I was in my early 20s, living on my own for the first time in college and having fun. I had just gotten out of a relationship and was on birth control so I wasn’t using condoms that much. I had a whole lot of unprotected sex with a whole lot of people until I got chlamydia (an STD) for the first time. I got tested too early after catching it so the test came back negative. I started having sex without condoms again and accidentally spread the chlamydia to about 5 other people. About 6 months later, I went to the doctor to get a women’s wellness exam and pap smear. They tested me for all the STDs again and come to find out I had chlamydia. NO SYMPTOMS FOR 6 WHOLE MONTHS! I was in shock. My best friend also had it, and a lot of other people had it, too, and didn’t have any symptoms.
After being diagnosed with an STD even though I didn’t have symptoms for 6 months, I definitely thought that a lot of people had it. I even saw the guys I gave it to go and get girlfriends after, and I’m here thinking “Oh no. They about to give it to their girlfriends, too.” Now, every time I get a new partner I make them go get tested with me. I let most of my partners know that my dad died from HIV related complications, so they know I am serious about my sexual health. We make a date out of it - it is more fun when you do it that way. Getting tested with my new partners makes me feel confident in myself, and I will withhold sex from them until they get tested with me, and I feel peace of mind when we get our results back together.
Bianca’s story is one of our HIV Testing & Prevention program’s "Role Model Stories” in which real people describe how they made a change to reduce their risk and improve their health as it relates to HIV and AIDS. Names have been changed and the images are staged with actors.