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Giving In

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I am not one to be kept down for long. When first given my diagnosis of herpes, I was...upset. Coming on the heels of everything else that had been happening, I just mentally, emotionally, and physically collapsed. But that didn't last - two weeks later, I was coming to grips with what had happened and making plans to move on.

Now I'm obsessed with autoinoculation.

As far as I currently know, I have GHSV-1. I'll know for certain when I get tested again in August. I've had one outbreak and nothing since except the occasional itching.

Except...I keep getting these zinging pains. And not just in my legs, but everywhere. I can't tell if my back pain is related or not because my back's been hurting for years. I can't tell if the dry itching on my hands means I'm shedding there. I can't tell if the swollen bump on my lip is a cold sore coming in (I've never even had cold sores) or just me picking at my lip too much. I can't tell if my itching, burning, aching, gritty eyes are like this because of allergies or exhaustion or because I'm about to develop ocular herpes.

I can't stop thinking about it. HSV has taken over my life.

Everything something burns or stings, I wonder - did it spread? I'm so careful! I wash my hands constantly, use moisturizer, use a plastic glove to wash down there, never touch my eyes unless I've just washed my hands (20 seconds minimum, with soap) or with a tissue. I take so many precautions, and I've been outright abusing the sanitizer at work.

People keep telling me to stop worrying, I'm just making it worse. They have no idea how much I want to take their advice.

What sucks even more is that I had such a good grip on this. I was going to be fine! I was so upbeat, so positive, I was moving on! I had good thoughts about everything!

Now all I can think about is whitlow and ocular herpes and what I'll do if it ever gets into my eyes.

This last month has been hell. It's like I've shut off. I'm experiencing such black depression that I have caught myself honestly wishing that I had just never left the hospital when I suffered that major infection earlier this year. Wouldn't that have been nice - just drifting off one night in a sea of medication and delirium. It would have been so peaceful.

You know what? I don't give a sh*t about the stigma. I don't give a sh*t about dating or having the talk. I don't give a sh*t about rude nurses, unprofessional pharmacists, or unscrupulous doctors.

I just don't want this to spread.

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If you only have GH and its been over a few weeks I would not worry about autoinocculation it does not often happen. Consider all the people with OHSV and none transmit it to their genital area.

Herpes in the eye, trust me if you have it you know.My case is usually infection of the lid margin its very painful and you can visually see the sores there. If you have involvment of your eyeball you get a condition like pink eye. I think I have had a bit of vision loss from it but I have 20/80 vision so its kind of hard to say, really. Frankly I dont know if i spread it from touching there or it went through my CNS. I have been told by my opthomologist (eye MD) that most cases of eye complications come from it spreading through the CNS and not through touching your eyes.

If your eyes bother you try some drops (non steroid, OTC stuff) or some benadryl or claratin if that clears it up your eye probs its likely allergies.

Its good to not touch your eye you can spread bacteria there and cause eye infections so keep washing your hands or using a tissue.

As for your hands well who knows, but again, herpes seems unlikely.

You ever considered seeing a therapist (no offense) or taking some barbituates for acute anxiety? i was prescribed xanax early for a week or so and it alleviated a lot fo the stress from these kind of fears.

You know what? I don't give a sh*t about the stigma. I don't give a sh*t about dating or having the talk. I don't give a sh*t about rude nurses, unprofessional pharmacists, or unscrupulous doctors.

Agreed, I would rather have my health back

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You have to talk yourself into realizing how overboard you are going. I have to do that sometimes. I have OCD and I obsess about everything. While I don't obsess about stigma or things similar, I DO obsess about hand-washing. I wash them too much, so that they are dry, sometimes white.

But I talk to myself about it. Like, think about this. I have GH-2. My bf touches me THERE when we are being intimate and no, we don't run to the bathrooms every minute to wash up. He touches me there with hands, face, and penis. But he has not caught this in almost 2 years.

What about all the people who have sex and don't know they have herpes? They touch, and are probably not as clean/safe as we might be because they don't know. But it doesn't spread around them either.

Lots of us find out we have herpes AFTER a significant amount of time, and we didn't spread it around before we found out. LIke me, I didn't spread it around in the 2+ years I had it but didn't know it. So the fact that you know it just means you can be more careful, but it's really going to be hard to spread it around your body unless you get really really sick. I even have a somewhat lower immune system because of my autoimmune meds, and I'm fine.

Lots of people have type 1 and don't know it, and don't spread it around. If you are still within the first 6 months then yes, be a little more careful, but try to talk yourself out of obsessing. I know how easy it is, since I have OCD and obsess about everything, but I sometimes think I'm crazy when I'm washing my hands a third time and my bf isn't even hardly worried.

If you just can't control yourself, you might want to see a therapist about it. But try not to let them give you meds that you don't need. Your body could be having all these symptoms because of some other cause... like STRESS. STRESS does terrible and weird things to the body. If you can try to destress, often your body will follow. after I found out I thought I was getting it all over my body... I felt the same way you do. I had tingles all over my face and down my arms. I felt flush on the cheeks. I would look at my bf's eyes and think boy they're really red, did he get this in his eye? But every single symptom went away and either had to do with something else or was just a freak symptom.

There are things that can happen to your body because the hsv virus can cause weird feelings in different places... but it might be your nerves and not necessarily that the hsv is actually in that place. HSV is in the nerves and those are all connected, so you might feel more feelings around your body than you're used to, but it doesn't mean it's travelling or that you are contagious everywhere.

I do know how you feel, but you've got to calm down. It will be okay!!!!!

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An observation

After posting on this board for a while, I have noticed something. Some people come on the board feeling pretty awful, depressed, angry, confused, even suicidal. Most of the time, after a few months, they begin to come to terms with it, not necessarily with joy but with a certain amount of acceptance that lets them start their lives again. Like I said in a recent email I sent to a reporter who is writing about herpes, it's kind of like you flunked puberty and adolescence and are forced to do it over again! Having to renegotiate your sex and love life is difficult. I found it very hard.

But, the ones who come on the board saying, "I'm not letting this get me down! I was upset for about ten minutes but I pulled myself together. I am not going to let this define who I am etc...." They are the ones who seem to develop these cleanliness or other similar obsessions. Don't yell at me if I'm wrong, that's just a general observation and my impression.

If you ask a knowledgable doctor, the doctor will tell you that you are very unlikely to infect yourself through casual touch. Just using some reasonable common sense and good general hygiene should be enough. I believe the anxiety you are experiencing in your fear of self-infection comes from the normal difficulties of facing off against this and adjusting to having your life altered (and not for the better).

Most people here have many different moods about dealing with hsv. We have good days and bad days, times when we truly feel it is not that big a deal and times when we feel that we have something that will doom us.

Maybe you need to consider allowing your feelings, all of them, to surface and get over the idea that you are above having unhappy feelings about herpes. You do not have to be perfect and strong about this all the time. Herpes sucks! I think we have to face that and face that we do not like having it before we can get to a place where we realize that, in the ultimate scheme of things, it really IS not that big a deal.

If you need help in facing or accessing your emotions about this, therapy could be a good thing. Sometimes we just need a safe place to vent our unacceptable feelings. We do not always feel like we wish we felt.

This will get better. Whatever the actual symptoms are, they tend to fade in time--herpes is like that. I have had hsv2GH for over 14 years and I am at the point where I only have very mild symptoms once or twice a year. I had those weird nerve itchy feelings off and on for the first 2-3 years. They they went away. So there is every chance you will get better. If necessary, you may need some meds, like valtrex, to tame the hsv for a while. But it does tend to improve with time.

Remind yourself of the facts every time you start obsessing. Herpes doesn't spread by touch that easily. I think this is unconscious emotions out of control rather than hsv out of control. Do what you can to take charge of it. Worrying only encourages outbreaks.

Hope you feel better soon!

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Try a Lysine supplement for cold sores

  • The Hive is Thriving!

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    • Herpeguy562
      Give it a try and report back to us. It's pretty safe vaccine approved by the FDA.
    • Skye249
      Have you tried changing your GP surgery? A decent doctor must surely realise that having back to back outbreaks warrants long term suppressive medication.  Aciclovir is available at very low cost to the NHS. I'd be firm with your doctor in what you'd like to do and make it clear you are educated on the relevant issues.  Don't be ashamed to talk to your GP. It is confidential.  FYI - walk in sexual health clinics (separate health record) are only as allowed to dispense a limited amount on the basis of episodic treatments. 
    • WilsoInAus
      I agree, herpes doesn’t show up as discrete little dots like your pic.
    • HereAndNowLater
      @Kurdt01Thank you! Very validating! And yes many doctors are so uninformed and misinformed it's incredibly frustrating.  ur right in multiple forums I've seen commenters invalidate someone's experience with herpes which is so weird. There's a wealth of experiences similar to both of ours but people put their hands to their ears and drill home "herpes is just a minor rash outbreak, nothing more."
    • friendlyboy
      I got the zinc acetate from an pharmacy in my town, they can't sell reagents but I know the pharmacist. I cost me about 10 € a 50 gr bottle, enough for a decade at the current rate of consumtion. Otherwise it is quite easy to get, you can buy it from a laboratory or even in ebay. I apply the treatment on my glans about 2-3 times a week, I've never had any problem or adverse effect so far.

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