Oof. Today, during my regular STI testing, I finally told my doctor that I was non-monogamous. It went a whole lot better than I feared it would. I was especially nervous about it because I wasn’t seeing my primary care physician (who is liberal and amazing and i love her but she’s impossible to schedule because everyone else loves her, too), but was an unknown doctor that was available at the time.
They already had it on file that I am currently sexually active and have male and female partners. The nurse was taking my blood pressure when I made some comment about being at higher risk because I have multiple partners. She was immediately like, “oh, I need to update your file” and keep repeating it to herself until she was able to get to it.
I got so many more and so much more thorough questions than I’ve got in the past. Things about how many partners, what birth control methods I use, do I use barrier methods, have any of my partners had any STIs….
The medical student congratulated me about talking openly and honestly with my partners about sexual health. The doctor gave me a mini lecture about making sure to always, always use condoms and referenced cheaters (sigh). Altogether not bad. And now I get to feel more confident that my medical professionals have a better sense of my risk levels.
I also recognize, though, that I’m pretty lucky in terms of where I live and what medical system I use.
Kinda irked me, though, that I didn’t get the same thorough history when I was labeled (literally) as monogamous. I mean, let’s be honest: most of the non-monogamous people I know are way more aware about sexual health than many monogamous people are. So to assume that monogamous people are being careful and thinking about these things is a disservice to monogamous people. For many, this is their only opportunity to get medical advice about sexual health.
Go be honest with your doctors, people!!