Last Updated on June 4, 2020 by Saurabh Sethi, MD, MPH
Molluscum contagiosum or MC is one of those borderline STIs that few people know about and that rarely gets sensationalized in the media. When children contract it, it’s not considered an STI/STD, but when adults get it, it’s almost always sexually transmitted.
As such, stigma surrounding the infection is lower than some of the more commonly know STIs, but even so, a molluscum infection still presents its own challenges.
Do you tell people who may have been exposed? Should it change your sex life and how you approach intimate relationships? And so on… This interviewee bravely shares some of those internal conflicts with us.
1. How old are you?
2. What do you do for a living?
I’m a student.
3. What STI/STD do you have/have you had?
Molluscum contagiosum (MC)
4. How long have you had or known you have an STI/STD?
A month and a half
5. Do you know how you contracted this STI/STD?
I think it was the one night stand I had, because it appeared after that.
This is a bit complicated. I thought it was a recurrence of my pityriasis rosea (which is not contagious), so I just applied the steroid cream given to me by my dermatologist…and then I had sex with two other people. I don’t talk to the one night stand.
6. How has your life changed since you contracted an STI/STD?
My quality of life and mental health were in jeopardy when I had pityriasis rosea a few months ago, and having MC has really driven me to a hopeless state.
Now, I’m focused on what goes into my body, so I’m trying to eat a certain diet and lead a healthier lifestyle. I’m working on not stressing out, which is difficult, because I’m the biggest worry-wart.
Also, sex is the last thing on my mind. I’m thinking of practicing abstinence, which really sucks. Sex is one of the most liberating things for me.
Sometimes, I feel spiteful toward my ex, because he was my first and only love, and I think (irrationally so), if he didn’t break up with me, I would have never gotten any of this.
7. Do the people who know you have an STI/STD treat you differently than they treated you before they knew?
Definitely not my friends or family, because this STI doesn’t have such a big stigma around it as some others.
I haven’t considered talking to any new guys, so I haven’t had to go through the talk with a guy yet.
8. Are you currently under treatment for your STI/STD? If so, please share whether you have explored prescription medication, over-the-counter medication, or holistic and natural approaches.
I got half of them scraped last week, and I’ll get the rest scraped off in a few days. The only reason they didn’t get it all scraped was because they didn’t want to use too much of the numbing cream.
I, personally, am willing to go through the pain if it means the bumps will go away faster.
9. Has having an STI/STD hindered past relationships?
I was single when I got this, and I still am. I only told my ex, because we had unprotected intercourse while I had this. He’ll get checked, but I haven’t been in contact with him since then.
10. Do you have a significant other? If so, how has this STI/STD affected your partner?
No, I don’t.
11. Have you been sexually active with someone since contracting an STI/STD whom you did not tell you had an STI/STD?
I have with two guys who I was both consistently having sex with for a while. I have only had sex once with each guy since I have had this, but I didn’t know it at the time, so they don’t know.
12. How have you changed as a result of contracting an STI/STD?
Yes. I am much more paranoid. I was paranoid before, but now I am a lot more paranoid, which really worries me.
13. Why are you choosing to participate in this interview and/or is there anything else you would like to share with us?
I think it’s important to get people’s stories out so others going through the same thing don’t feel alone…especially anyone who has a virus.
Can you relate to this interviewee? Did it help you to read someone else’s story? Have you experienced something similar or do you have some feedback to share with this individual? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!