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The Big Reveal….No sure how to word it. I’m Super nervous

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Recently, I’ve been getting reacquainted with someone. We are renewing our friendship and seeing where this can go now…we have known each other intimately. Since then I have had this recent turn of events happen. Although we have talked about open mindedness, and he has stated that he’s open minded and non judgemental and actually wants us to talk & be upfront about everything whether it be good, bad, or uncomfortable. It sounds very refreshing to know that we both want that to be a foundation for where We’re headed, but I am super nervous about having to disclose this. 
And even though I feel that he is open minded, me having to disclose both HSV 1 & 2 is overwhelming me.

We will be meeting up in a month or so and the physical attraction is there and it’s not being hidden that that is something that we both want to do but how do I disclose this? I’m trying not to let myself get too into him. He’s making it hard, but being vulnerable & that looming fear of rejection is what’s keeping me, I guess grounded? 

I need advice on how to broach the conversation. I know the reaction/ consequences could be rejection. However, it could also not be. It May all be in how I word things and my knowledge. I’m on daily meds once a day because I haven’t ever had a flare up. Not even an initial one. My diagnosis was unexpected. I asked for the normal battery for STI/STD which I’ve gotten for years and it just so happens that this doctor tests for hsv too. Since I’ve tested with them before & nothing came up I was devastated when it did as I knew it was from my last relationship which ended abruptly after almost a year & 2 weeks before I tested. Needless to say it was from him. But what’s done is done.

Now I have to disclose this no matter what. Honestly it feels like the opportunity to have a great relationship gets diminished to a degree. Being vulnerable was hard for me already. But this is a whole new level. 
 You’re asking someone to understand and potentially risk their sexual freedom by being with you. Because that I’m a sense is what was taken from anyone who has to disclose. Herein lies my dilemma. I’m not oblivious to the fact that ppl are not that selfless or as open minded as they think, especially with this & the stigma associated with it.
But I also know that having a defeatist attitude going in is bringing the wrong energy into the discussion. 
I just want to be as clear & concise as I can. I don’t ever want to take away someone’s choice as mine was. (And it was because he knew & didn’t say a word) However, I want to be as conscientious as I can. 
I know questions about can it be/how is it passed…either kissing or through oral is a concern. Is all that’s needed is a condom? How much do takings meds work? And how do you know if/when your contagious when there are no symptoms/ flare ups present? What the probability of transmission… etc. If anyone can assist with scripting it with me or just input I’m all ears/eyes. 

Thanks in advance…. 

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It's really great that you are being conscious about disclosing before the fact.  Are you planning on doing it in person or doing it before you meet up?  

It's good that this person already knows you on a deeper level because it instill trust beforehand.  I think I would state exactly what you said above, that you wanted this person to have their own choice because yours was taken away.   I do not know a lot about HSV2 as I only have GHSV1 but I would have all the knowledge and information available for him so that it gives him a bigger picture beyond the stigma.   Knowing that you are asymptomatic means that you can be viral shedding at anytime but its great that you take those meds to reduce the risk of transmission.  

I don't really have great answers since I was already with someone for years before I found out I had it but Im really glad that you are being upfront and open about your disclosure.  

Good Luck!

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Hi… if you don’t mind me asking how did your person handle it… did it make intimacy awkward?
And to answer I plan on doing it beforehand. Maybe within the next week or so. That will give some time before the meet up. I know there may be questions after the initial discussion. And time needed to process any and all information. Since the meet up requires travel I don’t want anyone to spend money then can’t get it back. 

It’s just seems very daunting right now. From having to disclose & discuss… to if he’s okay with moving forward how would I feel with actually being with him in that way. I have to deal with my own feelings, emotions…my apprehension. 
 That’s another thing I have to wrap my brain around. I haven’t been with anyone since finding out or wanted to be for that matter. He’s the first one… and he’s checked a lot the boxes for me, that gives me pause too. Hence me holding back & keeping grounded.
I have however been looking up & formulating what can be done to make intimacy sensually safer, fun & sexy. 

I appreciate you answering, and your words of advice. It makes what keep popping up in my head feel right to say. I’ll update after the Big disclosure reveal. 
BUT… if ANYONE has any more advice feel free to share. 

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Well to start off, me and my boyfriend have been together for almost 5 years.  I had a STD panel blood test in 2015 and it was positive for HSV1 antibodies.  I never had symptoms and didn't really know alot about HSV so I never really thought of it again.  When I asked the doctors what antibodies meant, they just kept saying " you came in contact with someone with HSV at some point" So I wasn't sure if that meant that I also had it.   Then in June of 2022, I started getting blisters and cuts on my genitals.  So we pretty much found all this out together because it had been so long since I got the positive test, I kind of forgot about it.   He was mad at first, but not at me.  He was more so mad at the person that gave it to me because we saw it as a life changing thing.   

Me having genital HSV1 didn't change anything for him but I was the one that made it awkward because I was scared of giving it to him if I hadn't already.  Now that its been over 6 months since my symptoms starting, its gotten a lot better.  We are just assuming he does have it and we are both okay with that.  I think he's just accepted the fact that we've been having unprotected sex for 4 years beforehand and it's just inevitable.  

I really hope this works out for you because its nice to have someone accept you for everything that you are.  It might not be right away but hopefully eventually. 

As long as you are taking the precautions to not transmit this and being upfront and honest about everything.  You are doing everything right.  

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Thank you so much for answering back. Just like you I was told that antibodies just means that you came into contact with it at some point.  That’s really not that helpful because it doesn’t tell you if you actually have it? If there haven’t been any symptoms will you have a flare up…will you not? Are you just asymptomatic? There are so many questions surrounding just that statement in and of itself.

But this is part of my journey. It’s about excepting all of who I am, and that means that I am excepting the responsibility of choosing to disclose. Most people won’t be privy to it. Only when I feel that the person(s) can be trusted with my feelings and my vulnerability, and I trust him with that. 

Also, I believe coming into the conversation with sincerity & with information is also a key part. I’m glad to know that you & your boyfriend have such a caring & great relationship. It gives me hope that after the processing period… which everyone goes through… he’ll continue to be non judgmental, accepting and understanding. Even if the direction Changes & the physical intimacy/ relationship doesn’t happen there can still be a great opportunity to be in another relationship… one of friendship/confidant with him. 

I’ll update soon as the day is approaching. I’m less nervous about it. It feels like the elephant in the room for me.Everyday we connect a little more. I actually want to get it out so that We both can move forward to wherever/whatever that may be.

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  • 2 weeks later...

So it’s been a week since I disclosed, and got the “elephant out of the room”for myself. I kept replaying in my head and saying it out loud what and how I want it to deliver this information and needless to say, my anxiety flared to an all time high.

However, once our usual conversation started to flow and I had a pregnant pause, he knew I really had something important to talk to him about.  When the word’s finally left my mouth & were out in the atmosphere I felt so relieved. At that point I truly felt I could breathe. Most of the shame & insecurities I felt had been lifted just by that one act.
And he was very open minded, non-judgemental and understanding about everything. What shocked me was that I didn’t have to go into a lot of detail because he actually knew information. I did have to give some information but he was responsive to it.
His response to our conversation was one that I wasn’t expecting… he said he respected me even more for telling him. I really appreciated and needed that. You hear & read about how people react and it scares you, I know it scared me. But I’m glad I did it. I realize now it wasn’t about him per se, more so it was about me accepting ME…My reality. About me understanding that I’m still myself just with a better bullshit detector lol.  I’ve gained a better sense of self, I’ve matured, I live in the present and I give myself grace. Basically my Mindset has shifted. I’m embracing this version of Me…and even though some days are harder I’m here for it. 

Now although he wasn’t bothered… accepting all of me…initially, I know there’s a possibility that things may not take a romantic turn, relationship, being intimate when we are physically present with one another. Or after some time has passed for it to really settle in, will things really change, I don’t know. Listen, It’s taken me months to just get here so I don’t put time expectations on anyone.

But no matter what…that’s okay. I’m okay with that. Yes, I would welcome a romantic/intimate healthy relationship with him, but there are different types of relationships that are just as healthy.  And I believe him & I have started a foundation for just that… a healthy relationship no matter what that looks like.

I will probably update again after we meet. At that time I’ll see what & where I/ we stand with each other & what type of relationship there could be?… 

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