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    Good %22Telling Partner%22 stories
    lonelygirl2009 posted:
    Alright, following Abe's suggestion, let's start a discussion of people's experiences telling their partners. If we put them all in one place, it will be easier for people to find. If you've already posted your experience in another thread, maybe you can re-post your story here, too. It'll be a good resource for all of us who are wondering what to do.

    Thanks to everyone who can help with this topic.
    abe648 responded:
    I promised lonelygirl2009 it she started a post on telling a partner I would post my story on it. So my story is more about the journey than it is about telling a partner but I do hope you can glean something from my story.

    Yes I have had HSV 2 for at least 27+ years. I had no symptoms for approx 10 years and then I had as far as I know my first outbreak. My doctor who so far is still my doctor diagnosed it visually and so he gave me only Zovirax ointment (which is a useless treatment) and advised me to use that to heal the herpes sores when I had a problem and to avoid sex when I had an ob. I told my wife and it was not an issue. So for approx 17 years that is all I used. I found that as years went by after intercourse I would get an outbreak that would last approx 1 week it would heal and then after about a week a would get something different which I am not sure if it is herpes related but I would get an uncomfortable feeling and I had to go to the bathroom a lot. That would last about a week and then I would be fine until I had intercourse again and the cycle would start all over again. I am married and have been faithful to my wife all this time and I got this before I got married. Any how I finally found the WebMD site (Aug 2007) and when I was looking around the site I found the Living Day to Day GH Board and while lurking in the background reading post I realized there was a blood test for herpes. So November of 2007 I asked my Doc to test me for herpes and he would not do it nor would he give me a Rx for Valtrex either. In the beginning of 2008 I had to go to a walk in clinic to get tested and found out I was negative for HSV 1 and positive for HSV 2. I again told my wife of the status that was now confirmed and she has been very understanding. The walk in clinic Doc had given me a Rx for Valtrex and what a difference it made. I started taking Valtrex in April 2008 and I have not had an outbreak since. I feel a lot better in the gential area. I would estimate that I would normally have 6 or more outbreaks in a year so you can see that I have been dealing with this for all these years till just April 2008 when I got the Valtrex. In regards to severity they were not to bad but a bother and always stayed in the same general area which is a blessing. If you are not on suppressive therapy and decide you would like to and cannot afford Valtrex or one of the new antivirals then you can always take Acyclovir as it is a lot less expensive and is now a generic drug. The only drawback is that you have to take it twice a day for the same type of result. I understand that there is no stats on it as to its effectiveness to decrease shedding as there was never a study done on it and now that it is a generic most likely there will not be a study done. Of others who have been on it for years though they seem to believe it to be as quite effective.

    From what I have read the herpes type specific IgG blood test for HSV 1 and HSV 2 has been around for about 20 years

    In the last year since I have been on Valtrex and Valacyclovir which is available where I live but not in the US till Dec 2009 as a generic of Valtrex I have not had a full blown ob. I have had approx 3 times when I have had to increase the dosage to suppress the virus but not a full scale ob.

    Yes I am stiill married and faithful to my wife for 28 years.

    Cheer up. God Bless you.
    unknown responded:
    Ok. So I'm being lazy this morning and just am going to copy and paste a few posts that I put up a long time ago. It's easier...

    Hey y'all. Haven't checked in on ya in a while. I was reading several of the latest posts from those of you who just received your diagnosis. Just an fyi--I am HSV-1 positive. I started having problems October 7, 2007 and received my official diagnosis October 11, 2007.

    When I think about that period of my life, it was one thing after another. My grandfather was getting worse with Alzheimer's and other health problems, I was homesick, my boyfriend at the time and I were on the rocks, my parents and I were on the rocks, I was doing poorly in school/student teaching, etc. I was spiraling. After a breakup with my boyfriend and then a fight with him, I broke school policy twice. I snuck up to the guys floor after hours and I broke our integrity policy. I went to a friends house, got very drunk, and slept with two of my so-called friends back to back. That was 5 days before my diagnosis. I still cannot pinpoint who I contracted HSV from because of the fact that I was with multiple partners in such a short time.

    After I was kicked out of school, my boyfriend and I got back together. It only lasted two weeks however before he left me again. My parents were trying to deal with the fact that their daughter was kicked out of school, had an STD, and were too busy trying to cope with their end of my problems to be able to fully help me with mine. As the month of November went on, I moved in with my grandparents. Because of my grandfather's condition, he still doesn't know about my situation but my grandmother did and she was amazing! I couldn't tell you how many nights she and I sat up discussing my situation and our living situation. My grandmother struggled immensely with my grandfather's care.

    December came and on the 2nd I found myself starting a relationship with an amazing man. On the 3rd, I was busy taking care of my grandparents, baking, cleaning, and doing laundry. Justin showed up on our front steps. He met my grandparents, my brother, my uncle, and my dog (very important ). He and I talked for 3 hours. It was perhaps the best three hours I have spent with him yet. It was the nervous, weight-shifting, interrupted type of conversation that happens when you first start off with someone. But it didn't matter. I knew he was special in some way yet to be discovered and my grandmother loved him!

    December 6, 2007--I told him my secret. I revealed to this man that I had HSV. He asked a few questions about how and then decided that he was better off not knowing how some man/men hurt me. He didn't care. He apologized that someone hurt me before he could show me how I deserved to be treated. He said that he loved me for who I am and not what I have. I was floored! After being rejected and ridiculed by so many, this man choose me despite my imperfections and mistakes.

    It is 2 days shy of our seven month anniversary and we are happier than ever. We have had our fights but we work through them and never go to bed mad at each other. We have discussed children. We both want them. We have discussed suppressive therapy. We don't want me to have to go on it. Openness and honesty are so important in our relationship. If I think I'm having even the slightest problem, everything is off limits. He helps me too though because I regularly keep an eye on what's going on down there. If I cannot see a particular area that itches, burns, or feels bumpy, he will check it out for me. He is so understanding about the whole thing and knows that we both want the best for each other. Thankfully he has not had any problems so far. I am coming up on another marker as well though this one is much different. As of July 7, 2008 it will be nine months since I began having symptoms.
    unknown responded:
    I've been catching up on posts lately because I haven't been on in a long time and I've noticed a trend. There are many of you who have just received your diagnosis--and many of you who have known your diagnosis for years--that think that your dating life is over. NOT TRUE! Your dating life has just begun!

    I won't lie to you, I didn't date many people after my diagnosis. I went back to my ex-boyfriend after I found out but he cheated on me two weeks later. Then I was friends with benefits with another man for a very short time. Then I reconnected with a guy that I had met over the summer (we've been together almost 8 months now!). It's so cheesy but he and I honestly had an instant connection. I was still reeling from a lot of heartbreak from the cheating episode and a lot of bad decisions that I had made so things were slow. BUT they went forward.

    Four days into our relationship I told him about my "secret". He didn't care! He said that he wanted to be with me for me and the HSV didn't matter. I have type 1 so I don't necessarily have to be on anti-virals but before we had sex, I asked him what he wanted me to do. I explained the numbers, the risks, everything and then I left the decision up to him. He told me that I didn't have to go on them (with the exception of a pregnancy). He said that they were unnecessary. Justin often forgets about the HSV. It is not a factor to him.

    He realizes that our children could be affected or that he could be affected but he's willing to risk it. I was very fortunate but I also was very careful. I didn't sleep with Justin before I told him (although I have made that mistake). That helped him in his understanding. I waited until the right moment for both of us. He knew I had to discuss something very serious and I had to prepare myself. I am also very cautious about the friends/family that I tell. If I think that by telling them, they will be comforting and still love me no matter what...I may tell them if it comes to that. BUT if I think that my life will simply be made more difficult but them having that knowledge, I won't bother.

    I don't bring my private matters into the work place. Only 2 of the people that I have worked with since my diagnosis know what is going on. One is my boss because I have spoken in public about what happened and I don't want it to go through the grapevine and cause problems. The other is a good friend that went with for moral support when I spoke in public the first time. You don't have to keep it a secret but you do have to be cautious who you tell.

    From my own personal experience, I know that I get a little frisky when I drink. So...I limit myself. I don't drink 1/10 of what I did immediately after my diagnosis. If I do, I make sure that I'm with friends who know to keep me in check. That of course was before I started dating Justin. Now that Justin and I are together, I direct my attention towards him.

    When telling someone for the first time, Betsy has amazing advice! Read her posts about how to tell a partner. She has had HSV for 22 years so she's had her fair share of experiences. Give them facts and give them time. Let them do some research on their own so they can fully grasp what's being said to them. Most of all, remember to relax. Your life is not over. You can go on. You can have a relationship. You can have children. You do not have to be a hermit. You can live your life to the fullest if only you will put on a smile and have an optimistic outlook. It will be tough but it will be more than worth it in the end.
    unknown responded:
    Haha I definitely posted these under the wrong thread. It took me a minute but they're here!

    Ok. So there you go. Remember those are old posts from...Last July? Something like that. But they still hold true. Later that month, I got engaged to my honey bunny. He is amazing. He is very understanding. When he sees me typing on the computer, he asks me if I'm on my boards. He knows that you guys are all very special to me and that it helps me to help you. I hope this all helps.

    Have a wonderful day. You guys are all special people in this world and if someone can't see that, they're not worth your time.
    lovepugs1 responded:
    I have had herpes since i was 17, i am now 24. I was drinking, passed out in a room, woke up with a guy on top of me. 2 months later i woke up one day with chills, swollen lymph nodes, body ache, etc. And the sores. My first outbreak was by far the WORST. I suffered for about 2 days with at least 15+ sores until i couldn't take it anymore. I called my mom from work and had her bring me to the emergency room. I was so embarrassed. My GP called me on my 17th birthday to tell me that i had herpes. Worst birthday of my life. I thought my life was over. Pretty much gave up for awhile after that, just stopped caring about everything. Things got better and i came to terms with what i had. it did help that i didn't have OB's often, I've probably only had 6 since i was diagnosed. Anyways, Senior year i started dating a guy who had been a friend for quite a few years. We started fooling around after awhile and all i could think of was my herpes. i actually stopped him in the middle of everything and just said "look, i have something to tell you before this goes any farther. I have herpes, and i understand if you can't deal with that but i thought you should know". He stopped and looked at me and said what i thought i would NEVER hear: "So?". I was floored. he understood that we had to use condoms, he understood the risk. We held off on the intimate stuff for a little while and after awhile it was no big deal. We dated all senior year, broke up when he went to college and as far as i know he does not have herpes. After highschool i dated a few guys, one was my best friend's brother. I told him on our first date, after dinner when he dropped me off. He said that he really liked me and that herpes had nothing to do with it. Things didn't work out (he looked too much like my friend lol) and we never got intimate. Got in touch with a guy i had dated when i was 15, the guy who took my virginity. i told him and he said nothing, got a blank look on his face and was very distant the rest of the night. I never heard from him again. After that it was very hard to tell another guy, but i knew i didn't want to NOT tell a partner and have them get it, obviously. So I dated a handful more guys, only slept with one or two of them, all of them had no problem with what i had! I just couldn't believe it. My boyfriend right now is very understanding. I told him the second day we started hanging out ( i had dated him a few times in highschool before i was diagnosed). He told me he would never wear condoms b/c he couldn't have an orgasm with one on, i explained that i was taking medication and that i rarely had OB's but that it was still possible that he may get it from me. once again, I was floored when he said he didn't care. We have been together for 3 1/2 yrs and i think we will probably get married but there are some other things we still need to sort out (nothing to do with STD's). I haven't had an OB in three years. *****It breaks my heart when i hear/read of other people who have just been dignosed and think their world is over. But I have news for you: IT"S NOT!!! You are not dirty, you are not a skank, you are not a nasty girl or boy. You had something unfortunate happen to you and you HAVE to make the best of it or you will never get over it and be able to move on. Taking that first step to tell a new partner can be one of the scariest and most nerve-racking things you may have to go through, but it only takes a few minutes to get it out. If you make it a big deal, if you make it seem like you feel you are dirty and are ashamed of it, they will pick up on that. Just lay it out for them, just the facts, and see what they say. You never know what you may hear, but 98% of the time it's not going to be anywhere NEAR as bad as you think. *******
    pinkgirls responded:
    I got hsv when i was 16 from my bf who didn't even know that he had it till i had an ob. i wish every day that it would just go away. but it doesnt lol i made a promise to myself that i would never have sex with someone with out telling them and i never have. it's the hardest convo that i have to have with anyone. my bf from hs and i got married and had kids but now we are divorced and i just started dating this great guy and had to talk to him about it since we were getting to the point of taking it to the next level. he was very understanding and sweet. we talked about it and i tryed to anwser the qustions that he had. he looked up more info about it on the puter. we are still dating but he wants to give it some more time before we move to the next level and are a little more serious. it was very hard to have to talk to him about it, my heart was in my mouth. i am so happy that it didn't tear us a part (that was my biggest fear) but i am a little hurt that we can't move to the next level but on the other hand i can see where he is coming from!!!!
    awolfe0806 responded:
    These are all really great and inspiring stories...but I guess my main issue is how do you even bring up such a topic... what words do you even use? I'm terrified to even utter that word to someone that it's just going to send them running for the hills the second it leaves my mouth!
    lovepugs1 responded:
    Hi awolfe, it's hard to know when the right time is to tell someone, every relationship is different and that can affect when/how you tell them. I definitely wouldn't wait until you are in "the heat of the moment" intimately for your first time with a new person. I just tried to think of how i would want to hear it if my partner was the one who had it and had to tell me. I know what you mean about saying "herpes" and having people run away screaming...but it really isn't like that. The majority of people know at least one person who has herpes, either type one or two; look at some of the statistics and they will tell you that millions of people have herpes. Anyways, I guess the way i always knew the "right" time to tell someone was when i knew i cared enough about that person to take it to the next level. Some people can tell the person on their first date, and with some guys i have dated i have done that, but some i waited a few dates. I noticed that the longer i would wait the more anxious i would become, and then i would stress myself out constantly wondering how that person was going to react. It's always been better than i imagined though. You can't predict how someone is going to respond so there is no point in worrying but it's human nature, right? I remember one time a guy i was really good friends with but i know he wanted more and i wasn't so sure, and we were watching TV and a valtrex commercial came on and they always show couples where one has herpes and one doesn't and they're trying to keep it that way, etc...and i asked him just casually what he would do if someone he was dating told them they had herpes. and he told me that if he really cared about someone he didn't think it would bother him. We never ended up dating, but that was a very easy way for me to bring it up.
    nome1979 responded:
    these are amzing stories... I too am trying to work up the nerve to tell my guythat I have herpes. Im just wondering from abe and all the rest of you that have spouses, do they have the virus too? I really like to know how many people can have sex with their uninfected partner without giving it to them. lovepugs I wish i could be as brave as you are and just tell my partner,. we really want to take it to the next level but im scared and dont know how to do it. What if he asks me what his chances of getting is if we use condoms and i stay on my meds...I just like to hear from other people that yes you can have sex with precautions and not infect the other person. Thanks again for sharing these stories. it gives me more hope everyday that i can have a sex life again after my husband
    kristinasunshine responded:
    The first and only guy I have told so far appeared okay with it as first, even going so far as to tell me he was proud of me, but after a few days he chose to text me and tell me that he couldn't handle what I had told him and that I was flawed. after all this he said I was an amazing person and he still wanted to remain friends, go figure... Better luck to the rest of you!!
    lovepugs1 responded:
    nome1979, i think the reason why i am so "brave" about telling guys is because i have had very good experiences doing so. but even with those past experiences i still would get butterflies in my stomach before i told a new guy. Abe has a lot of good information on statistics, as well as the "herpes handbook". I think it's great that you are thinking about telling him, and i also think you are very smart for wanting to have the information on hand when you tell him, knowledge is power and the statistics aren't as bad as most people think (as far as chance of transmission from partner to partner). Good luck to you!
    memo1072 responded:
    This is a great idea. I came here looking for answers about four months ago when I had to tell someone about my status for the first time. I have had HSV-2 for 17 years but after a divorce a while ago, this was my first experience on the dating scene with herpes. I was absolutely terrified to have this discussion and this was probably the reason I avoided dating for as long as I did. So I finally met someone and as things proceeded down the road, I knew I would have to tell him about the herpes before things got physical. I found myself convinced that there was only one way that things would end up after we had "the discussion". I became so obsessed with having to divulge this secret that it was all I thought about. I couldn't sleep. I came to this site to see how others approached this topic. I found these suggestions helpful: Know the facts Stay calm Have the conversation before things get too far Have trust in your partner

    The hardest part is just getting the words out.

    It was obvious I was nervous about something because he could feel my heart just about beating out of my chest and asked me what was going on. As calmly as I could, I told him I had genital herpes. I asked if he was familiar with it. He told me he had it in his mouth and had a prescription for Valtrex for when he got cold sores. I then went into my speech about the facts and told him where he could go if he wanted more information. We discussed always having to use condoms and that was it. I think we discussed it one more time after that and it was never brought up again. Now I rarely even think about it. We have been dating about five months. I consider myself very lucky to have had such a successful first experience. It's scary to be starting over dating at 37, let along dating with herpes.
    unknown responded:

    I love the how do you have sex question! It would have been even funnier if you left off the without infecting your partner part. We just do. We have decided (He decided) that we aren't going to use condoms and I am not going to be on suppressive therapy. I have type 1 and haven't had an ob since my initial ob.

    At the last time that he was tested (before we started dating), he was negative still. He hasn't had any problems since we've been together (over a year).

    BUT this is all what we decided was best for us. Other people use all of the precautions (condoms, meds, boxers, blah blah blah).
    willowone1977 responded:
    I am sure there is someone out there that is struggling with this, as I had been for the past 3 days. I found out I had G. Herpes threw a blood test, I decided to get tested because I have recently got involved with someone I really care about and is worthy of spending the rest of my life with. I found out when I went back to the results that I do indeed have HSV. I was devastated, more so that I felt my life was over. I have never had an outbreak and it wasn't that I even feared one; I feared passing something so horrible to someone I cared about. I cried for days with the dreadful feeling of fear that everything would come to an end. That I indeed am being punished. I felt dirty, ashamed, hopeless that I would never be able to have the second family I dreamed about. Anxiety, I knew in my heart I had to tell him. One friend told me "oh go on as if you never got the news, and if he catches it pretend you didn't know" coward way out! I couldn't talk to him or look at him without feeling guilt. I would never be able to live with myself had I not told. So, I stayed in bed all day and cried, I mourned over loosing him. I mourned over the children I would never have, I mourned in self pitty. Then I thought of the phrase "If you love something let it go and if it comes back to you it was yours to keep" I had to tell him and take the chance of loosing him, because I care that much. So I drank a few beers and called...he is in Germany so I couldn't do it face to face...but I told him. He amazingly took it well and said we can get threw it, and still live our lives together. We can still have kids it just faces some challenges. I feel better that I got it off my back, and I knew regardless of the outcome I would feel better clearing myself rather than hiding it. It confirms that he really does care and love me. So anyone struggling with telling your partner you have to do it, fear is a crippling feeling you will find freedom with truth! If that person chooses to be by your side what I wonderful person and if not then they were never worthy of you in the first place...because that is shallow. God Bless

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