the mere word of a potential sex partner. There is an unbelievable level of trust that accompanies the decision to have sex with someone. And that trust may take quite a while to build up...atleast more than a couple of days!

*And I see a huge difference between the casual sex episode where neither partner cares to even ask about STD and protection versus the committed couple (married or not) who have built a relationship on trust and one of them deceives the other. My issue is with those of us who don't even care to inquire about our partner's sexual history and our possible exposure to diseases.*

Realistically, where does that leave us? Are we to never trust what our partner says? What kind of life would that be? The fact of the matter is that we all put our lives at risk anytime we engage in sex, husband or not. Yeah, we'd all love to believe that our spouse would never cheat on us. But do you know how many women have been wrong about that? Plenty!

Are we ever completely safe from contracting an STD? Being able to say without a doubt 'yes' to this is 100% dependent on our level of trust in our partners.

ashrob123
02-07-2003, 02:58 AM
I agree with you esperance. It is becoming a scary place. I have a friend whose husband cheated on her for 2 years and just had a baby with the other woman after 10 years of marriage (all unbeknowst to her until about 2 months before the baby was born). You never know what your man is doing or with whom.

When I said choice I was referring to women who would still choose to have sex with someone who they know has a STD. It happens. He didn't even allow her the opportunity to say, yes, I decide to put myself at risk. That seems only fair, but as well all know, life is rarely fair.

esperance
02-07-2003, 04:14 PM
When I said choice I was referring to women who would still choose to have sex with someone who they know has a STD. It happens. He didn't even allow her the opportunity to say, yes, I decide to put myself at risk. That seems only fair, but as well all know, life is rarely fair.

I hear you. I was focusing on the choice to have sex, which is why I totally missed your point.:? I see what you're saying now!

That's a terrible situation for your girlfriend (and countless other women out there). One of my girlfriends started dating this wonderful man who told her upfront that he had an STD (turns out to be herpes) before they had sex. I can't begin to tell you how much respect I have for him for loving and respecting her enough to advise her of that BEFORE they were intimate.

Now, if we can just get everybody to be that honest and forthcoming...

CEE26
02-11-2003, 12:25 PM
you can't totally blame the man because it's your body...you have to protect yourself......and make wise decisions

ashrob123
02-11-2003, 12:38 PM
RE: comments on responsibility

There are some things that I simply don't understand about Black women. Why do we always choose to blame ourselves or other Black women for the things that others do to us. The definition of responsible is someone who makes a rational decision on one's own and is therefore answerable for their own behavior. How can someone make a rational decision when they are only given half of the facts? Who takes responsibility dishonesty and deceit? The woman? :roll:

Janie's comment in "Their Eyes were Watching God" has never seemed more accurate. We are the mules of the world. We take on our responsibility and are expected to take the responsibility of others who decide not to disclose their STD.

When does it end?

When do we stop taking on the burdens of everyone else? When do we start chastising our men for bringing back diseases to us at alarming rates? When does it stop?

scurrie
02-11-2003, 05:08 PM
If you are married yes, blame your partner but if you are not then you should take the responsibility of protecting your ownself.

I totally agree!

blumoonbabe
12-06-2003, 07:52 AM
bump

YoGirlToo
12-06-2003, 08:56 PM
like someone else said it takes 2 to tango. when you lay down w/ someone that's the risk you take especially if you are having sex w/ someone not your husband. even in marriage it's risky. so the only time i would blame them is if i was married and my husband brought it home to me- then it's his fault, b/c we're married besides that - i got to use the old quote- "you made you bed - now lay in it"

Aquarius
12-11-2003, 07:18 PM
bump

tdhayes
12-11-2003, 07:29 PM
I think that we'll only be better off when folks begin accepting responsibility for their own actions and stop blaming everyone else. Until then, I don't see much changing. In grad school, this subject of HIV/STDS/AIDS on the rise in the AA community always came up...no one could figure out why when there was so much knowledge available....

Clarity36
12-11-2003, 07:43 PM
Originally posted by LotsOfLocs@Feb 6 2003, 01:11 PM
One more thing AIDS is a more of a political issue than a health issue. The so -called facts the health industry chooses to tell. Is just that, what they choose to tell. Dont forget the Syphillis experiment. Look how long it took them to admit AIDS existed. They didnt want to tell us about AIDS until the politics of who would get to name it, who discovered, etc. was resolved. The cure will have the same politics involved. The cure will not be giving out anytime soon. At least not until AIDS wipes out the intended people. I believe there is a cure for a disease made in a laboratory.
I also believe AIDS is a man-made disease and was started in the lab. I find it quite unusual that it is taking such a toll in Africa. I really believe they went down there and started injecting people with the virus. The people thought they were being injected with a vaccine.

I guess the intended parties are being reached.

I believe alot of this would be controlledif people were more responsible and ask themselves if a few minutes of huffing and puffing between the sheets is worth a death sentence?

happidaz
12-11-2003, 08:01 PM
Assuming she really did wear a condom every time they had sex, then I think she did the best thing she could to protect herself second to abstaining. I guess she could have put the condom on for him, but thats not to say at some point it wouldn't have broken or whatever, and sometimes it slips off, even when placed correctly.

As important as it is to get tested prior to having intercourse (oral and genital), it doesnt account for the six months prior to getting the test. So both of you would have to abstain from and intimate contact for up to 6 months before getting tested. I'm not saying its not possible, but realistically, what happens when you both test negative. Does that still mean you cant get HIV? Do you totally trust in your partner not to engage in sex with anyother person ever while you;re together? Of course, thats what you should want, but I dont know how realistic that is...

Basically, at this point, I think the only way you can safely prevent HIV infection is through abstinence...next to that is wearing a condom properly and hoping it doesnt malfunction.

Unfortunately we live in an age where honesty and faithfulness is not an abundant characteristic for many, no matter how loving they seem. And we have to know that everytime we lay down with someone we are putting ourselves as risk for contracting an STD, and it is as much our responsibilty as it is our partners.

If I decide to have sex without a condom, and I get an STD--its my fault. If I have sex with someone and the condom breaks, and I get an STD--its the risk I took willingly.