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alfalfa

When to disclose?

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alfalfa

Diagnosed recently. Having my first crush since then, but haven't come close to acting on it. Still in fun daydreaming phase ;)

But the daydream always ends with "the talk." :(

When do you guys think is a good time to have the talk?

Yeah, yeah, the OBVIOUS guideline is before the action goes down south.

At the other extreme, first-date disclosure sounds idiotic. When someone makes a decision about me, I'd like him to know more about me than just that I have herpes. I don't expect him to broadcast all his unlikeable baggage on the first date, either.

But is it fair to let things get serious at all before telling someone? I don't want to waste his time, and I know a lot of guys would say this makes me ineligible for dating them. But I also think that attitude is unreasonable, and I don't know if I should have to capitulate to an unreasonable stigma just to spare someone a bit of time and emotional energy they could have used dating someone else. It depends on how much time/energy we're talking about.

So...this sounds kind of junior high, but is it fair to let someone like me enough to kiss me, or even hold hands, before I tell him?

Is it fair to make someone invest a few weeks before I tell him?

Is it fair to wait until someone says he is in love with me before I tell him? (My instinct is no -- I wouldn't want him to let me fall in love without telling me his secrets)

Does the fact that I'm making the first move make a difference in any of this? I saw a previous thread about the ethical dilemma of making the first move -- a "dilemma" that never even occured to me!

Thoughts, please!

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Claudia

Hi, alfalfa.

This is a post I wrote elsewhere, and I feel very strongly about it. If it makes a difference to you, I don't have any oral or genital herpes to disclose that I know of, but if I did, I would personally disclose some time before activity that puts my potential partner at physical risk, always keeping sight of the following regarding emotional risk. I feel this is appropriate from my current position as the potential disclosee as well.

STDs are a part of this world, and a factor in dating anyone if either party hopes that sex will someday be involved. If this guy doesn't want to put any time and emotional effort into anyone who has an STD, then the responsibility is his to ask right away if his dates have any STDs. It is perfectly reasonable for you to take time to get to know him, and let him get to know you before you reveal something that is very important and personal about you, something you don't want to reveal to any old person. You're looking for trust and signs of worthiness in him, after all.

If he is upset in any way about feeling difficult emotions later if you choose to tell him, then that is about his level of tolerance for the inevitable difficulty of dealing with challenges in ALL relationships, not about you and herpes. All relationships have monkey wrenches thrown in them. He will need to come to terms with his own level of tolerance for relationship challenges and learn to ask up front about STDs before he gets emotionally attached if that is a real sticking point for him. It isn't wrong or right, just his responsibility, not yours. On the other hand, he may have no problem with your herpes. Or he may initially struggle, but wish to learn and grow within the relationship, if you choose to stay with him for that experience.

Whatever the case, you are doing nothing wrong by waiting. We all risk emotional pain whenever we enter a relationship, and that pain comes in many forms, not just herpes.

You have many choices and options as a worthy, self-advocating and self-responsible adult. Focus on acting wisely according to your knowledge of your own heart, mind, and emotions, and expect a potential partner to do the same for himself.

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Bathany

Don't Tell

:idea:I found out by chance in mid-July 2007 through blood test I have herpes simplex virus type 2 specific antibody. The result shows: positive 1.5; The remark, “positive indicates the presence of infection by HSV-II or the existence of a previous infection”. I must admit it was a complete surprise to me, I have no idea how and when I got it and who from as I don’t have any symptoms, blisters nor outbreaks; but to think back really hard there was once many many years ago I thought how strange it was to have “a spot” at the genital area, it wasn’t particular painful and it went away in few days, I didn’t suffer at all; perhaps that was my one and only outbreak.

I have done some research, read a lot of articles and had a few consultations with my gynaecologist since, he says the virus simply gone latent hence I don’t have any symptoms nor outbreak, like most cases; it is also a really common infection, 80% of carriers don’t even know they have it, me included then. I am not even prescribed with any drugs nor suppressive therapy because when it’s gone latent it’s gone latent, there is not much to “suppress”, it is simply a pointless waste of money. By the way, the correct term now is STI, “infection”, not disease.

One mistake I made was to tell my boyfriend right away. We were very much in love and he took off in no time. This has taught me a very valuable lesson.

To me the show goes on as normal, there is no difference pre mid-July and post. I am NOT TO DECLARE to any new partners in the future I have got HSV2 simply because (a) it is so common, 1 in five in the USA, at least 50 millions adolescents and adults have got it; just put things into perspective, the estimated US population is 302.8 millions and the estimated UK population in 2006 is 60.6 millions (B) It is estimated that 80% of people infected with HSV2 are unaware it (me included before my blood test); © you are not entirely protected even using condoms because you can still catch it with skin contact, i.e. areas not covered by the condom; (d) there is still a huge misunderstanding, ignorance and stigma towards this infection, just save your breath; (e) this is not at all life threatening, there are many other serious stuffs out there, imagine your partner is diagnosed with tumour, cancer, or lost a limb or something like that and yet you are there to stay till the very end whilst a mere HSV infection will get your partner takes off in no time?

I am very sorry to read some of the readers here having really suffered from HSV, emotionally and physically, however, I don’t see why you should give up dating, a meaningful relationship, marriage and children due to a mere infection no matter how pronounced or frequent your outbreaks. I wish you all have a fulfilling life, stay strong and focus on the real stuffs, one day, the society may accept this inconvenience but until then, don’t ever give up, it’s really not such a big deal.

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alfalfa

Saving everyone else's breath

Please let me pre-empt the inevitable slew of indignant responses from users who find it unconscionable not to tell and will make you feel like crap for suggesting otherwise ...

Please, please reconsider your strategy.

My infection isn't that severe, either, but I wish I didn't have it. The guy who gave it to me has no symptoms, but he intends to tell anyone he's with about it. And he wishes he didn't have it. If you look at some of the symptoms other forum users have described -- not being able to sit or walk, abdominal pain, fever, depression -- it's pretty unfair not to let a partner know they risk that discomfort. I mean, people apologize and refuse to shake hands when they have the sniffles.

As for your last relationship, I think it speaks more to your boyfriend being an asswipe than to the stigma being insurmountable. Not everyone reacts as he did. Especially toward people they love, or even like a little.

I see NOT telling as defeat. For better or for worse, we have this. It mattered enough for us to join a forum. If it matters enough for us to join a forum, it matters enough for us to tell anyone who might get it from us.

My original question still stands. Not telling is not an option for me.

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katie8

honestly I would tell them when you first meet them (after a date or two)

Sometimes guys wont want to be with you because of it and that hurts enough. I have found it much much harder if I am with the person for a long time, fall for them and then tell them.

There is less chance of getting hurt if you tell them in the beg. (my opinion)

Good luck!

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Deadhead

Umm first date?? No way man. I don't tell anyone unless I feel they care about me. That is rule number one. Number two...I have to trust them with my most personal secret. I mean seriously, my best friend doesn't know this about me. It is all about gut instinct for me. When I feel like I am ready to think about intimacy...that is when I tell.

You said that you didn't want to waste their time...How about your own time. Not to be selfish but that is how I feel about it.

My advice...Take as much time as YOU need. Don't rush it just because you don't want to lead them on or waste their time. Just don't put them at risk of contracting hsv. This will keep your conscience clear. And really is the responsible thing to do.

Good luck.

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Sweety042

Tell or not to tell?

My best friend, and man I love is mostly a distance relationship. Although I now live 25mi away (Started out 1300), and we've met and I stayed with him 4 days.

We have been building a relationship since Jan 2006. I know he loves me, but he is a long time bachelor and commitment freak is a severe understatement.

I was diagnosed last week, although I trust him with my life, I won't tell him unless we are about to have intercourse. So far, I've given him oral last April. He has OCD, which complicates things a lot. But I love this man, and if he had AIDS I'd still be with him, and have intercourse because I want to spend the rest of my live with him even if it's 6 mo. Willing to change his diapers, etc. Isn't that what love is? I'd take a bullet for him, and I'm pretty sure he would for me, despite his "We're just friends," mantra

He has also said he can't live with me, because he doesn't like to live with someone he's in a relationship with. (I think he doesn't want me to know the extent of his OCD rituals. We've told each other our most intimate secrets in the past. He is attracted, and not gay. But does have sexual ,and other issues. I feel they define his personality and make him precious and special.

My question is? Telling new boyfriends right away is fine, but how do you tell ones you already have a relationship with? Friendship, or otherwise?

Heck, only one girlfriend knows, an online one. It isn't something that needs to be common knowledge; any more then my past, or current sex life.

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