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"I'd Rather Have Cancer Instead of Herpes"


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I joined this forum back in October, and since then I have spent countless hours on the periphery, eaves dropping on your conversations. Selfishly, I have gained knowledge and inspiration from everything you have to say, but have given little in return. This is largely due to the fact that I have never been the loudest person in the room. I am a listener rather than a sharer, however, I have come to realize that this may be the very thing that has slowed my healing process. Today I am ready to step out of my comfort zone, however timidly, and share my story with all of you, because today I feel that my words are worth listening to. So here is

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I'm a man of many words but after reading this I'm at a loss for them. You've gotten kicked, but you're far from licked. There's so much fight in you and I can feel it in everything you wrote. You have a tough road ahead of you, but know that whether it's herpes or cancer, every member of this forum is right here ready to back you up if you need it. You're not just a survivor; it's pretty clear you're a warrior.


The next time you're making trade-offs with "I'd rather have's..." involved, might I suggest you say something along the lines of "I'd rather have a pony" instead. I'm not a superstitious man, but better safe than sorry, eh?


As far as your ex goes, well, just reading this and we all know what an amazing woman he lost. You shouldn't give him another thought because off on the horizon is a real man who is going to see what he didn't, and when that happens just make sure to send us all invites so we can mark the date.


Keep smiling, keep laughing, and whatever you do, don't eat the jello. That jello they give out in hospitals is laced with all sorts of things you don't want to know about. ;)

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It's a little known fact that diamonds are not a girl's best friend. In fact, scientists have discovered that unicorns are. It has something to do with them always being hard and horny.


Your ex is the kind of guy I'd like to see go fishing with Sonny Corleone. People like him give decent men a bad name. And, I meant it, you sound like a strong woman who is going to kick the snot out of this pesky li'l blood disorder. That's right, I have no doubt that you're going to tell it to kiss your herpetic ass. Come to think of it, call your ex up and tell him the same thing. :)


Pop in anytime and say hello. Prodome or prognosis, we got you covered. Well, covered better than one of those hospital gowns at least.



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Wow. I'm in awe. I think this is just the exact perspective many on here need to see, so thank you for coming outside your comfort zone and sharing :)


And I've got 2 friends who had various similar lymph cancers (I think they had Non hodgkins lymphoma) and both came through with flying colors... I am pretty certain you will too :)


Just goes to show you that the adage "Be careful what you might wish for" really is true.


We're here to cheer you on through the crappy days. You sound like a really powerful woman and I'm sure you will kick Cancer's ass....just pretend it's your ex and it will be really easy to polish the boots and take aim :)



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Thank you for sharing a story. You truly are a strong inspirational woman! Your ex lost someone amazing and you are allowed to live a happy life with your family and friends no longer to be controlled by this man that never deserved you. Your story is something that has been needed because we can see how easy herpes really is. Having a strong woman like you as a remodel to show us that life does go on, and that life is too precious to beat ourselves up over a skin condition. Thank you again for sharing your story, you are among loving people that will not let you fall when you feel the shame.


Big big hug!

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Thank you all so much for the kind words. I realized that I have never actually told the whole truth to anyone. It was such a cathartic experience to get it all out there. I slept like a baby last night haha. You are such a wonderful group of people with so much insight. I’ve learned a lot about perseverance and survival from reading your posts. On more than one occasion your words have turned a bad day into a good one. I’m grateful to have found this place.


I just wanted to clarify that my story wasn’t meant to make everyone think a herpes diagnosis isn’t a big deal. The exact opposite actually. I wanted to share just how big of a deal it really is. It’s interesting to compare the two diagnoses. On the one hand you have something that is relatively harmless to your body but makes you feel worthless, emotionally damaged and shunned from society, while on the other, you have something that is very harmful to your body, however, there is often a cure and people are extremely loving and caring when they find out, sometimes they even hold you in a higher regard just for having it. So which would you rather? It’s hard to say really. For those of you further along in the healing process, the answer may be glaringly obvious, but for us newbie’s, it’s not an easy choice to make. The only thing I know for certain is that in both cases it’s ok to feel sorry for yourself for a moment, but only a moment. After that you have to at least try.

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"There is always something about him, isn't there?"


The ones that are bad for us are always the ones that draw us in.


Ashley your story really touched me. At one point I had tears in my eyes.


As for your question, after herpes gets rid of a few people that you don't need in your life, you'll know as well as we do that you would rather have herpes. It becomes something that instead of hating, you embrace. I believe in signs from the universe and see my diagnosis as a huge sign. I needed to slow down. I needed to learn to love myself and make sure the people I let in really love me, not just want to use me. I hope that sooner rather than later you learn your "reason". We are all here for you :)

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It’s interesting to compare the two diagnoses. On the one hand you have something that is relatively harmless to your body but makes you feel worthless, emotionally damaged and shunned from society, while on the other, you have something that is very harmful to your body, however, there is often a cure and people are extremely loving and caring when they find out, sometimes they even hold you in a higher regard just for having it.


Ironic, isn't it.... /:)

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@ashley..... Thank you for sharing your story. You have inspired many of us. If you can make it though this, we can too. My ongoing pity party for myself officially ended when I read your story.... I read it about 3 times. Next time I think I'm having a bad day, I will think of you and say a quiet prayer. Pleas keep us posted on how you're doing. Love, prayers and hugs, abc123

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All day long I sat here feeling sorry for myself. Freaking out about how I am going to tell some guy I have dated a few times that I have Herpes. I have had H for 20 years but I have never had cancer. I hope to never have cancer and am so sorry you have to have BOTH. However, let me say that neither Herpes nor Cancer defines you and it doesn't define me either. WE are not WHAT we have...the diseases we carry! We are wonderful, beautiful, strong, amazing women that can beat anything that comes our way...and we can do it with the grace and soul that only WE can!


Sweetie...I am praying for you! God only gives us what we can handle and he must have BIG plans for you. I assume you are relatively young and you sound smart, I am sure you will come out of all of this shining. Herpes won't even be a blip on your radar screen after you beat cancer!!!


Take care my dear...



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I finally just read this post. This is amazing. Well sad. You had me moved.


"Funny how the universe works.."

I have a good feeling that you are going to beat it.. && sending positive vibes your way! It is just an annoying skin condition, and when you do come out. I want to hear it. I want all of us to hear it. You are meant to be loved. WE are all meant to be lovedd !

&& you will be. Everyone of us here also love our fellow H warriors !

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  • 10 months later...

Hi Ashley,


Thank you so much for providing an update, and I cannot express how happy I am for you, both in terms of your successful recovery and your new-found happiness for life and love!! You deserve every ounce of love in the world, and I am certain that you will not take any blissful moment ahead for granted. Your journey has touched a lot of people on this forum, and I think I speak for many when I say thank you for sharing your vulnerability, also known as your strength and courage. You are truly beautiful, and I wish you the very best in life, love, health, happiness, you name it!! Oh, and thank you for making my heart smile today :)

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  • 2 weeks later...



Thanks for sharing some much-needed perspective. Bummer that chemo led to more flare-ups, have you had better luck in the months since? (Hell yeah & congratulations for your 7 months of cancer free life, btw!)


A year with herpes (and... cancer?) can make a world of difference. (I'm only familiar with the first, but appreciate the insight on the second.) :)

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