Competition time: #TellYourStory

Many men in South Africa don’t want to get tested for HIV! Not only that, they fear going for general health check-ups. What can we do to help our brothers?

Some men like to say “when it rains I don’t use an umbrella, so why should I use protection when I have sex?” The sad reality is, one of the most common ways HIV and STIs are passed on is by having sex without a condom, yet ama’gents still don’t want to wear protection – but why?

In not more than 200 words, #TellYourStory and win by answering one of the questions below and stand a chance to win your share of R250 in airtime and be published on Your story might inspire an HIV-free generation.

1.       When last did you get tested? How was it for you? Tell us your story.

2.       Why do you think it’s important to get tested regularly?

3.       Why do you think men are afraid of getting tested? Do you know your status?

4.       Have you ever tested for an STI? How would you know if you had an STI?

To submit your story, click on 'Submit a YOUR WORDS article here' at the top of this page. We'll contact you to let you know if you're a lucky winner.

Do you want to get tested for HIV and STIs, but don’t know where your local clinic is? You can find your local clinic and rate the service you receive by clicking here.

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B-Wise User Mologadi Monoge 12 March 2019 09:40

I'm a 21 year old native from the Limpopo province caring a lot about my health,thou I don't like engaging myself in sexual activities that doesn't stop me from wanting to know my status,I got texted few weeks back and the experience was nice like all the other days,I was referred to a HIV counsellor who spoke to me with a spirit of integrity. "When you feel good,you do good"so knowing your status increases your confidence as you'll be detailed about your well-being,this applies to all man kind because men(especially those who are circumcised) believe that they can't get HIV.Male circumcision does not provide total protection from HIV/STI,use condoms each time you have sex. Tomorrow is not promised to anyone,get tested today.Know your status #iknowmystatus

B-Wise User NicholasVilane 1 June 2018 14:06

I'm only 21 years old from Richards bay. Honestly I have never tested before. No because I see no importance in it. But because I have never done anything that could make me question my status. im assumed that my parents weren't infected when they had me because otherwise I'd obviously be at risk of mother to child infection. I think it's very inportant to regularly go for check ups at the clinic or hospital especially if you're a sexually active person. By doing this you are not only looking out for yourself but for your partner as well because knowing your HIV status means you will be a responsible adult who will start practising safe sex to avoid spreading the infection. Men fear getting tested because it makes them feel vulnerable. The thought of taking pills for along time is what frightens a man from getting checkups and the thought of having to depend on pills to live will make a man not even think about going the clinic. Honestly I haven't tested for an STI before. Same reason I feel I'd know. If something is not right with my body. Every person could know if they had an STI because we all know our bodies. If you experience pains on your private parts,that could be the first signs of an STI. And if your body reacts strangely while doing sex that also could mean something is not right, could be an STI. I advise everyone to make friends with clinics and hospitals and go for checkups now and then. Safe sex is important.

B-Wise User Nnanalicios 22 28 May 2018 12:56

My last test was last month at Nellmapius Clinic and my status is negative, every time I do my test I feel proud and free because knowing my status is important and i want to keep it that way, I was inspired by my mom because she is HIV positive she didn't hide from she told me everything and she always come to me whenever she needs support and i go with her for check ups and i always remind her when it's time to take her medication. Now my mom has accepted that she is HIV positive , she found out in 2009 that she was HIV positive and i went with her to the clinic in 2010 and i have been supporting her since then and we live happily ever after. Men they don't think it is important, my ex boyfriend used to say if I know my status it means it's the same as mine but currently my partner is more supportive and we go together for testing because we believe that it's important and you feel proud knowing your status.

B-Wise Expert Expert 28 May 2018 17:56

Well done for submitting your story. 

B-Wise User Anonymous 23 May 2018 11:04

Hi, I'm a 23 year old and I'm HIV positive, I have a baby that has just turned 1 and was tested negative at 6 weeks old. I have only been breastfeeding him and now want to stop because of the biting during the feeding, I'm scared he might get infected hence the biting leave cuts on my nipples, my question is what type of milk can I introduce him to because at the clinic they said I must not give him baby baby formula, please help

B-Wise Expert Expert 28 May 2018 09:23

Hi Anonymous. Breast milk is usually the best milk for your baby but considering the circumstances it's best you stop breast feeding as it may put your baby at risk. You can go back to your nearest clinic so they can give you further options. Babies need plenty of nutritional support so your doctor or nurse can advise on other best options for your baby so you can have a healthy baby. Make sure you keep taking your ARVs all through and the rest of your life.