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dani

Second guessing whether I could have done anything differently in spontaneous disclosure

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One of the things I've tried to find the balance between is trying to have a degree of spontaneity in my relationships that I was able to have prior to contracting herpes, in which I would often sleep with a girl on a first or second encounter, but also feeling like I'm able to have an honest conversation with a partner and feel they are comfortable with it before we have sex, allowing for the possibility of a second encounter or relationship to come out of it. I'm personally not of the mind that there's anything wrong with heat of the moment disclosures as long as I'm doing my duty to give her the information, but in my own recent heat of the moment situation I wanted to make sure I was not pressuring her in any way to make a decision.

 

Here is what happened. We were kissing, touching sensually, but clothes hadn't come off yet. As she started reaching for my pants I told her to stop, I had something I wanted to tell her. I told her I had herpes. She said she'd heard of it but didn't know much about it, she also said she didn't think it was very common in her country (this encounter happened in a different country). I told her based on what I'd read it was more common there than in the US, but most people didn't know they had it, I said that a lot of people had so it's statistically likely she'd been with somebody who has it already, but at least with me I take medication and precautions so the risk of passing it is small. I asked her what she think, and she said "I don't think so, but it's good that you told me." But, she was clearly still thinking about it - she pulled her phone out and started researching it. I told her there was no pressure, we could do other things if she didn't want to have sex. She said ok and we continued fooling around in other ways.

 

Then she asked if I had a condom. At this point, I said "no, why don't we wait to have sex and just do other things," thinking that if we had sex there could be a possibility she'd regret it the next day, given that only a half hour earlier she had seemed a bit hesitant.

 

The next day we texted a bit but she's started to seemed distant, and at the moment it's seeming like she's not interested in meeting again. She actually acted this way after a previous encounter a couple months ago in which we'd just kissed, distant the next day - so it kind of seems like a pattern for her to retreat after intimacy. Ultimately I can't really know whether it's because of the herpes or something else.

 

I'm just wondering if there's anything I could have/should have done differently. Firstly, there is a part of me regretting that we didn't have sex given that she seemed fine with it at the time. On the other hand I'm not sure if that would have made her more or less likely to want to see me again afterwards - I've definitely found, prior to having herpes, girls becoming more attached and wanting a second encounter more frequently after having sex, but in this case it's hard to know if she would have felt more attached or just regretful or paranoid the next day as she'd made a decision within a half hour of learning about herpes. is there anything else I could have done that would have been more likely to want to meet me again? I just feel a bit sad because it was a pretty good encounter in of itself and I would have been very happy to see her again.

 

 

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I don't think there are any real cut and dry ways to disclose. I think you handled it very well, actually. If you read hippyherpy's posts on here, you'll find he discloses all sorts of ways and most seem to work. Some people actually disclose via text. I hope she comes to realize it's not a big deal and how safe she really is with you knowing you have it. Best of luck!!!

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Just be you. That's what you're already doing by disclosing in a way that feels right to you for the situation and making it clear you'd like to see her again. Beyond that, her next move is far more influenced by all of her past experiences, beliefs and perspectives than anything you could say or do.

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thanks @Katidid and @HikingGirl, appreciate the affirmation. I've read hippyherpy's thread and that was definitely one of the things that I think encouraged me to do it this way. It's just the particular outcome this time - her becoming distant afterwards - that made me question whether this kind of spontaneous disclosure wouldn't generally work as a strategy and I'd have to fundamentally change my dating approach - by taking much longer to get to know girls prior to sex, which, to be honest, takes some of the fun and impulsiveness out of it for me. But I guess it just as easily could have gone a different way with a different girl, and at least we got to have fun that night, even if we didn't have sex. Maybe she will even change her mind down the line.

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Bro first of all, always have condoms available. Stash 'em in places where you are likely to have sex, within arms reach. You can't expect people to not want to have sex without a condom, regardless of herpes or not. I know a lot of people are goin raw even on one night stands now, but still.. always keep some rubbers around.

 

It sounds like she's being weird and it has nothing to do with herpes. You said she already acted weird the other day before you told her you got herpes. She also asked if you had a condom, which was likely in an indicator that she wanted to have sex regardless of herpes.

 

 

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Thanks. You're right, I'm probably overthinking the role herpes played into this. I didn't bring a condom intentionally because it was first so-called "heat of the moment" disclosure and I thought if I brought one I'd be tempted to have sex without telling her, or to try to persuade her into having sex when she was still uncomfortable with the idea. But, she seemed comfortable with it at the time. I guess the lesson learned is, people can act "weird" and wishy-washy after sexual encounters for all kinds of reasons, herpes notwithstanding, so the best thing to do is just seize the moment when opportunities present themselves. Who knows, maybe if we'd had sex she'd be texting back for more.

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