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What do I do?

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This morning this question kept popping into my head and it is starting to play with my mind. I know many of us have been at a point in a relationship where we have to disclose to our partners but after discussing this with my mum and my mums friend who has been in a similar situation to me when he was a lot younger keep telling me not to tell my partners about having herpes because I don't need to and as long as I use a condom there is no need to tell.


Part of me is telling me that yes my mum and her friend are right, I should be protecting myself and the other person by using condoms and if I take my tablets during this time it could lower the risk of me transmitting it but what if the person im with then gets it... thats a whole entirely new situation.


The other part of me is saying stick to your guns and tell partners because its about honesty and If you can't be honest with someone your with then its not really going to be the best relationship if your going to hide things from each other but then I feel that does this person really need to know this because as long as im safe and he is what are the chances f me passing it on 0-4%.


Im not in a relationship with anyone atm but im kind of scared to be in a relationship now, but I will not let fear drive me away from a part of life.


Please could I have as many people comment as posible. I just want some opinions and advice to kind of make me thik correctly and lead me in the right direction.



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It's a dilemma aye butterfly...listen to others who aren't supporting you in being honest or listen to yourself and your own integrity. I think you do know the answer but its scary...and I get that, telling people about H is scary.

I have been on both sides of the coin in contracting an STI...a cheating ex husband who gave me HPV and an honest partner who told me he had Herpes. I would rather have the honesty...and I would rather be honest. There is always a risk...and if you don't tell you will ALWAYS have a dark secret that you will worry about, and you are right NO relationship is good if it is based on hiding things.

Lowering the risk doesn't take it away...so don't listen to your Mum or her friend(I'm from New Zealand..either you are English or Oz or Kiwi :-)!. Listen to yourself and the question you are asking...do you want to live with honesty and integrity? It's either yes or no..and I think you do :-)

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Yeah, my mother and therapist have both told me that I don't have to tell my partners as long as I'm safe and always use condoms and I don't have sex when I have symptoms. Which feels good to hear since then you're reassured that this isn't THAT big of a deal and that your life doesn't have to revolve around a virus (and those things are true, it isn't and it doesn't) but even though that feels good to hear..I'd prefer to tell my future sexual partners before we have sex, since it seems like a big weight off your shoulders, like being able to be honest with your partners and if it's in a relationship it'd make things easier if the person knows, since when you're having symptoms you could still do other things to please each other without having sex and if you hadn't told your partner it'd be more suspicious if you'd try to do something like that, sneaking around is never fun. I'm probably not the person to give advice on this though since I haven't had sex since I found out (in the beginning of January) or "disclosed" this to anyone. And also if the unlikely thing would happen that you'd transmit this to your partner despite of being super safe, it'd be even harder to deal with since either you'd have to tell your partner you knew you had this or a web of lies would collect on top of this. Putting the "let your partner make an informed decision" aside, telling your sexual partner just seems easier for you, not telling just seems more stressful and probably makes you feel a bit alone.

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You have to be honest. The risk of transmitting may be small, but it is there. The Golden Rule applies - how would you handle this if the shoe was on the other foot? And you may go into a relationship believing it to be a fling, but what about when it gets more serious, and you're heading towards marriage or long term plans with the person? How do you disclose then? No question- honesty is required!!

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I completely agree with Atlantic about the golden rule. Even if the risk of tranmission can be very low when taking all the right precautions, the risk is always still there. Wouldn't you rather have someone inform you beforehand than potentially but knowingly pass herpes along to you? It's not fair to the other person to not give them a choice.


Also - the way I look at it now is that if I do not feel comfortable enough to disclose to a potential partner, then I do not think I am ready to be intimate with them. In some ways, herpes has been a blessing in disguise for me because it has made me slow down and really realize how intimate sex actually is. I genuinely think that sex is more meaningful between people that have a deeper connection, and what better way to establish or confirm that deep connection than by being completely honest with them and disclosing something so personal? :)

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I absolutely LOVE what you said, jumplejump. Nicely put. I always say that a great barometer to see if you're ready for the talk yet is if you feel that you trust this person with something vulnerable. Because disclosure is vulnerable. You're risking something in disclosing. It takes integrity and humility to disclose. And sex is vulnerable, too. Vulnerability = intimacy. Yet so many of us (myself included) seem to want to skip that emotional vulnerability and head straight for the physical vulnerability. Having herpes has us slow this process down and really consider it in a deeper way.


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  • 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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