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Looking for solidarity - exposed partner w/o knowing


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I’m no stranger to this forum but this is the first time I’ve been in this situation. 

I’ve had HSV2 for almost 10 years (since I was 21). I’ve been largely responsible (with some moments of lack of judgement that I sorely regret). But all in all, as far as I know, I’ve never given HSV to any of my partners as long as I’ve had it. My OBs are mild, and they happen on average 1/24 months, usually in times of some level of stress, always leading up to my period and NEVER while I’m taking antivirals. 

also, NEVER while in a relationship. 

well a couple weeks ago everything changed. After about 8 years w/o a very serious relationship I’m deeply in love with someone, he loves me back, and we’re super happy together. It’s only been about 4-5 months, but we see this working out very long term. I told him about HSV before we had sex he was very understanding, I was taking antivirals for maintenance before even dating him and kept up with the exception of a week I forgot my meds and was away on vacation and away from him. we’ve worn condoms every single time, we’ve had sex, and had had no other problems w out sex life. 

we had sex last Thursday, I was already about 3 days into my period and was on my meds (remember I’ve never had an outbreak outside of days before my period or while taking meds).

Last Saturday morning I start feeling itchy, not quite right down there. In the evening before we were supposed to head out for the night I was so bothered - thinking it was maybe a tear of some sort, and praying, that although it was in the exact area where I get outbreaks, that it wasn’t that. To my demise, it was the starting stages of a very clear but small OB. I felt my world crumble. 

at first my mind raced through every excuse I could maybe come up with to not have to share this information, but no matter what, i felt that anything other than the truth would be dishonest. I told him everything and was honest that when we had sex a couple days prior that I wasn’t experiencing symptoms. But here we were 2 days later, with an obvious flare up. 

he was extremely understanding and did not put any blame on me at all. He extremely loving and has followed my boundaries of abstaining from sec for about 2 weeks. It’s been 9 days and he has no signs of symptoms, so we’re hopefully in the clear. My symptoms with added medication cleared up within 2 days as usual. 

still despite that all being signs of a happy ending, I’m feeling a huge amount of self hatred. My heart keeps racing when I don’t hear from him thinking that maybe he’s found symptoms and hates me for it. 

i feel extremely guilty that I was overconfident thinking I totally had this under control and that I haven’t been checking on everything, and doing visual, tactile and overall checks prior to sex with my partners, In particular my current one that I have strong feelings of love for. that I’ve been eating chocolate, and cashews while being super stressed with work. That I thought I couldn’t pass this to someone. That missing a day on medication wasn’t a big deal. 

i feel like I’ve regressed 10 steps. I feel vulnerable, evil, selfish, stupid, and every adjective in between that I may have put the man I love at risk… or that I didn’t do everything in my power to lower that risk. 

im of course willing to change everything - skip my period most months, take more medication, take vitamins like lysine and olive leaf, give up chocolate, nuts, and other high arginine foods. Do visual checks each and every time here after. I’ll do it all. I’m working on strategies to lower my high stress at this new role at work. 

i don’t think doing all those things is gonna make this horrible feeling go away, however. 

It feels like God is punishing me directly. I feel like I don’t deserve this person. Or any person at all. I’m not sure how I’ll ever be intimate with him again. I feel like im gonna be afraid for as long as we’re together they I’m just a ticking time bomb and that I’m solely responsible for any suffering that comes of this. 

Part of me wants to push him away so that I don’t hurt him. He makes me so happy, but how could I possible making him happy if being intimate with me is a risk in itself? How can we ever think about kids if even wearing a condom feels like I’m exposing him to something terrible? 

im feeling lost, and deeply desire to self sabotage to “cut our losses”. I know this would hurt him so much, but wouldnt this be protecting him? 

Looking for some advice on how I can curb this feeling… I don’t want to lose him. But having a hard time seeing how i can even love myself or let anyone else love me after this….




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You love him. You can see it in every word. I'm sure he knows this and that you did everything to protect him. I believe this is what you need to remember. You are so honest! It could simply omit this information and it didn't.

You did everything right. Everything you could! Unfortunately when you get it right, you still have minimal risk. But you are not bad. Your attitudes prove otherwise! 

You can have a clear conscience that you did the right thing, so why wouldn't he love you? Please see yourself with better eyes. 

Be calm, he is likely to be fine as you had sex before the symptoms started. If you are going to test your boyfriend, it will take at least 12 weeks. Find support in each other. (If it helps, I really believe he's fine). Will be all right!

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Take a breath. You are not bad  you are not dirty  you are not unworthy of love.  ❤️ You are loved.  🕊️ You are a blessing. 🌻 You are pure. 🦋You are deserving of love and respect 💛.

I am so sorry you are experiencing such sadness and confliction. Please know you are not alone. Everything will be okay. There is hope for you, your relationship, and for the future 💛🌟.

Even though you feel dirty, ashamed, and like you aren't deserving of your partner, please know those thoughts are manifestations of fear; fear that is created by external societally-constructed pressures and stigmas surrounding H. The amazing wonderfully beautiful thing about true love, is that these fears and stigmas are no match for true unconditional love! 

Your partner seems to understands risks and how H Is sassy; sometimes we don't know when we are shedding. He doesn't blame you, and neither should you. You are a beautiful, safe person who has a common virus. It doesn't define who you are AT ALL! 

Your partner has freewill to choose, and he chooses you. He is modeling what you can feel for yourself, love and respect and acceptance and unconditional love, which you are so so deserving of ❤️

Be kind to yourself. Everything will be alright. H cannot break a true bond between two people! 

Feel free to reach out anytime. We are all here for you!



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