Sex talk

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You need to get tested

What you can say

  • “I got some test results today. I think we should talk about them.”
  • “I just found out I might have something and I am worried about you. I'll come to the clinic with you if you want.”
  • “I just learned that a person I was with a while ago has an STI. I want us both to get tested just in case.”

When to talk about it

If you have just found out you have an STI, it's important to let sexual partners know that they need to get tested.  Anyone you have had vaginal, anal or oral sex with may have the same STI.  Let your partners know soon so they can get tested and treated. 

Know the facts

Your sexual partners may unknowingly pass the STI on to another person, or back to you if they are not tested and treated. Some untreated STIs can cause serious health problems.  Let your partner know where to get tested. Have information, such as a pamphlet or website, ready to give your partners.

What might happen

Be prepared to deal with different reactions your partners may have. If your partner(s) is upset, try not to take it personally. Your partner(s) may need time to react to what you have said. Telling your partners that they need to get tested is a way to show you care about their health. Try to tell them calmly and with confidence.

Other ways to let your partner know to get tested

  1. Tell your partners with a health care provider present. Make an appointment to go together. Your health care provider can help answer questions.
  2. Have a health care provider tell your partners for you, without using your name. Either your health care provider or a public health nurse will contact your partners. This person will tell your partners they may have an STI and need to get tested.  


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