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In the past, Carlson would put the herpes conversation on the table quickly.
“I don’t like wasting my time or getting my heart broken, so I think it’s a self-defense thing to almost always tell the guy on the first date,” she explains.
I could go on and on and on about it – but here’s the long story cut short.
The stigma attached to STDs in society has to BECOME a thing of the past.
We hope the ‘positive’ message is rightfully injected in the mainstream nexus!
Jenelle Marie Davis, 34, of Grand Rapids, Michigan, will gladly explain why having herpes isn’t the end of the world. It took years for Davis, founder of The STD Project, which encourages awareness and acceptance of various sexually transmitted diseases, and spokesperson for Positive Singles, a dating site for people with STDs, to come to terms with the diagnosis she got at age 16.“My mom says the entire way home from my appointment, I cried and said no one would ever love me, no one would ever want me, and I’d never get married,” Davis tells SELF.
And unlike the problem of a limited pool that other niche dating sites suffer a setback from, the community has its numbers overflowing as the Center for Disease Control confirms that about 110 million people in the US are infected with an STD.Davis agrees, saying she fills people in on key details, like how herpes is transmitted, how transmission can be prevented, whether she’s taking medication that keeps the virus from multiplying, thus making it less likely to transmit, and how to find more information about the STD.To top it all off, she also tells them they don’t have to make a decision about whether to continue seeing her—or even respond—right away. But I usually peace out so they have their space to chew on it,” she says.Davis says the number one question they get on The STD Project is about how to tell a new partner.On sites like Positive Singles and HMates, users are expected to be open about their diagnoses, but because they know everyone else there has an STD, too, it removes a huge barrier—and the question of whether the information will send a potential partner packing.“It’s a great way to see you’re still the same interesting, sexy, desirable person,” Davis says.