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Female w/GHSV1 - oral herpes transmission question

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I’ve had GHSV1 for 3 years. I take acyclovir every day. Besides the initial outbreak I’ve only had 1 other outbreak. I have a friend that I’ve known for a long time and lately we’ve been kissing but not much else. He’s afraid of getting my herpes but the other night he wanted me go down on him, no protection. Now he’s kind of freaking out. (BTW, he has a history of cold sores.) Is it a given that if I have it genitally I have it in my mouth as well?

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Great question!

Just because you have herpes in one region of the body, it does not mean you automatically have it in another region (or everywhere) on your body. Herpes is isolated to the region that you were infected in.

I also have GHSV-1. I think I have it orally as well (but in my nose, oddly enough). However, just because you have it genitally it doesn't mean you have it orally. Have you ever had any oral symptoms? 

If he is worried about contracting HSV-1, please let him know he already has it... orally! Cold sores are HSV-1, just in the oral area. How I explain my GHSV-1 to people is that it's cold sores but in my genital area; that helps them understand it.

Since he already has it orally, he hypothetically could contract it in the genital region as well if you were engaging in genital sex or contact was made between the genitals or possibly body fluids (like if you were virally shedding and used vaginal lubricant to preform oral sex on him, but the risk of that is lower than skin to skin contact, I believe (but I am not a doc!))

In general, contracting GHSV-1 from someone who has it is a low risk, since HSV-1 typically is the less aggressive strain of HSV. Plus, he already has some antibodies since he has cold sores! Could he still get it, sure, but is the risk very very low, yes!!!

If you both decide to engage in penetrative sex, he should really make sure he understands everything and won't freak out afterwards. In regards to his freaking out... I understand that it can be overwhelming for people after being intimate, but he should not take that out on you. I've been with people who freak out the next day and act regretful and upset and it is immature and just inappropriate. If someone needs support after the fact, they need to approach it in a respectful way. We are not dangerous and our bodies aren't bad! If they are upset, they need to remember that we can provide support and knowledge, but they also can seek knowledge from research and data (like on this site!). 

I hope this is helpful! 

Blessings to you! ❤️ 🙂 


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Thank you for the response. That’s what I was afraid you were going say, that yes he could get it. He’s not going to hear the part about a very small risk.
I feel really guilty because the truth is he was a little drunk at the time, I was not. It was selfish of me to do it when I knew he wasn’t thinking straight. It just felt so good being touched, held for the first time in 3 years. I was irresponsible and put him in jeopardy. if he gets it I’ll never be able to forgive myself.

I don’t know about you but my experience with telling people that I have herpes has not been good. Everyone thinks of it as a dreaded  disease that never goes away and it is. Herpes itself hadn’t been a problem, it’s the stigma, the judging, the assumption that you are promiscuous. I wouldn’t wish having to go through that on anybody and what did I do, I exposed one of my best friends to that very thing. 😔

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Wait! If you've never had cold sores orally, then you are perfectly safe! ❤️ 

You only gave him oral, correct? And you only used saliva?

If so, you are perfectly fine ❤️ 

Apologize to him, forgive yourself, and learn from the situation. I understand that it's hard to face rejection and pain. You made a mistake and learned from it. Just apologize and don't make the same mistake again. That's all we can do! 

You can get through this and so can he! We are here for you.


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I don’t remember being tested for HSV1 in my mouth at the time I had my initial outbreak genitally 3 yrs ago. Last summer I asked my doctor about having a test to see if I had it orally and he said I would have to get off acyclovir for an extended period of time because that would effect the test and I wasn’t willing to risk having another outbreak genitally. I can tell you that I’ve never had a cold sore/fever blister in my life. 

That is correct that I gave him oral with my saliva. I also had him wash up right after. I don’t know if that helps but I figured it couldn’t hurt. 

Isn’t there still a possibility that I could pick up oral HSV1 from kissing him? He does have a history of cold sores. Of course, I have antibodies and take acyclovir every day so maybe not.

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Okay, thanks for the clarification!! So, it sounds like you don't have HSV-1 orally since you've never had a cold sore or outbreak orally. Because you get symptoms with your GHSV-1, if you had oral HSV-1 you would likely get symptoms of it. But since you've never had any it's more likely you do not have it orally. 

In terms of testing, blood tests cannot tell you the location of your herpes. If a blood test came back positive for HSV-1, it doesn't tell where that is. This is why your doctor told you that you'd have to be off medicine to see if sores would appear in the oral area. 

Washing after intimacy is good hygiene and it may help reduce the risk of transmission. However, if you don't have oral HSV-1, there's really no reason to worry! It's so considerate you told him to wash afterwards. You obviously really care about his well-being. Remember that he needs to care that much about you, too! You deserve that 💛 

Also, hypothetically, yes, you could get oral HSV-1 from kissing him (more likely if he has an active cold sore) but you already have HSV-1 so you already have antibodies for it. In summary, it's possible to get it from him but the risk is pretty low. 

I hope this helps!! 

Blessings!! ☘️☀️

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  • mr_hopp changed the title to Female w/GHSV1 - oral herpes transmission question

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