gender

Sensual Seduction: Feels So Right, But Can Be So Wrong!

Check this scenario, you are chillin with your girl or your

man (or in some cases any girl or any man-depending on how you rock). Lights

are turned down, passion is turned up, clothes are coming off, you are about to

get into it, and… your next decision can

affect the rest of your life! Sexual irresponsibility has run rampant amongst teens and

young adults, a behavior that is displayed in music, movies, on TV and

throughout society.

 

Whether it’s not using protection, not getting check-ups,

not being tested or having lack of knowledge on STDs and how to catch them,

this level of irresponsibility is on the rise.

 

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) provides the following

staggering statistics on the rate of HIV/AIDS and STD infection:

 

Over 19 million new

sexually transmitted infections occur each year among all age groups, with the

highest infection rate among young African-American Women.

 

HIV/AIDS

Although African-Americans make up only 13% of the U.S.

population, we account for more than 49% of HIV/AIDS cases. AIDS is the leading

cause of death for Black women ages 25 to 34, and the second leading cause of

death for Black men ages 35-44.

 

Of all Black women living with HIV/AIDS, the primary

transmission category was high-risk heterosexual contact (74%), followed by

injection drug use. Of Black men, the primary category was male-to-male sexual

contact (48%).

 

CHLAMYDIA

 

In 2006, 47% of all Chlamydia cases occurred among

African-Americans. The rate of Chlamydia among African-American women was more

than seven times higher than the rate among white women. The rate among African-American men was more

than 11 times higher than among white men.

 

GONORRHEA

 

In 2006, gonorrhea rates were highest for African-Americans

aged 15-19. Among African-Americans aged

20-24, the Gonorrhea rate was 16 times greater than among whites.

 

GENTIAL HUMAN

PAPILLOMAVIRUS (HPV)

 

Approximately 20 million Americans are currently infected

with HPV and another 6.2 million people become newly affected each year. At least 50% of sexually active men and women

acquire genital HPV infection at some point in their lives.

 

HERPES

 

One in five Americans have Genital Herpes (also known as Genital

HSV-2). Genital HSV-2 infection is more

common in women (approximately one out of four women) than in men (almost one

out of eight).

 

LADIES!

You are becoming infected with HIV and other STDs at

alarming rates. You have to think about the fact that when you are having sex,

you can get little tears in the lining of your vagina, which makes the

transmission of diseases and infections from a man to a woman extremely high.

We’ve got to do a better job of cherishing our bodies. 

 

There are several men out there who are leading dual sexual

lifestyles, which can increase his chances for infections. Make that man use a

condom. Better yet, keep your own stash of male and female condoms, so if he

gives you a problem about wrapping it up, you can handle your own business and

protect yourself.

FELLAS!

You saw the stats above. One thing to know is that the

majority of these women are catching these infections from heterosexual

relationships. You are carriers of several infections that may lie dormant in

your system, but are easily transmitted. And although the chances are slightly slimmer, you can catch these infections from women. 

 

Use a condom! This choice is not that difficult. If you are concerned about lack of sensation,

use an ultra sensitive, ribbed, or dual pleasure Life Styles condom. There are

too many choices and not enough reasons not

to wrap it up!

 

Think about this…when you have unprotected sex with someone

you are giving that person the ultimate

level of trust. This is the same person

that you wouldn’t leave alone in your house or you wouldn’t let drive your new

BMW, but you are allowing them to possibly dictate how you live the rest of

your life, whether it will be a life of fighting HIV, living with an incurable

STD, or possibly having a child with them when you didn’t even want to call

them the next day. This is crazy!

 

IN 2008, THERE ARE NO

EXCUSES!

 

I am scared for the younger generation.  There are a lot of smart people making dumb

decisions about their health, decisions that are literally killing them. What has

to happen for us to get smart about the situation?  A few minutes of pleasure can lead to a

lifetime of pain. 

 

Protect yourself:

 

Get Check-ups!

Way too often, the only time we visit the doctor is if we

are feeling sick or notice something is wrong – or we tend to skip the doctor

and just diagnose ourselves. Our doctor visits need to be more proactive than

reactive. Again, many infections and

diseases lie dormant in our system and we do not find out about them until it’s

too late. Be responsible to yourself and

make sure you are straight.

 

Get Tested!

Doctors recommend that if you are sexually active, you need

to get tested for HIV every 6-12 months. This is not a game. We are dying at alarming rates because of a small

decision to not know your status. HIV tests are free and there are several

testing sites within communities nationwide.  

 

USE THE CONDOM!

 

One of the safer methods of protection…USE IT!

One of the quickest methods of protection…USE IT!

You are literally holding your life in the palm of your

hand!

 

Be informed – Be empowered!

 

For more information about STDs and HIV/AIDS check out the

following websites:

IWannaKnow.org

CDC.gov/STD

NMAC.org

RapItUpPresents.com

YoungWomensHealth.org

ASHASTD.org

 

Tamekia Flowers is the

Founder/Executive Director of Hip Hop 4 Life, a non-profit organization

dedicated to engaging, educating and empowering young people to adopt a

healthier lifestyle while impacting positive social change within communities

across the nation. She can be reached at info@hiphop4lifeonline.com.

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