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  1. Thank you all so much! It is so reassuring to hear from people who have felt the same way and understand and are dealing with it well. I appreciate you!
  2. Sorry - him in my post referred to my husband. Editing mistake.
  3. Official hello, friends! I have been around and reading for a while and really appreciate all your posts and support for each other. I thought I was doing alright/improving but I think I could use a little advice/support so here is my first post. I’ll try to keep it short. I am 39 and have been with my husband for 16 years. Late last year I saw three tiny bumps unlike anything I’d seen before. I went to the doctor and she suspected GHSV1 which was confirmed by culture and blood test (on my birthday, ugh). I spoke to him that night and he was very cool about the whole thing; we didn’t accuse each other of cheating, I explained he probably has had it forever without symptoms and that is that. But then my blood work came back that it was an old infection, he got tested, and shocker - he tested negative! So it seems I have had this for at least 16 years, with no symptoms ever until last year. We talked and he was thrown for a bit as he assumed he had it and not having it made him nervous about me cheating (I have never) but he says he doesn’t really worry that I did/have. I offered to go on meds but he said that as far as he is concerned nothing is different. We’ve been having sex for 16 years and he hasn’t gotten it so we don’t really need to change anything. So he is amazing and that has been wonderful. I also got the courage to tell a friend and she said, “I’m going to stop you right there, because I have herpes too!” So, I told two other friends and they have been so supportive as well. I am grateful and acknowledge how lucky I am in that. But one of those friends is currently battling breast cancer for the second time and the other friend is struggling to have a child so my struggle seams (and is) so petty compared to their struggles so I don’t want to burden them. Since last fall I’ve been going to therapy and meditating and it was helping. But I have had two or three outbreaks since and they destroy me. I always loved sex. No self consciousness. All of that is gone. I feel like I have a poisoned vulva and I hate it. I’m worried all the time about things I know aren’t true - like I didn’t go in the pool because there were three pregnant women in it and even though I know that isn’t how it works I didn’t want to risk their babies. Or like infecting my daughter if she lays in my bed on my sheets. I know these are irrational, but I can’t stop. I simultaneously know that it isn’t a big deal because I never noticed for 16+ years so how big a deal can it be, but also feel like shit. I can’t stop worrying about passing it to my husband even though the risk is low and as proof of that he hasn’t gotten it in 16 years! I think about it every day, multiple times and I thought I was done crying, but I’m not. I have never noticed every twitch and itch and discomfort on my vulva as much as I do all day every day. You guys! I have things to do! I can’t be sitting here contemplating my vulva all damn day! I need to get over this, like, now!! I’m not sure what else to do. I can rationally accept all the facts and risks and stats in my head, but then the emotion and irrationality and fear/worry/anxiety/and self loathing just washes it all away and I am stuck in this anxious, sad place. How long did it take for you to not think about it every day? Any other suggestions for ways to reframe my thinking? What am I not doing? Or does it just take time? Thank you!!
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