Test Your STD Knowledge

Think you know what kind of people get STDs? Think again! Anyone can be at risk for contracting STDs, regardless of age, sex, income, race or sexual orientation. And anyone can be at risk for passing them along, too. If you don't believe that, read the following stories - all based on actual Wyoming case studies. Some of the people knowingly made poor choices that put them at risk, some of them had no idea they could become infected, and some are STD-negative. That's why it's so important to be responsible, take simple precautions, and be tested regularly. Don't assume you're STD-free; get tested and know for sure.

Answer the question after each story to assess your understanding of the risks associated with different STDs. If you get a perfect score, let us know and we'll send you a prize pack! And if not, don't worry … you'll still receive a voucher for a FREE HIV/STD test at any Wyoming clinic. Not only will you know your status, you'll also ensure that you don't become another statistic. Let's begin!

Meet Charlie 1 of 12 Charlie

I moved to Wyoming about three years ago to work in the oil fields. About two months ago, I fell off a rig and hurt my shoulder. It turns out I had a torn rotator cuff and needed surgery. When they drew my blood at my pre-op appointment, they discovered I have hepatitis C. I had no idea; I never felt sick. I probably got it a couple years ago when I was shooting dope on a pretty regular basis. Now I only party once a month or so with friends from work. I have considered going into treatment, but I’m not convinced that I am willing to abstain from drugs and alcohol. Working long hours and swing shifts makes quitting even harder since it's easy to find uppers and meth on the rigs.

How could your meth use have resulted in your getting hepatitis C?

  1. I don't think it did. My doc told me that I could have gotten it by sharing a toothbrush or razor with my co-workers on the rig.
  2. We got high as a group, so we probably shared needles and rinse water.
  3. I have a buddy that I used to use with has lost a lot of weight lately so I must have gotten it from him.
  4. My old girlfriend probably gave it to me when we had sex.
Meet Claire 2 of 12 Claire

Robby and I met in high school and have been together exclusively for seven years. I've only had one other partner besides him. Shortly before graduation, we became pregnant, and we separated for about six months. We eventually got back together, but I always thought that Robby had other sex partners during our break. I wanted to be safe, butI didn’t know how to approach him about using condoms - I was afraid he would think that I was having sex and might have something. Then one day, I noticed some odd looking bumps in his pubic area. We went to the free clinic and found out he had genital warts, the result of HPV. I don’t have them, but I’m afraid of getting them. Robby has been extremely concerned for me, and now he insists that we use condoms to prevent the HPV from spreading. It's been four months, and so far I haven't developed any signs or symptoms of HPV.

Did you ask your partner if he had other sex partners while you were separated?

  1. No, I am just so glad that we are back together.
  2. Yes, but he said none of them were serious.
  3. Yes, and he got tested for HIV.
  4. Yes, and we decided to get tested together to make sure we didn"t have HIV or another STD other than HPV.
Meet Connie 3 of 12 Connie

I grew up in Wyoming, but my hometown was very small and everyone knew my family. That's why I never talked to a doctor about my sexual activity, and no one ever asked. Most of my friends had already had sex, and a couple were pregnant. I became sexually active the summer between 9th and 10th grade, and I just prayed that I wouldn't get pregnant. I would try to get my partners to pull out before ejaculating, but sometimes they would and sometimes they did not want to. When I enrolled in college, I decided to live in the dorms to get away from my family and hometown.

I met a guy during orientation, and we have been dating ever since. We haven't used condoms because neither one of us wants to be seen buying them - it's embarrassing! But then I missed my period. I decided to take a pregnancy test, and it was positive. I don't know if I can take classes, have a baby, and finish my education. My boyfriend is supportive, but he just took a job with the railroad and will be gone a lot.

You just found out you are pregnant. What is your next step?

  1. I will have to drop out of college to have the baby.
  2. See if my boyfriend wants to get married before I get too far along.
  3. Go to the local family planning clinic and get tested for HIV and other STDs and see what my options are. I’ll need to go to an OB clinic for treatment.
  4. Maybe the test wasn’t right. It could have been a false positive.
Meet Devon 4 of 12 DeVon

I moved to Wyoming two years ago because I had some friends that live here, and they thought I would like it here, even though there isn't a large black community. It was a huge adjustment moving to a small city. I felt like I was the only black person, let alone being a gay black man. But the people at work have been great. I am out to most of them, and they seem to be supportive. I make it a point to get out of state to bigger cities at least once a month just so I can meet more people like me and have some fun. I am single and have been since I came out at 19. I play it safe and use protection for anal sex because I want to lead a healthy and long life. I get tested every six months just to be sure.

Have you been tested for hepatitis?

  1. No, I never have had jaundice or stomach cramps.
  2. I think I was tested for hepatitis when I had a pre-employment physical several years ago for work.
  3. My doctor tested me for hepatitis when I told him that I had sex with other men. He also vaccinated me for hepatitis A and hepatitis B.
  4. I never used drugs so I don’t need to be tested for hepatitis.
Meet Jerry 5 of 12 Jerry

I recently took a job with a hot shot service that supplies oil and gas rigs in Wyoming, Utah, and Colorado. I travel a couple of days a week, but I’m home on the weekends. I married my high school girlfriend, Susan, two years ago. She works at a local motel and hates that I travel so much, but the money is good and she likes that I’m not working on a rig. When I’m away, I usually stop at the local bar to meet people and see if I can score some meth. Not too long ago, I met a girl at the bar and had sex with her, but then a few weeks later, I started having a discharge from my penis . I stopped in another town to use the public health clinic since I didn’t know anyone there and my wife wouldn’t find out. I got a call a week later - I have gonorrhea. To top it off, Susan just found out she’s pregnant.

Your wife Susan just found out she is pregnant, what do you do?

  1. Tell Susan that I have an STD and take her to the clinic and have us both tested for HIV and to make sure neither of us has another STD.
  2. Always use a condom when we have sex now so that the baby doesn’t get infected.
  3. Cut back on my meth use when I am out of town.
  4. I’ve been treated so we should be okay.
Meet Joseph 6 of 12 Joseph

I recently moved to Wyoming to open a small business. My long-term girlfriend and I broke-up when I moved, but I have not met very many people here so I visit home often. My girlfriend and I still see each other when I come home. A week ago, I noticed swollen glands and blister-like sores in my genital area. I thought they would go away on their own, but they are still there. I went to Indian Health Services and found out that I have herpes.

Now that you know you have herpes, what do you have to do?

  1. Nothing, the doctor treated me so should be alright.
  2. Always use a condom when I have sex.
  3. Tell my girlfriend so that she can also get tested and treated.
  4. Only worry when I get another outbreak.
Meet Maria 7 of 12 maria

I live in a small town in Wyoming with my mom and two younger brothers so I can help out while they're still in junior high. I have been working since I finished high school, so when I have free time, I like to hang out with my girlfriends. It gives me a chance to get out of the house and have some fun. I started having sex when I was fourteen, and because I look older than I am, I can get alcohol easily. About a month ago, I went out to a party at a friend’s house and got very drunk. I woke up the next day with a guy in the bed that I didn’t know - it was obvious that we'd had sex. I haven’t seen him since. Then a couple of days ago, I started having a burning sensation when I urinated and a vaginal discharge. I freaked out and went to the local STD clinic for testing. I think that guy gave me Chlamydia! I don’t know who he is, so I can’t tell him to get checked. I usually sleep with women, so I never thought that I would get an STD.

Do you think having sex with other women is safer than having sex with men?

  1. Yes, I can’t get HIV from oral sex or using toys with other women.
  2. It might depend on what we are doing. Since being diagnosed, I have encouraged my partners to get tested for HIV and other STDs.
  3. Most of the guys I have sex with I insist they use a condom if we are having vaginal or anal intercourse. With women, I don’t have to worry.
  4. My treatment for chlamydia will prevent me from getting other STDs and I have shared that information with my girlfriends.
Meet Michelle 8 of 12 Michelle

I grew up in western Wyoming, the oldest of four children. My parents both worked a lot, so I was in charge of cooking, cleaning, and shuttling my siblings around. I took these responsibilities very seriously and didn’t have a very active social life. When I was in high school I dated a little, but I have made the conscious decision to wait until I am married before having sex. I don’t want to get pregnant and have to get married early. I have always wanted to be a small business owner, and I know that I need to go to college to be successful. I live in one of the dorms, and I’m feeling pressured to party a lot. I have a good relationship with my church youth group, and I have promised myself to remain a virgin until I am ready to settle down. I’m unwilling to have a relationship that doesn’t honor my choice.

How do you define abstinence?

  1. Not letting his sperm enter my body.
  2. Not having vaginal or anal intercourse.
  3. Not having any vaginal, anal or oral sex until I am married.
  4. Anything beyond mutual masturbation.
Meet Patricia 9 of 12 Patricia

I grew up in southeastern Wyoming. I was sexually active as a teenager, and I often used alcohol or other drugs before having sex because it made me more relaxed. I went to a local beauty college so that I could become a hairdresser, and after graduating, I moved to a larger town in Wyoming where my boyfriend at the time lived. We lived together for a couple of years and then got married, but after three years, I realized that I didn’t want to be married to him anymore. He left, and I found out two months later that I was pregnant. When I went to see my doctor, he suggested that I have an HIV test. It came back positive. I'm not sure if I got it from my ex-husband or not.

You just found out that you are pregnant and that you are HIV positive, what will you do?

  1. I am too afraid to tell anyone.
  2. I’ll need to find another job where I am not in physical contact with the public.
  3. I’ll just handle it on my own.
  4. I will call my ex and tell him that he needs to be tested for HIV and other STDs.
Meet Phil 10 of 12 Phil

I am a Wyoming native. I grew up in central Wyoming and have worked in the sugar plant since graduating from high school. I married my high school sweetheart, Cindy, and we have three children together. After 22 years of marriage, Cindy filed for a divorce six months ago. I decided to move in with my sister; she lived in another town, but I needed a change. I drink occasionally and like to go the local stripper club. Several weeks ago I hooked up with one of the strippers. Recently, I noticed a sore on my penis so I went to the public health office to get checked out. The nurse I saw said my sore was a chancre. I have syphilis.

Does having syphilis make it easier to get HIV?

  1. No, they are two different infections.
  2. Not sure. Wouldn’t they have tested me for HIV at the same time?
  3. I think so. The chancres (sores) would be another way for HIV to get into my body if I was having unprotected sex with someone infected with HIV.
  4. I heard that the drug for syphilis prevents possible HIV infection.
Meet Sarah 11 of 12 Sarah

My family is nuts! Dad is very wealthy, having made most of his money from investments over the past twenty years, but he is a highly functioning alcoholic and does cocaine now and then with business associates. In fact, my whole family is involved in drugs. My dad was so worried about my drug use and lack of direction that he bought me a small catering company last year, which has been doing well. I am really busy working events late into the night and partying with friends afterwards. My mother and I, along with my younger brother, like to shoot dope. Since we are all family, we have shared works and didn’t worry about contracting or spreading any diseases. My mom died last month of liver failure, and then three weeks ago I got busted trying to buy more drugs. Once I was in jail they drew my blood. The tests came back saying that I had hepatitis B., which I apparently got from my mom. I wish I had known about the vaccine to prevent hepatitis B. I have been struggling with my drug use and my mother’s death for the last several weeks, but now I've started seeing someone off and on.

Now that you know you have hepatitis B, what should you do?

  1. Tell my brother to get tested along with the other people I used with.
  2. Cut back on my using and drinking.
  3. Look for another job as I shouldn’t be handling food if I am infected with hepatitis B.
  4. Nothing, the doctor said I would probably be okay in a couple of months.
Meet Sean 12 of 12 Sean

By eighth grade, I knew I liked men and wasn’t interested in women. I came out to my family after my sophomore year in college, and even though I think they already knew, my dad was still a little freaked out. He wasn’t sure how the information would be received by his friends, business associates and other people in the community. After college, I moved back to my small hometown to help my dad out on the ranch, but it’s hard to meet people. So I go out of state once a month to meet other men. Then about two months ago I started to feel crappy, and I couldn’t seem to shake it. I felt like I had a little bit of the flu and was tired all the time. A month ago, I heard that a community organization in a nearby town was offering rapid HIV testing. I took the test and I tested positive. A follow-up test confirmed it. I know I got it sexually, because I have never injected drugs or been exposed to a blood spill, but I don’t know who gave it to me. I meet with a case manager this week. I don’t know what to expect.

Have you told all of your sexual partners that you have HIV?

  1. No, I know who infected me and I have been relatively safe with the others.
  2. I have told a couple of guys that I haven’t been feeling well lately so they might want to see their doctor if they have similar symptoms
  3. I have only told the guys that I have been with since my diagnosis.
  4. I know how important it is to notify all my previous partners about my HIV diagnosis, so that they can get tested. I will work with the health department to ensure that they are all tested.
   
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