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Differentiating between hsv1 and hsv2

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Hey everyone, 

I’ve been coming onto the forum regularly to read posts and every once in a while I’ll engage if I see a space for it. I wanted to mention something that’s been bothering me. Too often I’ll read a post where someone in the community is relieved to find out they have hsv1 instead of hsv2. I think everyone should be aware of how they are contributing to the stigmatization of a huge portion of the h opportunity community. I realize that it may provide you with some temporary relief in your H journey but really, herpes is herpes is herpes. If it does give you a glimmer of hope, great, but it’s a punch in the gut for people who have hsv2. Not only that, but it’s a grossly misinformed perspective to have. There’s way too much in the variety of experiences to assume that one is so much better to have over the other, we’re still all in the same group forum looking for support and coping with the same life circumstances. Every sexual health professional I’ve spoken to says it’s all the same thing, and they don’t seem too worried about drawing a line between one or the other. I’ve been wanting to comment on this for a long time now but have kept it to myself up until now. It’s at the point where it’s put a bad taste in my mouth and I will bow out a bit from this group. 

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I’ve felt the same way. I feel like lately it’s a double whammy, I have HSV but now I’m the worst of the worst because I have HSV2. I understand HSV2 sheds more which makes it more likely to transmit but it’s still herpes. Whether you have GHSV1 or GHSV2 you are going to deal with the same issues. I don’t need to be made to feel like I’m doomed because I have type 2. 

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It’s just sad this community perpetuates that there’s a good herpes versus a bad one. This should be the place that destigmatizes this believe. At the end of the day, when I told my partner about transmission rates the bottom line needed to be that there’s a risk. When you have herpes, 1 or 2, there’s a risk. You could have hsv2 and never pass it on, you could have hsv1 and pass it on. ITS ALL THE SAME YA’ll. H opp has a lot of potential but that needs some work. It’s sad to see it coming through the community that should be chopping it down.

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We are all H Opp, my friend. 😉 You make it sound like that is H Opp’s official stance, but it’s not. I certainly don’t hold that stance. And I’d love to see you hang around and school some folks on the equal opportunity nature of HSV instead of bowing out. If you don’t like the stance that people are coming in with, help them change their minds in a kind and supportive way. I can’t always police everyone’s viewpoint here, so I’d love the help! 

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@mr_hopp Yes, you’re right. Yesterday was the day i hit a wall with this because I was out with some friends and one of them made a comment that they were worried they have herpes, but the “bad” one. I ended up disclosing to them for the first time and the whole experience set me off. I realize that this community in general doesn’t hold that stance, but it’s hard to deal with the fact that I don’t even feel solidarity with other people who have herpes as well, because of this tendency to separate one from the other. It’s unsettling how many misconceptions there are. Anyways, today I have a new fresh perspective and I think you’re right, it’s better to treat this moments as teachable moments. 

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Thanks man, I get the frustration. And that frustration can totally be transmogrified into golden teachable moments, for sure. Use it as fuel for positive change. Here's a classic example of that when my best friend's fiance made a herpes joke out of the blue after dinner: https://www.herpesopportunity.com/post/herpes-stigma-how-to-become-bulletproof

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@mr_hopp That’s a really great video. Thanks for that, I’ve missed out on a few chances to make a better impact and yesterday was the first time that I took up the chance to myth bust. Slowly I’m getting more comfortable with sharing my own experience and honestly it feels a lot better than not saying anything at all. I don’t regret speaking my truth yesterday but I really regret all the times that I hid from doing so!


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These are really great points and I want to personally apologize for any comments or posts I've made that contributed to you feeling this way and the divide between the 1/2 designations--I realize that much of my sharing with others dealing with HSV-1 has leaned heavily on the trite "if you are going to have it, this is the best kind to have" statement, I even put it in all caps at one point in an effort to be upbeat and reassuring, and instantly regretted it when I found I couldn't edit it to be tamer. I have absolutely no desire to contribute to the stigma of any variety of H, but I totally see OPs points and will endeavor to keep this in check in the future. There are so many variables, every individual is different, and each experience of this journey is highly individual--but we share a common enemy--stigma. I was initially diagnosed as having 2, spent two years believing that before I had my western blot confirm the variety. It's true that the nurse used the same trite line to reassure me when she told me, but also true that it's not felt very much different to me either way.

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Thank you so much for contributing this. It’s interesting that health “professionals” are perpetuating this. I had the same experience with th doctor who diagnosed me. She said it did look like herpes and then she reassured me that my partner probably got cold sores as a kid. I didn’t think much of it until months later, now it feels like it was meant to be a subtle reassurance that I had the better one. It’s very interesting...

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