|Egg on your Face
Life is gearing up here at CAMP Rehoboth, and summer is headed this way with a big roar! We are putting the finishing touches on our CAMPsafe campaign for this summer and it sure seems like it is going to be a fun campaign. Get ready boys! Start your engines!
Well, it will soon be time to hit the bars to hand out condoms and we will again go through them by the thousands. I am so glad we go through so many because it means that people are using them and that makes Safer Sex Sal happy. But I have a question for you.
What do you say to a handsome man you meet at the bar or on the beach? We all have our favorite pick up lines and I wish I could share mine with you but that would spoil everything, wouldn't it? I know you have some great lines to use on men to make them melt into the palm of your handand if the situation arises, I bet you can even make some up on the fly...no pun intended. But do you always tell the truth? HA! Some of you will ask why I'm asking this question! Well, do you always tell the truth? If you are going to lie, lie about something that is easy to correct.
Some of the lies I have encountered: people who have added a few commas or move the decimals in their salary; say the rented house is theirs; say they are the director instead of the assistant to the director, and such as that. These are all small things, but they can sure be hard to clean up if this one-nighter becomes one you don't want to get away! What worries me though is that some guys lie about their HIV status.
One's HIV status is a big thing. I have seen things in advice columns like Ann Landers and in The Blade lately on when it is the best time to tell what your status is. Ann said, "After you have built a relationship and before intimacy." The guy in The Blade said basically, "I am handsome, kind, smart and positive. Try finding someone to date me!" It is easy to see the dilemma. Some guys say they are negative and insist on a condom. Some say they are negative and don't use them. I encourage everybody to be upfront with their dates and sexual partners about their status.
Can you imagine the difficulty telling Mr. Right a year later? OUCH! That is one egg that will be hard to wash off!
In order to disclose your status, you have to know your status and if you are going to be out looking for Mr. Right, you need to make sure you keep yourself covered. This is where I come in. I can help you with testing. I can help you with safer sex supplies and I can even discuss disclosure if you wish. I have more than tricks in my bag of tricks. Come see me and make me feel useful! I can help you keep that egg off your face or help you wipe it off if it is there! Come see me! You know where to find me! Bars...Internet...CAMP!
Sal Seeley is Program Director of CAMPsafe, an HIV/AIDS Education and Prevention program funded through a contract with the Delaware Division of Public Health. Free, anonymous HIV testing is offered at CAMP Rehoboth, 39 Baltimore Avenue. For more information or to schedule an appointment, call Sal Seeley at 302-227-5620 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
LETTERS From CAMP Rehoboth, Vol. 15, No. 4 May 6, 2005