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I'm prepared to be judged, criticized and be called names because I know I deserve it... Here's my story...


I had found out I have herpes 2015 when I ended up single and I wanted to experiment so in the heat of the moment, I end up having an orgy with my close friends at that time. Well one of them which I will call as B had rashes all over his scrotum and I remember asking his girlfriend who was my bestfriend at that time if that was okay? (I was so naive, I know and stupid) and she looked at it and said that it was okay and it was no big deal. He then told me that it was a heat rash and it was no big deal & that was the beginning of the end for me. I later got a phone call from a friend of mine saying that B's ex was crying to her telling her that he had given her herpes. I was such in disbelief and I knew I had to confront him. I called him and he kept insisting that it wasn't true and he promised me that he was clean. (Before this, I also heard rumors that other girls got herpes from him or his roommate but yet I still didn't believe it or I was too naive and foolish) Well, one of my close guy friends who was part of that orgy came to me crying one day and showed me his penis with bumps and everything. My heart sank and I was so scared that it was true. A couple of weeks later, I notice a bump on my vagina and i had a hard time urinating because it was so painful. I just knew what it was so I panicked and I went to my doctor. She swabbed the sore and I had to wait for a phone call for that. Well, I had missed their phone call and my doctor end up sending me a letter which was addressed to my mom's house where my mom opened the later and called me about the results. I was still in disbelief and denial that for months, I didn't believe or even think about it. I went on with my life putting the diagnosis in the back of my head but slowly feeling myself fall into depression and anxiety. Anxious at the fact that my care free, bubbly personality will be rejected due to this diagnosis that no one will ever want me. I was in denial for so many years that when I had my last boyfriend for 1 1/2 years, I disclosed and pretended to him that I just found out I have herpes the first time I had an outbreak while I was with him. It was so awful since then because I never learned to accept the diagnosis and it felt like I was living this lie to my partner and to myself. I couldn't accept that I got this one diagnosis that I swore in my life would be the worst thing that can happen to me and it happened to me just because of one act of experimenting. My first and only time doing something that extreme and I get this. The guilt, shame, anger and resentment I felt towards that friend of mine who lied to me about my diagnosis didn't come to terms to me until I did it to someone else and I see right now, what it is doing to him. He's been a mess for a couple of months now, slipping from being confident and happy like me to this insecure and sad man. I did it to someone I cared about so deeply and it hurts me.


I feel awful, hurt, disappointed, mad, upset and so sad at the fact that I put this person in the same shoes that I had to deal with three years ago. To realize that he will constantly feel this constant fear of getting rejected everytime he talks to someone is painful. I deal with it every single time I talk to someone new and I was never the same after herpes and to know that he will go through it on a daily for the rest of his life like me... I'm the worst human being for making someone go through this trauma and hell. Fuck the positive side or the brighter side about having herpes, the truth is, it sucks and we just deal with it to make ourselves feel better. I hate this so much. Every time I get intimate, herpes keep crossing my mind and sex was never the same to me. To make things worst, I love this person so much that I should have been there to protect him instead of bring him this permanent gift that will change his life forever as it did mine. We were just in our beginning phase of learning each other and was heading to the path of being exclusive when we both decided to get intimate. I kept telling him to wait but at the heat of the moment, it happened and ohhh how I wish I could take it back. In all honestly, I wanted to disclose before hand but the fear of getting rejected or the shame or being viewed as "dirty".... I just couldn't bare it. (I SHOULD HAVE JUST SAID IT) I wish I had known that there were sites like this that offered advice on dealing with disclosing it to a potential partner instead of me constantly being in denial and lying about it. I never researched "herpes" since my diagnosis of 2015 and now, I've been so active with learning everything I can about this diagnosis. I can't sleep, I can't think, I can't focus at work and I can't eat knowing that I hurt someone in a permanent way. I lied when he confronted me about being clean. I told him I was tested before and that I was clean. We are no longer talking right now but the burden, the guilt and feeling like I owe him the truth is eating me alive. This is a lesson that I will never forget and I have come to terms about how I can affect someone's life by being intimate with them. It sucks learning that my own body can potentially damage someone else's and make them feel depressed and anxious like what happened to me. I've researched about this disease and I've looked at this site looking for any similar stories to mine but no one had any stories that were like mine. A lot didn't disclose but their partner never got it while in my case, he did and it was all my responsibility and fault. I am hurting knowing that I hurt someone. I want to come clean and tell him everything but I fear for my own safety, my own life and him suing and going after me for being negligent and ultimately me losing my career and the life that I have worked so hard for. I've asked several close friends of mine about this and they all told me to let it go and move on and it's better that he doesn't know the truth because telling him the truth will make everything worst. But i'm to a point where I will end up losing my mind or to be honest, i've been suicidal at the fact that I did know and I didn't protect him. I could have prevented all of this if I only disclosed... I don't know why I wrote this but I need some guidance. I hate how far this disease have taken over my life and how I let this scare me to a point where I neglected another human being's health. I'm so sorry and I hope that who ever will be reading this can forgive me for being a coward.

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Thank you for sharing that.

It is important to accept responsibility for your actions and the impact they have on others, especially those closest to you.

But you aren't hopless or lost.

You can decide at any moment to do something good, as much as you can to decide to let fear or shame control your actions.

Seeking those opportunities to do right by yourself and those you care about isn't like flipping a switch. Just like doing something you regret is not flipping a switch either.

It's a moment-by-moment choice to either take action based on what is right for yourself and your loved ones or not.

Making a few consecutive mistakes can often feel like turning away from those poor choices would be difficult, but the truth is that you won't ever have to (or be able to) walk backward step for step through all of those mistakes. Instead, it's more like taking an exit off the highway. You decide you will make a change, slow to give yourself a fair chance to take advantage of the next opportunity, then let the gradual grade of the road bring you onto a new street.

That may be a bit too metaphorical, but the essence is that you can do the same when faced with a series of bad choices that bring guilt and regret down on you. Decide to stop following that pattern of behavior by changing your intentions. Decide where you want to arrive as a milestone in your journey. Seek the opportunities to take different actions, ones you will respect yourself for doing, appreciate yourself for doing. Then keep seeking those opportunities.


You can start any time you want. Sooner is better than later.

And it doesn't have to be Earth-shattering. Next time you open a door, turn to see if the next person to pass through might need a hand. Next time you buy something at a store, smile and say, "thanks". It's not much to anyone else, but it breeds a feeling of respect for yourself.

When you're ready, tell this guy the truth.

He does deserve to know and to make his own choices. You can give him his right to decide for himself back whenever you want. It is literally that easy. Assuming you take steps to avoid a physical confrontation, don't put yourself in harm's way.

He won't be thrilled. You won't be thrilled.

But you are bashing yourself with guilt and shame and fear already.

When he knows. When you have decided to give him his right to decide back. When you have told him what he should know. Then, at least, you will have earned back some tiny, massive part of your own respect and admiration which you had sacrificed to play pretend at the life you had convinced yourself you couldn't have. Or didn't deserve.


Because the truth is that you do deserve to be in a fulfilling, rewarding, honest and passionate relationship.

You don't deserve to sabotage your happiness with manipulation and deceit.

The saddest part of your story is not that you have herpes.

The saddest part is not that you feel guilt, shame and fear.

I can assure you everyone here shares in those struggles plenty.


The saddest part is that you hurt someone who trusts you. That is the part that robbed you of your happiness. That is the part that buried you under guilt. And that was the one thing in all the things which you had the chance to decide.


For your own happiness, for the kind of life you deserve, for the self-image which is so temporarily deminished, for the person you care about so much.

Tell him. Let him have his right to decide back. Begin building the life you deserved, rather than the one you condemned yourself to.

Stop flying past those highway exit ramps at 100 miles per hour. Slow down and seek the next opportunity.

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I'm so scared to tell him but I know I have to tell him. I'm crying reading what you just said and I know that he will hate me as much as I hate the person who did this to me but I know deep down, I have to tell him. I'm so over feeling fearful. My inner peace was disturbed since my diagnosis and I was never honest in all my relationships because I was so afraid and ashamed. I do need to face the consequences of my actions and I'm so over living a lie. I just want that inner peace that's been lacking for 3 years. I've been imprisoned by herpes for a long time and I'm barely dealing with all of it now after hurting the one person that I truly cared about in a long time. Thank you for your kind words. I was expecting the first comment to be a little harsher. Thank you @RegularGuy.

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This disease doesn't define you. These mistakes aren't an inevitable result of who you are.

You already know all of this.

You just haven't given yourself permission to see how valuable, desireable and worthy your whole self is, flaws included.

I remember being hesitant to just say the words, "I have herpes" out loud. It felt like I would be shattering a glass windowpane that could never be put back together. But I had a couple phone calls to make when I first was diagnosed. I knew they would need to have a chance to know, to make their decisions based on knowing. So I called, got sent to voicemail and said the words out loud.

I was surprised that it wasn't hard. I didn't cry, I realized it wouldn't break me even if I did choke up while saying the words.

"It's RegularGuy. I just got diagnosed with type 1 genital herpes. You should get tested right away. If you are angry, I understand. If you have questions you want to ask, I will answer them. Please get tested as soon as you can."

I blew right through saying it without much trouble, just like I had practiced a few times before making the call. It was a really big part in being able to gain some perspective on the virus and how I felt about myself. I felt bad for putting that kind of worry on another person, especially when I realized thise people had never been at risk fron me. But I was reassured that I was still capable of doing right, earning my own respect, and letting go of so much of the guilt and shame that threatened to overpower me.

It was the first step of many that helped me to realize that I deserved to live, I deserved to seek some happiness, and that I could possibly live the kind of life I had always imagined.

8ish months later now, and I am doing just as well as I would have been if I had never been diagnosed. Not a single ounce of difference in who I am, what my day-to-day is like, or how I interact with others (except that maybe I am slightly less selfish and vain, maybe).


You'll find the same is true for you. But you have to give yourself a chance to prove it in your own mind.


We're all hoping for the best for you, and we're all here if you need to reach out!

You did some things you don't feel great about, some things you don't want to do again.

That's okay. As long as you decide to do the things that you know you should, that you really want, to get the things that are actually meaningful, not just superficial and temporary. It's okay.


And at very least, I hope that if we don't hear from you it will be because you did things the way you want to and not the way fear and shame try to tell you to.

But maybe soon you'll follow up with how you made the changes you needed to in order to be the person you deserve to be. I hope so.

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  • 1 month later...

@RegularGuy so here's my follow up 1 month later...


I had moved out of the area end of May in hopes of forgetting about the whole situation and living my life normally. I told myself that it was better not to tell because it will hurt him more if I told him. (That was just me justifying why I should not tell him) I saw an energy healer, went on vacations, self medicated, and partied my way in order to escape my guilt. Trust me, the guilt never went away coz what I did was wrong and out of my character. Fast forward to yesterday, I finally had the courage to be brave and call him to tell him the truth. It definitely devastated him and it broke my heart knowing that I had hurt him. He was very angry, hurt but despite all of that, he didn't cuss me out but just told me to leave him alone and that we both need to move on from this. This is definitely a big lesson for me and I'm truly learning the meaning of integrity and being authentic. In hopes of sharing my story, I hope that one person will not make the same mistake as I did and to always disclose before doing anything sexual to protect your partners. Trust me, the guilt in knowing that you betrayed someone's trust is not worth over the fear of possibly getting rejected. Be honest and be brave. Also, I went to a personal development seminar over this weekend which inspired me to be brave and tell 150 people around me with the microphone that I have herpes and that I forgive myself for allowing this skin condition to rule over my life when in fact I am in charge of my life. Thank you @RegularGuy for all the advice and the support you provided for me and to the others in need. You are making a difference!

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Thanks for the kind words.

I'm really glad that you are taking hold of your own accountability and shaping yourself through determined thoughts and actions!

You will do good things, and you will get to enjoy the benefits of living with intent!

Keep focused on building up your self-image and your pride. Look forward to opportunities to be the person you want to be and do the things that person would do!

I'm really inspired by the fact that you took all of this as a crossroads to steer where your future self gets to be, and how your future self gets to feel!

Congratulations on not letting yourself be swept away by the current of past mistakes!


As the great philospher, Metallica once said: All sinners, a future. All saints, a past.

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I was recently diagnosed with hsv2 a month ago and yes at first absolutely devastated. I have a choice though to let it destroy me or make it an opportunity to love myself that much more and make me a stronger, better person. The stigma of herpes is far more worse than the actual virus. It is ultimately a skin condition first that happens to be transmitted sexually. My first job was to accept that I have this by looking in the mirror and saying "I have Herpes" and telling myself that I am just as beautiful and amazing as ever. The fear of rejection is what affected me most, but I will use it as an oppurtunity to show my character and in all honesty if a man loves me for me and wants to be in my life than he will not give a damn and I promise that. I have to change myself and how I look at things while dealing with this. It is so common and you are not alone! Best of luck to you. Be brave.

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@RegularGuy & @Imkrawz28 yeah, thank you so much for the kind words. I promise to live with integrity and to honor myself at all times to prevent myself from self sabotaging my own happiness. This was the biggest lesson of my life and from here on out, I will be brave and be courageous.

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