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Health

Dear Amy,

I am a 23 year-old woman who recently got diagnosed and treated for chlamydia after being hospitalized with pelvic inflammatory disease. I contacted the disease from my boyfriend of one year, who was not aware that he had the infection. He says that he has been tested for STDs and HIV yearly and none of the tests have come back positive.

This past month, my annual PAP results were abnormal. I went in to see my gyno and she performed a colposcopy. She says that the abnormal cells look like they could be HPV (human papiloma virus), and she did a biopsy to make sure. I am still waiting for results, so I'm not sure if I have the disease or not.

I love my boyfriend very much and believe him when he tells me he hasn't cheated on me and that he has, in fact, gotten tested annually. This is a guy who spent 13 hours with me in the emergency room and would do almost anything for me. But, I'm still pissed and unbelievably sad about all of this.

Although he has gotten treated and has supported and comforted me throughout all of this, he did not have to go through what I went though and what I am still going through. He hasn't had to face the doctors and the biopsies and the countless pelvic exams. Not to mention all of the embarrassment and other possible health risks I have to face because of al of this. I have admitted this to him, we have talked about it, and I thought we had moved on. But because of the recent developments, I am at a loss. Am I stupid to stay with him? I don’t know what to do. Any advice you could give me would be much appreciated.

Thank you.

   

Hello,

By now your test results have probably come back and you may know if you have HPV. However, HPV is also hard to detect and given that an estimated 80% of all people have some strand of HPV it is also a hard STD to confirm and treat. Surprisingly, many people have HPV who have never even had intercourse, plus, for many people it is an STD that can lay dormant for years. Therefore, your boyfriend might have contracted it several years ago and it never got detected.

That said, your boyfriend might very well be telling you the truth. Now, you just have to decide how you are going to navigate this situation together. It sounds like you have been able to talk about it and support each other--and that is most important. I hope that helps. Good luck - and take care of yourself.


--Amy

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