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Genital Herpes HSV 1... "Not as serious"?

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All research... well let me rephrase, MOST research online- which is why I chose to ask here... has basically designated HSV 2 as the "bad" virus and HSV 1 as the "good" virus. I'm sorry, but having genital HSV 1 sucks. I understand there are potentially less outbreaks and less symptoms associated but I feel like even the nurse who called to tell me I was positive basically told me to get over it. So I am confused... because some information I have read has said well everyone has some type of HSV 1 one form or another so you don't have to worry about disclosure. I don't necessarily agree with that because look what happened to me. As "unusal" and as rare as people are making this sound I would absolutely feel awful not disclosing before an intimate relationship. I would feel bad about even someone getting a cold sore from performing oral. I would never make myself sound like a leper and provide factual information about HSV 1 Of course... but am I the one who should lighten up? Or is it just being underplayed? I realize the stigma of herpes is why people think it's "icky" when it is totally ok. It will be ok. I've come to terms with that fact. I guess I just don't know how I should behave with this in personal intimate relationships. I thought I had a good handle but even a support group I've talked to keeps telling me I have it easy because they all have HSV 2. I have outbreaks, I shed, I am on medication for life, I have triggers... I am NOT trying to be a victim at all I just want to make sure when the time comes to explain to someone that I have to because after reading doctors explanations and other people's accounts in other forums and google searches shrugging it off making it sound like it seems to be "no big deal." Can anyone help me here? Maybe going through the same or just offer insight to how I should take this "unicorn" by the horn?

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I have H 1 also to me it seems just as bad I have only had one outbreak with sores but feel very off down there with a super sore back and tingling everyday a bunch? How long have you had it I'm on 6 months or less but have same feeling as day one. Has it got better for you? Do you feel weird in you genitals?The one good thing I guess your less likely to pass it on? If the other person has cold sore's it's very low to pass in other areas? Just want to know if this feeling that I have will ever go away. Thanks for any info you have.

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unfortunately my diagnosis has been around the same time as yours! I can totally give you some insight about what has worked for me so far. I have had 2 OB in 2 months. The first by far being the absolute worst... lasted a whole month and I wasn't even correctly diagnosed until last week at the start of my second OB which was much milder. My skin is still tender from the primary OB and having another one so soon has been unbearable. Are you taking medication? I started taking acyclovir for almost 2 weeks now.. 400 MG up to 4x daily if I have an OB and I do 2x for preventative daily. I too also feel the tingling and now that my second OB only lasted a little over a week I feel the medication is finally helping although I need to explore another type because I get frequent migranes. I don't know about you but i get pain down my leg as well. Another thing that has helped is I started taking l-lysine supplements and staying far away from food items that have a high arganine to lysine ratio. Not saying you can't have peanut butter, popcorn or blackberries ever... but I usually pop lysine that day if I know I'll have a lot. Oh and I will attach the link for the list that has helped me. Haven't tried to be intimate with anyone since... probably will take some time. Talking to a supper group and hanging out with people who understand have been a great help. Like I said, I'm the only one I've met so far type 1 and it's frustrating when people tell me "it's not that bad". so I completely understand and feel for you. It will get better, I promise. You just have to find a routine that works for you whether it's medicaion, oils, supplements, diet... being a female my menstral cycle is triggering a lot for me but I can't really change that! I'm staying optimistic. Can't stop living... but do you know anything that seems to set you off like triggers yet?? I know tingling means shedding and supposively we don't shed that much but I've been tingling constantly also until this past week...

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Hello and Welcome! And kudos for you for coming here to get some clarification about living responsibly with HSV1 genitally.


HSV1 sheds a LOT less genitally (in fact, the "experts" seem to be indicating that they don't really have alot, if any, data that indicates that HSV1 actually passes to others when you have it genitally. Certainly the vast majority of new cases seem to come from people with HSV1 orally (aka cold sores). So that (and the fact that *most* people with genital H1 have fewer/less bad outbreaks) is why those with H2 feel that H1 is the "better" virus to have. But what they don't understand is that it doesn't always "feel" that way to those who have H1 :)


Doctors see Herpes (both 1 & 2) as a nuisance skin condition in a really inconvenient place, and no more ... they deal with real life and death situations every day and they don't really "get" why people feel so devastated by the diagnosis. It's all relative ... when you have someone come in right before you who was just diagnosed with Cancer or MS or who lost a limb in an accident, Herpes seems like a pretty insignificant thing. ;)


So - how to live with it? Disclose before sex .... explain that you have the "cold sore" virus down below... and that you (likely) got it from someone who had a cold sore. That 80% of the population has cold sores and 80% don't know they have it, so odds are the other person has been exposed to HSV1 many times (kissing or sex) many times and if they don't have it by now, they got darned lucky! Explain you can take the anti-virals and they can use condoms if they wish to take more precautions, and that sex is off limits with an OB or during prodromes but that it's just a great excuse to explore other ways to be intimate ... And print out the handouts below and show them the video .... and if they need more answers, send them here. :)





Handouts + disclosure e-book:



Herpes facts video


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