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(probable) oral hsv2, isolating myself, depressive ideations


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 a couple of years ago I was diagnosed with hsv-2 via blood test, and came up negative for HSV-1. Shortly thereafter I had a Genital outbreak.  I spoke with my doctor about the possibility of also getting it orally, and she said she had never seen a case of oral HSV-2. Since then I have read some studies cited on this board that HSV-2 is really uncommon, so it was never particularly a concern for me. 
 
In retrospect, I think there have been a couple times in the past couple years where I've had an oral outbreak, but I kind of pushed it to the back of my mind, thinking it was unlikely I had oral hsv-2 given how rare it is. 
 
But then, just a week ago, i had a genital and oral outbreak at the same time, bringing my attention to this thing I'd ignored. I got retested and still come up negative for HSV-1, which means I must have oral hsv-2 in addition to genital - unless the HSV-1 IGG test was a false negative, which I should know once I get the Western blot but it seems unlikely. 
 
I think the thing that was so difficult about originally getting diagnosed with genital herpes was the idea that it would remove any spontaneity/excitement in the way I date / meet people and suddenly limit me the only being able to have sex within a super serious relationship, whereas I'm never sure that I really want a long-term relationship, especially when first meeting someone.
 
I took comfort reading stories on this forum of people who had, post- herpes diagnosis, still found ways to engage in more casual slash spontaneous shorter term relationships. In the past 3 years I've had 3 relatively successful disclosures with women were not necessarily going to become a serious partner. Two of those disclosures, however, occurred after I had already started kissing a girl, but prior to sex. 
 
But now, I'm finding it really hard to deal with having (probable) oral hsv-2. Everything I read online suggest that it's extremely rare, sheds very infrequently when not symptomatic, suggesting that the risk of passing it on via kissing when not having an outbreak is very small. I wish between that, and the fact that most people already have oral herpes, albeit a  different strand, and don't disclose it prior to kissing, left me feeling comfortable with refraining from disclosing this until after kissing, but before sex. I've asked some of my friends, and they've said if they were in my shoes they wouldn't sweat disclosure before kissing. 
 
But my Integrity tells me otherwise - that since I do have the rarer "HSV-2" oral strand it's something I have to disclose before kissing. And I just feel this overwhelming anxiety over that, partly because normally on first and second dates I'm still seeing for myself whether I even like a girl, and often times it's not until having kissed that some genuine excitement to be with the other person starts to form. For me to have to disclose before I even know how I feel about the person or how they feel about me, whether I want to kiss them and whether they want to kiss me - just feels like this impossible burden.
 
 I just don't know how to disclose in a way that won't completely destroy all the momentum of a first ot second date, especially because my situation seems to be rare. It's one thing to tell a prospective partner that I have oral or genital herpes, it's another thing to have to educate them on the difference between HSV-1 and hsv-2, and the fact that I have HSV-2 both genitally and orally, and that the odds of passing it orally are small and genitally are small given the use of protection and antivirals. It's just so much information to tell somebody at once when we barely know each other. Is it enough to just tell someone I have herpes and the risk of transmission is low, and then (unless they ask more questions on the spot) fill in the details later? 
 
I'm now just finding myself with severe depression, struggling with suicidal ideations and having difficulty enjoying things that I normally enjoy, as my anxiety over this is overwhelming. It's not that I don't think there's anybody who will be accepting of my condition, but I do think the contexts in which I'll be able to explain my situation thoroughly wil be severely limiting in terms of how I go about meeting someone. Right now, for example, I am traveling and working abroad in Mexico (living the "digital Nomad" lifestyle),  and part of the whole excitement of that is the fact that I could meet somebody from a completely different it walk of life, in an environment I would never expect. But I can't help but think that the only realistic way for me to date now is to return to the United States and join match.com or some website where people date at a slower/more serious pace. And if that's what I end up doing I hate the fact that it's this virus controlling my life/eliminating so much of what I find enjoyable about traveling, meeting people, dating in the first place (i.e. the spontaneity). It's making me feel like I should just give up on everything and not even try.
 
In any case, sorry for the long post.... If there is anyone else with oral hsv-2 who has any suggestions for disclosure, I would be happy to hear them. Otherwise I'm just happy to hear any words of comfort anyone has, though I recognize my situation is rare even amongst the herpes community. 
 
 
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Unfortunately being abroad right now I haven't been able to find a testing clinic that does the swab test, only blood tests. But it looks like a normal (small) cold sore, and I feel all the sensations I associate with herpes - major tingling/itchiness around my face. Plus I had a genital outbreak at the same time. I would be shocked if it wasn't herpes. 

The only other possibility I could think if it was actually HSV-1 and my IGG test showing me negative for HSV-1 was wrong, since Terri Warren says 30% of IGG tests are false negatives. But the fact that I had an oral and genital outbreak at the same time makes me think both HSV-2. I won't be able to verify until I'm back in the States and can get the Western blot. 

 

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  • 1 month later...

I understand your struggle. People Don’t disclose their oral herpes, at least I’ve never heard of it. Should they, probably. But that’s a whole lot of people. You’re probably much less likely to give it to someone through kissing than someone who has hsv 1. But the way society deals with it is super crazy. Would you be opposed to dating on a HSV dating site? It could take away a lot of the stress. That’s probably what I would do. That much more to life than herpes, deep down, you know that. We just need to keep reminding ourselves. Sending you love. And also, I’m jealous of your traveling! 

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