Sexually transmitted diseases affect the body, but living with STDs can be stressful on the emotions, too. The emotions are heightened when past partners may be infected, too. If you’re worried about how to share news with a past partner, you’re not alone. There aren’t any hard and fast rules to sharing this information with a partner or past partner, but there are a some ways to make the process less daunting.
After having a positive test result for an STD, you should focus on your health. You may have a number of recommended treatments. Your other responsibility is to share this information with past and present partners. Since the risk is high that those partners may too have infected an STD, you must share and encourage past partners to be tested.
Before you share the details
You should know and understand the details of your STD before you contact any past partner. When you know the basics, you’ll be more prepared to answer questions and explain the situation correctly.
Preparing for the interaction
You can’t predict the path of the conversation, but you can prepare yourself. Get ready for the discussion by deciding how and when to speak with your past partner. Some may feel more comfortable talking on the phone, while others would rather meet in person. Make sure you feel confident with the details and specifics about the disease before you meet. This will make it easier for you to confidently share information. Staying calm in this uncomfortable position might be difficult — try to ease your partner’s fears by relaxing and staying calm and collected.
When you have spoken about the issue, give some time for him or her to soak in the information. Let him or her react and ask questions. Talk about testing and treatment, and make sure your past partner knows you are concerned and sharing this information in the interest of health.