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More Success than Failure

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In the past year I have disclosed that I have herpes to 4 guys and have been surprised to find that their responses are mostly of gratitude for telling them and that they are willing to work through this minor "drawback" to our relationship. Hopefully these stories will give some of you the courage and strength to see this talk can sometimes be a good thing for a relationship.


The first guy I had to disclose to I had been seeing for a month. I was very strict about the no sex thing, but finally one night while fooling around I just blurted out why we couldn't have sex. I disclosed the information all wrong, starting off with "After I tell you this you will never want to talk to me again". The guy didn't handle the information very well, nicely showed me to the door and said he wasn't sure how to deal with it. I was pretty upset as he was the first guy I had disclosed to since previously I had dated the same guy for the past 7 years. Surprisingly a few weeks later I saw him out and he said that he wanted to try dating again because if having herpes is the worst thing about me than its not that bad. We went on one date and I realized he was honestly terrified of possibly contracting herpes so I decided to end it.


The next disclosure I had was also less than perfect. I had been seeing this guy for about 2 weeks, again being persistent that we did not have sex. One night while fooling around he just slipped it in and I said "this isn't a good idea." But he said no it will be fine. I was in shock and didn't know how to handle it since I didn't want a repeat of what happened the last time, so I didn't mention it that night. The next time we met up I gave the talk (using the helpful disclosure book). Surprisingly it went really well. He actually had had herpes in his eye so he sort of knew the statistics and a little about it. He was really sweet about the whole thing and made me feel okay about it. We only saw each other a few times after that, but this disclosure gave me the confidence I needed.


The third disclosure was a true success. I met J online and we hit it off immediately and by our third date in 5 days I sat him down and gave the talk. He looked at me and said "That's it? I thought you were going to break up with me." I was so relieved. J was more upset with the guy who gave it to me than anything else. We had a good 2 month relationship full of sex and never once did I feel ashamed of H.


Now on to my last disclosure, which I think might have been the hardest one since I REALLY liked this guy. I was introduced to M through some mutual friends and he asked me out on a date. I had just broken up with J, but decided hey why not. Immediately I realized M was close to everything I was looking for in a guy, which I seem to rarely find. For two weeks I stuck to my no sex rule which he was totally cool with, saying he really liked me and thought it was good idea too. It took me a whole week to find the courage to tell him about H, each time I would chicken out because I was afraid he wouldn't like me anymore. When I finally gave the talk, I could tell he was slightly surprised, but I think mostly because he never suspected I would have H. He looked at me and said "I still like you, we can work through this." He also thanked me for telling him. I know he is afraid of getting H, and who wouldn't be? So we still haven't had sex, but have a lot of fun doing other things and both of us seem content with that for now. I think that the H talk made him realize I am serious about "us" and actually brought us somewhat closer. At the same time I still feel upset that this issue hinders our sex life in some ways. For now I couldn't be happier because I truly know M likes me for me and is willing to deal with the little H baggage I carry.


In the end I have seen mostly positive responses to my disclosures and think that people who honestly care about you will accept you for who you are- Herpes and all.

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