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    Welcome to the Herpes Opportunity Support Forum! We are a supportive and positive group to help you discover and live your Opportunity. Together, we can shed the shame and embrace vulnerability and true connection. Because who you are is more important than what you have. Get your free e-book and handouts here: https://www.herpesopportunity.com/lp/ebook

Shedding - how to discuss when disclosing

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Hi All 

I disclosed to a guy I was dating, he said he was ok with it but a few days later said he’d read online that he could catch it at any time because of shedding and so he ended things. In the 4 years since my diagnosis this is only the second person I’ve disclosed to or had sex with so needless to say I’m pretty gutted. 
Just wondering how people talk about transmission when they disclose. Do you mention shedding? 

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Yes, it’s necessary to talk about shedding, but it’s also one of the most misunderstood parts of herpes.

First things first, download the disclosure e-book and handouts here: 

Those will give you a great positive perspective and facts to work from.

Secondly, it’s super important to share that the chances of getting genital herpes (HSV2) for a man is only 4% per year. (Genital HSV1 is very rare to pass genital to genital.) And if you take suppressive therapy that number is cut in half to 2% and if you wear condoms, it’s cut in half yet again to 1%. To put that in perspective, he is more likely to die in a car crash than he is to get herpes from you. (See these breakdowns in the handouts.)

Then with you having awareness that first of all you even have herpes to be cautious and also know your prodrome symptoms, that adds an all-important first line of defense to protecting your partners. Because most of how herpes is passed is through ignorance and denial. My wife and I have been having unprotected sex (with suppressive therapy) for over 5 years and have a 3 year old boy and she hasn’t gotten herpes yet. And none of my exes have gotten herpes either and I’ve had it for over a decade. (And it’s easier to pass herpes to women because there’s more mucous membrane with vaginas than penises.) Now I’m not saying it’s so rare to pass herpes since it is a chance that’s always there; it’s just a smaller chance than it seems with all the stigma and fear clouding the facts.  

So don’t fret. This is a great learning experience for you, rocket fuel to get the facts seared into your brain so next time you can disclose with confidence, strapped with the facts, spreading knowledge and helping dispel the ignorance and stigma. You got this. 👊

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This content is for informational purposes only. This information does not constitute medical advice or diagnosis. I'm not a medical professional, so please take this as friendly peer support. 

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