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BellGG

Didn't Know I had it, passed it on.

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BellGG

Hi - new year. I've had cold sores forever, since I was a teenager. I'm 44 now. Long story short, I man re-entered my life that I knew when I was very young. We met when we were 11-13. Anyway, he found me last month, and while it sounds crazy, we became close sooo quickly. We live in different states. I'm divorced of many years, and have dated over time, but, this man, is beautiful in every way. We fell in love. I visited him during the superbowl, and it was the first time we'd seen each other in over 30 years! We felt like we'd been together forever. And, I want to add, I don't fall this quickly over people - at all! Anyway, I was there for a few days, maybe 5 or so. We made love almost every day. The day before I left, I got a cold sore on my upper lip and chin. He had a tiny beard and it seriously chaffed my chin which ended up in a break-out. Well, I told him I had bad news and no more kissing. He had also shown me something that looked like a small, tiny, cut, like a couple centimeters in length on his penis. We thought it may have been an abrasion from fooling around with our clothes on. Well, I left for home, and he was troubled by it as he said it was sore. In the end, it ended up being genital herpes. We found out yesterday. I didn't know I had 2 ever! I've been racking my brains and have been reading a lot about herpes. I wonder if I had it and it was dormant, or if what in the past I thought was a yeast infection was an outbreak.... I'm more devasted because he's DEVASTATED!! He recently lost his job, and he tells me he hates himself, and is resentful towards me. He's so miserable, and was crying all day yesterday - I feel helpless to do anything. I've sent him some information and blogs about herpes, and it shares that people often feel shocked and have depressive symptoms like he is. As for me, I've had some serious trauma in the past and currently work in hospice. Personally, I'm grateful it's not AIDs or advanced cancer. It's a virus. With respect to others that are grieving, I just don't identify myself AS the virus. I can live with it. But, I don't know how to help him. I seriously believe he's breaking up with me. I tried to support him as much as I could yesterday, and told him, based on what he was sharing, not to call, because I know he was leaving me. He said that he didn't want to go there yet, and that he loves me. Honestly, I just want to him to be happy. I want more than anything for him to be happy with ME, but, if he can't, I'd rather let him go if he'd feel better. He's going through a really hard time in his life now, and as he says, "now this". Is there ANYTHING anyone can suggest that I can do for him? Or do at all? I don't want to bombard with him information and bloggs, but, I'm the type that with more information, I feel better. It's the "unknown" that we fear the most. Thank you to anyone that may have a suggestion! Must love and peace to all!

Bell

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Jewel

Sorry BellGG, don't know what to say but just wanted to say sorry. Sounds like both of you are shocked by all of this. Are they giving him Valtrex or anything?

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BellGG

Thank you Jewel. They gave him some meds. I want to say Acyclovir, but not sure. Pretty sure it's not Valtrex. I know I can't really "do" anything, but, I thought if I put it out there, well, you never know what ideas others may share. I sincerely appreciate your note. I hadn't had a sexual partner for EVER, meaning several years. And the last time I was tested I was clear. I did have other partners after that test which was also a long time ago. I was shocked I had genital herpes, but, again, since having cold sores, and my life experiences, I'm not half as traumatized as he. He's TRAUMATIZED, and I feel like I just plunged a knife into his back. I know I didn't know, and, had I known, I would have been more careful. He believes me, thank God. Still, what I would do to turn the hands of time back... Much peace and happiness to you ....

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thereismoretome

I have lived with H - type 1 but down there - for 15 years. Since I first got it, 15 years ago, I was lucky and never had another OB, until a few years ago when I had one, didn't realise until too late and gave it to my boyfriend. In all those years, I had led a normal life, overcome the stigma, had lots of boyfriends, never given it to anyone and then I did. I honestly didn't realise it was an OB, I had always been so careful. I really feel for you and understand. Giving it someone else was worse than getting it. I had come to terms with it but upon that happening, the guilt was unbearable. That's why I am here now. I felt like I had committed genocide (which I don't mean offensively but honestly, I felt like I had done the worst thing in the world). I hadn't meant to. I never would have wished this on anyone else. For me, it has not plagued my life and I had never felt vindictive towards my first boyfriend (oh what luck I had!) who gave it to me - I am from the UK, we don't sue here - and I read all those sites where people like us should be convicted and persecuted. Makes me feel ill. I would give the world to take it back and change what happened. But I can't and living with having given it to someone else is harder to handle than having it. He has what I have and so has not had any effects since (apparently type 1 does not thrive well down there) but now he has to live with the stigma etc etc. I read your post and I would really appreciate sharing this with you. I don't get OBs -what I find hardest to cope with is the stigma and now the guilt. The guy who gave it to me could not ahve cared less. But I care, I didn't mean it and I struggle to deal with having done something to someone that I never meant to do.

When our relationship started to go wrong and I realised we were not right for each other I felt I had to stay with him even though I was desperately unhappy. I realised of course in the end that was not the case and I should not do that. But I always knew that when I broke up with him that he would turn on me and use that against me and he did - he threatened to tell people about my dirty secret (it is a secret, but as we all know, it has nothing to do with being dirty) and he told me I'd short-changed him, and the guilt kills me. He wasn't kind to me when we were together and could be so horrid, hence why I had to end it but he turned round and said how could I end it with him after what I had done. But it wasn't something I had meant to do or had done, per se.

I am rambling, I'm sorry. But this is something that torments me every day. I was strong enough to leave him despite this but I feel like I have committed the worst crime in history and, as you say, like I plunged a knife into his back.

I would love to hear your thoughts.

Hope you are are ok.

Take care

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RealisticGal
I've had cold sores forever, since I was a teenager. I'm 44 now. Long story short, I man re-entered my life that I knew when I was very young. We met when we were 11-13. Anyway, he found me last month, and while it sounds crazy, we became close sooo quickly. We live in different states. I'm divorced of many years, and have dated over time, but, this man, is beautiful in every way. We fell in love. I visited him during the superbowl, and it was the first time we'd seen each other in over 30 years! We felt like we'd been together forever. And, I want to add, I don't fall this quickly over people - at all! Anyway, I was there for a few days, maybe 5 or so. We made love almost every day. The day before I left, I got a cold sore on my upper lip and chin. He had a tiny beard and it seriously chaffed my chin which ended up in a break-out. Well, I told him I had bad news and no more kissing. He had also shown me something that looked like a small, tiny, cut, like a couple centimeters in length on his penis. We thought it may have been an abrasion from fooling around with our clothes on. Well, I left for home, and he was troubled by it as he said it was sore. In the end, it ended up being genital herpes. We found out yesterday. I didn't know I had 2 ever! I've been racking my brains and have been reading a lot about herpes. I wonder if I had it and it was dormant, or if what in the past I thought was a yeast infection was an outbreak.... I'm more devasted because he's DEVASTATED!!

How was he diagnosed with genital herpes? Did they do a swab/culture? If so, did they type it? Has he had a type specific antibody (blood) test?

It is possible to get genital HSV1. A common way for that to happen is via oral sex. So if you guys did that during your time together, that could be how he got it.

If you both get type specific IgG-based blood tests, that might eliminate some of the unknown that you both fear.

Honestly, this site provides good, balanced info. If I were you, I'd introduce him to it. It should explain a lot (for both of you). Take a look at the links on the right side of this page. >>>>>>>

Take care... :wavey:

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RealisticGal
I hadn't had a sexual partner for EVER, meaning several years. And the last time I was tested I was clear. I did have other partners after that test which was also a long time ago. I was shocked I had genital herpes, but, again, since having cold sores, and my life experiences, I'm not half as traumatized as he. He's TRAUMATIZED, and I feel like I just plunged a knife into his back. I know I didn't know, and, had I known, I would have been more careful. He believes me, thank God. Still, what I would do to turn the hands of time back... Much peace and happiness to you ....

The thing is, you may not have genital herpes. You could have passed your oral infection to his genital area.

Are you sure you have had a herpes test in the past? If you did, it should have come back positive since you have always had cold sores.

Most routine "full STI panels" do not include testing for HSV, yet doctors rarely inform their patients of this. So many, many folks believe they have been tested clear of herpes, when in fact they have never been tested.

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BellGG

Hi "thereismoretome",

I'm so frustrated! I just sent a long reply back to you and I must have hit cancel rather than send, or post! Grrrrr!! I'll write again a little later. I have to run now, but I was hugely grateful for your post to me. A million thanks for sharing what you did with me. I feel like you really understand how I'm feeling.

Much peace, blessings and happiness,

Bell

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BellGG

Hi "thereismoretome",

I just had to take the time now to re-write what I previously wrote. First, I thanked you immensely for writing and for sharing what you had. Your message meant so very much. It was nice to read that someone can truly empathize. I liked how you said that you felt like you committed genocide, because I had wanted to share in my original post that I felt like I had killed him, but then worried that I was sounding too melodramatic. But, it does feel like that doesn't it. I feel like I killed a part of him, and there's no way to get it back, or take it away. He says he hates himself right now, which kills me because he's such a good, kind, person. I've always had pretty good self-esteem, but, talk about hating oneself. I loathe myself right now. I hate to look at myself in the mirror. He trusted me... And I love him - he's the best thing that's ever happened to me, and ... I think it's over. I know people will say if he really loved me, etc., but, I think that would be more the case if I knew had it and told him, rather than him getting it and finding out after the fact. I'm sorry your partner ended up being so mean, and I'm glad you left him in the end. Personally, I think if 2 people really love each other, you work through things, although, there are definitely situations that are trickier than others. Sigh.... I also appreciated how you mentioned that we're not dirty, because, we're not. It's the stigma that's so awful, and people can be stupid and cruel. Anyway, with regards to our situation, I think only time will heal our wounds. I don't think I'll ever get over it, but, I hope in time it won't hurt as badly as it does now. Life throws things our ways all the time. Just like having herpes, we'll have to live and learn from our experience. I think maybe by helping others out even if just on this site may help. I know hearing from you has given me a bit of comfort. Thank you!!

I know how important taking care of ourselves is. It's just a little harder when you feel like you don't deserve it. Sometimes, things are best dealt with day by day... and personally, a lot of prayer!

Thank you again so much for your post here. Please feel free to write again. And, I wish you the absolute best!

Much peace, blessings, and happiness,

Bell

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BellGG

I believe he was diagnosed with a swab culture. And they did type it. It was 2. Don't know about the blood test. Honestly, when he described the soreness he had, and was going to the doctor, I actually did think it was HSV1 because I ended up having a cold sore. But, I gave him oral sex when I didn't have the cold sore. So, when it came back as 2, I was dumbfounded and didn't understand. I thought I had to be carrying it and it was dormant or something, or maybe if I did have previous outbreaks, they were so mild I may have mistaken it for a yeast infection or something. He said he'd gotten tested after his last relationship and was clean. And again, I dont' know which tests, but, it sounded like it was a full test for all STDs. I appreciate the information. My head is a bit cloudy though right now and I don't know what to do right now. I hear you're suggesting a specific type of test for myself. But then, what if I do have 1 and 2. I'm in the same boat. But, at least we know for sure.... right? I don't know if I'm thinking straight...

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BellGG

You're right - my tests never came back postive even with the positive HSV1. I'm getting insurance in a couple weeks. I'll get a full STI panel done. Thanks again for the info.

Peace,

Bell

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RealisticGal
I believe he was diagnosed with a swab culture. And they did type it. It was 2. Don't know about the blood test. Honestly, when he described the soreness he had, and was going to the doctor, I actually did think it was HSV1 because I ended up having a cold sore. But, I gave him oral sex when I didn't have the cold sore. So, when it came back as 2, I was dumbfounded and didn't understand. I thought I had to be carrying it and it was dormant or something, or maybe if I did have previous outbreaks, they were so mild I may have mistaken it for a yeast infection or something. He said he'd gotten tested after his last relationship and was clean. And again, I dont' know which tests, but, it sounded like it was a full test for all STDs. I appreciate the information. My head is a bit cloudy though right now and I don't know what to do right now. I hear you're suggesting a specific type of test for myself. But then, what if I do have 1 and 2. I'm in the same boat. But, at least we know for sure.... right? I don't know if I'm thinking straight...

I know it's a lot to take in. And it's understandably very upsetting on many levels, what's happening with this guy. My sympathies, hon.

So you have a reason to feel a bit fuzzy. It's all emotional and scary and uncertain. I'm sure you will get your head around all this pretty soon, though. Knowledge is power. :hmmmm2:

If I were you, I would ask him to take a look at his printout from his most recent panel of tests. He may find out he was never tested for herpes, unless he did specifically request it. As I mentioned before, most "full" STI panels DO NOT INCLUDE testing for herpes simplex. And if that is the case, he can't be sure he was clear (please, not "clean") of HSV prior to you two getting together. If he doesn't have a printout, he should be able to request one from his records.

Yes, he could have had a dormant/unrecognized infection prior to you. And since both stress and sex can be triggers for an outbreak, that could have been what caused his to come out.

On the other hand, you might have had genital herpes (without knowing it) prior to becoming intimate with this guy. If that is the case, obviously you cannot be blamed for something you didn't know. So if you get a blood test and it turns out you have both HSV1 and HSV2, then you will know. From now on, you will know. But before this, you did not.

He needs to understand that. Either partner could bring HSV to a relationship unknowingly. About 70% of those who have herpes do not know it because they have no recognizable symptoms. There can be no blame on either partner if they did not know.

I do want to mention that it is possible to spread herpes at times when you are not having an outbreak, via asymptomatic viral shedding. So even if a person is not having an outbreak at the time, it is important to inform potential intimate partners about having herpes. Both oral and genital infections can be spread, even in the absence of symptoms. In fact, the period about 7 days prior to an outbreak is the most likely time to be shedding heavily, and a very likely time to transmit herpes.

By the way, oral HSV2 is rare. But if you have never had a type specific test done, there is a small possibility that is what you have. Since you've had cold sores since you were a kid, the odds are even lower your oral infection is caused by HSV2. But I did want to make sure you know that it is possible.

:itllbeok:

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RealisticGal
You're right - my tests never came back postive even with the positive HSV1. I'm getting insurance in a couple weeks. I'll get a full STI panel done. Thanks again for the info.

That definitely suggests you have never had a test for HSV.

Getting a type specific IgG-based herpes antibody test is a good plan. Congrats on getting health insurance!

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RealisticGal

Oh...thereismoretome...you did the right thing! Leaving that relationship behind was the right thing to do!

Nobody should ever stay in a relationship out of guilt feelings about ANYTHING. You certainly shouldn't stay in a bad situation just because you unwittingly gave someone a virus you clearly did not fully understand.

Hopefully now you do know better. Hopefully now you know that you can spread herpes even when you are not having a noticeable outbreak. In fact, not to put too fine a point on it, but it is entirely possible that guy was not the first one who got it from you. It's just that if there were others, they either might not know they have it (no symptoms) or might have simply never said anything to you about it.

Either way, I'm sure you didn't mean to give it to anyone. So many folks, even doctors, still believe that the only time it can be spread is during an outbreak. That just isn't true.

Now that you know, you can tell future partners prior to intimacy --- so they can make an informed choice.

But please, both of you, stop beating yourself up over it. You don't deserve that. Besides the fact you never did this on purpose, it also isn't the end of the world. The stigma is bad, but it is entirely manufactured and false. Did you know the stigma wasn't around until a few decades ago? But herpes has been around for thousands of years.

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BellGG

YOU are awesome!! Wow - thank you so much!! That was hugely informative, supportive, loving, - YOU are my new hero, or shall I say, heroine!! I love your smiley faces at the end too... very sweet touch. I'm just new to this site today, and already I've gotten SO much from it already, by amazing people like you! Thank you a million times over!

Much love, peace, and HAPPINESS!!

Bell

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BellGG

I went out with a friend tonight and told her about what was going with me and my boyfriend, or ex-boyfriend... I don't know yet. Anyway, she told me SHE has herpes!! I loved it!! Previously, I had made jokes about the 3 of us having a 3some, and now, we could! I'm so kidding, but, it helped to further "normalize" it somewhat. She's had it for a long time, she's in her early 50s, and she rarely has outbreaks she said. She said she doesn't feel stigmatized, and it's not a big deal to her. I somewhat felt that way for myself, but, my difficulty is how this man I LOOOOOOVED is so devastated by something I did... yes, unknowingly, but, the fact remains it was me.... very likely. I know I will have to let him go through his journey, but I hate that he has to deal with this journey of all because of me. If he had it already, I'd have no problem. It seems to me that he's lead a fairly simple life - I don't know.. a lot of people are shocked upon hearing this. At any rate, I know I'll have to let him go through this and I'll have to deal with my feelings on my own. I can support him any way I can, but, I can't fix it. And, that' IS the truth.. unfortunately. At some point, it will be better. Hopefully we'll be together at that time, but, nonethless, it will be better.

Again, a million thanks for your kind, kind words!

Bell

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RealisticGal

I am sending strong, happy thoughts your way. (I'd say positive thoughts, but the pun is just too easy.) :vollkommenauf:

The best thing you can do is be good to yourself. Don't be down on yourself. Just to repeat, if you do have GHSV, you did not know, so you can't be blamed for that.

No matter what conclusion this guy comes to, you need to come to the conclusion of loving and accepting yourself --- no guilt.

Chances are if you do that, if you love yourself, you will attract more love into your life. That's just how it works.

I do hope it works out for you with that guy. I suppose I feel a little connection, because I'm in a somewhat similar (yet different) situation. My fella and I met at school when we were 12, knew each other all through jr. and sr. high, then saw each other again 30 years later. And now, after fits and starts, we are trying to figure out our feelings in the face of a lot of complications (including, but not limited to, him having herpes).

So I'm rooting for your story to have a happy ending. But remember, if he decides he can't handle it, that is his loss. You didn't make that happen. If he can't handle this minor bump in the road, just think how he would have reacted to something really serious! :burnout:

Take care of you. The rest will follow, in one form or another. Just consider it all one big adventure. :itsme:

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thereismoretome

Bell< i wish you the absolute best too and thank you for writing back to me, twice!

You are clearly someone with a great depth of soul and feeling, and conscience. I really appreciate your reply and empathy. I wrote the word genocide knowing how politically and socially loaded that term is because it did feel like that, it felt like I had kiled someone, used biological warfare, deliberately caused harm. which was so so so far from the truth. this cannot be taken back and it isn't to do with being dirty or cruel. there are far far worse things and it is definitely the stigma that is the worst aspect of H for me, and, for everyone, the only potentially lethal effect of this thing is the way that others make you feel.

realistic girl is right, H has been around for thousands of years but until drugs companies developed anti-virals in the seventies it was not stigmatised at all.

take care of yourself bell, you are very aware and brave.

tome

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