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  1. Hey Max, I'm sorry that you have been feeling depressed, scared, lost and hopeless. That makes me feel sad to think you're going through that. You are right that loving ourselves is a work in progress. It's a daily practice. Have you ever thought about journaling? That's one thing that makes me feel more connected with myself. When I write out my thoughts, I feel a huge relief. You are the author of your life and you can create whatever you want. I just don't want you to feel hopeless, feeling like nothing good will come your way. Not true; because you have the power to create whatever you want for yourself. You can get involved in whatever your likes/interests are and create some happy vibes. Don't wait around for things to happen. Hop in the drivers seat and steer your life in the direction you want to go! <3
  2. Whoopsidaysi, "I think some of us feel guilty when we're being kind to ourselves and feel like we just need to "suck it up". I know for myself, I need to be as kind and loving to myself as I am to my friends." yes! yes, yes, yes. You're so right. It can be really difficult to give ourselves the kindness. I really struggled with it for a long time until I became really conscious of it. I taking on pain that I thought I deserved. I wouldn't wish it for anyone, so why administer upon myself? I started to treat myself as I would someone else, and the compassion and love came out full force. It's quite beautiful. I like this way of relating with myself. I love your awareness, and I love your capacity of love and support. You mentioned in another post "If it is herpes, then we are here to hold your hand, love and support you and get you through to the other side where you see the blessings." I just love that. sjj, great quote. "we accept the love we think we deserve" So true. And we have the power to give any amount of love to ourselves and others. Sometimes we have the capacity to love others more than ourselves, but then we're not being fair to ourselves. Why don't we give ourselves the love that we give others. We deserve our love too! Learning to love ourselves is one of the most beautiful things we can do :)
  3. That is beautiful that you are happy for your sisters. I've been reading a book called the Mastery of Love. And I've been getting some wonderful life lessons from it. Our love and happiness need to come from within ourselves. It is so easy to look outside for happiness, but it will often dissapoint. Others can't meet our needs and always make us happy, but we have that power within ourselves. One of the most important things in life is to give ourselves the love that we often give other people. It's so important to be in charge of our own happiness first, and then once you are settled into your own love, you have the power to share your happiness without giving any of it away. It doesn't drain you to share your love, because you're not expecting anything back from the other person. It just makes you happy to share your love. Something else that I took away from this book is the difference between aloneness and loneliness. Alone is when you feel at peace and content with just yourself. There's a certain celebration in being with just yourself, knowing that you are the only "you" in the world. Loneliness is when we feel cut out from society in some way. We are human and there's a primal need for us to feel like we fit in with others. The beautiful thing is, everyone is different, but we always fit in. We are human. Everyone experiences sadness, happiness, loneliness, community and all those other beautiful and tough parts of life. This is what it is to be human. We're all going through the journey. Might as well enjoy it, and always see the beauty in everything ;)
  4. Great questions. Even if you are having an outbreak, a guy can't get it from fingering you. I suppose the only way that could happen is if they finger you and then directly put their hands on their genitals. A good hand washing should do the trick for sure. Outbreaks are shorter and come in wider spans as time goes on. Your body builds the appropriate antibodies so that the outbreaks clear up much faster. I compare it to having your period for a week or less and just having to hold off on the sexual stuff. There's always other options to make you feel connected with your partner. It could be through touch. massage. or relaxation. taking a bath together. playing games, cuddling up by a fireplace, sharing stories. There's all sorts of ways to connect :O)
  5. Aahhh yes. I just love this conversation. I'm taking it in a little bit different of a direction, but only because this reminds me of an article that my friend, Dave wrote. The article is entitled "Why finding the right man isn't working" Some key things he writes that really spoke to me were: "We don’t date whom we want, we date a mirror reflection of ourselves." " Our “choice” is mostly an illusion, a cosmic joke played on us to think we are in total control of our lives. Dating isn’t about selection, it’s about resonation." "To find the man of your dreams your job is not to search out where he’s hiding, it’s to become the woman of his dreams. Men want a woman who loves herself, loves everyone in her life and doesn’t hold herself back sexually (among many other things)." "You are attracting you. When you improve you, guess who shows up? Men who are more conscious, men who are confident, men who are sensitive to your needs, men who are more of what you want. Why? You have become more of the woman men want." Basically, it really hit me that we like to date mirrors of ourselves, and before we can be in a loving relationship with anyone else, we need to be in love with ourselves first. here's a link to the whole article if you want to read it http://themaleblueprint.com/why-your-plan-to-find-the-right-man-isnt-working/
  6. Welcome Shannon, and thanks for sharing. Whatever it turns out to be, I just want you to know it's not the end of the world. Although it felt like the end of the world at first, I've come to find out after a year of having herpes, that it's actually more physically and emotionally managable than I ever imagined. I imagine that you must be feeling really frustrated, knowing that you've been so careful all these years and now there's a possibility of having herpes. I am sorry. It just goes to show how wrong the stigma is. It's estimated that 80% of people who have genital herpes don't even know they have it. Really can happen to anyone, and you are certainly not alone- no matter what this turns out to be. Sending healing thoughts! It's nice to meet you too. -Katie
  7. Jassabell, Hi. So its only been a week, huh? I'm so happy you found this forum. Way to take care of yourself, finding community and answers :) I'm happy that you have your sister for support too! It can be really nice to have a shoulder to cry on, and a big wise sis reassuring you that you don't look like a huge herpes germ lol. I am posting the links to 2 handouts that Adrial made up. I find them to be really helpful, answering some really important questions. http://herpesopportunity.com/downloads/herpes-opportunity-disclosure-handout.pdf http://bit.ly/h-opp-diagnosis-handout I wish I had an answer to your IGG question, but I don't know. Sending love and hopefully some peace of mind. -Katie
  8. Yes, yes. I totally hear you. I went to a therapist one time and didn't go back. There's just so different ways to process everything, and I think that therapy is a great choice. It wasn't my choice after I tried it out, but who knows what your experience will be. Maybe you and your therapist will have a great connection; maybe not. But it's worth a shot. I'm happy that you're exploring options. Thank you for taking care of yourself :) I also used to think about herpes constantly. It was an everyday occurance. 1st thing in the morning, different moments throughout the day, then last thing at night. I thought it would Never go away, but it really has. It haunted me until I learned more, loved more, and forgave more. I'm amazed how little it sneaks up on me to think about it. Even when I think about it, my relationship is different to herpes and it doesn't feel like a knife in my heart anymore. I promise you it gets better. Please feel free to message me at any time too if you have any questions. I just totally get what it's like to be in your shoes right now, and I want to support you in whatever way I can!
  9. Sjj, I feel for you. I feel protective over you, bc I know what it's like to get herpes from a hookup, and to hate myself for not being more considerate of the consequences. I imagine that you're feeling drained, fearful, and confused about what herpes actually is and how it will impact your life. Being newly diagnosed is the worst part bc it's easy to sink into feeling the social stigma of herpes. The public actually knows very little about the statistics of herpes. If the information was out there in the open, I have a strong feeling that the stigma would be much less powerful. 80% of the population has oral herpes. And about 1 in 5 Americans have genital herpes. It's more common than you'd think. Herpes will choose anyone. It's a virus. It doesn't choose "the dirty people." It just happens. You are certainly Not the only 19 year old who's had someone gone down on them. I don't know what the statistics are, but I'm willing to bet that its way for common for college kids to have sexual experiences rather not. You just happened to unwillingly get herpes, just like other people unwillingly "happen to get pregnant." Stuff just happens. It doesn't mean anything, and any guy worthy of a serious relationship w you will fully see who you are, and love you for you. They will not let a virus stop them. Sure, they will probably have questions about herpes, and then you can answer them w facts that will help dissipate any fear. I just really want you to get that you're not alone. And there's a lot of information about herpes, especially on this website. I'm really glad you found it :) What I came to find was that having herpes is not nearly as scary as it first seems. I was in your shoes a year ago, and I've come to realize that herpes was a bump on the road that led me to a path of self love and forgiveness that I truly value in my life. I'm sorry that you're going through a really hard time right now. I really feel for you. And! I want you to understand that you don't need to live in fear of disclosing. It will come easier w time and knowledge. Much love, Katie
  10. yes. yes. yes. Thank you WhoopsiDaysi. Beautifully said :)
  11. Thanks for the positivity Dom :) I wrote in a blog one time something that pertains to this. It was about a favorite quote of mine "Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending." - Maria Robinson. I create my story. I am the author of my life. Sometimes I write with a pen and can't erase it, but what I can do is keep writing and moving forward. Our lives. Our stories. We have the power to live however we choose. :)
  12. Nice to have you here, Ben. :) -Katie
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