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New guy - herpes :((119 Posts)
I've been dating a really lovely guy for two months. I'm careful when it comes to my sexual health as I do a lot of online dating, Tinder, etc so like to take it slow, so recently I asked him if he would mind being tested before having sex, he said not at all, was great about it. All came back clear. He then told me that he has had genital herpes for five years (this is generally not tested for in the usual 'suite' of STI tests). I said I needed some time to think about it, research the risks, etc.
Anyway, I did a lot of research and spoke to my gynaecologist, the general consensus is that if we had protected sex when he didn't have a break out the risks are minimal. We have since had protected sex and even though I feel fine and don't think I have contracted anything it's at the back of my mind, and I have decided that I just can't take the risk, I also don't really like using condoms in a serious relationship (if we got that far), I feel they take away the spontaneity. I also can't see myself wanting to perform oral sex (this hasn't happened so far) so I feel that the kindest thing to do for both of us to finish it. He has told me he has feelings for me and can see himself being with me long term, so I feel pretty lousy.
Reason for my post is how do I break this to him without destroying is confidence? Do I tell him straight or do I make up a white lie? He's such a great guy, a real gentleman and he doesn't deserve to feel bad about anything this is just something I don't have the right disposition to deal with without becoming unduly worried.
I would lie. It's a shame, it's a nasty thing to catch and I feel for people who do..but it would be in the back of your mind, especially since it can be transferred to the face and I know you're not supposed to care if you like someone and all that. But I admit I would struggle with it. I can't even handle the thought of catching cold sores though which isn't as bad as the other type.
I'm sorry man I don't envy you.
You tell him straight.
I can't imagine not bothering to tell a new partner. If you are sleeping with someone you should respect them enough to tell them.
If I was dating someone and they told me if I liked them ot wouldn't put me off as it's far from the worst thing
I think whatever you say he will probably know why you have ended it. I was in a very similar situation a few years back. The guy was just lovely, gorgeous and so thoughtful but I just didn't want to risk it...like you. I imagine he has probably already experienced r'ship's ending because of it so don't be too hard on yourself
I think I'd tell a white lie to avoid hurting him. It wouldn't be fair to either of you to carry on if you aren't comfortable
You tell him straight. Protected sex is all well and good but comdoms can break/split
If you last in this relationship you will have to tell him sooner or later anyway and I'd be annoyed if I found out in 6 months because you didn't respect me enough at the start to tell me
Thanks, gamerchick, making up a white lie is what I'm inclined to do. I feel so shitty as he's lovely and aside from this issue he's been great, but I think he would be devastated if he knew the real reason. When he told me he said he felt like a leper
It's such an cruel thing to have and I really feel for him. Dating is hard enough without having to deal with this kind of rejection.
Thanks, everyone, really appreciate your opinions. I still feel like shit !
Is this not a bit dramatic? I can see your point that you personally can't deal with it but you know that men can contract it and not know they have it for years til they have a breakout. So you could have contracted it and not even known. Same with genital warts.
I think the fact that he's nice enough to have told you makes him one of the nicest guys on online dating. But at the end of the day you wouldn't know you had herpes until you have a breakout so how do you know you haven't already contracted that or hav from previous partners as not everyone is that honest
This post makes me so sad. One of my best and oldest friends has herpes. She has only had 3 sexual partners in her life and caught it from her most recent ex who did not have any symptoms himself ever. They have now separated and she is worried sick that when she is ready to date again she will not meet anyone who will accept she has herpes. Especially seeing as she is 42 and the dating pool is a lot smaller.
Op I would ask what is more important. Being more careful and not giving oral sex but being with someone who sounds honest considerate, kind and lovely , or meeting someone you can give oral to but whom you may not get on as much with?
Many many people have herpes including my lovely friend. Many many people don't ever show symptoms. But it can be managed. It depends on how much you like this man but it doesn't have to be the end
Well you would feel like that, I know I would. Poor bugger.
There will always be someone who can see past and deal with all of that though so he deserves the chance to find her.
I'd use a white lie TBH. I don't blame you for not being able to get past this and think you should end it before it gets any harder to end. I do feel really sorry for him, but it's a deal breaker for you and that's fine.
That's how I feel, gamerchick, that I'm not of the 'disposition' to not worry and he needs to be with someone who wouldn't be thinking about developing herpes, my future if we didn't work out, and the stress of having to tell people that I date in future. I have quite a few friends with herpes and though some of them have v few breakouts, some of their lives are blighted by regular v painful bouts, which impact on their physical and mental health.
Just out of interest-would you end a relationship with someone because they suffered from cold sores?
witchofzog totally ustand your post, it IS really sad, but the thing is even if we're 'careful', there is a still a risk and some people have contracted / caught herpes from their partner despite using condoms / avoiding break outs. That risk is something I don't think I can deal with.
I do think it's a shame and personally, if I really liked and cared for the person it wouldn't put me off - reason being that at least 70% of the population have it anyway. Many carry it and pass it on because they don't know they've got it and have no awareness. At least with someone who knows, you know what to look out for and can take precautions at the appropriate times. You could leave him and very easily move on to someone else who has it but doesn't know about it - and gives it to you anyway. At least he's been honest with you. He sounds like a lovely chap. Just saying... ignorance isn't always bliss. Someone not knowing they've got it doesn't mean they haven't got it. You yourself could already have it and not know!
Kiwi32 No. but if I went on a date and told that date I suffered from coldsores he would probably shrug and we'd move onto the next topic of conversation.
Coldsores are caused by HSV1, which is of course a form of herpes, but coldsores generally come for a few days, you feel a bit gross and they look horrible, then they are gone. HSV2 is genital herpes, which often can be very very painful and cause all manner of horrible symptoms (although you can contract the less severe HSV1 genitally from receiving oral sex from someone with a coldsore)
alfagirl73 that's very very true of course.
He is a lovely chap and I respect him immensely for being so honest with me.
This is why I don't want to hurt him.
witch this post also made me sad. I have it, not slept with many men at all and caught it from DP. We didn't know he had a cold sore coming on his mouth which then transferred to me (down below).
I understand people need to protect themselves, but it does make me worry for my future.
I like Kiwi'squestion.**
What about all the possible partners who don't know they are oral or genital herpes positive. How are you going to screen them?
They will be possibly contagious and not even know it so no chance of avoiding contact with condoms.
There is no need for stigma to attach to this infection in my opinion
I have genital hsv1, caught by someone who had had cold sores at some point in their life- but didn't have one at that time. If you wouldn't break up with someone who had coldsores then this just doesn't make sense to me.
Op - HSV1 contracted genitally (i.e. via oral sex) can be just as painful and extreme - it varies from person to person. Just saying. Dating someone who gets cold sores means that you are dating someone with Herpes - fact. If they have performed oral sex on you within days or even a few weeks of a cold sore, chances are, they have already passed on the virus to you. You simply haven't had an outbreak of it. Equally, you could have simply had sex with someone who has HSV2 and again contracted it - you just haven't had an outbreak. Not saying you've got it - but you seem to be under the assumption that dumping this guy who has told you about it makes you safe. Truth is - you'd probably be safer with him than someone else who carries the virus (either version) and doesn't know about it.
Does he suffer from HSV2 then? (I think he does but wasn't clear from your last post).
I think I'd tell him straight to be honest with you. He already knows this and if you think as much of him as you say you do then best to be honest. He'd know if you were telling a white lie.
70% of the population does not have genital herpes. They just don't.
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