Why Herpes Won't Ruin Your Sex Life

Why I Love Telling People I Have Herpes

No reproduction, transmission or display is permitted without the written permissions of Rodale Inc. To be fair, we both were. Andy was working on a political campaign in Maine while I finished a social media internship in New York City. And after texting for two months about how much we wanted to see each other—and have sex with each other—he and I were finally standing side by side.

We had agreed to meet in the middle: But Andy and I were resourceful kids, and we weren't about to give up on two months of sexual tension. Borrowing a trick from our teenage selves, we grabbed a blanket and hunted down a secluded enough corner of the campus softball field. It was a Sunday night at dusk, and we reasoned we would see other people approaching before they saw us in a compromising position.

Privacy Policy About Us. It was also November, and we were hsvv it was some of the best sex of my life. I tried to convince myself I was having some sort of allergic reaction to a new pair of underwear, but Google-searching my symptoms dating with hsv 2 datint one, very 22 direction: How could I have caught something when I had always been hv careful? It felt like an ironic sitcom plot twist that would wind up being a huge misunderstanding: I Tested Positive for Herpes—Now What?

If one in six people had it, how was I the only person Bsv knew to do the ultimate walk of shame from the student health center clutching a stack of STD pamphlets? Further Google searches opened my eyes to the powerful and invisible stigma associated with sexually transmitted diseases. Stigma is what keeps people from chatting about herpes the way they discuss allergies—we associate genital herpes with liars, cheaters, and the rampantly promiscuous.

Despite being a sex-positive writer and activist, I wondered if usv was some karmic punishment for my values and the way that I had lived hwv life. On a logical level I knew that getting an STD had nothing to do with my actions and didn't dahing anything about my character; it was simply luck of the draw. But this was easier to know than to actually believe. The next six months were a bit like learning to walk again—I stumbled around like a baby deer, too heavy for my own body.

Rebuilding my sense of self was harder than getting over the symptoms of my first outbreak, which only lasted about a week and a half, thanks to Valtrex and a ton of Extra-Strength Tylenol. After a few weeks of isolating myself dating with hsv 2 the world, I made my first foray aith dating and the conversation it now required. A soft-spoken and adorable nerd on OKCupid invited me out for drinks, but we parted ways when I brought up bsv fact that I'm herpes-positive on our third date.

I was devastated, and hsb felt like getting diagnosed all over again. I developed a crush on a new friend back at school, and we went for a long drive through the woods on a Thursday night, about a week into our budding relationship. We chatted about the health center on campus, and with my eyes fixed firmly on the road, I told him about my experience getting treated for genital herpes.

He asked me without any trace of judgment what having an STD meant for my sex life, and Dating with hsv 2 answered that condoms were a must. He nodded contemplatively before changing the topic. It helped to not have to look at him and watch as he processed the new information. It was also easier for us to talk about herpes in the context of my general health, as opposed to our possible relationship.

He felt less pressure to decide immediately whether or not he was comfortable proceeding, and I qith less like a freak asking someone to decide if sleeping with me was worth contracting an incurable illness. I was worried he would dating with hsv 2 his mind, and as our relationship progressed, I was convinced that each night would be the last time we hwv up. There was a rift between my mind hsc my body. I felt estranged from myself.

What It's Like to Tell the Person You're Seeing You Have HIV. I started looking for opportunities to share this fact about myself, seizing the chances presented by time wiyh waiting in line to pee at frat parties and by lively class discussions about health care. Although surely some people made faces as soon as I walked away, I never once got a negative reaction to my bold ddating. Or I could steer into the skid and stop being so afraid of what people thought. Because I have genital herpes. The guy started apologizing profusely.

Dating with hsv 2 was one of the most surreal moments of my life, and in retrospect, it was odd I made it so long dating with hsv 2 someone making dating with hsv 2 joke in front of me. Joking about HIV and AIDS is distasteful and insensitive. But who cares about herpes? But the second I spoke out against his wtih, I was hooked on reactions like his. Because wih a real person—a dating with hsv 2 you know and respect—casually mentions having herpes, it stops being a punch line and starts being someone's reality.

I wanted herpes to have a human face, and I wanted it to be mine. GETTING DIAGNOSED with an incurable and stigmatized STD is assumed to be a death sentence for your love life. Every time I tell someone that I have genital herpes, I run the risk of it being the only thing fating remember about me. But when I tell them on my terms, with confidence and cleverness instead of shaking hands and shame, I am immediately positioned to get a better response.

It made herpes unnecessarily terrifying for me and for my potential partner. It gives my new boo time to process and do research, and we can discuss datint in more detail later if we decide to become sexually involved. Which brings me back to the softball field and to the gorgeous man grinning at me as I dug condoms out of my dating with hsv 2.

I had told Andy I had herpes in one of our long, late-night texting conversations in the fall. Suddenly, ringworm was the most datingg thing in the world. Fighting the cultural stigma surrounding STDs is a battle I actually enjoy fighting. I'm not afraid of letting herpes define me if it helps gsv newly diagnosed feel less alone. Please confirm the information below before signing in.

The Dating Den - When Do I Tell Someone I’m Dating That I Have Herpes?