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inner sunlight

Decisions, Decisions

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inner sunlight

I know that the vast majority of the people on this forum are HSV+ and are living w/ something I only fear. I have HSV1 oral but not the much more stigmatized genital herpes. A few months ago while I was jumping through all kinds of hoops to detach myself from an ex who refused to let go of me for financial reasons (ugly story: I won't go into it here), I met a really lovely woman on a dating site and we began to see each other casually. My previous relationship was over, but, again, the ex was making it impossible for me to become serious with anyone else. After about a month of this, I finally broke down and disclosed to the new girl my situation with the old girl, at which point she read me the riot act and then told me that she understood that people make mistakes and that she has genital HSV2, transmitted to her by her previous bf. We had not had sex at the time (and still haven't). She got pretty emotional about it, said I might "never want to see her again", etc. Honestly, I was more focused on my dilemma than hers. I told her about my struggles w/ the oral version and told her I'd do some research on genital HSV2. I told her it didn't exactly sound like the end of the world, which was my honest reaction.

It took me a while to sit down and do research on HSV2, as I was dealing w/ my own entanglement and I also assumed that all I would "learn" from my research is that I need to wrap up and she would need to take her meds. After all, I've been watching late night Valtrex commercials since time anon. I was even placed on Valtrex after I contracted HSV1, during the first year or two of seemingly constant outbreaks. Fun times...

Anyway, when I did research genital herpes I found that asymptomatic shedding accounts for most contraction of the disease. Unfortunately, stats aside, I think that it's highly probable that in a long term sexual relationship (say, over the course of 2 years or more) w/ her that I will contract the disease from her despite whatever preventative measures we use. I also want to have kids, which means unprotected sex, which would up the probability that much more. Is this a big deal in a marriage/lifelong partnership? No. In a "failed" 1 or 2-year relationship? Yeah, unfortunately, it would be.

But how bad is genital HSV2? I never gave the disease that much thought before this. I've always hated the ugly jokes that people make about people w/ herpes. In part b/c my oral outbreaks really were tough to deal w/ in my mid-20s and I know I did nothing to deserve that difficulty, I don't think that anyone w/ either form of the disease should endure the social stigma that's out there. Moreover, while GHSV2 sounds like some even nastier shit to deal w/ for the first couple years after contraction, everything I read online even from people who say they would never be in a relationship with someone who has it include the caveat that if he/she is the one, it shouldn't matter at all. I agree.

My feelings for this girl are pretty intense, in part b/c she's a very kind, smart, successful, creative, and very attractive woman, and probably in part b/c of the time in my life at which I encountered her. At the same time, I did struggle with HIV contraction fears in the past (another feature of my lovely 20s) and know that even though herpes was something I just sort of shrugged off as another bad but bearable thing that life might do to me, I know that I don't want to deal w/ it if I don't have to, especially if me and this girl end up breaking up after a few months, or a couple years, of sex. 

Obviously, she and I need to talk about sex soon. We're both busy mid-30-something professionals so we've had a lovely relationship the past few months without sex, which is a first for me. I'm a veteran of several failed long-term relationships and this experience has made me question the centrality of sex in love. Sex isn't something that we've stressed over. We're even talking about traveling abroad. Etc.

But obviously, we need to deal w/ it. And right now, I don't want to place myself at risk. Oral sex would be great-- I could care less about getting more oral herpes-- lol. But vaginal sex carries some risk. I know that on some level she's probably reserving herself emotionally until we confront the sex issue. 

Am I being unfair to her? Honestly, I don't want to have vaginal sex w/ her until we would be close to making a very long-term commitment. I feel like a moral puritan, which is the last thing my bohemian, half-commie ass ever thought I'd say. But we're just not there right now. But I want that future w/ her. I just don't want to take potentially life-altering risks (I'm not really scared of the disease itself, of course, but of dealing w/ disclosing to future partners) until I'm surer that her feelings are deep and sustained and my feelings aren't some residue from a former relationship.

Life is risk. And life is also chronic conditions. I've reflected that by our 30s, most people (myself included, beyond herpes) are dealing w/ unwanted, lifelong health conditions. Nobody should be shunned, or lsoe out on love, for a disease. I really want to continue to date this girl and see if we can build something. But I also know that no aspect of a relationship can be solely on my terms. I want to do what's best for her as well as me and I am probably failing. As you can tell, I'm confused.

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Quest
15 hours ago, inner sunlight said:

Am I being unfair to her? Honestly, I don't want to have vaginal sex w/ her until we would be close to making a very long-term commitment. I feel like a moral puritan, which is the last thing my bohemian, half-commie ass ever thought I'd say. But we're just not there right now. But I want that future w/ her. I just don't want to take potentially life-altering risks (I'm not really scared of the disease itself, of course, but of dealing w/ disclosing to future partners) until I'm surer that her feelings are deep and sustained and my feelings aren't some residue from a former relationship.

Tell her that you really don't want sex until you are more closer to making long term commitment.

 

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inner sunlight

Thanks for this, Quest. Honestly, it's just a complicated, difficult situation. I really do like her and don't see herpes as a dealbreaker-- but man is it complicated. I fear she'll reject me once she realizes that I need to wait quite a while to feel secure in our relationship before having sex when she can just find someone who is HSV2+ or who doesn't care. She's quite attractive, smart, makes good money, etc. She hasn't had a relationship since contracting it from her ex, but she could have any number of suitors.

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Newone2
45 minutes ago, inner sunlight said:

Thanks for this, Quest. Honestly, it's just a complicated, difficult situation. I really do like her and don't see herpes as a dealbreaker-- but man is it complicated. I fear she'll reject me once she realizes that I need to wait quite a while to feel secure in our relationship before having sex when she can just find someone who is HSV2+ or who doesn't care. She's quite attractive, smart, makes good money, etc. She hasn't had a relationship since contracting it from her ex, but she could have any number of suitors.

I’m going to give you a dose of reality that more then likely you will not get from anyone else. I highly recommend you not be with this person physically. You have already contracted HSV1 orally. Do you really want to go 2 for 2? The sad truth of this condition is that over time you will eventually catch it from being with a person that has it. I myself caught ghsv1 because I listened to people and a doctor that told me it was safer to be with someone that knowingly has it then to be with someone that doesn’t. That outside of a outbreak you basically can’t catch it. That is the single dumbest thing I’ve ever heard for the record. It’s highly contagious and the only way to not get it is to not have physical contact with an infected person. That’s the truth.  I don’t know how you got HSV1 but I’d be willing to wager it was from someone that either didn’t disclose to you or downplayed the condition in order to convince you that they couldn’t pass it on to you. Don’t let that happen again. Protect yourself and screw what other people think. If you don’t want hsv2 then don’t be with her. If you do then go ahead. Hopefully in a few more years no one will ever have to make that choice again with the help of genetic editing but for now that the reality of it. 

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inner sunlight

Thanks for your input.

I either acquired HSV1 as a child, or as a young adult from someone who didn't know they had it or didn't tell me they had it (kissing, sharing drinks, something like that) and passed it to me. Either way, it sucks but I feel no ill will. It sucked when I first got it. Lots of outbreaks. Since then, I've learned about the virus. My symptoms have decreased significantly. It's a minor nuisance at this point. I know GHSV2 would not be a minor thing, but I don't see my HSV1 status as something that should have any bearing on this decision.

After everything I've read, I agree with you that a long term sexual relationship with someone who is GHSV2+ will most likely eventuate in me contracting it. That's a sad reality.

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Newone2

No problem. It really does suck but it’s the truth. If you don’t want hsv2 then don’t do it. Period. 

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morty1234

Man imagine she throw you few times after you catch it. Women have more opportunities than men. All girls after her will reject you. In her case maybe its not love, she just love that someone accept her despite her std

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morty1234

You can develop same feeling for someone else, love is just a big market in which women are overrated. Herpes can also lead you to chronic issue as nerves pain or fatigue....

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Quest
On 4/13/2019 at 10:42 AM, inner sunlight said:

 

If you think she can you are probably right! It doesn't get everyone down! If she is what you say she is.. you can also do things to court her and tell her you're just going to take your time and at some point feel the fear and do it anyway! My boyfriend does an inspection each time!! Wear a  Polisoprene condom.  Sagami large if you are around 6 inches. Do not shave and rub both of your trunk areas with coconut oil.

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inner sunlight
2 hours ago, morty1234 said:

Man imagine she throw you few times after you catch it. Women have more opportunities than men. All girls after her will reject you. In her case maybe its not love, she just love that someone accept her despite her std

I mean, maybe. You can't see inside her head and neither of us has a crystal ball, unfortunately. I've read a lot of stuff online about this, enough to know that I'm far from the only person who would "accept" her, in whatever sense you mean that, despite her STD.

2 hours ago, Newone2 said:

No problem. It really does suck but it’s the truth. If you don’t want hsv2 then don’t do it. Period. 

Question: If the person from who you contracted this virus was your lifelong partner, would you still feel the same way about your situation?

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Newone2
27 minutes ago, inner sunlight said:

I mean, maybe. You can't see inside her head and neither of us has a crystal ball, unfortunately. I've read a lot of stuff online about this, enough to know that I'm far from the only person who would "accept" her, in whatever sense you mean that, despite her STD.

Question: If the person from who you contracted this virus was your lifelong partner, would you still feel the same way about your situation?

Me personally, I don’t think so. I never wanted herpes. Not in a million years. You might think I’m crazy for saying this but I’d rather lose an arm or a leg. The girl that did this to me....I liked her at one point but ever since she passed it on to me I 100% hate her. If it’s sooo prevalent in our society she should have found someone with it instead of selfishly ruining my life. It’s your call man but if I could go back and tell the woman that did this to me to go fuck herself I would. I’d sell my soul for the opportunity.

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inner sunlight

I don't think you're crazy, I think you're honest and I really appreciate your honesty. I'm really sorry for everything you've gone through. You don't deserve it. You deserve much better. 

Like I said, I agree w/ you about the transmission risks.  I guess I just wonder what the big deal would be if in fact the person you get it from is your life-partner. Of course I don't want any STD ever and certainly nothing that 1) has major health impacts or 2) that's incurable. But that's largely b/c I want to be "clean" when I find the person I want to spend my life with and only secondarily b/c I don't want the disease. From what I read, there's a very good chance that I'll either be totally asymptomatic or that my symptoms will be minor, so just having a crappy virus to add to my other chronic minor health problems doesn't sound like a good reason to walk away. 

I have HSV1, I am definitely symptomatic, but it hasn't come close to ruining my life. I rarely think about it. Now, if someone gives me the genital version in the course of a relationship and then leaves me (which is what happened to the woman I'm seeing), yeah, that would mess me up badly due to having to disclose to future partners.

I don't have a crystal ball so I think I'm just going to tell her that I can't have a sexual relationship beyond oral sex until I've known her for a long time and we're committed to getting married. I think she'll probably go running for the hills at that point, LOL, which (though I LOL) will really, really suck b/c I like her so much. In the context of a real, deep, total commitment this shit is not a big deal to me. But that's not where relationships launch from...This is a pretty damn sad situation. Peace to all the good, suffering people. I don't have GHSV but I've got my own baggage. Life's hard.

Edited by inner sunlight

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Newone2
11 minutes ago, inner sunlight said:

I don't think you're crazy, I think you're honest and I really appreciate your honesty. I'm really sorry for everything you've gone through. You don't deserve it. You deserve much better. 

Like I said, I agree w/ you about the transmission risks.  I guess I just wonder what the big deal would be if in fact the person you get it from is your life-partner. Of course I don't want any STD ever and certainly nothing that 1) has major health impacts or 2) that's incurable. But that's largely b/c I want to be "clean" when I find the person I want to spend my life with and only secondarily b/c I don't want the disease. From what I read, there's a very good chance that I'll either be totally asymptomatic or that my symptoms will be minor, so just having a crappy virus to add to my other chronic minor health problems doesn't sound like a good reason to walk away. 

I have HSV1, I am definitely symptomatic, but it hasn't come close to ruining my life. I rarely think about it. Now, if someone gives me the genital version in the course of a relationship and then leaves me (which is what happened to the woman I'm seeing), yeah, that would mess me up badly due to having to disclose to future partners.

I don't have a crystal ball so I think I'm just going to tell her that I can't have a sexual relationship beyond oral sex until I've known her for a long time and we're committed to getting married. I think she'll probably go running for the hills at that point, LOL, which (though I LOL) will really, really suck b/c I like her so much. In the context of a real, deep, total commitment this shit is not a big deal to me. But that's not where relationships launch from...This is a pretty damn sad situation. Peace to all the good, suffering people. I don't have GHSV but I've got my own baggage. Life's hard.

Thank you. Life is definitely not fair sometimes but it is what it is I guess. I know your situation sucks but in the end you will be better off. Trust me. Having sores on your dick is worse then death. Fuck her feelings. If she passed it to you it wouldn’t change her life in the slightest but your entire world will be turned on it’s head. Just keep in mind even though you only have HSV1 orally you can still pass it to someone’s genitals. That’s what happened to me so please don’t just go down on girls without giving them the choice. 

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inner sunlight
31 minutes ago, Mrspinkk said:

If I had a choice, I'd never choose to do that. 

do what?

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Cas9
1 hour ago, Newone2 said:

Having sores on your dick is worse then death.

No it's not

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Newone2
2 hours ago, Cas9 said:

No it's not

It is to me. This has ruined me in every way. I have no motivation for anything anymore. I try and go to the gym but can’t seem to muster the dedication I had before. What’s the point? Being attractive doesn’t matter anymore. I can’t be with a woman without potentially infecting her. The sores hurt so bad when they happen I can’t walk... this is no way to live.

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Cas9
1 minute ago, Newone2 said:

It is to me. This has ruined me in every way. I have no motivation for anything anymore. I try and go to the gym but can’t seem to muster the dedication I had before. What’s the point? Being attractive doesn’t matter anymore. I can’t be with a woman without potentially infecting her. The sores hurt so bad when they happen I can’t walk... this is no way to live.

If you tell a potential partner and she accepts, then you should be OK with the risk. You did your part and she accepted. She's an adult.

Eat well, exercise moderately, don't over stress yourself, and make sure you sleep the way we all should; not this 5 hours of sleep a night crap.

I had plenty of relationships after being diagnosed.

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Newone2
3 minutes ago, Cas9 said:

If you tell a potential partner and she accepts, then you should be OK with the risk. You did your part and she accepted. She's an adult.

Eat well, exercise moderately, don't over stress yourself, and make sure you sleep the way we all should; not this 5 hours of sleep a night crap.

I had plenty of relationships after being diagnosed.

I hear what you’re saying and I appreciate it. I still feel like disclosure doesn’t justify infecting someone with this curse though. The only way I’d feel alright about it is if I were to find someone that already has HSV1. It should be easy if the statistics are correct lol.

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Quest

As a man thinketh so shall he be. If you think life will be sheer hell you will be correct!

Cas9 has it right, maybe aim for that goal.

People in here take charge of their health and make it happen. So can you in time.

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cloud2017

Why don't you try to transfer it to your hand or leg before you start having sex? That way you will develop antibodies which may prevent the infection in the genitals. I am not sure it will work but may be you can try if you decide to go ahead with this relationship.

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viralfrog

@inner sunlight I completely understand your thoughts. 

The problem with HSV-2 and Herpes in general is that the symptoms are so indivual-specific. For example, I personally have constant outbreaks and lethargy from the virus that is pretty much ruining my life at the moment. Then at the same time, there are people who carry the virus for a lifetime and won't even ever know. For example, my ex girlfriend got the virus from me and she had one tiny outbreak and nothing since. She probably doesn't even remember she still has the virus. 

So it's really down to luck at the end of the day how your body will react to the virus. If you are using both, antivirals and condoms, catching the virus is quite unlikely though. You mentioned having kids, say if you only had sex without a condom on the right days of the month to make her pregnant (with no visible outbreak) it would still be quite unlikely. That is, of course if you are able to enjoy protected sex. Personally, I struggle.. 

 

1 hour ago, cloud2017 said:

Why don't you try to transfer it to your hand or leg before you start having sex? That way you will develop antibodies which may prevent the infection in the genitals. I am not sure it will work but may be you can try if you decide to go ahead with this relationship.

That is a very random suggestion. Firstly you can't catch HSV to your hand or leg easily and even if you got it there, the issue is not always the blisters themselves but the flu like / shitty feeling the virus gives you everytime you have an OB. The only advantage of not having outbreaks on your genitals would be with less chance of transmitting it to another partner (and OPs gf already has the virus. 

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jmherped
On 4/18/2019 at 4:15 PM, inner sunlight said:

I don't think you're crazy, I think you're honest and I really appreciate your honesty. I'm really sorry for everything you've gone through. You don't deserve it. You deserve much better. 

Like I said, I agree w/ you about the transmission risks.  I guess I just wonder what the big deal would be if in fact the person you get it from is your life-partner. Of course I don't want any STD ever and certainly nothing that 1) has major health impacts or 2) that's incurable. But that's largely b/c I want to be "clean" when I find the person I want to spend my life with and only secondarily b/c I don't want the disease. From what I read, there's a very good chance that I'll either be totally asymptomatic or that my symptoms will be minor, so just having a crappy virus to add to my other chronic minor health problems doesn't sound like a good reason to walk away. 

I have HSV1, I am definitely symptomatic, but it hasn't come close to ruining my life. I rarely think about it. Now, if someone gives me the genital version in the course of a relationship and then leaves me (which is what happened to the woman I'm seeing), yeah, that would mess me up badly due to having to disclose to future partners.

I don't have a crystal ball so I think I'm just going to tell her that I can't have a sexual relationship beyond oral sex until I've known her for a long time and we're committed to getting married. I think she'll probably go running for the hills at that point, LOL, which (though I LOL) will really, really suck b/c I like her so much. In the context of a real, deep, total commitment this shit is not a big deal to me. But that's not where relationships launch from...This is a pretty damn sad situation. Peace to all the good, suffering people. I don't have GHSV but I've got my own baggage. Life's hard.

Look buddy, you could end up in hell, sick as hell.  Its not worth it.  Send your lassie’s details to me, she sounds perfect....

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Aubrey06
On 4/18/2019 at 9:08 AM, Newone2 said:

I’m going to give you a dose of reality that more then likely you will not get from anyone else. I highly recommend you not be with this person physically. You have already contracted HSV1 orally. Do you really want to go 2 for 2? The sad truth of this condition is that over time you will eventually catch it from being with a person that has it. I myself caught ghsv1 because I listened to people and a doctor that told me it was safer to be with someone that knowingly has it then to be with someone that doesn’t. That outside of a outbreak you basically can’t catch it. That is the single dumbest thing I’ve ever heard for the record. It’s highly contagious and the only way to not get it is to not have physical contact with an infected person. That’s the truth.  I don’t know how you got HSV1 but I’d be willing to wager it was from someone that either didn’t disclose to you or downplayed the condition in order to convince you that they couldn’t pass it on to you. Don’t let that happen again. Protect yourself and screw what other people think. If you don’t want hsv2 then don’t be with her. If you do then go ahead. Hopefully in a few more years no one will ever have to make that choice again with the help of genetic editing but for now that the reality of it. 

Actually, if you have HSV1 there is research that finds that you may have immunity to HSV2

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