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HSV 1 and dating?


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I have never been officially diagnosed, but I am pretty sure I have HSV1. I had one test for HSV2 only (I think called the pocKIT test or something) that came back negative. I had one type-specific blood test that also came back negative for both 1 and 2 a few years ago. Nevertheless, my operating assumption has been that I do have it because the rest of the evidence is overwhelming and I'd read that blood tests are not that accurate anyway...at least back then, maybe they're better now.

Assuming it is what I think it is, I am infected in both upper and lower body. I hardly get any outbreaks on my lower body any more, and when I do it's usually on my thighs. The upper body is the exact opposite, I get frequent outbreaks that come almost anywhere. I even suspect that I have had an outbreak in my eye (see Herpes Diagnosis discussion). Although, as time has passed, the outbreaks are now pretty much restricted to my chest and mouth.

One of the reasons I wasn't too concerned about it was that everything I read indicated that HSV1 was so common that there didn't seem to be any point to worry about it. I've heard anywhere from 50% to 90% have it.

To me, until I thought my eye got infected about 2 years ago (I did see a doctor about it), herpes has always seemed more of a nuisance than a serious disease, and I have a fairly active case. When you add the fact that the vast majority of the population is infected with one form or another, it seems like it would be insane to end a relationship because of herpes or even really be all that concerned about having contracted it. Because of these factors, I never really thought about warning someone before kissing them, but I never kissed anyone when I had a cold sore I was aware of. Although, I have probably infected other people because I bought the negative blood tests for a while.

Anyway, I'm trying to figure out what the ettiquette for this sort of thing is. The reason I'm confused is that every post on here appears to from people with *genital* herpes (presumably regardless of type 1 or 2). I don't really see what the difference is between having it on your face or your genitals, other than a possibly inane social stigma. I guess it is less embarrassing to walk around scratching your face than it is to be itching your crotch, but is that the only reason? Frankly, I am sort of embarrassed by the red sores in plain view for all to see, while the genital people have them tucked away, out of sight.

Bottom line is I am trying to reevaluate how I approach relationships. How do other people whose upper bodies are infected and thus get "cold sores" approach new relationships? Do you give people disclaimers before kissing them regardless of outbreak status? Do you just not kiss people when you have outbreaks, and then mention your infection later as the relationship progresses? Do you not worry about it at all?

I should add, before people berate me for not getting diagnosed, that I am scheduled to see a doctor in a couple of weeks for yet another blood test that I am hoping will resolve the matter once and for all.

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  • 3 weeks later...
I have never been officially diagnosed' date=' but I am pretty sure I have HSV1.[/quote']

When do you plan on seeing a doctor so that you can find out for sure?


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