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Herpes negative and herpes positive partner stories?

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I am hoping to hear some stories on h- people choosing h+ partners, if they got herpes or didn't and how long...


Statistical data has been hard to come by. I have seen one study that women->men had a transmission rate of 4% over a 320-something day period, without reporting on condom use, and not taking an antiviral. Another study by a drug company reported 50% reduction in transmission rates while taking suppressive meds, where there was less than 50% reported condom-use, also over a period of less than 1 year.


In my case, I have GHSV1, have only had 1 outbreak ever- over a year and a half ago, and my boyfriend at the time had one too at about the same time. Everyone reports that transmission rates are lower for 1, even lower for women to pass on, lower if you don't do anything during an OB, lower if condoms are used, lower if taking meds, lower if the partner knows- but no actual info on what this number boils down to (if there is, let me know!).


I haven't found a good doctor who can give me some good anecdotal evidence either. The doctors who diagnosed me told me to calm down, that I could live with this, forever, but gave no practical information (eg. they didn't tell me that there was a blood test that could be performed beyond the culture that I had done at the time. My fault too- I wasn't in a hurry to delve into finding more information when I thought that it was hopeless either. It took me 1.5 years, a breakup and a new crush, to bother to tell another human being, doctors included). My primary Dr. could only tell me that rates are low. And my crush (who is awesome, but I totally messed up with him because I was not prepared or even thinking about my having herpes) asked his doctor, who told him that there was a 18-20% chance (wtf).


I imagine that I can find more anecdotes here- thanks for your input!

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My girlfriend and I were together for 3.5 years, decided together to not use condoms but instead put me on daily suppressive therapy. She never got herpes. I've heard of plenty of couples out there who have been together for years and haven't passed herpes. And yes, stats are meaningless when you look at each individual person: you either get herpes or not. Very black and white.


Something tells me that knowing you have herpes actually makes you more safe than the 80% of the people who have herpes and don't know it having sex thinking they don't have anything. Knowing we have herpes allows us to be more aware of the prodrome symptoms and communicate that with our herpes negative partner to keep them that much safer. And yes, your stats are correct: women>men is 4% chance of transmission with unprotected sex; men>women is 8% (more mucous membrane means more surface area for the virus to have access). With condom use, that percentage falls in half, and with daily suppressive therapy, that number falls another half.


All in all, it's simply a conversation and decision to have between each couple and weighing the risks and fun of it all. ;)

Note: This 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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Thanks Adrial. I needed to read that today. I may be in a position to have "The Talk" soon and I had forgotten the stats (it's been a while since I've had to know them!). It doesn't sound quite so impossible when I see the numbers. I had herpes for about 9 years without really knowing (but had an h+ partner back then so sort of suspected....ahhhhhh denial) so I was always pretty careful. I have never, to my knowledge, passed it on to anyone. I made my ex get tested when he and I split up (the stress of the break up gave me my fist OB and I wondered if he wasn't my donor) and it came back negative after 5 years of unprotected sex. Okay...the more I talk about this, the more confident I get. :) Thanks!!

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Hi Pcvkak..have been thinking about your post and how to answer it. I was H- and chose to be with an HSV2+ man - we were together for only a few months and I contracted it in that time (it took about 4-6 months after we stopped seeing each other before my first episode). Previously I was with my ex husband for 28 years and he had HSV1 orally..I never got it from him.


I'm not sure what you want to know...I have this and HPV and there are things I can do to reduce the transmission of them (diet, lifestyle, body awareness, medication and condoms) to any sexual partners I have. I know I have to have the courage to talk about them if want to have sex with anyone. Yes doing these things reduces the likelihood of someone who has sex with me getting either but that is no guarantee...I haven't fitted the statistics with either type.


Not sure where the doctor got the 18-20% from..! The information on here and other Herpes sites are the best places to find accurate up to date information :-)


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I have friends who have been married for 12 years...he is positive and she is negative as far as she knows. They have two kids so they don't use condoms all the time. The avoid sex during outbreaks and that's it...but so far so good for her, As far as she knows.


When you say you were hoping for more, I am not sure what you mean, but I am sure some hesitate to offer anecdotal evidence because it's unreliable. No one wants to tell you something that may hurt you or someone you love. Please keep in mind we are just trying to be responsible in what we share. We aren't doctors...we don't even play them on TV, so we can't offer much outside of our own experience and often that is precious little, which is why we gather here.


I know you're trying to prepare yourself for the talk...gathering information, etc....and we support you here! Information is an important part of disclosure, but no matter how many stories or facts you can google up, I personally believe the connection you have with your partner is going to be what makes the difference. Hopefully he is not going to need an algorithm to determine the desirability of establishing and growing an intimate connection with you, or rely on a few googled stories to seal the deal. My hope for you, is the person you disclose to sees your heart, your integrity, your desire to be transparent and loving with his safety in mind and says yes to YOU. And I believe the simple facts in one or two nuggets give a person the science they need. The rest should come from the heart. (And I'm a research nerd!)


I hope you will stick around, no matter what happens, and share yourself with others and offer support as well. It works both ways...



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