It’s No Big Deal

24 Nov

Ok, this post is going to be something a little different.  A few days ago a friend confided in me (via facebook chat) that she had a great date with a guy but broke up with him when he told her he had HPV.  The following ensued.  For lack of a better method her text is blue and mine is red.

ps- I went out with an awesome guy who I really liked last week and it turned out he fucking has HPV
which makes me all types of sad
but dealbreaker
I don’t think thats a huge dealbreaker. Have you had your vaccine?  Also, HPV is on the not-such-a-big-deal side of the STI spectrum. And very few of the HPV strains are particularly dangerous. And it’s very likely you’ve already been exposed to it. And as Dan Savage says “if you break up with the guy who admits to having herpes and does everything to keep from giving it to you then you’ll end up with the guy who doesn’t own up to his chlamydia.”
hmmm I don’t have my vaccine
getting it next week
I got scared once he said it.
Did I tell you that when I was going out with XXXXXX he told me he had herpes
the first night he wouldn’t even let me touch him without a condom on but wouldn’t tell me why
and then he sent me a long apologetic email the next day saying he had herpes
and told me that he understood if I didn’t want to see him again
but he takes his meds every day and hasn’t had an outbreak in over a year
hm and what did you do?
I sent him back a message like “dude, if you think that’s gonna scare me off then you’re an idiot”
I ended up breaking up with him later for totally different reasons
he was upfront and honest about it. he took every precaution to keep me safe. I found that incredibly honorable. I couldn’t punish him for that.
and also deprive myself of someone I liked
seriously though herpes is scary
I am surprised
herpes is not scary
dude, you’ve been exposed to herpes I promise you.
anyone who isn’t a mormon or on one of those ‘virgin bride’ TV shows has been exposed to herpes
I would say that there is a 97% chance you’ve been exposed to it
and your body just said ‘whatevs’ and you’ve never had an outbreak and probably never will
something like 70% of the country has that exact experience and never even knows it and so as a result they think it’s totally gross and scary
herpes is not scary
herpes is not a big deal
herpes is right next to HPV on the not-such-a-big-deal side of the STI spectrum
you should write about it on your blog
the reason hpv seems so scary is that a small percentage of all hpv strains can result in warts or cervical cancer sometime in the next 70 years of your life.
And someone made a drug that could be marketed to *possibly prevent* those things
And then had to make a lot of commercials reminding you how bad hpv is so that you’ll buy the drug
I repeat, write about it on your blog
Now I’m not saying you shouldn’t get the vaccine.  I believe in vaccines.  I’m just saying that if this guy is really great then an STI that isn’t really a big deal, and that he’s obviously not dying from, and that he can and wants to protect you from shouldn’t come between you.  
I shall.

Except that I didn’t feel like writing so I just edited our conversation.

When someone tells you that they have an STI and they want to be honest with you and protect you from it, that honesty and bravery should be rewarded.

That doesn’t mean that you can’t break up with them.  You’re allowed to break up with anyone for any reason at any time.  You can wake up and decide you hate the taste of your partners spit and be done with the relationship.

Just remember to keep perspective.

2 Responses to “It’s No Big Deal”

  1. Izzy November 24, 2012 at 12:21 pm #

    I agree unequivocally. We, to our own detriment, stigmatize and fear many diseases that are just not that harmful. Thank you for writing this.

  2. Cjc November 24, 2012 at 3:21 pm #

    I feel like we are susceptible to being afraid of std’s.

    I’m surprised he was even aware that he has HPV since it normally has no symptoms in men… So he probably is actually an extremely conscientious person in respect to his health. 1 more plus.

    I’m glad you posted this!

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