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Do you ask new partners for STD testing?

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Forgive me if this sounds....I don't know....weird. But as a fairly recent divorcee, I haven't been in the dating world for a very long time! I'm curious to know if most people just have a brief discussion about STD testing before becoming intimate with a new partner, or if you actually ask them to have a new test (or even to see their test results) before sex. Especially since HSV usually isn't included in a routine STD panel, I wonder what your experiences have been like during disclosure.

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@HikingGirl I don't think it's uncommon for partners embarking on a relationship to get tested either before becoming sexually active or when choosing if they want to go without condoms. Because I'm in casual dating mode, that approach is less practical from a timing standpoint, though I have heard of people physically exchanging recent test results. I test periodically and am very willing to share a copy of my results, but nobody has ever asked me to do so, nor have I asked them. I am aware some people do this and I don't think it's at all unreasonable.


My disclosure conversations aren't all the same, but I usually ask people how they approach safe sex and whether they get tested periodically, share my own status (including HSV) and recent testing history, and tell them I use condoms outside of monogamous relationships (I prefer to set this expectation as early as possible, not in the heat of the moment). I don't ask specifically about their HSV status or encourage them to get tested because I'd rather leave that decision to them, and I am not at risk of contracting it from a partner anyway. My feeling is that there are consequences to HSV testing and I'm not comfortable influencing someone to make that personal choice. I might feel differently about it in a LTR, considering I only take antivirals to prevent transmission to a negative partner. In such a case, if the partner wanted me to continue taking antivirals on a long-term basis, I might want them to be more conscientious about knowing their own status.


My experience is that most people will say they are "clean" and test periodically, but what they have been tested for really varies. For instance, I'm most concerned about HIV, and some people who get tested regularly are not being tested for HIV, so if you don't ask specifically, you won't know what they were tested for. They may not even know.


I recognize that I'm taking a risk in only verbally discussing these things, having non-monogamous sex, and not waiting for window periods to pass before getting physical, but this is the level of risk I'm comfortable with. I know there are others on this site who approach this differently, so hopefully you'll get a range of perspectives.

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@HikingGirl -- I've had an amazingly low amount of partners ask me about my testing and disease status, and because I have mostly been engaging in casual sex and dating since I've been sexually active I have not been too concerned by their lack of questions, or asking much myself.


Now that my situation has changed, I will of course plan on talking about safe sex and diseases probably in a manner similar to how @optimist describes.


Personally I doubt I will ask someone to get tested together, unless maybe I get into a relationship and go without condoms. I'll cross that bridge when I get to it. Not saying it is a bad idea to do this, though. It's all about what level of risk you're comfortable with as @optimist said.

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