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Need help navigating relationship with new disclosure

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I just found out my boyfriend of 7 months has both hsv1 and hsv2.  He got a cold sore a few months ago and that's when he told me gets cold sores and we should avoid kissing until it went away. I had almost zero knowledge about cold sores so I looked it up and found out about hsv1 and 2. I didn't know they are lifelong viruses and how they spread, viral shedding, etc. Anyway, at that point I suggested we get tested for both.

About a week went by and I had asked about the results but he said he didn't have them yet. After that life kind of went along and I had forgotten about it but it would pop into my head at times when I couldn't ask him, like when was trying to sleep. I should have made it a point to ask and that is my fault. I wrongly assumed that he would have had a very clear conversation with me if he tested positive for hsv2. Well I just find out that he did test positive. He said he tried to tell me that he got the results back and I said I didn't want to talk about it. I don't recall this conversation at all bc I absolutely would have wanted to talk about it. I'm really mad that he didn't push to have a more clear conversation. He said he just assumed I knew and was ok with it.

So here I am now not knowing what to do. I feel deceived but also mad at myself that I didn't push more about it. I was trying not to make him feel bad or stigmatized him. I really trusted he would tell me and make it very clear, because that's what I would have done in the same situation.

I just tested and haven't gotten my results back so I don't know if I've gotten hsv 1 and/or 2 from him yet. I can't even decide what I want my results to be. Obviously I don't want to have H but I'm also concerned about being able to continue our relationship if I am negative. I feel like I'm going to be paranoid about getting it and thus wont be turned on at all when we are intimate. But I'm also afraid of being positive for obvious reasons. I know some people have very mild outbreaks and infrequently but I've also read on these forums some scary stories and I'm afraid of being in pain.

Just looking for some advice/support I guess. I'm having trouble dealing with so many things at once... that he didn't really tell me/assumed I knew/was ok with it.... dealing with the fact that I might have hsv 2 (and hsv1)... and how to have a good intimate relationship if I test negative, how to not be scared all the time.  Help appreciated. Thank you.

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I would suggest waiting for your test results and to go from there. No point worrying about things just yet as you will just make yourself distressed. 

There’s a good chance you probably will have HSV 1 as upwards of 70% of the global population has that. 

Around 25% have HSV 2 and some will never know. Once you have your results then consider your options but do remember most people with HSV never show symptoms. 

I have type 1 - had one sore 5 years ago and have not since, it has no bearing on my life at all. 

So remember even if you were to test positive theres no guarantee you would even get symptoms and if you do they could be mild. Theres also medication if you need it.

The idea of H is scary but over the last 5 years my whole mindset has changed. I’d be lying if I said the idea of type 2 didnt scare me but its more because I already have type 1 so i don’t want “more herpes” so I’ve actually decided here on that any partners I have - I will make them get a blood test  

That being said, plenty of people on here have type 2 - mainly genital rarely oral - and they live happy normal healthy lives (same with people with type 1 regardless of location)  Trust me, you will be fine when you realise how common H is  doctors literally don’t even care about it

if you are negative - use condoms / dental dams (cold sores can give u HSV 1 downstairs) - also maybe he could go on antivirals ? I’ve only ever been in a relationship with someone who had the same type as me - type 1, so I can’t give too much advice im afraid as for us it was a non issue 


Wishing you the best!



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Thank you for your input. I think I'm just really overwhelmed right now and definitely thinking worst case scenario, especially with hsv2. This also feels like a huge breach of trust to me so I'm not sure what to do with that. Maybe I just need more time to process it. I just would have made sure he clearly understood if it was the other way around. If I had known he tested positive, I could have chosen to take the risk vs unknowingly being exposed (which feels much crappier).

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Makes sense. How long has he known about it for - before telling you? Also maybe you guys should sit down and have a conversation about it. He needs to give you a proper explanation of why he didn’t tell you and not brush it off like it isn’t a big deal to you. 

I think you both need to be compassionate towards each other - he also may have been scared to tell you ?? Doesn’t make it right. But that’s something

More time to process it will definitely help - when I first found out about HSV 1 I was feeling suicidal until I learned what it actually was, now it makes me laugh to think I ever felt that way 

Also regarding relationships should you test positive - you will need to work on how you perceive HSV. I work in healthcare so maybe my view is different as I know a bit about viruses and things but you need to remember Herpes - type 1 and 2, oral and genital is just a virus !! We as human beings have attached meaning to something that is literally not a big deal

Chicken pox is herpes and no one cares and that virus stays in our body forever too. We literally live in a world full or bacteria and viruses and having a virus does not define you. Its a virus. It just makes you human !!

Definitely recommend speaking to your partner as you need some support right now and clearly he has upset you so I think it would be good to get your feelings out 🙂

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He has known since May I believe. We are going to talk tonight. I'm definitely very upset about it. Bc again I personally can't fathom why a smart, mature adult wouldn't feel that a clear conversation has to happen. Even if it is scary. If it was me, I know I would have done more, so I can't understand. This isn't a situation where it is ok to just assume someone knows. 😬

He has said he is sorry and should have said more. Bad situation to have an oopsies with though. 😞

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Yeah I’m sorry you feel this way. May is a long time to have known and not told you, especially as he is your boyfriend. 

I do hope you feel better soon! And I hope when you speak tonight he truly listens to your feelings - try and stay positive as there is a chance you haven’t gotten anything


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