Risk of internet dating
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The authors call for the development of strategies to promote STDs/HIV prevention among online seekers (Mc Farlane/Bull/Rietmeijer, JAMA, 7/26).Find out if you've left yourself vulnerable to internet creepers and how to protect yourself.
Liverpool Crown Court was told Hawke, of no fixed abode, moved into Sharon's house after just one date, and started controlling the 39-year-old, who suffered from depression and had learning difficulties.A study conducted between September 1999 and April 2000 evaluated 856 anonymous clients, ages 18 and older, who sought HIV testing at the Denver (USA) Public Health HIV Counseling and Testing Site, to determine whether the use of the Internet to solicit sex partners should be considered a potential risk factor for STDs/HIV.The study sample largely consisted of white heterosexual men.Stephan begged her to end the relationship after hearing that Hawke used to "push his sister around."But Sharon told her brother that she was "just desperate to be loved" and stopped speaking to him shortly after."She continued her relationship with that monster," her devastated brother said.Stephen begged his sister to end the relationship but she continued seeing him.
Then his worst nightmare came true when he read on a local news website that "A 39-year-old woman has been found dead in her flat."He said: "I felt sick to my stomach.
Online seekers more frequently reported oral and anal sex and more sexual exposure to men and to men who have sex with men than offline subjects.
The study concludes that the Internet clearly has had a role in the solicitation of risky sex partners. Thus, seeking sex on the Internet may be a potential risk factor for STDs/HIV.
Speaking for the first time since his sister Sharon Winters was murdered by online lover Kevin Hawke, Stephen urges women to be wary of meeting men on the internet."She was a lonely heart just wanting love," Stephen said of his sister.
"That animal preyed on her caring nature."I still can't believe someone would want to hurt my poor, defenceless sister in such a horrific manner," he added.
She said that chatting to men online made her feel good about herself."She got frustrated by my disapproval, so I dropped the subject.