Too Gay to Diagnose


Zackary Carpenter realized he had mono in early September after his liver and kidneys started to fail. Carpenter believes doctors are not given enough training treating gay men. Screenshot from Berkeley Lovelace Jr.


Guest Writer: Zackary Carpenter (@zackmacg)

Zackary Carpenter currently studies magazine journalism at the University of Missouri. He is from Blanchard, Okla. just south of Oklahoma City. Carpenter likes video games, science fiction, beat poetry and various forms of music. Opinions are his own. Place close attention when marked (ATT:)

When I was 19 years old, my liver and kidneys began to fail and my muscles started deteriorating. My blood was extremely toxic and I had a severe headache. I felt like a Centaurian slug was digging into my head, and I did not know where the hell Spock was. This is the story of how I learned that doctors know very little about gay men, and what they learned in five hours of training.

I am not HIV positive, and even though I am a gay male, I do not have any other STIs to my knowledge. I always use a condom during anal sex, and I am very careful about how I go about oral sex. I never mix sex with alcohol, and I have never used intravenous needles to take a drug. Continue reading


‘Okay, Everybody Take Some Rubbers’

“Don’t have sex. Because you will get pregnant and die. Don’t have sex in the missionary position, don’t have sex standing up. Just don’t do it, promise? Okay, everybody take some rubbers,” Coach Carr, from “Mean Girls.”

People have sex. Coach Carr knew that when he passed around condoms to a gym full of teenagers after his famous anti-sex rant. Props to Tina Fey! But, he was right. Sex does come with risks (but not likely immediate death).

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention the rate of HIV/AIDS has increased among adults with African-Americans at the most risk. Other sexually transmitted diseases, often a bacterial, parasitic or viral infection, are still a major issue too.

But, why? Sex education and STDs awareness have increased in the past decade. Until, a conclusive answer has been made, here are a few ways to protect you and your partner during sex.

1. Communication

Engage in an open and honest communication about sex with your partner. Each time you enter a new relationship take time to talk about your sexual history and experiences.

2. Get tested regularly

Go to your doctor or a free clinic regularly to screen for sexually transmitted infections or diseases. Ask your partner to do it with you. If your partner is unwilling to know their status, then you may need to find a new partner.

3. Use a condom

Condoms are simple to use and widely available at counseling service locations. Understand that other forms of sex are risky too. Consider using dental dam for oral sex or a female condom for vaginal sex

4. And Lastly, Know Your Body

Pay attention to your body. If something doesn’t feel right, don’t engage in it.

For the best information please see your doctor or primary care physician. I do not have a health degree, nor am I substitute for medical advice. This information was found through research.

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