The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that more than 1.1 million Americans are living with the HIV virus. About one in five of those don’t know it. All I know is, that’s a whole lot of sexually active people who could give me AIDS. Or you.
The best way to keep us all protected is if every infected person knows about their condition. Since that’s not happening, every sexual person needs to be as careful as possible.
If you think I’m only talking about grown-up, mature adults, think again.
Last month, the CDC announced that nearly half of U.S. high school students say they’ve had sex. Those same kids were asked about their condom use, the answer was, “Not so much.”
Approximately 60% of so-called “experienced” teens say they used condoms the last time they had sex, and that’s up from the 46% who were using condoms in 1991. Bad news: Teen condom use today is still lower than the high of 63% reported in 2003.
Education at the high school level is critical because 4 of every 10 new HIV infections occur in a person younger than 30. I say, if your age is in double digits, you need to be learning about safe sex. Period.
Of course, more sex with more people equals more risk. In 1991, almost 20% of high schoolers said they’d had 4 or more sexual partners; that number is down to 15% now. (Four partners?! Who ARE these kids?)
In a 1996 survey, 62% of adults reported using a condom during their last sexual act outside of an ongoing relationship. But if we’re in A Relationship, the numbers plummet to just 19%. Wow. Sure hope nobody’s cheating or anything.
Single NotMoms, show the next gen how it’s done. (So to speak.)
Use a condom. Every time. I’m talking to you, too, my Boomer peeps.
As for women happily, and newly, ensconced in a relationship, consider getting tested with your partner. Once the (happy) results are in hand, that’s the time to consider giving up the Love Glove for good.