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telling my partner about herpes


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i discovered that i was diagnosed with Herpes 2 years ago. i got it from an ass who forced himself on me. anyhow, true to what we've all been reading, the first outbreak is the worst until treated.

 

2 months ago, i met someone amazing, and everything went so well and perfect. he is a great guy and i feel like i needed to tell him about my disease before we carry on anything further into the relationship. when i told him i had HSV-1, he was rather clueless about it. but since he would be pretty confident that he is Herpes-negative, he chose to leave. (realistically speaking, i do understand that it is not an easy matter to accept. he took a while to absorb all the information that i've been feeding him about it). we went to the gynae together and spoke to the doctor about it and we both got tested together. results will be out tomorrow, and of course i hope he doesn't have it, too.

 

i think that after a few days, as he started reading more about it he slowly discovered that HSV-1 is not that big a deal after all and pretty common among people who do and do not get tested, as it can be spread even through kissing or sharing of utensils. unfortunately, i believe that he still stands to his decision of leaving but on the other hand i feel that he is slowly becoming more accepting to this whole new shocking information imposed on him.

 

hopefully there will come a day where he changes his mind about me.

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Hey overcome_anything! Welcome to the forums!

 

A few things struck me ...

 

First off, thanks for sharing your story. I feel pissed off, protective and sad when I hear of men forcing themselves on women in any context. I apologize on behalf of that man. I apologize to what I imagine is a broken heart that is less trusting than before. Less open. And I wish you healing in that so you can trust and open again.

 

Something else that jumped out at me is how you called herpes "my disease." That makes me feel dirty just thinking about it that way! ;) Even though you can use any word you want for herpes, pay attention to how using that word feels (using disease for you may not have any charge to it, and if so, feel free to disregard this comment). ;) I like using "skin condition" or something that doesn't play it up to be some horrible thing. It may sound minor, but trust me, how we talk about herpes to ourselves and to others is HUGE in how we experience it and how it affects our lives. By the way, here's a post I wrote on the power of what words you choose to put to your experience: http://herpeslife.com/herpes-wordplay-the-power-of-words/

 

You also remind me how interesting the stigma with herpes is. The double standard of cold sores (oral herpes) having no stigma, but as soon as the location of herpes (whether it's HSV1 or HSV2) crosses the "belt border" all bets are off and the stigma is in full effect. It's simply not fair. So yes, HSV-1 is super common (80% of people have it), but that is when it shows up on the lips. When it shows up on the genitals, it's less common. But that just throws in more confusion since anyone who has a cold sore can go down on someone else and pass it to their genitals and *ding* the herpes magically has a societal stigma against it. (Like what CanadianGuy spoke to in his comment here.)

 

And to clear something up, you're right that you can pass herpes through kissing, but you CANNOT pass it through sharing silverware. For all the details on that, check out the blog post on How can you get herpes?

 

If this guy is the right guy for you, then he will change his mind about herpes. And if he doesn't change his mind, know that you will still be okay. You have plenty of people to support you. And there are plenty of men out there who would love to have you in their life.

Notes:

  • My mother is now in hospice with end-stage cancer, so I am at her house a lot these days helping where I can until she passes. Thank you in advance for understanding if I am not as quick to respond as I normally would be. This is a precious and bittersweet time …
  • This content is for informational purposes only. This information does not constitute medical advice or diagnosis. I'm not a medical professional, so please take this as friendly peer support. 

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