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Author Topic: I am an idiot  (Read 2630 times)

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Offline imanidiot

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I am an idiot
« on: June 23, 2013, 02:30:41 PM »
First - let me salute you all for the professional, practical, consistent, and non-judgmental advice you offer daily on this website.

I was in a safe monagomous relationship for many years, it fell apart, and in a bout of loneliness had "sex" with a man and a woman recently.

I've read a lot on your site so I think I know my answers but I'm probably looking for some sort of reassurance...

Anyway, met a guy online and we slept together. No anal cause I'm just not interested. He wanted me to top him, but instead I fingered him for a few mins. This is no risk I gather. Also, since I had just met him, I wouldn't suck his penis. But I did stroke his penis and felt a little clear precum dribble on my fingers. He asked me to stop for whatever reason, and so I rubbed my fingers - with some of HIS precum - across his chest in a stroking massage-like fashion.

He then asked me to suck his nipples. I remember thinking to myself "But I just spread your precum over your chest including nipples. That means I will be licking some of your precum!" I then counterargued myself saying "This is not a major risk factor. It's a tiny volume and it's PRECUM! He's just asking for his nipples to be licked for crying out load." So I licked his nipples....

Anyway, that was that. My rational brain knew nothing risky had happened and I never thought about it again.

About one month later I met a girl around 30yo. Not a hooker or anything. At a party. She seemed nice and we went on a few dates. She told me about all the cheating boyfriends in her life and I felt sorry for her. She also seemed very lonely and was kind of encouraging me to take her home. **On the third date I had unprotected vaginal sex with her** Since I was in a monogamous hetero relationship for so long I didn't think much about the risk, and in any case I had always associated hiv with gay sex. (I KNOW NOW TO NEVER EVER EVER EVER EVER EVER DO THIS AGAIN!)

Anyway, about two weeks after the sex with the girl I caught a cold (this would be six weeks after meeting the guy). I thought nothing of it. It was mild. No flu. No sweats. No headaches or anything. Just an annoying cough where I would cough up phlegm from my throat.

However, the phlegm cough turned into a dry cough after about a week and just wouldn't go away. It then started to worry me.......so I looked up "dry cough" and immediately a link to hiv came out and I literally nearly sh&t in my pants. I didn't even think about the sex with the girl - I just assumed the gay "sex" with the guy might have been the cause!

Now, to be honest, many people at this time were having run-of-the-mill viral coughs lasting weeks. On the internet, I read that viral coughs last on average 18 days. http://www.mirror.co.uk/lifestyle/health/whats-causing-cough-10-causes-1758473  Also, aound the same time a friend of mine said his cough lasted 3-4 weeks. Mine lasted 4 weeks.  So whatever, nothing definitive in terms of acute infection I'm assuming???

But after doing some more research on your site, I've become really worried about the sex with the girl and the subsequent cough and have all but forgotten about the "sex" with the guy. And I'm thinking maybe I should get tested....but in all honesty, I am scared sh%tless!!! I have always been a hypochondriac and I do not think I am prepared psychologically for a bad result. I'm not good at dealing with any type of health issues, let alone hiv. On the flip side, I can't simply forget it! I can't sleep at night anymore and I'm stressing myself out......

A few details about the unprotected vaginal sex:
1) Lasted a few minutes (ejaculated outside)
2) Immediately washed off penis in shower
3) I don't know if she was menstruating because it was dark but I saw no blood on penis, etc.
4) I looked at my penis in the shower and there were no sores or cuts (as a matter of fact, I don't think I've ever had sores or cuts on my penis in my entire life?!)
5) I have no STDs
6) I am circumsized
7) I have no reason to believe she has hiv (but I understand the working assumption should ALWAYS be that he/she does)

So, I know the risk is not zero, but I'm really really really really scared about getting tested. It's a Catch-22. I want the peace of mind from a "good" result, but am not capable of handling a "bad" result....
« Last Edit: June 23, 2013, 02:37:18 PM by imanidiot »

Offline jkinatl2

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Re: I am an idiot
« Reply #1 on: June 23, 2013, 04:14:28 PM »

You had a risk with the unprotected vaginal sex, of course, and you ought to test. But please note that it's much more difficult (by no means impossible) for HIV to transmit from female to male than the other way around. Your risk, if it needs to be categorized, was on the lower end of the high scale, if that makes sense.

It should go without saying that NOTHING you did with the guy was in any was a potential risk for HIV. HIV cannot be transmitted outside the body, and the only firmly documented modes of that infection are unprotected anal sex. Precum on fingers, giving/getting oral, precum in mouth, these things simply are not risks for HIV.

Saliva contains over a dozen identified elements which inhibit HIV and make it impossible to infect. HIV is a very fragile virus at any rate, and the docking receptors (glycoproteins dotting the outside of the spherical viral shell) are extremely susceptible o changes in pH, temperature, and oxygen. Once outside the rather carefully controlled environment of the human body they disintegrate.

Without those fragile receptors, the virus has no "teeth" and cannot latch onto a vulnerable cd4 or dendritic cell, even if it smashed up against one - which is in and of itself unlikely, as those cells are not found on the skin or even in shallow cuts and scrapes. Heck, people even use their partner's semen as lubricant to masturbate with (not a very... sustainable option, actually) without fear of infection.

You did have a risk, on the lower end of the "high" scale, but as a one-off event with a person of unknown status, it would be unlikely in the extreme for this to be a "perfect storm" for you. However, a test at six weeks, and then at three months is still the only way to be certain.

Try not to stress too much, and remember- sometimes a cold is just a cold.

"Many people, especially in the gay community, turn to oral sex as a safer alternative in the age of AIDS. And with HIV rates rising, people need to remember that oral sex is safer sex. It's a reasonable alternative."

-Kimberly Page-Shafer, PhD, MPH

Welcome Thread

Offline imanidiot

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Re: I am an idiot
« Reply #2 on: June 25, 2013, 02:46:01 AM »
Thank you so much jkinatl2!!!

With your encouragement I went and got tested and the result was NEGATIVE!

For anyone reading this thread, let me just say that, after doing lots of research on the web about hiv over the past few months, I have found POZ to be hands-down the most informative, responsible website out there. The moderators here KNOW THEIR STUFF. Please trust them!

And regarding oral sex, here they don't try to "cover their ass" (excuse the pun!) like a lot of websites which treat oral sex as if it's as risky as unprotected anal/vaginal sex.

Because of my ignorance about hiv, I put myself at risk and worried myself sick for months.

I had it all backwards. The idea of sucking a guy's penis and getting some cum/precum in my mouth struck me as extremely dangerous (which is why I didn't give the guy a blow job even though that's clearly what he had wanted), and yet I did not think twice about having unprotected vaginal sex!!

I was making judgements based on my feelings about how hiv is transmitted and not the science. 

Who would've known that if I had just sucked the guy and worn a condom with the girl I could have saved myself months of worry!

Strange moral to the story. haha

Offline jkinatl2

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Re: I am an idiot
« Reply #3 on: June 25, 2013, 02:54:22 AM »
Thanks for the kind words!

I am glad you are negative! Try not to change that.

"Many people, especially in the gay community, turn to oral sex as a safer alternative in the age of AIDS. And with HIV rates rising, people need to remember that oral sex is safer sex. It's a reasonable alternative."

-Kimberly Page-Shafer, PhD, MPH

Welcome Thread

Offline Ann

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Re: I am an idiot
« Reply #4 on: June 25, 2013, 07:44:30 AM »

It's good to hear that you got tested - and I hope you also tested for all the other, MUCH more easily transmitted STIs as well.

However, you need to understand that there is a testing window period and it is unclear how long after the unprotected vaginal intercourse (your only risk) you tested.

The vast majority of people who have actually been infected will seroconvert and test positive by six weeks, with the average time to seroconversion being only 22 days.

A six week negative must be confirmed at the three month point, but is highly unlikely to change.

If the unprotected vaginal intercourse was less than three months ago, then you need to confirm your negative result at three months.

If it has been less than three months but longer than six, your result is unlikely to change.

Condoms are a girl's best friend

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"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

Nymphomaniac: a woman as obsessed with sex as an average man. Mignon McLaughlin

HIV is certainly character-building. It's made me see all of the shallow things we cling to, like ego and vanity. Of course, I'd rather have a few more T-cells and a little less character. Randy Shilts


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