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This spring, we're encouraging people to talk openly with their partners about safer sex and STDs, get tested, and get treated as part of GYT: Get Yourself Tested, a national campaign that takes place during STD Awareness Month.

Last year Planned Parenthood of Northern New England health centers in Maine provide more than 22,000 STI tests. Here are a few patients' stories about why they get tested and why they choose Planned Parenthood:

Nina's Story

[After the condom broke], I encouraged him to get tested at Planned Parenthood to know his status and he did. Planned Parenthood promptly informed him his test came back positive for chlamydia.

All the staff were extremely kind and non-judgemental. The nurse sat with me and answered a plethora of questions I had. She was amazing and  empowered me with advice on how to have destigmatizing conversations with my partner about the situation and how to encourage him to contact past partners...I cannot emphasize enough how crucial Planned Parenthood's services have been in this experience. I now feel at ease and at peace and comfortable in my body again.

Starting a new relationship can be scary but not knowing your status is even scarier.

-- Nick

Stephen's Story

I first came to Planned Parenthood to get tested. I hadn't been in before and it was the first time I've been tested. I've never had any issues or shown symptoms, but as a single man in his thirties I felt that it was important to know more about my own sexual health.

After speaking with the staff, I felt very comfortable and assured knowing that coming in was the right thing to do.

Just recently, a woman I've started dating informed me that she has been living with HSV-2 for six years and that It was important for me to know. I know that she has my trust and I'm here to become more educated to make decisions that may affect my health but more importantly, how to be safe and not let this affect our relationship.

Planned Parenthood is my all-in-one stop for all my sexual health needs.

--Logan

Brooke's Story

PP has provided me with a safe place to get STD testing and to bring friends and partners to get tested as well. In 2014, PP helped my friend diagnose and treat an STD she didn't know she had but was causing health issues. I had just gone through finding breast lumps and my friend had seen how helpful and thorough [the staff] were. My positive experience helped encourage my friend to come in.

When I learned that my new partner had an STD, I needed some insight and information on how to move forward in my relationship in a healthy way for the both of us. I turned to Planned Parenthood.

--- Chloe 

Cote's Story

I'm getting pretty serious with a partner and I have never been tested before. This is becoming a major gap in my medical history. I figured no better day than the present. This is a step that needs to be taken in order for me to keep building this relationship.

Want to learn how STD testings works, find a health center, or make an appointment? Check out Planned Parenthood of Northern New England.

Tags: GYT, STD testing

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