If you’re sexually active, it’s always advisable to get tested for sexually transmitted infections (STIs) before any new relationships or intimate encounters and encourage your partner to do the same. While being intimate with a single partner may reduce the risk of STIs, there’s still a chance of contracting an infection from your current or previous partner, especially if you haven’t gotten tested in the past.
While the stigma around STIs is as real as it gets, you should know that getting tested is a proactive and responsible step of your sexual healthcare routine. It is equally important to ensure the safety of your partner. Talk to your gynecologist or phlebotomist (a person who collects blood from patients and prepares the samples for testing) to get the right advice. The beauty of living in this day and age is that you could vet a professional before you access their services so look up their reviews online or ask on your social media if they’re non-judgemental and verified.
Talking about STIs can also seem like an awkward conversation with your match at first. My hot tip would be to initiate the conversation by sharing about the last time you got tested. In case you’ve been seeing each other for a bit, you could propose that testing together can even be a healthy relationship milestone!