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Symptom-free and Rejected


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My saga:

I'm 38 and unmarried with no boyfriend. For various reasons, including now-conquered problems such as obesity, depression, and moving around getting degrees, I haven't had a lot of lengthy relationships.

I've slept with a number of guys, almost always with condoms, unless we both got tested before we stopped using them.

Last year, I started being really specific about who I wanted to date, and advertised online. I met a fabulous guy with whom I had a lot in common, and we started talking marriage. We had both been tested recently, but we had both slept with several people since the tests, using condoms, so I wanted to get tested again. Besides, I had noticed that although I had asked to be "tested for STDs," no test for herpes had shown up on my chart several years before. My boyfriend was unemployed with no insurance, so he didn't feel like getting tested. We didn't practice safe sex because we had been careful in the past and had recently been tested.

So I went to the gynecologist for an unrelated matter, and I asked to be tested for STDs. I specifically listed herpes, and the nurse said she didn't want to test me for it because I had no symptoms. I asked why not. She said, "Because people get really upset when they find out they have herpes." This didn't seem like a logical or valid reason to not be tested. So I got the test done.

I didn't hear back from the doctor, so my boyfriend and I continued having sex with no condoms. When I went back to the gynecologist a month later for a follow-up on the unrelated matter, I was left in the examining room for an unusually long time. Then the nurse came in and told me I was positive for HSV2 (and not HSV1). She said, "The reason we didn't call you to tell you about your results is that our computers have been down this whole time and they just came up again this morning." Yeah, RIGHT!! This is one of the most bold-faced lies anyone has ever told me.

I was told that the antibodies in my blood were so high that I had to have had it for a very long time and my current boyfriend could not have given it to me. So, with much trepidation, I told my boyfriend, who wasn't pleased but didn't break up with me or blame me. Several weeks later, right before his first job interview as a patent attorney, he broke out with cold sores on his face. He said he had never had a cold sore before in his life (and he doesn't lie). I was certain it was HSV2 and that I had given it to him (I'm still certain it is herpes, but I am no longer certain that it is HSV2, and I am no longer certain I gave it to him -- more on that later). He wasn't pleased, but he didn't break up with me or blame me. I was totally devastated.

We got past that, but several months later, he broke up with me in a very painful fashion, for other reasons. I was devastated.

I recovered and started dating online again. I met a young, successful, charming man 8 years my junior with whom I had a lot in common. This was the second one in a row that I could really see a future with. The intellectual and physical chemistry between us was intense. After a number of dates, it became clear that we would have sex soon.

During a telephone conversation, he told me he had gone on a few dates with a young lady who had the human papilloma virus and had gotten cancer because of it but had survived. He declined to date her further because he didn't want to become a carrier and kill another woman later with cancer (his mother had just passed away from breast cancer). I told him about my herpes, along with all the scientific information I had gleaned from the Internet. (As someone else on this website said, I know a heck of a lot more about herpes than all the doctors and nurses I've seen in the recent past - 4 in total. They have not been doing their reading on the topic, at all!!).

My date came over the next day and broke up with me. He said that he had been agonizing over it the entire day, and that the fact that he was even considering dating me was an indication of how much he liked me. He was really upset about it.

I was again devastated.

He has actually called me several times in the month since he rejected me. He calls to chat because he really likes talking to me. He says he keeps hoping I'll tell him it was all a big mistake and that I don't really have it (I have been tested twice total now, with the same result). He told me it had been incredibly difficult to leave the day he broke up with me, that he still desperately wants to have sex with me, that it was only the physical distance between us that was stopping it from happening (that is, if we were ever alone together, the deed would be done). I don't know what will happen here since he called me only 5 days ago.

I don't have any symptoms, so I could easily not disclose my HSV status to potential partners, but my values make it impossible for me not to. Now, I just have yet another characteristic that makes it difficult for me to find a mate e.g.,

Height: 5'10"

Education: Ph.D.

Religion: Atheist

Age: 38

Looks: Kinda good lookin'

Herpes 2: Positive

I'm trying to get my ex-boyfriend to get tested to see if I gave it to him (he says he?ll make an appointment). If I can tell potential sex partners that I'm a carrier but that I have no evidence that I ever gave it to anyone, that might be slightly more appealing than saying "I gave my ex-boyfriend herpes 2 on his face!!." I'm thinking/hoping maybe he has HSV1 that flared up for the first time because of stress -- in which case I didn't give it to him because I don't have HSV1. Or maybe he has HSV2 but has a lot of antibodies, indicating he has had it for a long time, in which case I didn't give it to him. The reasons I think I might not have given it to him are:

1) 95% of HSV2 infections are genital, so he'd have to be in that rare 5% who got it on their face.

2) Oral HSV2 infections are supposed to almost never recur, but he had a second outbreak three months after the first (right before his first day of work as a patent attorney!!).

3) I've had it for a long time, so it's supposed to be less contagious.

4) I have no symptoms, so it's supposed to be less contagious.

So, please, I need people's input on:

1) What kinds of people, under what circumstances, seem to reject you for having herpes? (I really don't want to hear that they're all a**holes or immature; the guy who rejected me seems to be a very kind, thoughtful man.)

2) Do they change their minds???

2) Success stories about finding love.

3) Oral HSV2 infection (recurrences, contagiousness, etc).

4) Being symptom-free but knowing you could give someone else a raging case of herpes.

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Sorry about all that's been happening, but you should know it isn't the end of the world having this.

I just went through a similar situation with a guy, a long-term friend turned love-interest a few weeks ago. His initial reaction was not to proceed, but we continued talking. I could definitely tell things were different, though, and I felt like I was in a position to prove my worthiness to him even though he knew me really well. I was feeling so stressed out I thought I was going to have an outbreak over it. It was making me feel really anxious and even worse about having this. I had given him the information, answered his questions, encouraged him to do independent research, etc. He was backing into friend-mode and basically disinvited me to all of our planned events. I didn't want to feel like I was in sales pitch mode so I let it drop and stopped calling him. I haven't heard from him either. I think his view was short-sighted because long story short - it is better knowing than not knowing a partner's status, but that's his decision and I respect it.

I opened up to some friends, and found out that I didn't know they had this, too. No one talks about it. I learned that they had partners that immediately accepted them (that married them) after having a few no's. I accepted two partners who had this before, too. I don't think it is really that uncommon to look past this kind of thing and continue dating. Stories on this site demonstrate that.

I don't have anyone in my life now, but I'm confident it will happen because I have lots of other great quailities to offer. I'm sure you do, too.

Keep the faith. If things are meant to work out with this guy, they will. But be careful in how this is impacting you. Don't let yourself get into a position where you feel like you did something wrong or there is something wrong with you, because there definitely isn't.

This is a small problem but not a reflection of who you are.

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Darlin, first of all let me just say, you are TALL, good looking (I am sure you are being modest too, but shit a nice tall lady, newly slimmed....very nice!) mid 30s so you are in your prime AND YOU HAVE YOUR PH.D!!! you have ALOT to offer a man. A-FREAKIN-LOT!

I am so ENVIOUS...it has always been my dream to get my PH.D. My father did it....other members in my family did it....I am the token college drop out. :(

But obviously, you are an intelligent, driven woman. Your post was very eloquent. I will say it again, at the risk of sounding redundant....YOU HAVE ALOT TO OFFER A MAN.

Sure, there will be men who are afraid, and that is their right to be afraid. The gentleman who really liked you was probably quite torn, but we can't be mad at this folks for being scared....he wasn't mean our cruel about it, so I Won't say "he is an ass"....he is not. Just scared. BUT, while it is nice that he is trying to stay in contact with you, at the same time, I don't think it is up to YOU to sell yourself to HIM (just like getonwithlife was talking about.) He knows, he has had ample time to think and DO something about it. I wouldn't waste a lot more time on whether or not he is going to change. I find it sort of ballsy that HE has HPV (in some ways, a MUCH more serious virus in that it CAN CAUSE CANCER in women!) but is afraid if your herpes and wishes it "wasn't true". Sure, herpes is a virulent virus, but adults dying from it is quite rare. Just my two cents there. :wink:

As for the guy with the coldsores on the mouth....herpes 2 CAN be transmitted to the mouth/face....and it CAN be quite virulent, especially if someone has never been exposed to herpes at all. They do not have the antibodies to fight it. Although H2 prefers to be in the nether regions, and H1 in the upper regions, the two can easily find a happy home switching locations. You can one person who HAS herpes,but is totally asymptomatic, and their partner contract it from them only to endure horrific outbreaks. Why that is, I don't know. Everyone is different, and each of our bodies' deal with herpes differently.

Then again, like you said, he may have been really stressed out, and just had a bad h1 outbreak. Hard to say, he would be wise in going and getting tested.

As for the doctor who told you that they "do not like to do herpes tests as it upsets people....' then waited so long to give you an answer...I say, what an idiot. Again, proves my rants that folks in the medical field are utter morons when it comes to knowledge about HSV. I have learned MORE HERE and from a few other sites on the internet and in my own womens health books than I EVER DID FROM A DOCTOR/NURSE/HEALTH CARE PROVIDER of some sort. Good god, then we all wonder why herpes is spreading like wildfire amongst...EVERYONE. Because our doctors tell us a bunch of baloney. Why the ignorance in the medical field about herpes? WHY?

I am sorry that you DO have this, but at least count your blessings that 1) you know, and knowledge is power and 2) you do NOT get outbreaks at least so that is one battle with herpes you do not have to deal with! :wink:

Again do not sell yourself short. I think that if you set high standards for yourself and a potential mate, you will find the right MAN for you. Sounds like you have already been tested and been through alot, you will come out of this just fine!

Last word: I have herpes. 1 and 2. My man doesn't! :D And he is a great guy, one of the best. (is that good Dangermouse?!!? hehehe) He is a great support to me when the herpes has me down, and when it is not around, he never brings it up, makes me feel bad, nothing. I met him and I KNEW he was a good man (as well as so good looking) very smart and very peaceful (I am the highstrung one!) I snatched him up and didn't let him go. Good guys are hard to find! I never let my standards down just because I have stupid herpes. But I am one of many on here who are proof that you CAN have a wonderful relationship with someone, despite having herpes. And kids too. (we have a baby.) Sure, it takes some extra precautions, but it is well worth it!! :D

I hope my ramblings here helped a wee bit. Good luck to you and please stay strong.

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getonwithlife: Thanks for your insight and your support!

ouch: Thanks for your kind words and your success story! I really appreciate it.

-- BTW, the guy who rejected me does NOT have HPV; he refused to date a woman with HPV, because if it didn't work out with her, but he had become a carrier in the interim, he could infect his next sexual partner with HPV and possibly give her cancer.

-- I've been doing some reading on oral HSV2, and it looks like it's almost impossible that my ex-boyfriend has HSV2 on his face because it's extremely rare to begin with, plus HSV2 almost never recurs, whereas his recurred right away.


I located an STD clinic near him, and he might go on Wednesday to get tested.

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    • CHT
      Hello "FeelingLost".... your fears and concerns are understandable but, nothing you've described regarding the sexual encounter would cause you to contract herpes.... further, your symptoms are not herpes related.  Best of all, your doctor is correct, your results don't show any herpes here.  You can relax.... definitely have your GP take a look at things and see what might be causing the symptoms but, again, none of them are typical herpes related.  I wish you the best in terms of talking to your wife about this encounter.... hopefully she will understand and you both can work through this amicably.  We all make mistakes.... be careful not to beat yourself up too hard over this.... you can become so racked with guilt that you start imagining physical symptoms.  Best of luck.... and take care..... come back to the site if you have questions.
    • FeelingLost75
      Hi (I’m really scared and feel really disappointed in myself and worried about my future), I had oral sex with a condom almost 3 weeks ago and a massage parlor. I also received a hand job at the same time prior to putting a condom on, also may have rubbed my penis on her back a little. Did not touch her genitals I don’t recall any sores on her back. After the event she handed me a pice of TP and after I took off the condom I wiped my penis head to clear away the excess ejaculation…this is where I suspect I got infected, she had just gone pee and wiped and maybe touched a sore or something and then I got it on my penis from the tp? Idk. I’m just flailing.   After this I’ve had discomfort on the skin below the head of my penis and 4 bumps for 2 weeks now, the bumps don’t seem to have changed in size. I also had frequent urination for about a week and have had dull pain in my groin on and off. I also have some pins and needles on the sides of my abdomen/trunk that get worse when I go out in the heat or get dehydrated. I’ve had a lot of trouble sleeping, likely due to guilt and shame and worry about the future.   so I got one test done at 10 days from the event (idk know if this can tell me anything… the doctor assured me it was 100% correct and I don’t have herpes. I was not physically examined). I got a full panel std. neg for everything. HSV-1 results: IgG 0.3 / HSV-2 IgG 0.9 hsv-1 IgM = 2.2 hsv-2 IgM = 3.0 (Reference V. Negative: Less than 9.0 Borderline: 9.0 to 11.0 Positive: Greater than 11.0) I have an appointment with my GP on Thursday, hoping he can help. Will likely go to a std testing service tomorrow to see if I can get in an antiviral proactively. Plan to get tested again this week.    
    • TS4real
    • FeelingLost75
      How are you doing now?
    • TS4real
      May 13 ( day I will never forget).. a guy I was dating and I drank way to much and decided to have anal sex. We did use protection however, not enough lube, wasn’t done correctly and it was painful. So bad that I yelled out and fell off the bed. Anyway, oral was also performed on me anal and vaginal. Flash forward to 3-4 days after that. I was in the most intense pain I had ever felt. I went to a gyn she tool one look and said it looks like herpes. She swabbed me . 2 days after that, yes it’s HSV1 . I was still in pain, irritated anal area and vaginal area and It was unbearable.  today, I still have irritation and itchy and when I pass a bowel i’m in pain and the itch is crazy.     When I first was diagnoses the gyn gave me valtrex which I did not take bc I was in so much pain I could not move for 2 days.  Groin lymphs were swollen I had fever , tired etc.  I am wondering if I had taken the valtrex would it have kinda liked stopped the virus in it’s tracks enough to reproduce? Do people see a correlation between no more outbreaks and immediate initial valtrex  use ? I am 43, I never thought this wound happen as I am not a promiscuous person, I hardly date and I always use protection when I do have intercouse , have yearly std tests. I’m just so sad that i’m at this point right now . I’m trying not to get depressed but this is making my body feel miserable. I’m an avid runner and biker and mom of two teens. I feel like my life as I knew is over. I want to feel better already.
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