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Stellar1777

Kind of an...interesting story?

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Stellar1777

Yesterday I was talking to a friend about recently finding that I have GH, and she responded "oh, that sucks, I'm so sorry, etc." (which actually makes me feel a bit worse because I really just want people to tell me that it's not that big of a deal). As we continued talking, I got the impression that she didn't know a lot about herpes. When I told her that it was caused by the HSV virus which also causes cold sores, she said, "that's not right! I have a cold sore on my lip right now and I don't have herpes!" She went on to say that she's had a few cold sores ever since she dated a guy who would get them occasionally, but they always "go away," so it can't be herpes.

I just found her reaction kind of interesting; the conversation was very revealing to me. I have several friends who are health professionals and understand the virus, so telling them is often met with the "don't worry too much about it, it's really common, etc." But I realized that unless the person 1.) has it or 2.) works in the field, he/she may not have any idea what the virus is and simply react to it based on some vague, indefinite social attitude about herpes or STDs in general. Wonder how to deal with that...

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RealisticGal

I suppose I'm sort of a bitch, but I would print out a pamphlet for your friend with the cold sore so she would be informed about her own reality. The fact is, she is probably out there contributing to the spread of herpes, including the rise in genital HSV1.

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Blonde Moments

I understand completely. Until I was diagnosed just over 3 weeks ago, I really had no clue what herpes was about. I knew cold sores were herpes and there was the genital kind but that was about it. I had no idea what viral shedding was or this damn itchiness that won't stop after the ob is gone. There really isn't very good education on the topic, I don't even remember them teaching about it in school. They just said it was an STD and moved on. I believe this at least part of the reason why it is running so rampant. That, and people that don't believe they have it and are out there spreading it like crazy.

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boo32

Agreed

I really do agree with everyone. I actually have GHSV-1 that I am almost completely sure is from oral HSV-1. Who knew? I didn't. I am almost embarrassed to admit that I'm actually a health professional (currently in school) and wasn't fully aware that it could be transmitted that way...especially without any symptoms! But I guess that's why most of us are all here right? I'm sure at one point in the back of my mind I had recognized the fact that people with the virus do not have symptoms all the time, but never did I realize that there are people who simply NEVER even have them, and unknowingly transmit it that way! I guess somewhere along the line being a naive youth I had always thought that someone who contracted the virus would OBVIOUSLY know, and why wouldn't they tell someone who they would potentially be intimate with? Now even as an adult I didn't really understand that about the virus until I read all the information. I don't actually consider myself to be at all naive, or think that I would put myself in a situation where I could potentially contract it, but the keyword there is thought. I didn't actually know. I think this is a huge misconception about this virus (or no conception at all even), especially with how people stigmatize both types, Type 1 being no big deal and Type 2 being the 'dirty' type. I'll be honest and say I, too, thought cold sores were 'no big deal' because my mom has dealt with them all her life. But did I ever think that type could be transmitted to another area? Definitely not, especially if someone has never even shown signs of having the virus. Why would I? So, I guess there lies the problem, but I think that as there may be a lack of education at times, some people may also, unfortunately, take the information for granted :(

But thanks for the posts, I really do find this interesting, and it just goes to show how there are still so many people who have no idea about it and that they may possibly be contributing to the spread of it.

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AF Vet

I basically had the same thing recently. I was at my mother's house and my youngest sister (20) had double cold sores in the corners of her mouth. My whole family knows about my GH. So I took her aside and told her that her cold sores were probably the oral version. She was shocked! I told her I'd appreciate it if she held off kissing my children for now until she was cleared up (which upset her a bit) and explained to her about doing the same with her boyfriend and not to have oral sex with him. Her response was basically, their just cold sores... I finally convinced her, basically by getting graphic about my first outbreak and how that's what I'd had, painful as it was, down below.

Then she started asking me questions about GH... does GH cause razor burn or ingrown hairs? No... Shaving causes razor burn and ingrown hairs... I showed her this website, told her if she wasn't sure to go get tested.... I don't know if she did or not. She and I aren't on good terms right now... but I was surprised she didn't recognize it for what it was. Alot of people don't. Hell, I didn't. I've been getting cold sores off and on since I was a child. Probably got it from my parents kissing me good night. I didn't really think about it until I was on this site just because its not really taught... and I only get sores orally once every 5 years or so. I don't remember when I had my last one.

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      Having HSV-2 has not bothered me at all for casual sex. I'm just avoiding sex during outbreaks, on suppressive therapy and using condoms every time with casual partners. Since my outbreaks appear on top of my penis, even during an outbreak the risk is minimal if I put a condom on as soon as I take my underwear off.  I guess it might be a slightly different case for a girl as if you have external lesions around your groin you could still infect someone even using a condom. And of course, condoms can break, which has happened to me over 10 times and caused myself to get infected in the first place.  I see it as a much more difficult now having a serious relationship, because I can't feel much with a condom on and really want stop using them. However, I don't want to put my new girlfriend to any risk - I would feel terrible if I infected her. 
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    • Burty
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