So I had my first ever HIV test on Tuesday (came back negative ), and the experience brought up a lot of concerns. I went to an HIV forum to ask some general questions in their off-topic area(since all the other forums were geared towards people who are either positive or questioning their status), and my questions (and I would venture to say that my overall presence) appeared generally unwelcomed since I didn't appear to be suffering from anything, so I'm posting here where I know I have at least one thing in common with folks here (interest in law school), so I'd appreciate any of your insights on this:
I'm a 23 yr old African American lesbian who was tested for the first time this Tuesday, via a Rapid test. For quite a while I've known about the risks of contracting, but really didn't think much of them since I wasn't very active (dumbest reasoning ever).
Anyway, I was watching the Logo station on Sunday and saw a movie, I think it was called 26 days, though I can't be sure. In any case, I started looking up symptoms just out of curiosity and ran across the swollen glands part. I'm scheduled to have my tonsils taken out because the swelling hasn't responded long term to penicillin, which is kind of unusual (I would have thought mono, but penicillin would have made me break out into hives if I had mono, as it has happened to me before and is a common effect, says my GP). Then I noticed the swollen glands under the arms symptom, and this was a huge red flag for me, since my ex complained of this and I saw scars under her arms. (she turned out to be a compulsive liar, which is why I became so worried so long after breaking up with her--2 years ago).
Fast forward 2 years and I'm thinking about those scars I saw. and the fact that she claimed she was sick....by what? who knows? But I'm thinking..and thinking.. and by Monday, I was scared to death. Why did I never think about getting tested long before now?? What an idiot I am. Especially because I have a current girlfriend, who I've insisted we get tested before we go any further intimately. Such a dummy. So I was terrified for all of 24 hours and frantically got myself to a clinic and was relieved to know that both of us are negative (we got tested together). And I feel like we are in the clear now. Finally. Except...
We had a discussion the other night about protection. Even though we are quite committed and trust one another, is it ever really okay for us not to use protection? Our guess was probably not. And here's just a general question, is it ever smart for monogamous couples to not use it? Ever? I mean, I'm fresh from reading about our New York governors and LT governors, and I think it's a prime example of why we can't. But maybe I'm missing many other insights. But I'd like to see what I can learn here in this community, if I can.
I hope to hear from all of you soon.
Aside from all this: happy weekend everyone. enjoy the l word season finale! Can't believe it's ending already. I hope the last season is promising. Just from watching this season's, I feel like it will be.
Waiting for the results of that rapid test thing was one of the most excruciating things I have ever been through even though I knew that I had a tiny, if any chance it coming back positive. Anyway, as to your question, I think at some point, it's okay to stop using protection, like when you're pretty much married to the person. You do raise a valid point with the whole Spitzer thing but I'd like to believe that's an anomaly. I think it'd be somewhat strange to always use protection with someone that you're committed to for life. Anyway, I'm rambling. My point is, if you're dating, then use protection, if you're committed, trust each other, definitely together forever, etc, then I don't think it's necessary. Just MHO.