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Married 7 years. 2 kids. Terrified of spreading to baby!!!!

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Let me start off by saying I have not yet received an official diagnosis. But i'm 98% sure and my doc is too.


I have been with my husband for 10 years. Married for 7. I don't fit the stereotype. I had planned on remaining a virgin until marriage, but that all changed when I was raped at age 21 by a nurse (of all people), that I met at a bar. I was screened for STDs afterward. Thought I was clear.


My husband was a bit of a man-whore before I met him. We agreed it would be prudent for him to be tested while we were engaged. All clear. Thought we were good.


Several days ago I started having some burning and itching down there. I've never had an infection of any sort so it was strange for me. When I looked, I saw some red lesions on my vulva. It was alarming. I thought maybe it was a reaction to some new soap I had used a couple days earlier. Days passed and the pain and itching spread from my perinnium and to my anus. I went to the doctor and she immediately told me it looked and sounded like herpes. You can imagine my shock and panic.


My first thought was "how did I get this?"


My second was "what if I spread this to my baby?!?" (This scares me far more than anything else) The thought of not covering her beautiful little cherub-like face in kisses and snuggles just absolutely KILLS ME. I cry as type the words.


Over the last 24 hours I have developed what looks like, the beginning of a cold sore in the corner of my mouth. I don't think I've ever had one before. (Though I have had painful sores on the inside of my mouth, even recently and little itchy bumps on my eyelids, which I always thought were allergy related), I've been avoiding getting very close to either of my children, which is heart-wrenching as a mother.


It is very likely, after researching it, that I got it from my husband, who recently told me he had cold sores as a kid, but never considered it could be contagious now. He may have picked it up from a past lover. I may have contracted it from the ass hole who raped me. Who knows. That's not really important to me now.


How do I live with this and actively love my kids?!?!


This is all so new to me. I never thought I'd have to think about any of this. It truly sucks. It feels life changing. I feel like a walking petri-dish. I cannot stop washing my hands. I second guess touching my children or kissing my husband... Please help me.

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You have nothing to worry about :-). I am not sure about the location of your herpes (if this is what you have), as you mentioned both lips and genitals. You cannot give genital herpes to your kids. As for cold sores on your mouth, most people have hsv1, don't kiss them if you have a cold sore or feel any itching on your mouth. Herpes is not part of a regular std testing, so it is possible that both or one of you had it genitally. Although the most likely scenerio would be your husband gave it to you through oral sex. Wait for your results, if you have hsv1 than it might be recent and through oral sex. If it is hsv2 than one of you had it before. You can also do an IGG test to see if you have antibodies yet (if you don't, the infection is recent).


As for the stereo typing ... Most of us don't fit the type :-). Some got it from partners that didn't know they had it, some trusted partners that were not honest and didn't disclose ... Herpes does not choose ... Nothing to be ashamed of ... Herpes is a virus with a highly stigmatized name ... Getting viruses is part of being human so if you are human you fit the type ...

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Gosh you sound like me when I first joined...I remember I didn't get a reply and omggg was I upset....now I forget how many replies are in my thread...we are here, just some days busier than others.

I have hsv1 and 2....I think I've been infected for decades, and have not transmitted it to any of my children, and had heathy normal vaginal deliveries.

Hsv1 is transmitted by oral to oral contact both with and without symptons(cold sores, shedding).

Have you talked with your doctor about kissing the children? Highest risk of transmission is during an outbreak. Statistically most people acquire hsv1 during childhood/teenage land (I have no idea when I contracted mine, I've never had a cold sore)

Hsv1 can also be transmitted to the genital area via oral sex(FYI)


I hope I helped, I have only officially known since last August of my diagnosis, I remember that day like it just happened.

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Hello and Welcome!


First, let me clear something up for you. I'm sorry that you didn't get an immediate reply but you have to realize 2 things.


One is that this is a voluntary group and thus we all have other things happening ... I usually try to check in most days but I'm 1000 miles from home nursing my father through an operation and trying to get his house sold so he can move in with me. So while @Adrial and I and the other "regulars" try to check in, sometimes life just happens to get in the way.


And (2) the others on here usually rely on the Moderators/regulars to answer things like this because they don't want to give the wrong answer. So while some may chime in for support, most just hope one of us will spot the post and answer it 🙂


So I hope you will understand that this isn't personal and sometimes you have to be a little patient with us.... and if you don't get an answer within 48 hrs... THEN come and post a gentle reminder that you are still looking for answers or support. Ok???


So - about your fears and questions:


Sounds like you got HSV1 from your hubby seeing as you got an oral and genital OB at the same time. And his having HSV1 orally likely isn't from him being a "man-whore" ... 60% of young people have HSV1 orally by the time they are young adults. I got HSV1 orally around age 3 or 4. Likely from some other kid in my playgroup.


Sadly the CDC and Dr's and our High School Sex Ed classes have failed our society when it comes to comprehensive info on STD's. Especially Herpes. And more especially with the issue of the transmission of the "Cold Sore Virus" to a partner's genitals. So your hubby isn't at fault here.... the SYSTEM is.


So - as for your kids:


FOR THE MOMENT, do be careful and wash your hands if you touch your mouth or genitals as you are in the phase where you will shed more. On about 3-4 months hopefully the worse will be over and you won't be getting as many sores. And you will know what triggers you to have an outbreak better by then.


In the long run, your kids will be quite safe as long as you don't kiss them with a cold sore and you are careful about washing hands if you touch the sore when you have one. I have both oral HSV1 and genital HSV2 (got it with my first sexual experience... GO ME!) and I had 2 daughters ... one born naturally and one born by c-section (the Dr's scared me into having it with my first) and neither ever got it from me and I never thought to take special precautions (back in the 80's we had no real info in it) I loved on them (except when I had an open cold sore) and bathed with them (water/soap kills the virus very quickly) and just was quite normal with them. What I know now is if they ever HAD got the "cold sores" as kids, likely it would have been from another kid.....


So - try to not over-think this. Use common sense hygiene. And use common sense when you have an OB. And your kids will be just fine 🙂







Handouts + disclosure e-book:


Herpes facts video


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don't worry about kissing your children. Kiss them. Love them. This shouldn't stop you from loving anyone.

But if you're scratching yourself down in the treasure box. Yes, please wash your hands. Or if your licking your fingers after eating something delicious. It's hygiene


In reality if your children didn't get it from you they'll get it from someone else, or their father.They could even have it and not know. Herpes is so popular. But it's Nothing to be afraid of. The fear of herpes is the only fear,really. Remember that thing kids would say about he or she having the Koodies!!! Well I think that's referring to herpes... Or maybe Mono

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@Dave, that isn't exactly true. Babies that are born while moms are having outbreaks are at risk of contracting neonatal herpes, and yes it can kill them. Also, rarely, HSV1 can spread internally and cause encephalitis, and that can be fatal too. So while it is rare to die from HSV, we can't say "It kills no one" because it has.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Just to clarify the risk for giving herpes to your baby during pregnancy (so as not to alarm women who are or hope to get pregnant)


"the pregnant woman who acquires genital herpes as a primary infection in the latter half of pregnancy, rather than prior to pregnancy, is at greatest risk of transmitting these viruses to her newborn. Additional risk factors for neonatal HSV infection include the use of a foetal-scalp electrode and the age of the mother less than 21 years. "


"in US, approximately 22% of pregnant women are infected with HSV-2, 10% are at risk of acquisition of genital HSV from their infected partners (during periods of asymptomatic viral shedding) and 2% of women acquire genital herpes during pregnancy, "


"The risk of neonatal infection varies from 30% to 50% for HSV infections that onset in late pregnancy (last trimester), whereas early pregnancy infection carries a risk of about 1% ".


So if you already have and are aware that you have HSV2 (or 1 for that matter) then the risk is VERY low for transmission to the baby especially if you make the Dr aware and they monitor your status and put you on Valtrex for the last month. As mentioned, MANY die from flu (especially babies) every year... you *rarely* hear about babies getting or dying from Herpes.


I'm going to post this as a separate discussion so I can point people to it as this article is a great reference to help women get some facts to help them to remain calm and realistic about the potential for transmission to their babies during birth.



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