I’ve had a urinary tract infection (UTI) twice in the last one month — each time just a bit after 24 hours of penile-vaginal penetrative sex. The first incident occurred at 3:30 a.m., and the second at 12:30 a.m. when I felt this urgent urge to pee 3 times in 5 minutes. Each time, I chose to go to the A&E near my place because of my commitments that day i.e. needed to feel better quickly.

I am so fed up with people not understanding what UTI is.

The few people I told:

  • Asked how I know my UTI was caused by sex. My UTI happened AFTER sex and likely BECAUSE of sex since it was not long after just like my previous episodes of UTI with other sexual partners.
  • Asked if I know it was his bacteria. (I would NEVER say it is his bacteria — but it is bacteria. Bacteria is everywhere. The bacteria that went into my bladder is likely to be bacteria already IN or near my urethra.)
  • Asked why I had UTI even when we had protected sex i.e. with the external male condom (The penis with condom over was IN my vagina NOT urethra. UTI is caused by bacteria being pushed INTO the bladder. Bacteria are NOT the same as a virus.)
  • Reacted as if it is the fault of my sexual partner — calling him dirty/ unhygienic.
  • Called me stupid because I had sex with the same person who caused me UTI as if he carries UTI! (I’ve had UTI from other sexual partners and it is NOT their fault. It is NOT my fault. This is just shit that happens sometimes!)

I get these kind of comments/ questions because of the sexual ignorance of my friends. If my educated friends can be confused about UTI, then I figured this might be worth retelling.

Luckily this recent sexual partner is more sexually educated than my previous sexual partners who also caused me to have UTI. He was cool about it whilst my previous sexual partners did this out of their ignorance:

  • One went for full STI test immediately (even though no STI will show up so soon after sex) just so he can say he didn’t give a STI to me. I never once accused him of passing me an STI.
  • Another went for a full STI test and a penicillin jab (even though I repeatedly explained UTI is not STI). Again, to have the satisfaction of…
Dr. Martha Tara Lee, Sexpert — D.H.S., M.A.

Relationship Counselor and Clinical Sexologist of Eros Coaching. AASECT Cert Sexuality Educator Supervisor. Author of 4 books. www.ErosCoaching.com