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He's just told me he's got herpes!

(141 Posts)
dancingqueen345 Thu 27-Dec-18 07:56:57

I went on a second date last night and just as we were about to leave he said because we'd had another really good night there was something he needed to tell me, and told me that he had herpes.

I had no idea what to say so I just kind of mumbled through saying I'd had a nice time too and thanks for telling me.

I came home and started furiously googling and from what I can see there is actually a fairly small chance of passing it to a partner (provided you avoid flare ups and use protection), but I'm not sure if I can get over the mental aspect of it, am I going to be scared every time we have sex?! Will I still be able to touch him normally? Go down on him? (Sorry TMI).

I really like this guy (as much as one can after 2 dates, I'm not a believer in love at first sight), and I also massively respect how hard It must have been for him to tell me, so I want to be delicate with this, but equally I do have questions that maybe only he can answer because they could effect me long term.

Has anyone been through this or a similar situation and can firstly give me reassurance that my stats are accurate about stopping the spread, and secondly, anyone living with someone with herpes and can advise on any changes you've had to make in the bedroom/general life to accommodate it (if any!).

HappyGowerGirl Thu 27-Dec-18 08:00:54

Wow I imagine that’s a bit of a shock! Like you say though, I’m pretty sure the chances of passing it on are really small if you take precautions. Someone with experience will be along soon I’m

Either way, if I really liked the guy there is no way I would let something like that stand in the way:-) Also, the fact he told you is really positive, I think:-)

Hope it works out for you!

PsychedelicSheep Thu 27-Dec-18 08:02:49

Herpes is way less of a big deal than most people think, many of us carry the virus and never have flare ups or maybe only one or two.

Definitely don't ditch him over it if you like him.

HoneyWheeler Thu 27-Dec-18 08:04:25

I think it bodes extremely well that he was upfront and honest with you - I would be able to trust him so much more than if he sprung it on you in an intimate moment!

From what I know (had to do the sex chat with Year 9s 🤦🏽‍♀️) - it will be totally normal between you, you just have to avoid a flare up period! Most of the time you won't be able to tell.

GrandmaJane Thu 27-Dec-18 08:05:10

I’d avoid him. If you don’t have STIs, why volunteer for them?

Thankssomuch Thu 27-Dec-18 08:09:55

I think it’s honest and decent of him to tell you beforehand you enter into a sexual relationship. It can’t be an easy thing to talk about. What you do about it, well that’s up to you, but it’s your feelings about the person that are most important, medical conditions can be dealt with/Managed.

PollyFlinderz Thu 27-Dec-18 08:11:32

I’d avoid him. If you don’t have STIs, why volunteer for them?

I agree with you.

ReggieKrayDoYouKnowMyName Thu 27-Dec-18 08:13:35

I had a five year relationship with a herpes sufferer. He never passed it on thanks to taking the necessary procautions.

adaline Thu 27-Dec-18 08:13:35

Does he mean genital herpes or the cold sore virus? They're two different strains and have different implications.

dancingqueen345 Thu 27-Dec-18 08:14:56

@adaline genital herpes.

dancingqueen345 Thu 27-Dec-18 08:16:57

Thanks @ReggieKrayDoYouKnowMyName that's exactly what I was hoping to hear!!

Can I ask you a (potentially stupid) question? Let's say that this all goes really well and a few years down the line we decide we want kids, am I basically making the decision to also contract herpes?

dancingqueen345 Thu 27-Dec-18 08:19:33

@GrandmaJane @PollyFlinderz I do get where you're coming from

brusselsproutfan Thu 27-Dec-18 08:26:29

Genital Herpes is an overblown stigma.
It's not like AIDS.
1 in 6 Americans have it and they don't even know.
Some people are living with it and they never get a flare up. Some people have a flare up once a year so don't have sex during that time.
Honestly it's no biggie

pumpkinpie01 Thu 27-Dec-18 08:27:37

Years ago my friend got herpes after a one night stand ( no condom used ) I remember her describing it as little razors slicing her down below when she walked. I never knew it could be that painful but she assured me it was. But if you use a condom every time you’re not going to get it anyway. Full marks to him for telling you so soon.

haveyoureadthethread Thu 27-Dec-18 08:30:21

You can still get it with a condom, depending on where the flare up is. My understood it's far more contagious during a flare up and okay when skin clear, could be wrong in that right enough.

70sbaubles Thu 27-Dec-18 08:31:09

Bless his honesty. He's a good one.
But unless you're absolutely sure about him, I wouldn't bother.
Although you really never know who has what, I would find it hard to get aroused knowing I'm around an STD. It would feel clinical like being at the doctors.
I personally would pass him by, though probably he gets rejection all the time. Could you take a LONG time to get to know him without sex?

timeisnotaline Thu 27-Dec-18 08:32:08

You can’t control for genetic conditions and future illnesses like cancer and tragedies like car crashes in a partner , but you can do your best to control picking a nice guy. He’s been upfront , told you before you got too invested, it’s manageable and you can keep safe, I’d definitely not dump him over this.

timeisnotaline Thu 27-Dec-18 08:34:48

Re I would find it hard to be aroused around an std , I expect my dh to find me beautiful and sexy as a pregnant whale and then with 40 something stitches holding my underside together, so I think it a bit unfair that a dormant condition kills your mojo. You’d have to avoid when a flare up but plenty of people avoid sex on periods as far as I know so doesn’t seem at all unreasonable.

welshweasel Thu 27-Dec-18 08:38:22

Totally not an issue. Brilliant that he’s been so upfront with you though. Essentially avoid intimate contact if he has a flare up but other than that you’re good to go. Condoms don’t protect you (although obviously should be used to protect against other stds, although sounds like he’s pretty sorted with his sexual health). Please reassure him when you can, it must have been a huge deal for him to tell you this early.

EmmaGrundyForPM Thu 27-Dec-18 08:39:17

He sounds lovely.

I don't know much about herpes except that the virus is passed on when there's a flare up. So you'd need to avoid having sex then.

He is obviously keen on you. If he wasnt hoping the relationship would go further then he wouldn't have disclosed.

If you like him.(and it sounds as though you do) I would read up about minimising the risk and take the appropriate precautions.

Gunpowder Thu 27-Dec-18 08:42:16

I would really trust someone if they told me something like that early. It shows honesty, responsibility and bravery - and that he likes you! smile

dancingqueen345 Thu 27-Dec-18 08:45:32

Thanks all so much for all the replies!

@70sbaubles that's sort of what I'm worried about. We had a snog after he told me and it was the sort of kiss that does get you going a bit, but I'm worried that when it comes down to actual sex it would be different. Arghhh shit why can things never be straightforward.

He really is lovely though. I'm seeing him again this afternoon so will just play it by ear as to whether I mention it, although I agree I do need to give him some sort of reassurance that it's not a total deal breaker, just something I need to get my head around.

JillScarlet Thu 27-Dec-18 08:47:03

Would you sweet a relationship with someone who gets cold sores?

I have had herpes for years, only get an outbreak once every 5 years or so, never passed it to anyone else. Certainly did not pass it in during childbirth.

It is only as painful as described during the initial outbreak. After that, just mildly sore.

People can have the virus for years without having an outbreak. It is very very common. The next person you date could have it without knowing, never mind telling you.

Someone upfront enough to tell you is someone who will take great care for you not to catch it.

VictoriaBun Thu 27-Dec-18 08:47:49

If you were to take it further with him you would only ' catch ' herpes if he had an outbreak ( it would be best to avoid sex at that time or at least use a condom ) You can have unprotected sex without any problems. You can have a baby without any problems . Some people never have outbreaks after the first one which usually is the worse one ( pain from blisters, flu like experience ) Please note cold sores, chicken pox, shingles, finger whitlows are all from the herpes simplex virus.

mamaduckbone Thu 27-Dec-18 08:49:54

Herpes is a virus, exactly the same as a cold sore but a different strain (also related to chicken pox). The vast majority of the time it is dormant.
As long as you don’t have sex whilst it’s active (ie when he actually has sores) you won’t catch it. I have cold sores, my dh has genital herpes - in over 20 years together we’ve never caught either from each other because we’re careful.
It’s very honest and sweet of him to tell you so early - he sounds a nice guy tbh. It certainly wouldn’t be a deal breaker for me.

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