male box

Are Men Less Concerned About STDs?


If you’re American and you attended high school, you likely took a class called “Sex Education.”  I don’t recall learning much about sex per se, but I do remember the gruesome pictures of STD-infested genitalia, presumably shown to convince me to maintain my already intact V-card.  I still remember the horrific images of puss-filled sores and lacerated labias that successfully scared me straight, and still haunt me to this day.

I’m EXTRA paranoid about STDs, especially AIDS.  So, you can imagine my shock when I read that, according to AskMen’s Great Male Survey (a poll of over 72,000 men), 61% of the men surveyed had never been tested!  The results were further broken down by country, and in the U.S., a whopping 54% had never been tested! Seriously?  In 2012? We all know the risks associated with sex, especially in non-monogamous relationships. So, again I say, seriously?

True, women must routinely visit the doctor far more often than men because of our complicated innards, and so it is much more likely that we will get tested once we start having sex, and routinely thereafter. But, still. Don’t men care to know whether they have “the clap” or herpes, or heaven forbid, some incurable, or worse, fatal disease?

The “what you don’t know, won’t hurt you” mantra cannot reasonably be applied HERE.  Therefore, I implore you to take your a** to the doctor and get tested REGULARLY, not just when you get that burn or that itch, REGULARLY.  We all know that condoms do not fully protect against STDs, so using them faithfully does not discharge your duty to get tested.  Furthermore, it is possible to be infected and experience no symptoms at all. I suggest getting tested after each partner, if for no other reason than to know who to blame when your member starts dripping.

You guys know I don’t typically use profanity, but this statistic not only disgusted me, it put me on notice that there are hoards of people out there who are sexually irresponsible, and could care less about their own sexual health, much less yours.  Be well. You only live once.

Why don’t men get tested for STDs?  Why are men less likely to take their overall health seriously enough to visit the doctor even when nothing is necessarily wrong?  Is a man who takes his personal health seriously (through diet and exercise) more likely to also be more proactive about maintaining his sexual health?

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Discussion

19 thoughts on “Are Men Less Concerned About STDs?

  1. TT:

    I believe there is a correlation between not getting tested for STDs and the steadily increasing number of people who do not accept responsibility for their actions. Further, most people (especially men) are in denial regarding their own mortality. I find it to be quite prevalent for men to believe they are invincible unless faced with a life threatening situation prior to reaching their 50s.

    Also, pride and ego sometimes play a role. As a former athlete who competed at just about every level (albeit one for a short period) during my life, I have met many delusional athletes who pumped themselves up yet would play it cool when faced with the bigger challenges (so that they could tell themselves they didn’t give it their all when outplayed). I believe the same principle applies here. While I rarely listen to any rap or hip hop anymore (if I do it is definitely not any of the new stuff), I can distinctly remember how some of the music encouraged the development of an egotistical self image (eg. “so fresh and so clean”). As a matter of fact, it can be traced to the beginning of the era as the Sugarhill Gang said “I’m imp the dimp, the ladies pimp, the women fight for my delight”. My point is that people who have a delusional self-image are less likely to voluntarily accept nor listen to the truth about themselves.

    I do not believe “a man who takes his personal health seriously (through diet and exercise) is more likely to also be more proactive about maintaining his sexual health.” Quite often some individual’s motivation for watching their diet and exercising regularly is to increase their number of sexual encounters. I occasionally recommend to people (those I know who are doing so) to not sleep around (disease is not the only reason I recommend not doing so), and they just laugh it off and some of these people are extremely dedicated to adhering to a quality diet and regular exercise routine, yet are reckless sexually.

    I just don’t get it but I must say that it is not just men doing this. I once had a woman tell me she wasn’t concerned about catching HIV or AIDS and sleeping with numerous people. I asked her why and she said, “if I catch it I’ll just use my story to inform others.” I have heard a lot of stupid things in my life but this is still in my top 5.

    Mark

    Posted by Mark | September 21, 2012, 12:36 PM
    • “I once had a woman tell me she wasn’t concerned about catching HIV or AIDS and sleeping with numerous people. I asked her why and she said, “if I catch it I’ll just use my story to inform others.”

      Wow…this is asinine. But, it just goes to show that there are a lot of irresponsible men and yes, women out there, so to trust someone that “looks clean” or appears to be is like gambling.

      I focused on the men because, the stat for men far exceeded that of women. Overall, the women’s stat was 29% (still frighteningly high though lol). Also, in my experience, women are dragging their husbands and S/Os to the doctor kicking and screaming, sometimes even when something IS wrong. I always found this perplexing.

      I think your explanation helps to explain this though, especially the part about them “not recognizing their own mortality.” Where did this come from? Is it taught? It seems innate.

      I’m often saying in my head, ‘you do know you could die too, or much worse (at least it seems it would be much worse to them) they could experience erectile dysfunction and all matter of difficulty that could render their member inoperable. You would think that would be enough to get them to take their sexual health more seriously, but I honestly don’t think it does. It’s a shame.

      Posted by 30thoughts | September 21, 2012, 7:59 PM
      • maybe it has to do with some of the blood leaving a mans brain to give him an erection, but I know from experience when it comes to sex men are more wreckless than women. There are more men out here with more than 5 kids with several baby mama’s, than there are women with 5 and more kids and they all have different daddies. I once dated a man who had 20 something brothers and sisters. Like his dad literally made 20 something babies with countless different women.
        I think when they get caught up in the heat of the moment many men “lose all sight of the world” and don’t really think and don’t think about condoms or the woman they are about to lay with and what not. I’ve had men I met at a club tell me they would go down on me and meant it. I’ve never known a man to turn down sex from a woman ever for any reason unless he had no desire for her whatsoever and was completely unattracted to her to the point where she couldn’t get him hard, or unless she had so much serious drama with her he wanted to avoid it at all costs. When it comes to sex, many times a man is just happy to get it any way he can from whatever attractive woman he can get it from. Most times it’s the woman who stops it or says no, not the man. I think this has a lot to do with how irresponsible men can be when it comes to sex.

        Posted by Bree | October 5, 2012, 10:42 PM
      • I have to agree with you. lol @the guy with 20 brothers and sisters. Is his dad still alive to tell the story or did his peenie fall off?

        I just wonder if it also has to do with their self-esteem like they say when it comes to women. Your body is your temple, and it would seem that no one is worth “dying” or living uncomfortably for, especially someone you DON’T KNOW. So, the fact that many would throw it all away for a roll in “raw” hay is beyond. It could be chemical like you say (re the blood/erection), but geez!

        Posted by 30thoughts | October 6, 2012, 12:19 AM
  2. Maybe some of them hear that little factoid about how it’s somewhat easier for women to contract STDs than men, and think that means they can get away with being reckless. But I think for most of them it’s one of two issues–
    1) thinking that if it looks/smells okay she must be clean and 2) not wanting to accept that women have a sexual past or that a woman might be cheating on him.

    Posted by Brownbelle | September 22, 2012, 1:09 AM
    • I wasn’t aware of that factoid…interesting. I’m not sure how that can be true, but assuming that it is, doesn’t seeing things happen to others affect their thinking at all. Like when Magic Johnson announced he had AIDS, it really made Black men especially aware they it can happen to them too.

      Your issue #2 is probably the most common line of thinking, but how can men be so gullible? Thinking with the little head instead of the big one is probably the culprit.

      Casual relationships aside though, where the man professes to love a woman, wouldn’t this so-called love at least drive him to ensure hers and his own sexual safety? I feel like if he doesn’t care about his own body, he could care less about yours. Maybe this is something women should also consider when dating and considering a potential mate.

      Posted by 30thoughts | September 22, 2012, 1:25 AM
      • Oh, it’s not a major risk reduction. It mostly has to do with the size of the *ahem* orifices down there. I think we just underestimate the power of the little head. I totally agree that any real man worth his salt wants to protect himself AND his partner. But part of it is human nature, and unfortunately many folks have to get burned (literally) before they wise up. And you hope you’re not the guinea pig. I’ve had a guy be shocked when I asked about his status b/c apparently no other woman he dated had inquired. It’s a shame.

        Posted by Brownbelle | September 22, 2012, 2:32 AM
      • Yikes!! That’s actually a question I ask VERY early on…smh at the ones who don’t lol

        Posted by 30thoughts | September 22, 2012, 3:17 AM
  3. “Also, in my experience, women are dragging their husbands and S/Os to the doctor kicking and screaming, sometimes even when something IS wrong.”

    Unbelievable.

    I believe it is innate in some circumstances and taught through various means in others. People don’t like to think about the death and this leads to all kinds of reckless behavior. The thing about STDs is that the consequences often times aren’t immediate and do not always occur. A person who gets caught stealing the very first time they attempt to do so is unlikely to ever steal again but those who do…. Given that people have had sexual intercourse and not caught anything just leads to the belief they will will always escape unscathed. Further, most people never tell even their closest friend that they’ve contracted an STD so most people feel it’s like seeing Bigfoot. They never had it and do not know anyone who has, so it is “out of sight, out of mind”.

    What do you think?

    Posted by Mark | September 22, 2012, 1:30 AM
    • Omg! I totally agree. I don’t think any of my close friends would tell me if they had an STD, so I think it’s totally an out of sight, out of mind situation, coupled with your other great point about getting away with reckless sexual behavior so long that they think they will always have this result.

      I think part of it also may be some of what I said women should look for in men; when men meet someone who takes care of themselves and cares about their body, they also assume that she has done the same sexually and are “safe” if engaging in unprotected sex with her.
      Honestly, though, since I’m not a guy, I have no idea what they’re thinking or how they rationalize this type of behavior.

      Posted by 30thoughts | September 22, 2012, 1:47 AM
      • “I think part of it also may be some of what I said women should look for in men; when men meet someone who takes care of themselves and cares about their body, they also assume that she has done the same sexually and are “safe” if engaging in unprotected sex with her.
        Honestly, though, since I’m not a guy, I have no idea what they’re thinking or how they rationalize this type of behavior.”

        Could you elaborate on this?

        Posted by Mark | September 22, 2012, 2:01 AM
      • One of the questions I asked, at the end of the article was whether a guy who takes care of his personal health would be more likely to be more responsible about sexual health. With regards to women, I think that’s how men determine whether a woman is “clean” or not, but then I said honestly I don’t know what they’re thinking when they decide to have unprotected sex with random chicks because I’m not a guy.

        Posted by 30thoughts | September 22, 2012, 2:51 AM
      • I agree!

        Posted by Mark | September 22, 2012, 2:53 AM
      • I’m not sure what they’re thinking either.

        Posted by Mark | September 22, 2012, 2:54 AM
      • I agree too with men going to the doctors for any reason. Men are taught to be strong, brute, masculine and brawny and all that stuff. So I think many men associate being sick with a sign of weakness, which in a way it is a physical weakness temporarily if your sick for as long as your sick. Many men are also homophobic and would honestly rather have testicular or colon cancer than have a male (or even a female) doctor handle their genitals. Going to the doctor can be a very uncomfortable and embarrassing thing, men hate and will avoid at all cost anything comfortable and embarrassing.
        It’s funny, my uncle would be mad and pissed and just in an evil ass mood when he was sick. If he had a stomachache he would actually walk around cursing his stomach and the fact that he had a stomach ache and be pissed like someone stole his bike. lol To this day he is the only man I know who gets in such a bad mood and gets so pissed when they get sick, as if it makes him less of a man to be sick and he should be strong all the time and never ever sick and weak. it’s the most comical and senseless thing I’ve ever seen. But thats men for you. What can you do.

        Posted by Bree | October 5, 2012, 10:49 PM
      • True. I could also see it as being a sign of weakness. But, unlike your uncle, the same men will act like grown babies when they’re sick and require 24/7 coddling and head-rubbing smh. lol

        Posted by 30thoughts | October 6, 2012, 12:21 AM
    • Also, the fact that many STDs are curable gives them an indifference about using protection, but it’s like, WHAT ABOUT THE OTHER ONES!!!?

      Posted by 30thoughts | September 22, 2012, 1:49 AM
      • I agree. They need to be concerned about them all. While it is good that Magic Johnson is living a quality life, some people have come to think they can just take pills if they catch the the OTHER ONES and they will be just fine.

        Posted by Mark | September 22, 2012, 2:03 AM
      • Right! It amazes me.

        Posted by 30thoughts | September 22, 2012, 2:21 AM

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