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VagueNotion

Newly diagnosed, how to proceed in relationship.

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VagueNotion

Hello all, this will be my first post.

In the last week I developed a pain while urinating and then bumps developed on my penis. I made an appointment to see a doctor as soon as I saw the bumps and I was diagnosed with genital herpes. The tests aren't back yet, but I basically have all the symptoms. I'm not really holding out any hope of it being anything else. I was told that the test would probably come back negative anyway, since the culture was taken so early in the outbreak.

I have been in a monogamous relationship for about a year now. Both myself and my girlfriend are pretty devastated by this and we really don't know how to proceed. She has never shown any symptoms so we don't know if she is infected or not. She called to get a test but they basically dissuaded her from getting tested unless she was showing symptoms, saying that the blood test was too likely to show a false positive.

I just don't know how this relationship is going to go on. I feel like there are 3 options, all of them bad:

1. She also has HSV and our relationship continues on.

2. She does not have HSV, but we continue having sex and she risks getting HSV.

3. She either doesn't or we don't know if she has HSV and we stop having sex, probably ending the relationship.

The worst part is that to make a smart decision on how to proceed we need to know whether or not she has HSV too, but it seems like we may never know.

We used condoms most of the time, but also had unprotected sex maybe a couple dozen times, but if this is my primary outbreak I think it's possible that I have not passed it to her yet. I think that if she was clean before and I passed it to her it would have been right before this outbreak was apparent.

I am also having trouble finding information on how likely it is to infect a partner. I understand that if I go on an anti-viral medication, use condoms all the time and refrain from sex during and immediately after and outbreak then the chance of transmission is reduced, but it's not eliminated? I don't want her to have HSV, but I do want to continue being in this relationship. I just don't know how these two things can co-exist.

The good news is that the concept of HSV being contracted via infidelity never came up. I trust her and she trusts me. I never betrayed that trust and I am sure that she hasn't either.

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Acesheart
Hello all, this will be my first post.

In the last week I developed a pain while urinating and then bumps developed on my penis. I made an appointment to see a doctor as soon as I saw the bumps and I was diagnosed with genital herpes. The tests aren't back yet, but I basically have all the symptoms. I'm not really holding out any hope of it being anything else. I was told that the test would probably come back negative anyway, since the culture was taken so early in the outbreak.

I have been in a monogamous relationship for about a year now. Both myself and my girlfriend are pretty devastated by this and we really don't know how to proceed. She has never shown any symptoms so we don't know if she is infected or not. She called to get a test but they basically dissuaded her from getting tested unless she was showing symptoms, saying that the blood test was too likely to show a false positive.

I just don't know how this relationship is going to go on. I feel like there are 3 options, all of them bad:

1. She also has HSV and our relationship continues on.

2. She does not have HSV, but we continue having sex and she risks getting HSV.

3. She either doesn't or we don't know if she has HSV and we stop having sex, probably ending the relationship.

The worst part is that to make a smart decision on how to proceed we need to know whether or not she has HSV too, but it seems like we may never know.

We used condoms most of the time, but also had unprotected sex maybe a couple dozen times, but if this is my primary outbreak I think it's possible that I have not passed it to her yet. I think that if she was clean before and I passed it to her it would have been right before this outbreak was apparent.

I am also having trouble finding information on how likely it is to infect a partner. I understand that if I go on an anti-viral medication, use condoms all the time and refrain from sex during and immediately after and outbreak then the chance of transmission is reduced, but it's not eliminated? I don't want her to have HSV, but I do want to continue being in this relationship. I just don't know how these two things can co-exist.

The good news is that the concept of HSV being contracted via infidelity never came up. I trust her and she trusts me. I never betrayed that trust and I am sure that she hasn't either.

Hey VN, welcome to our site . I want you to know if it were me, I.would find a Dr or clinic that would test. O also want you to know that either of you could have been Asymptomatic for years and just never knew it. I stayed dormant for 23 years. I wanted you to know that condoms only protect about 30% of the time since the condom doesn't cover the entire area. I want you to know my husband of 22 years tested several months ago, he is still a non h man. I take supressive daily therapy and have never passed my herps. Just because you have h, doesn't necessarily mean you will automatically transmitt. It is also harder for females to transmitt the h. Antivirals also add to lessen the chances of passing h. Your girl needs to test. This could be that both of you already have had h for many years. Please keep us posted. Here is a book www.westoverheights.com , please read all you can about h. It takes the fear out when you get educated. Please feel free to ask any questions. Try not to stress. Support each other. If you have a good foundation, it will and can withstand h. Take care, hugs Ace :)

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VagueNotion

Thanks for your reply and guidance.

What is the best test for her to get while she is asymptomatic? And considering that if I infected her that she would likely have been infected when we had sex right before I noticed symptoms, won't it take a while for antibodies to show up in her blood?

And unless the culture swab test comes back positive I suppose I should get another test. Wouldn't want to live for too long thinking I have HSV if I don't (I'm not really holding out much hope for that though unfortunately).

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Acesheart

Hey VN, some show signs of antibodies as soon as 2 to 22 days after exposure. Make sure to request the Igg blood test which is most accurate. If you or she have never had an Igg blood test, either of you could have been Asymptomatic. Meaning she could have given it to you too, its possible with herps. Here is also another site medhelp.org. this is another site where you can find much good information on herps. Believe me when I say love is way more powerful than herps. Keep me posted honey. Hugs, Ace :)

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chickentuna

hey VN, welcome to our website :) hope you try to learn as much as you can about the viru using all the links ace provided you as well as the ones on the right hand side of this page :) pop into live chat also if youd like... and keep asking questions its the best wayto learn. good luck with everything

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UserID
Hello all, this will be my first post.

In the last week I developed a pain while urinating and then bumps developed on my penis. I made an appointment to see a doctor as soon as I saw the bumps and I was diagnosed with genital herpes. The tests aren't back yet, but I basically have all the symptoms. I'm not really holding out any hope of it being anything else. I was told that the test would probably come back negative anyway, since the culture was taken so early in the outbreak.

Did the doctor not do a swab test? This would've been the best test to have and it would've indeed told you if it was hsv.

I know it's really easy to feel negative right now but it's not so bad. Condoms and suppresive therapy as well as being hyper aware of your body and signs of an outbreak do reduce the risk right down to about a 0.5 - 1% chance of transmission...about the same as getting your girl pregnant while she's on the pill. You do have to be a little more careful though in the beginning stages of being diagnosed as you could shed the virus more often until your body builds up the antibodies.

If you turn out positive and your girlfriend turns out to be negative, you can still definitely enjoy a relationship that includes sex. I was with my non-h ex for 4 years and was not on suppressive therapy, never used condoms and didn't transmit it to him.

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VagueNotion
I want you to know my husband of 22 years tested several months ago, he is still a non h man. I take supressive daily therapy and have never passed my herps.
In addition to suppressive therapy and avoiding sex during and immediately after outbreaks, do you take other precautionary measures? Do you use a condom or other type of STD prevention every time?

Did the doctor not do a swab test? This would've been the best test to have and it would've indeed told you if it was hsv.
The doctor did a swab test, but told me that there was a high probability of it showing negative even if I was positive, due to the outbreak being so early. The sores were very small and were not open, nor had they begun to scab over.

I know it's really easy to feel negative right now but it's not so bad.
I was a wreck in the 24 hours or so leading up to my doctor visit. After I made the appointment I had done some online research into what was possibly wrong with me. The more reading I did the more convinced I became that it was herpes. Strangely the doctor confirming that relieved a lot of stress.

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superdork

to make my story short. i tested positive the first time by blood test in october 2012. then neg by blood test a few weeks later and another negative test 2 weeks after that.. then positive again by both blood test and culture test a few weeks ago in jan2013 when i had what i suspected was my first outbreak- which turned out to be spot on..an outbreak.. spurred on by a massive sinus infection and stress..

after my first negative test i began dating another guy, and was 100% upfront about the possibility of my hsv issues.. told him about the possible contraction..my issues about my ex's infidelity and the two different test results... he listened with no judgement and accepted me 100%. we are still dating to this day.. he understood the risks involved, and tested himself and came up negative for both 1 and 2... when i got the 2nd negative test we thought we were in the clear.. but were still cautious about sex..even at our age with a clean std test on both ends.. then shortly after i had my outbreak and i was devestated.. as was the new guy. but also very supportive and understanding.. we are reading up on all the info we can about hsv, as i have tested pos for both 1 and 2 in the genital region... and he is going to be retested to see if he tests neg or pos. i began suppressive meds, 1gram a day of valtrex daily, and am reading up on if there are any types of vitamins that i can add daily that can help boost my immune system as well... hopefully the suppressive meds will help to slow down the shedding of the virus soon, as i have just had my 2nd outbreak. but until we adjust and test results come back, we are remaining abstinant...

after finding out about my exs infidelity, i blamed him for giving me herpes.. but it turns out that none of the other girls he cheated with contracted the virus... and he insists he is hsv neg... but will not provide proof to the matter so of course ill never know the truth.. my doc says that the virus can lay dormant for years, and a person test negative until the virus becomes active in your body... so its very possible that this is what happened to me.. i could have been exposed many years ago, and it just now became active..which given all the stress and physical trauma my body has been through in the past 6-9 months is plausable as i am undergoing testing for fibromyalgia now after a really bad fall this summer.

my advice to you, is dont just give up on your relationship, not if you love your partner, have faith in eachother. be honest and discuss your fears, discuss what is going on, and dont let hsv bring you down. its not the end of the world.

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Radicalemw

Hey superdork,

Vitamin a, soluble zinc, vitamin b12, reishi mushroom, vitamin c for absorption of other vitamins, and echinacea....I take the vita c and reishi with echinacea mint tea each da....the reishi along with my anti viral and regular ocean dips...or Epsom salt bath really really have helped me.

@vn hey if you two have been in a relationship for a year lack of sex until everything is talked over shouldn't end the relationship you aren't a leper. It heals it goes dorman, and there is a lot more to love than the physical.

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sim

I agree, she needs a test.

If you take daily meds- she has only a 3% chance of getting it. Not sure if its worth the risk- condoms would obv decrease that 3%.

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RealisticGal

The doctor did a swab test, but told me that there was a high probability of it showing negative even if I was positive, due to the outbreak being so early. The sores were very small and were not open, nor had they begun to scab over.

Hi VagueNotion ---

If your doctor really said this, he has it wrong. Culture (swab) tests are BEST done as soon as possible when symptoms appear. The longer they are delayed, the more likely the result will not be accurate.

The test that is more likely to show a false negative due to testing too early is a blood (antibody) test, as it takes a while for our bodies to form the antibodies after infection has occurred.

It is important to be aware that culture tests can show false negatives, but that is NOT due to testing too early. Viral particles are present in lesions as soon as a person has become infected with the virus.

Rather, reasons for a false negative culture could include:

  • exposure of the sample to high temperature
  • mishandling of the sample
  • not swabbing the area vigorously enough
  • taking the sample too long after symptoms appear
  • mislabeling of the sample
  • etc.

:wavey:

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Acesheart

@VagueNotion, no we do not have protected oral or sexy times. Since I'm married, he knows how I got my h since he knew me when I was coming out of outbreak, we.don't worry about other Std's , simply because he only has those passions with me and I with him. I got it in writing :) . He would never cheat, nor would I so no need to protect either of us from anything. He isn't afraid of my h. I also take Vit.b12 complex sublingual. I get it at walgreens. Hope this helps hon. Truly, Ace

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Balanceandcomposure1

hey, i just went for testing today because i have had painful urination and sudden painful small blisters (i am a female).

i have been in a monogamous relationship with my boyfriend for a little over a year now, both have never had any out of the ordinary bumps, or cold sores EVER.

im waiting on results but like you, ive convinced myself of the worst, i have no idea how i could have contracted this though.

how did you go about telling your girlfriend? im terrified to have that conversation with my boyfriend.. =/

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RealisticGal

i have been in a monogamous relationship with my boyfriend for a little over a year now, both have never had any out of the ordinary bumps, or cold sores EVER.

im waiting on results but like you, ive convinced myself of the worst, i have no idea how i could have contracted this though.

Hi again, hon.

Okay, lets get this cleared up for you.

The way you could have contracted HSV is the same way anyone else does...through skin-to-skin contact with someone else who has the virus.

That could be your current intimate partner, but it also could have been someone prior to him.

If the person you got it from had genital HSV, you would have gotten it through genital-to-genital contact.

It could also be through oral sex, from someone who has oral HSV (also called "cold sores" or "fever blisters).

People can have any type of HSV (genital, oral, whatever) without any obvious symptoms.

Some folks may have had symptoms a long time ago, when they were children, but not have symptoms as adults. A lot of people have one or two episodes of "cold sores," then they never have them again. So it is not unusual for those folks to have no memory that they had some cold sores when they were very young.

Anyone who has HSV, in any location and either type (HSV-I or HSV-II) can still pass the virus along to others, even if they do not get sores now (or ever) that they are aware of. Even without obvious sores, a person can shed the virus at the level of the skin surface. It is called "Asymptomatic Viral Shedding."

Does this help a bit?

:hmmmm2:

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morgy8755
hey, i just went for testing today because i have had painful urination and sudden painful small blisters (i am a female).

i have been in a monogamous relationship with my boyfriend for a little over a year now, both have never had any out of the ordinary bumps, or cold sores EVER.

im waiting on results but like you, ive convinced myself of the worst, i have no idea how i could have contracted this though.

how did you go about telling your girlfriend? im terrified to have that conversation with my boyfriend.. =/

For me, when the possibility became apparent the best thing for me was to just realize there is nothing i can change about having it so there is no need to agonize over it. Same thing as there being no use crying over spilled milk. I am like you where i have never had any previous symptoms prior to the initial outbreak and neither have i seen anything like this on my current or past boyfriends.

I was terrified to tell my boyfriend because he is the most decent guy i have been with. But you just trust that if they are going to bethe "right" person during this time they will understand. If they don't then despite how you feel their negativity isn't going to help you one bit and might make things worse. My guy told mewhen i was in tears after seeing the doctor he said that all this is is luggage, we just pack it up and take it with us.

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Balanceandcomposure1
For me, when the possibility became apparent the best thing for me was to just realize there is nothing i can change about having it so there is no need to agonize over it. Same thing as there being no use crying over spilled milk. I am like you where i have never had any previous symptoms prior to the initial outbreak and neither have i seen anything like this on my current or past boyfriends.

I was terrified to tell my boyfriend because he is the most decent guy i have been with. But you just trust that if they are going to bethe "right" person during this time they will understand. If they don't then despite how you feel their negativity isn't going to help you one bit and might make things worse. My guy told mewhen i was in tears after seeing the doctor he said that all this is is luggage, we just pack it up and take it with us.

i only hope that, my conversation is along those lines, but im doubtful. My boyfriend is definitely the most decent guy ive been with too, but not the most educated or understanding regarding stuff like this... he has a very BOYISH mentality when it comes to matters of sex etc.

how long did it take for your results to come back? ive been crying on and off because not knowing is the only thing leaving me with some hope but its also making me more anxious.

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morgy8755

For the results from the swab it took about 4-5 days and the blood test about two weeks. And really when it comes down to it there are a lot more worse things than herpes. I know i have been fortunate that mine don't hurt except when i wipe and are itchy all the time. But i would honestly in my situation take the herpes over the cramps from my period. They made me nauseous, and i honestly could not function for the first two days of my period. But since i am on birth control now i don't have anymore cramps. So this is life getting at me for finding a loophole. That was just my method of staying positive through waiting for test results.

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RealisticGal
i only hope that, my conversation is along those lines, but im doubtful. My boyfriend is definitely the most decent guy ive been with too, but not the most educated or understanding regarding stuff like this... he has a very BOYISH mentality when it comes to matters of sex etc.

I hope the tests your doctor did were Type Specific IgG-based for both HSV-I and HSV-II. If so, you will be able to find out what type you have (if they come back positive). If it turns out you have HSV-I, this will help you with approaching your "boyish" partner.

If that is how it turns out, then you will be able to tell him that there is a very good chance he has had asymptomatic oral HSV-I since he was a boy...and that he passed it to you via oral sex.

If your results turn out differently, we'll figure out a way for you to approach it.

I just have to say, this "boy" is having sex, so it is time for him to start looking at things like a MAN.

If he can't do that, he ought to go back to having his fun at the playground with the other kids.

Just sayin'...

:wavey:

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Starletdusk25

So say my partner did give it to me, and we both have the same type, does it not matter anymore at that point? Like could we continue sex as usual without worry or could our interaction impact outbreak frequency? I know he had HSV1 from cold sores, and I had chicken pox and shingles as a child, so could I have been symptomatic and given it to others? Could he have given it to me with no visible OB?

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Acesheart
So say my partner did give it to me, and we both have the same type, does it not matter anymore at that point? Like could we continue sex as usual without worry or could our interaction impact outbreak frequency? I know he had HSV1 from cold sores, and I had chicken pox and shingles as a child, so could I have been symptomatic and given it to others? Could he have given it to me with no visible OB?

Yes sweetly I say you and he are herpsters :) . Your outbreak is most prolly from his Cold Sores, h1.. So after outbreaks finish. It is fine to have sexy times and oral pleasures since it makes sense he could be your giver, with your genital herpes, it most probably came from him. You can't reinfect him with what he already has :) . Hugs, hon Ace :)

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RealisticGal
So say my partner did give it to me, and we both have the same type, does it not matter anymore at that point? Like could we continue sex as usual without worry or could our interaction impact outbreak frequency? I know he had HSV1 from cold sores, and I had chicken pox and shingles as a child, so could I have been symptomatic and given it to others? Could he have given it to me with no visible OB?

Despite the fact that chicken pox and shingles are caused by a virus that is in the herpesviridae family, they are not caused by the same virus that causes oral and genital herpes.

Chicken pox/shingles are caused by the Varicella Zoster virus.

Oral herpes, genital herpes, etc. are caused by the Herpes simplex virus.

VZV and HSV are two separate, distinct viruses.

You cannot give someone Herpes (oral, genital or anywhere else) based on having had chicken pox in the past. You have to actually have HSV in order to pass it to someone else.

:wavey:

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Starletdusk25

Thanks Gal. My mom just brought it up as an option...so just curious.

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RealisticGal
Thanks Gal. My mom just brought it up as an option...so just curious.

It can all be very confusing, especially since Varicella Zoster Virus is sometimes referred to as Herpes Zoster. Still, it is not the same organism as Herpes simplex.

If you ever have an outbreak of shingles, you would then be contagious to any other person who has not had chicken pox or a vaccine for the same. Such folks could get chicken pox by exposure to your lesions.

However, nobody can get Herpes simplex from you unless you also have that virus.

Have you been tested for HSV?

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