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What herpes means to me

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so I was visually diagnosed with herpes at the end of Feb this year after suffering for three weeks. I was also diagnosed with chlamydia and or gonorrhea. Go me! Anyways the relationship I was in at the beginning of my herpes outbreak has ended and I'm now dating someone new. Before my diagnosis, I called myself an "accidental slut." I was very promiscuous but never intentionally seeking it out. It's very hard for me to say no and the times I've really tried have been really traumatic, like the men get pretty angry/violent. So saying no or being faced with unwanted encounters are pretty triggering for me and exceptionally hard to do. Sex was always something that kind of just happened to me. I've experienced a broad array of negative sexual encounters, from non-consensual to very coercive and a year and a half ago in DC I was attacked at night and raped at knife point by a guy wearing a zombie mask. Needless to say that was a bit traumatic and since that night sex lost any last vestige of emotion for me and whenever I had it I always felt numb and disassociated and found myself sleeping around more than ever, and I wasn't able to form any kind of deep connection with someone. I've always tended to sleep with people right away. Occasionally I would stop and think hey I'm still disease free and I've been with x number of people, I should really stop now while I'm lucky but never did.


After my diagnosis I realized that I never had enough of a reason to resist sexual encounters. It was always easier to pick up the pieces of myself afterwards than say no. I wish it didn't have to come to this, but it is what it is. So flash forward to the present and a couple weeks ago I found myself with a guy and we had each had 18 shots of tequila and we ended up sleeping next to each other and in the morning he was asking me for sex and I gave a firm no and he accepted that. The same thing happened the next two nights and then I didn't see him for another week and when he came over I said I didn't want to sleep with him bc I was on my period (convenient excuse) and he said "I didn't come here to have sex with you I came here because I wanted to spend time with you." He's glad that we didn't sleep together those first couple of nights and yesterday he had a whole convo about how he's completely over having meaningless sex that he just can't do it anymore (Ive reached the same place). So we're really building intimacy from the ground up which is honestly something I've never experienced before and to tell you the truth its AMAZING. Bleh so I've been squirming around on the disclosure issue. I was talking to my sister about this and intimacy in general and in her opinion its best to wait 2-3 months before you sleep with someone so you can build up enough intimacy with them which sounds totally crazy to me but she said to at least commit to a timeframe of at least 6 weeks (before sleeping with them) so I don't get lost in the moment before then.


so in short herpes is the thing that finally put the brakes on my unhealthy sexual behavior and has caused me to slow down and really consider someone before just jumping into bed with them with the result that I'm totally starting from scratch, with this TRUE intimacy thing I have going on with this guy right now. I've never done this before, do any of you have advice for me?

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I would love to give you advice, but herpes has been a similar blessing for me as well. I really honor and congratulate you on the progress you have made!! Wow! Anyone who has not been down a similar path as you and I may not appreciate how frickin HUGE that is. So, you have my greatest respect and admiration starry. This guy sounds like he has his stuff figured out and you will know how to have the discussion when the time comes. The Talk is just another way to build that sense of trust and intimacy, as scary as the anticipation of having The Talk can be. Here is to true initimacy, not self-abandoning and respecting ourselves and setting boundaries. You rock my dear!!



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