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How to tell

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So I have only been diagnosed for a little over a month now.. and i haven't had to have "the talk" with any new dating prospects yet.. But now Ive met this guy and we've hung out a few times, talked on the phone, texted, emailed, etc.. but how do I tell him? when should i tell him? Im so afraid that Im going to tell him and he is just going to bounce and not talk to me anymore..

So any pointers??

Live, Laugh, Love


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You should tell him when YOU feel comfortable with him, and that you think that the relationship is at a stage where you both would like to take it a little further. I always think it is best to leave it as long as possible, so that you both have time to really get to know each other. That way, you can gage if you trust him, and he can get to like you so much, that he is willing to give you a good hearing.

Also, choose your setting carefully. I always prefer to have the talk at home, and not during a kissing session! How about you offer to cook him dinner, and bring it up over dessert, when both of you will be feeling nice and relaxed?

Don't make a big deal of it, and try and keep your emotions in check. Tell him the facts. If you give him all the info, and stay cool about it, he is less likely to over-react.

And finally, if he does decide that he does not want to continue the relationship because of it, then you come here immediately for support – it can happen, and it can be hard to get your head around being rejected because of this silly virus, but you are not alone, and not every guy will react this way. I have had the talk many times, and gone on to have happy healthy relationships. I have also been denied relationships because of it – but looking back, this was always by men I was not 100% sure about – so there is a lesson in that. I think in our hearts we know when someone is going to be understanding and non-judgemental about herpes – especially if we have taken time to get to know them before disclosing.

I am thinking I may have to have this talk myself sometime soon, so I do know how you are feeling right now, you just want to get it over and done with! Because until then it just hangs over you, somewhat blighting any happy feelings you should be having at the start of a relationship.

But! We have to play the hand we are dealt...Best of luck, lovely.


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Here is how I give the talk

I agree with Soraya, try and do it in a comfortable setting. Do not make a big deal out of it or say "I have something important to tell you".

I start out by asking her if she has ever had a cold sore. Chances are she will say yes, so I tell her I get cold sores down there. If she says no, I say I get cold sores down there. I do tell her it is herpes, but I figure that if I can get her to associate it with something she does not think is a bad thing, cold sores, she will be accepting of it.

Also, read as much information as you can. They will probably have questions and if you can answer them then the more they will realize this is pretty much a harmless little virus.

I have had this 'gift' many years and have given the talk many times. I have never been rejected because of this.

Good luck!


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I really think JB's way of relating it to cold sores (which it is) is a really good idea.

Both him and Soraya have offered you great advice.

Take your time and make sure you feel sure about him before you put yourself out there, and when you do try and remain as confident as possible. (I know its hard). If its meant to be, you two will work around it.

Good luck ;)

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  • The Hive is Thriving!

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    • TCBH
      You don't put it down there. you put it on your arm. 
    • luvurself16
      I got hsv from a police officer. Sickos out there.
    • Toro
      I am 44 and I have active herpes in both of my eyes.Only Amenalief helps.
    • Jayne
      I know this thread is a couple of years old, but it’s been helpful to me, and I wanted to contribute as well. Back to Berliner’s original post, I’ve tested negative on several IGGs, with the latest ones being 1 yr and now almost 2 years past exposure.  Figuring out what was going on was the worst nightmare I’ve ever been through in my life. I made the mistake of drinking heavily a week after my father died of cancer, and I had unprotected AS with an ex, who happened to be poly and had some occasional unprotected M2M encounters.   Three days later I had a red line rash along my (sorry to get explicit) crack. This was followed by a rectal burning. Tested negative for G&C and related tests.  Over the next couple of weeks I had severe swelling and discomfort in my lower right quadrant and was told to go to the ER, where (I guess as a standard practice) they did a cat scan, which revealed nothing.  Also not a bacterial infection.  However the repeated manual examinations that occurred at urgent care and the ER seemed to relieve the abdominal pressure over the next few days.  I then had diarrhea for the next several weeks after.  I developed what felt like internal hemorrhoids, which were exacerbated by the diarrhea, and a gastro doctor confirmed via digital exam that there was indeed some sort of mass that felt like possible hemorrhoids. He ordered a sigmoidoscopy, but by the time it was undertaken, whatever was there was gone. After the procedure though, I felt much better for a while, possibly due to digestive issues clearing up after the colon “cleanse.” But this was concurrent with other issues.   About 3 weeks after the encounter I developed a large rash on my left thigh. Shortly thereafter I started having light sensitivity issues, culminating in a fever-like state after being outside in the sun only for 15 minutes after work. At work around that time for a couple days I felt like I was going through life encased in a gauzy gel- similar to being on laughing gas at the dentist, but not in a good way. I didn’t know what the hell was happening to me. I developed a severe case of canker sores for about a day. Later during a sunny drive, after getting back in the car at a gas station I noticed a red blotch below my lip. I tried to shrug it off but it happened again on the trip back.  So by about a month after the encounter I was having more anxiety. I spent the night at a friend’s house and woke up with a massive, swollen red eye and swollen lips. I got eye drops for bacterial conjunctivitis but that was wishful thinking.  A couple of weeks later, my lips were covered in sores. I smothered them with abreva. By the next day, they had mostly gone away. I tried to do a swab test at urgent care (I believe it was the next day), but there was not enough there to make any sort of positive diagnosis. Since then, I’ve had what you could call repeated aborted lesions and red blotches that appear around my mouth, particularly after stress and alcohol consumption. But even having peanut butter or chocolate would set it off for a long time. Fair skin doesn’t help- there was no hiding it. Two months after the encounter, I had my first vaginal burning- it was pretty intense and I had to use ice cubes because I didn’t know what else to do.   The worse feeling though was the periodic flare-ups of rectal itching/burning, often accompanied by another red line rash. It made sitting uncomfortable for about the next two months. I couldn’t wear pants at work- only skirts seemed to make things somewhat less irritated. And for the first three months, I was still testing for HIV along with HSV because of the overlapping symptoms (rash, diarrhea, neural pain, severe flu like symptoms without fever). I lost a lot of weight and had panic attacks. On top of all this I had just moved to a new city and started a new job and didn’t have a support network. And the sad thing is, I had to deal with all of this instead of being able to grieve for my father and being a better source of support to my mother. She had to support me without understanding what was happening.   Another bad thing through all of this was having both my ex and my current partner treat me like I’m crazy. That makes me feel alone and in the dark. Another “hysterical woman.” F*** that.  And while I felt grateful that my current was at the time still ready to be with me even if I had hsv, it’s a little discomfiting that he still doesn’t really believe me. But I’ve learned to live with ambiguity. And now I’m used to doctors as well as partners acting like this is nonexistent. Especially with negative IGG tests even 2 years later, which have left me without any answers.  I’m lucky in a way to be able to blend in because I don’t get obvious sores, genitally or orally (I can cover up the blotches with concealer, and they fortunately have lessened in frequency). But I still get the rectal itching/burning every six months or so (anthistamines seem to alleviate it a bit). And as more of a concern, I’ve had a cramp in my lower right quadrant ever since, which feels like it’s in my digestive tract. Since this has pretty much spread everywhere else in my body, intestinal involvement wouldn’t surprise me, and it isn’t unheard of anyways. I’ve tried to move past this and have since gotten married to my partner, who is a source of support (even if he doesn’t believe I’m having health problems. I know that’s a contradiction but occasionally I want to believe that too.).  I’m also newly pregnant, and symptoms have started to flare up again somewhat. I’m sure this will be an adventure. Hopefully more good than crazy. I know I’m going to struggle with the fear of passing this along but I’m trying to reconcile what doctors say (which is that it is extremely rare) with my own intuition about what I need to be careful of. Maybe I’ll repost with an update down the road. In short, there are people out there who test negative and have to live with loved ones and doctors thinking that a negative test closes the book on this. Again, learning to live with ambiguity is a real life lesson that I’m still coming to grips with. This forum and specifically this post have been a source of comfort that I haven’t been able to find elsewhere. Thanks everyone for the support for the community.     
    • Rockster
      You deepthroat so good that you get all kinds of mouth-to-skin-of-base contact? Kudos to you, but that is extremely rare. 

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