Dating Etiquette

I was talking to two female friends recently.  One is 28-years-old and the other is 44.  Both are single.  I had asked them their opinion on a recent news story out of Oregon.  The story involved a 49-year-old woman who met a 69-year-old retired dentist online.  They went on three dates.  On the fourth date they had sex.  She asked him to wear a condom and he agreed.  But once the sex started, she realized that he wasn’t wearing a condom and that it was “too late.”  As they lay in bed afterwards, he told her that he had herpes.  She kicked him out of her house.  She contracted the disease from him and has had several painful outbreaks since then.  The woman sued the dentist and a jury awarded her $900,000.

So I asked my two friends what they thought about dating in 2012 and stories such as the dentist one.  Both women pretty much said the same thing.  They said that if you’re sexually active today, you need to be worried about things like this.  Both also told me that they are regularly getting tested for STD’s.  They get tested not because they think they have anything.  Of course the test will make sure, but they also do it in case they are questioned about it (if they have been tested) by a potential sexual partner.  And in turn, they said they don’t hesitate to ask a potential boyfriend if he’s been tested.

Now, I’m 12 years out of the dating game, so maybe I’m ignorant about it, but the women’s matter-of-fact answers surprised me.  So I decided that I’d get another opinion, but this time from a guy.  So I asked a buddy of mine.  He’s 29-years-old and single.  He agreed with the ladies and said that as he gets older, he’s having more sexual partners.  And he’s obviously meeting women who have had more partners too.  Then he very matter-of-factly said that he has no problem asking anyone he’s dating if they’ve been tested for STD’s recently (or at all).  And he thinks that conversation should be happening.

I suspect that whether you’re single, married, dating, have friends who are dating or are old enough to have kids who are dating, you’ll have an opinion on this.  As I sit here thinking about it; I could probably write an entire post about today’s society and how sex is pretty much expected if you’re dating (no matter how old you are).  Or one about the sexual irresponsibility displayed by both kids and adults today.  But those are topics for a different day.  Today I’m wondering about the people out there who are like the dentist and the woman.  Should he have told her that he had herpes?  Should she have asked beforehand if he had been recently tested for STD’s?  Should those conversations be commonplace in today’s dating game?  And lastly, should people be able to sue over situations like this?

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9 comments to Dating Etiquette

  • Yes, he should have told her that he had herpes. Unlike getting a cold from a friend, that’s something she’s stuck with now. She should have asked about STDs but she did ask him to wear a condom so she was heading in the right direction. He might have lied about the testing before sex, though. If you plan on being sexually active, these conversations need to take place, even if you are waiting until after the marriage.

    I don’t have any problem with people being able to sue in these situations but it almost seems like what he did should be criminal.

    It’s a scary world.

  • You could not pay me enough to start dating again and the issues in this post are much of the reason. I’m old enough to remember the good ol’ days of sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll, and there wasn’t much you could catch that couldn’t be cured with a shot of penicillin or a good disinfectant. Today, without the drugs and the rock ‘n’ roll, sex isn’t nearly as fun. Couple that with the need to exchange sexual histories, have periodic medical tests and “suit up” and I’ll pass, thank you. The thrill is definitely gone.

  • Jane

    Wow, I have to tell you, the thought of diseases scare the crap out of me. I’ve been in the dating game way too long. There are more jerks out there now than ever. And even though a guy tells me he’s clean or that he’s been tested, he could still be lying. Thus, any rod coming near me will be covered. I assure you of that.

  • Girl should have TOTALLY asked - although that douche should have told her even BEFORE she asked.

    This is why I don’t sleep with anyone until it’s been a long while. This means I live like a nun often, but I think that’s a better way to be than contracting herpes from a giant douche.

  • blunt

    uggggh. F yea he should have told her. Or, you know, don’t be a jackass and keep the condom on. WTH is wrong with people.

    as far as the story, she should be a little smarter than that. you can tell if there’s one on or not. And he shouldn’t have been a d-bag.

    I don’t know about the suing… i’m not the suing type. But hey, if it scares people away from doing stupid crap like this then by all means.

  • I dunno…getting Herpes might be worth 900,000. lol

  • The dude has herpes, agreed to wear a condom then took it off, and now she’s got it? Sue baby sue!

  • I think he absolutely should have told her about having herpes. If she had asked beforehand whether he had been tested or not he could’ve lied. I mean, he DID not put a condom on when she asked so I’m thinking this guy is doing this on purpose. Need I remind you of the scumbag who had HIV and was having sex with multiple women? It seems it’s a malicious attack on people, like a last hoorah before the sun sets. I think the guy in the HIV case was pissed that his time was limited so he wanted to make as many people as miserable as him. I don’t necessarily believe the guy with herpes wanted this also, but that it was very malevolent that he didn’t disclose a DISEASE to a sexual partner, AND didn’t wear a condom when she EXPLICITLY asked him to and he LIED about wearing one.

    I am VERY happy she sued this a-hole and got a pay day. It’s EXACTLY what I would’ve done. I was raped by someone who told me they had an STD long before they raped me TWICE. I got tested 8 months after (once I overcame the FEAR of thinking ”great now I have this for the rest of my life”) and when I had a clear bill of health, I was able to forget this.

    Unfortunately, crap like this happens more often than we’d like to admit or hear about. This is what’s wrong with our society these days — and you’re right! This is definitely for another post.

  • So so soooo cool you popped in on my blog! Ron is a longtime blog pal of mine. I love the way he lives life.

    The guy in your story should have told. Honesty is the key in doings.