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New to herpes and feel like an idiot

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It's been about 2 months. I have HSV 1 on my genitals. I decided I wanted to break free of my traditional sexual views and have a little fun with someone who was into open relationships and other alternative sex styles. We had condom sex only once and I got it. He also gave it to another girl. Now all 3 of us are dealing with it. I've never felt so isolated. The thing is that I've been in the "alternative/goth club scene" for most of my life and clubs really revolve about being sexy, dressing sexy and feeling sexy. I feel like I've lost my identity. I was a serial monogamist and I decided to try something new, and I got burned. I do feel a bit like I am being punished. I know that's not reality. I fight with myself daily to maintain perspective. A part of me wants to announce to everyone because it really is OK and a part of me want to crawl in a hole. I have never once heard that you could get it using a condom. I had no idea and every friend I have told also had no idea. So a part of me wants to be an advocate for kids to say that condoms aren't enough! I'm just going through so many emotions, I'm terribly sad and lonely, I miss sex. I'm 38 and thought this was going to be the prime of my life with no worries as I don't have kids, I have a good job, I am stable but my life has literally gone from great to the pits of hell. The worst is that I am a very open and honest person and I've had to hide this from most of my friends. No one knows why I'm sad and why I stay home now. To look at me from the outside, I've got a lot going for me but I don't feel that way. I guess I'm just posting here for a pep talk. Sorry about all the rambling. Today is a particularly bad day. Thanks for listening

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Hi SingBlueS...ramble all you like.. we need to do it when we feel like this and I so know what you mean. I understand how you feel you are being punished while knowing its not really true. I know about missing sex and wanting to express being sexy and also about being open but not sharing. It is all so mixed up when you first have this and it takes a while to find some balance again.

Its all new for you and believe me it gets better...I have had H it almost a year and it set of the genital warts I got nearly thirty years ago. I had learned to deal with the warts...and now this too. But I have learned to deal with missing sex and the H's have taught me so much more about life and connection with people...what love really is and how I can love myself and be sexy again.

Today I bought some clothes that are sooo sexy, I figure if I am not getting sex then I'll damn well dress like I am getting heaps ;-) I learned to dance (the originaly 'dirty dancing') and now get to be downright sexy several times a week for hours with gorgeous guys. Have to say I feel sexier now than years ago...and no hassles coz it all happens on the dancefloor and I can leave it there. I don't miss sex so much as long as i dance.

I am not short of men...I just know I have to be selective and very honest. It has meant finding some amazing friendships with men that I would not have had without H...there are definite boundaries and alot of respect and caring.

Maybe you could share with your friends - selected ones. It's isolating if you can't and yes you are then being an advocate and helping others to understand and be aware of H. So many people don't know...I didn't know the full facts either. I have taken that path and am pretty open about it. I have been surprised at the respect and support I have got from those I have told...including all my adult kids.

I think you sound like a pretty cool woman who is repsonsible, cares and depsite grappling with the emotional rollercoaster right now wants to be positive. The biggest hug...bad days don't last but they suck when you are having them. Thanks for sharing and I hope you feel better tomorrow. :-)

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Thank you for your response. I know this will become less of an issue as time goes on, at least that's what I'm told. I struggle because though it is a skin issue once in awhile and really doesn't have many other consequences, then why is it so awful? I can't seem to reconcile how everyone who doesn't have it says it's not that big a deal but then they all thank god they don't have it! And if it really is almost like getting some pimples sometimes, then why the F does it have to be such a horrible, stigmatized thing? How in the world did such an awful stigma get attached to such a minor condition? I mean, it's not terminal. It's not getting worse. It doesn't inhibit movement, etc etc. So why are we so shunned in society? I'm so heartbroken over this. Thanks for listening again. I see you comment a lot and it's really appreciated. :)

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Aren't stigma's stupid...and this one comes from old Christian Victorian religious beliefs- and therefore just goes to show how immoral and sinful we are...if we believe it, and I don't. That's why I contribute to this site and why I am open about it when the opportunity arises - I don't go telling everyone but if it helps support someone, kindly challenges a negative comment or promotes understanding for someone or for me I just go for it. I now don't feel so isolated and don't feel I have to hide it or that it's such a stigma or that I am shunned...it's all how I think and feel about H.

And you are so right...its not terminal and I've been there too and healed.

It's all a process and getting this challenges you to deal with all the negative thoughts you carry around that don't surface when the going is good. But having excema, psorisis or any other skin condition can make people feel really unattractive and not want to get naked...H isn't the only thing that brings up these feelings. Be kind to yourself and yes it becomes less of an issue over time - with setbacks along the way but they also aren't so bad. :-)

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