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I just gave my partner herpes and he is devastated. Will he forgive me? How can I help him?


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hope that someone can please help me and provide some advice and insight.  I have had HSV2 for many years.  I got it from an ex boyfriend who cheated on me. It has taken me a long time to get over.  

I met my partner many years ago but we only got together recently.   He is a very kind, quiet and caring man. I am absolutely mad about him.  We began a relationship and I told him about my HSV2 before we had any physical relationship.  He thought about it and made the decision to stay with me. I went on Valacyclovir and we used protection EVERY time.  

He recently told me that he had an outbreak and is understandably very upset and has chosen to end our relationship.  I am so upset and want to help him. He said he doesn't blame me but I feel immense guilt and don't know how to live with this.   

If there is someone here who has been in a similar position could you let me know what happened? I can't believe I could have passed this onto such a kind and good man and that I have hurt him so much. For those men that this has happened to - can you provide guidance on what I can do to help him? Will he forgive me? Could the relationship ever recover? I am so upset and feel so guilty and bad for infecting him. Can I help him or should I just leave him alone?

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Hey there, yes there are people who read these and are here for support.  Unfortunately I don't have any info on your specific topic as I'm not in a similar situation.  I'm sorry that he got it and all I can say is to be there for him as much as he will let you.   He knew the risk and took the chance, you did everything right.  This stupid virus absolutely sucks and I hope things work out with you.

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You shouldn't feel bad. You proceded like the text-book. It's normal that you feel bad about it, but don't let it take your energy since you acted un the right way.

As a man, I can tell you that he is probably having all the thoughts we have when we get the virus:
- Nobody is gonna love me.
- I am dirty.
- How did I allow this in my life.
- This is my fault.
- I'll have this for the rest of my life.
- Everybody is gonna make fun of me.
- I don't want people to know about it.
- Should I stay in this relationship? I don't want to disclose this to a new person.

If he likes you, he will come back with you. Just let him think and give him space. I would suggest that you can tell him how you feel, without making a drama: that you like him; that you took care of him as much as you could, but it happened; you can imagine how he feels; that you feel bad; that you liked him since the beggining and disclose it as a sign of respect; that you still respect him; that you want to be with him; that you respect his decision. 
You did right and he knows he can't blame you. You got all his respect because of it as I can imagine when I read your story. I think he is processing how it will be having the virus, and assuming the condition, maybe. That's a possible interpretation.
In my case, the woman didn't disclose it to me. She disclosed ir after months in the relationship. I really loved her. In my case, not disclosing was the reason I ended the relationship. I couldn't forgive it and I still think that if she had disclosed before being with her, I'd have been with her.
I hope your guy figures out how he feels soon. 

Regards,

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On 5/21/2021 at 5:52 AM, My thoughts said:

You shouldn't feel bad. You proceded like the text-book. It's normal that you feel bad about it, but don't let it take your energy since you acted un the right way.

As a man, I can tell you that he is probably having all the thoughts we have when we get the virus:
- Nobody is gonna love me.
- I am dirty.
- How did I allow this in my life.
- This is my fault.
- I'll have this for the rest of my life.
- Everybody is gonna make fun of me.
- I don't want people to know about it.
- Should I stay in this relationship? I don't want to disclose this to a new person.

If he likes you, he will come back with you. Just let him think and give him space. I would suggest that you can tell him how you feel, without making a drama: that you like him; that you took care of him as much as you could, but it happened; you can imagine how he feels; that you feel bad; that you liked him since the beggining and disclose it as a sign of respect; that you still respect him; that you want to be with him; that you respect his decision. 
You did right and he knows he can't blame you. You got all his respect because of it as I can imagine when I read your story. I think he is processing how it will be having the virus, and assuming the condition, maybe. That's a possible interpretation.
In my case, the woman didn't disclose it to me. She disclosed ir after months in the relationship. I really loved her. In my case, not disclosing was the reason I ended the relationship. I couldn't forgive it and I still think that if she had disclosed before being with her, I'd have been with her.
I hope your guy figures out how he feels soon. 

Regards,

Thank you for your thoughts and insight. So much hurt and pain for a cold sore. How did such a small thing become so big and so shameful that it breaks up relationships and hurts so many people?

I don’t think our relationship will recover and I’m starting to accept that. I did my best and am so sad at what’s happened but I can’t do anything to change it. I guess if he loved me he wouldn’t care about this so I need to just try to move on. 
thanks again to those who replied. 

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Hello!

I am sorry about this. I can't even imagine the pain you feel, especially after having trusted someone after not dating for 12 years. However, there is hope. ❤️

I am only a 21 year old female, so I cannot give a heterosexual man's perspective here. However, I can say that he may feel ashamed, guilty, dirty, or otherwise disappointed that he "let it happen". However, we all know that no one's asks for herpes, and honestly others are always at a risk when we have sex with them since herpes is a virus that spreads so easily without warning. 

The best you can do is accept what happened, offer support if he needs it, and be kind to yourself. You took the steps you needed to: you were honest with him when you met. He even talked to his doctor and made an educated choice before continuing your relationship, and the risks were known. You were patient and kind. Although it hurts when someone does not reciprocate the kindness back to us, it doesn't mean that this is in any way your fault. We cannot control how people treat us but we can control our responses. 

Please reach out on here if you need any help! ❤️ We are here for you. 

Sending Love and Blessings ☀️❤️🍀

 

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He will soon realize how poorly he is handling this. We’re all adults, we all know the risks involved. You were responsible, honest and careful. He has nothing to blame you for. Your body isn’t a threat to anyone. This virus sucks but it’s not the end of the world. We all learned that when we got it, he has to take time to learn that now. This is a painful thing for both of you and he should be more understanding of it being hard for you as well, not to mention appreciate of the caution you took. 
 

I recently began seeing someone who is hsv negative and she is extremely understanding of my worry of passing it to her, and has vocalized her understanding of the risks involved and that to her, I am worth that risk. She sees me and understands why this isn’t such a big deal, and so should this guy. Move on from him and don’t be hard on yourself for doing all the right things

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Thank you for your insight. I think it goes out of all proportion in your head if you let it and I think that’s possibly where he is right now. 
I’m so upset as he knew and said he wanted to stay with me regardless but when he did get it he turned ran away. I’m so confused. We had been so so so so so careful - it’s just not fair. He says he doesn’t blame me but he must. He said we are ‘broken beyond repair’ but I didn’t even know I had done this and I would never have knowingly hurt him. 
I am giving him space and hope he can figure it out in his head. I thought if he did get it (years down the line) we would handle it together- but he doesn’t want me near him. 
maybe this is an excuse for him to end the relationship but it’s come from no where. 

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@DistressedLady Hi!! 🌼

First, "broken beyond repair" is not something that just simply is NOT cool to say, especially to someone who feels horrible already. These words hurt, and can make us feel like because we have herpes, WE are broken beyond repair. You are NOT broken, damaged, or ruined in any way shape or form. You are strong and beautiful and you can do so much better. The one amazing thing that herpes has taught me it that it filters out people I meet; it really shows who someone is, and perhaps this is seeing this person's true colors for the first time. None of this is your fault, and anyone who makes you feel like it is (even if they SAY they don't blame you, but act like they are) are NOT worthy of your time and energy. 

Stay strong and do what you would tell a friend to do-- if someone you loved were in this situation, wouldn't you tell them to move on from this person, treat yourself with respect and kindness, and be free and happy ❤️

I am sending you love and light!

We are all here for you! 🌼❤️🌈🌄🍀☀️

 

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Ah thank you. I know you are right. He meant the relationship was broken beyond repair - but it did really hurt. 
He was so good about it, so understanding and telling me not to worry, it was his decision. It would be much easier if he didn’t have it and I could walk away guilt free but I will always feel bad for passing this on to someone. I would never want anyone to feel as bad as we all have here. Hopefully with time he will get his head around it. 
thank you so much for your kind words and understanding. It really helps stop my head exploding with guilt and sadness!!! 
 

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OMG I am in almost the exact situation.
I was in a LDR for a year and we were a week out from meeting for the first time when I got diagnosed as HSV2. I had no idea and suddenly it was all over. My SO is immuno-compromised so the danger to her was heightened.  I thought it was over but she said she still wanted to meet and when we did it was amazing. We were crazy for each other before, had told each other we loved each other and when we met in person everything felt so natural and happy adn it was an amazing 2 weeks. We ended up having unprotected sex after condom trouble and a few days of resisting. She said she was all in. And when I left I was so happy. We both were.

Then 3 weeks later and it looks like she has caught it. And it's hit when she has some other stuff going on too. LAst week she told me she needed space and was going to disappear for a bit. And she has. I've onyl had a couple of texts from her adn they have been brief, cold even.
I know she is going through a really hard time but I am pushed outside. I feel helpless and scared as I thought this was the relationship I would be in for the rest of my life. SHe said she doesn't blame me but I think she hates me now.
I"m terrified to lose her. I hate to think of her in pain, or scared, or shamed. I don't know what to do or if it is too late.

Distressed Lady, I hope your man comes to terms with what he has, that it isn't the end of the world and realizes what he has with you is worth saving. Good luck.

 

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Ah I’m so sorry to hear your story. One part of me is like ‘what the heck is wrong with everyone - it’s just a cold sore?? if it was the other way around I wouldn’t care once we were together’.

The other part knows how hard it is to have to tell someone and be rejected for it buts all just the stigma that’s associated with it and not the actual sores themselves as they can be managed. 
I don’t understand how someone can say they accept the risk and then turn and run and be angry and punish you when you don’t even know that you could be passing it.  You didn’t do it consciously- you would never want to hurt someone you care about. why is it so hard??
I’m still sad beyond belief and so upset with my situation but I can’t change it so I think I need to accept it and try to move on. 
I hope your girlfriend calms down and realises it’s not the end of the world. If she doesn’t I hope you meet the right woman for you soon and your heart heals. 
 

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@DeMar

Hello! ❤️☀️

I just read your post and I wanted to say that I am sorry for what happened. Abandonment hurts a lot, and it's like opening up an old wound; every other little thing regarding rejection and abandonment just opens up and it leaves us feeling broken hearted and unwanted. 

However, you ARE wanted. You are worthy of healthy, happy love with someone who wants to and can be with you. It is wrong for this person to be with you and then suddenly leave, especially without explanation. If this person has an immunocompromised condition such as AIDS or HIV, or even something like Multiple Sclerosis or Lupus, HSV could significantly harm their health or trigger their conditions or cause relapse, and It is SO hard when medical complications complicate relationships. If anything, this person probably feels horrible, angry, and overwhelmed at THEMSELVES because their condition is preventing them from being with you, someone who makes them so happy, and maybe they just are angry at life. Although all emotions are okay, they should have been more mature about it, and should have worked through things WITH you, not without you. 

This person may come back in the future. Then, it is your choice to accept them back or respectfully say no thank you. You can acknowledge their shame and suffering and be sympathetic, but in no way should you ignore your own feelings and accept the person back right away because you are fearful no one else will want you. You are WANTED, NEEDED, and worthy of so so much good ❤️

Please know you are beautiful, pure, and a blessing. Another love will come it's way. See what this relationship has taught you; about you, about others, about how to be stronger and resilient through times of pain. 

We are all here for you!! If you ever need a buddy to vent to, feel free to direct message me 😊.

Sending Love and Light!! ☀️🌄🌼❤️🌈

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Thanks Distressed Lady and Flowerteacher for your very kind and supportive words.

I heard from her last night. She is in intense pain from the herpes and has a couple of other major things that make it worse, one pituitary related. So she does blame herself for allowing this to happen to her and she is angry at life too.
At the moment she feels like she can never have a love life. She is very very low right now. Once she gets through this I don't know if we'll still be together. It's not about me right now.
She suffers from anxiety and right now her stress is through the roof.
It is awful what she is going through and she feels very much alone. She doesn't feel she can talk to anyone... the sigma. She has decided to see her doctor although it has taken a week feeling too embarrassed.  Please don't judge her, we all come from different backgrounds and although I think it's crazy to be so embarrassed to stop you seeing the doctor when you're in pain, I can understand it too.

What is the best way I can support her from the other side of the country? I don't think she would be up for a visit right now. I don't think she could handle the stress.

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@DeMar

Hi!! 

I am so sorry for the pain you both are suffering. This is such a hard situation. 

As someone with OCD, anxiety, and eating disorder issues, herpes and illness can cause such intense worry, shame, and guilt because herpes effects our physical self and emotional self (especially since it's so stigmatized). However, this is not really anyone's fault. It's a virus. You both were consenting adults going into it. It happened. And that sucks. However you are there for her, and that means a lot. Even if she cannot express it right now, I'm sure she feels happy you are sticking by her for support if she needs it. 

Your feelings DO matter right now. Make sure you do not absorb the suffering of others. You can sympathize and help and offer kindness, support, comfort, and time, but taking on additional pain doesn't help her OR you! 

I would say offer an ear, or an information source. If she has questions about living with herpes, you are a resource. Something people often need is someone to LISTEN, not offer advice, but to just listen without judgement or comments at all. You can tell her that you're here for both, listening and advice.

If she chooses to stop talking to you, that's up to her. However, she seems like she is afraid of never being with someone who accepts her for her physical self, but YOU DO! Even as a friend, this is HUGE. You can even reassure her that she still matters no matter what. And that you are there for her even as a friend through this (if you choose to be!)

I hope this helps ❤️ 

Sending Love and happiness your (and her!) Way!!! ❤️🌈🌄🌼🍀☀️

 

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Hope you are doing ok. It’s great that she’s being open with you while she tries to figure it out and work through it. I think that she’s showing she doesn’t blame you and while she may not feel ready for a sexual relationship right now - she might when things settle down. You are doing all you can and once you’re still communicating things can improve. 
hoping you both are feeling a little better!

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Thanks Distressed Lady,

We texted more last night and she told me more about what she is going through, and it is awful. Herpes was so different for me, I didn't even notice I had it! Yet she is going through huge pain, swollen lymph nodes, pain in her groin, arm pit, tonsils, under her neck, and the pain in her groin is so intense. Added to that she is feeling very very low about herself, she is angry at herself, and at the world, and she is having trouble seeing a future quality of life. She can't contemplate any future love life or sex life right now although she says she still loves me, but the thought of sex now makes her feel sick and terrified.
And so she wants to end it, and continue her life on her own, forever single.
I am heartbroken yet I cannot believe this is hte end of it... although I know it may well be. For now we are still in touch and I care immensly for her and will do anything I can to support her, even if it means ending our relationship. I still feel everything is too fraught right now and uncertain. And I feel awful but I can't give up on us until I know for certain it is over.

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9 hours ago, DeMar said:

Thanks Distressed Lady,

We texted more last night and she told me more about what she is going through, and it is awful. Herpes was so different for me, I didn't even notice I had it! Yet she is going through huge pain, swollen lymph nodes, pain in her groin, arm pit, tonsils, under her neck, and the pain in her groin is so intense. Added to that she is feeling very very low about herself, she is angry at herself, and at the world, and she is having trouble seeing a future quality of life. She can't contemplate any future love life or sex life right now although she says she still loves me, but the thought of sex now makes her feel sick and terrified.
And so she wants to end it, and continue her life on her own, forever single.
I am heartbroken yet I cannot believe this is hte end of it... although I know it may well be. For now we are still in touch and I care immensly for her and will do anything I can to support her, even if it means ending our relationship. I still feel everything is too fraught right now and uncertain. And I feel awful but I can't give up on us until I know for certain it is over.

I'm sorry this is happening.   Maybe once the symptoms subside and she starts to feel better then she'll come back around.   

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I am so worried about here. W live on opposite parts of the country so I can't be with her, can't help here. SHe doesn't want me there either otherwise I would fly out.
She is freaking out. She may have to have an operation the will require medication that will clash with antivirals and I feel she is in panic mode really badly. I don't know what I can do to helpt. She won't take my calls. I don't know what I could say anyway. She sends me occasional texts where it's like she explodes with panic about how her life is going to be now. She doesn't see the possibilty of a normal life that so many people with herpes have as she is in total reaction mode right now. She feels she cannot share this with anyone in her friends or family. It is so difficult for her. The only person she can talk to at all is me and she can't face me right now. We spoke last night and then she saw her doctor today. I thought things would get better but they have got worse.
I'm really worried. I don't know what to do.

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@DeMar

Hello! I just read what you had posted. I am really sorry about everything, and I am sorry she is not feeling well. 

However, please know that this is not your fault. Yes, it is very sad that she is struggling. She doesn't deserve that. However, you don't deserve to feel guilty or horrible, either. You can have sympathy and empathy, but make sure you don't absorb these emotions and problems like a sponge. Having two, let alone one, panicking people isn't good, right?! 

You have extended your hand and have offered support, which is all you can do. 

Right now, just let it go. Forgive yourself and the situation and keep on keeping on. 

Sending Positivity and Strength!! 🌄🌼❤️☀️

 

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Hi DistressedLady:  I'm so sorry your partner decided to end your relationship. 😞  I think he's really mad at himself, but no one likes to be mad at themselves, so sometimes, the next closest person gets it.

You did all you could do. You were honest about your status, and he accepted it and chose to be with you.  Like others said, he knew the risk (pretty much, any sex with anyone is a risk....that has never changed...goes back decades and decades).

Please hang in there....one day at a time. ✌️☀️

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