Aids Affair: Partner says he didn't infect me


May 17, 2016

Dear Counsellor:

I tested positive for a sexual disease and the doctor said it was Chlamydia. Do you think my sex partner of only six months is infected as well? I told him about my infection and he insisted that he is not the one who gave it to me because he is not the one who is having symptoms. Counsellor, my boyfriend is making me feel so guilty. I am very confused. What I find really strange though, counsellor, is that I only started having these

symptoms after I had sex with him. Counsellor, can you tell me if it is possible that I picked up Chlamydia from using the toilet at my workplace because that is the only place I think I could be exposed.

Confused Girlfriend

Dear Confused Girlfriend,

Chlamydia is a common sexually transmitted infection (STI) caused by bacteria and is usually transmitted from one infected partner to another during vaginal, oral, or anal sex. Most people infected with Chlamydia often do not have visible symptoms in the early stages of the infection. That could give you a false impression that everything is okay. Therefore, for someone who practises unsafe sex, have more than one sex partner, or change sex partner, it may be difficult to determine who infected that person. It is also important to note that only a few men (two out 10) show visible symptoms when they are infected. On the other hand, most women (eight out of 10) show visible symptoms when they are infected. Chlamydia can cause serious health problems in the later stages, including preventing women from getting pregnant or even endangering their pregnancies.

Right now, your major concern should be to get better. You must follow your doctor's instructions carefully. You should abstain from all sexual activities until you are fully cured. Your boyfriend needs to get tested for Chlamydia even if he is not showing visible symptoms. As mentioned earlier, he may be infected but not showing visible symptoms. He could

re-infect you if he is not treated, and most importantly he could develop serious complications.

Both you and your boyfriend must discuss safer sexual practises and you must be reminded that you have a personal responsibility to protect your sexual health.

Dear Counsellor:

I got a text message from a woman saying that my husband infected her with gonorrhoea. Counsellor, this worries me a whole lot because I am pregnant. If it is true that my husband is really infected with gonorrhoea, how would this affect my unborn child?

Expectant Wife

Dear Expectant Wife,

Gonorrhoea is a serious sexually transmitted infection and must be taken seriously. Women who have gonorrhoea during pregnancy tend to have higher rates of miscarriage. Therefore, a pregnant woman who found out that she is infected with gonorrhoea must seek prompt treatment from her health care provider, as prompt treatment reduces the risk of possible problems. If you don't get treatment for the gonorrhoea infection and go into labour, you could pass the bacteria to your baby.

This could cause your baby to become blind as gonorrhoea in newborns most commonly affects the eyes. Therefore, you should go promptly to your doctor to discuss any possibility of you been exposed to gonorrhoea. It is possible that the text message was not intended for you or someone is just been malicious. However, take no chances. It is better to be sure than later you end up saying you are sorry you never acted.

For more information on condom use, HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted infections, call the AIDS/STD Helpline toll free at 1-888-991-4444.