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Readers Respond: Living With Herpes

Responses: 541


Updated November 26, 2011

dont have one night stands; too risky!

I had protected sex Friday and Sunday morning saw a bump on my vag and I knew something was wrong. after crying for three hours I went to ER where they told me it was just an ingrown hair. I insisted they tested me regardless. I have to wait a few more days for my result... as I looked at more info on HSV, I read "HSV can easily be misdiagnosed as an ingrown hair etc" I cried even more and called my mom and told her what was happening. she made me feel so much better and told me she'd love me no matter what and my life isnt over, things are gonna be different though. she told me to get a second opinion which I will tomorrow morning and wait for my results. I'm hoping everything is alright... will repost with my results but I have a terrible feeling I have it. I feel so disgusting, like I'll never love again or wont get married or have kids and this kills me inside but these stories have helped immensely... I just wish I could take that night back. I wish I would have just stayed home..
—Guest anxious

life gos on

i was 20 n 6 months preganet when i found out i had herpes. i had cought my boyfriend cheating on me a week b4 n i took him back because we were about 2 have a baby n i loved him.when the doctor told me i didnt know how 2 handle it. i was numb. it didnt hit me till i went home 2 brake da news 2 my boyfriend. we stayed 2gether till 3 months after i had the baby. i cought him cheatting on me again but with a 18 year old who didnt know about me or that he had n std. i only stayed with him after i found out because i figured since it was him who infected me then maybe he would change n think b4 he dose n e thing. after all it could have been something worse that could have infected our baby. dat was the last straw 4 me. thankfully my mom was very suportive n helped me deal with dis problem i have. im now 23 n i moved on n met some one else who is a few years older then me. b4 we did n e thing i told him n he didnt mind. we now have a child 2gether n r very happy.
—Guest guest 315

you never think it wil happen to you

well i was only 19 years old when i found out i had it. i had been partying lots and binge drinking putting myself in bad situations left n right til i met someone i liked, we rushed into things and slept together, the next day my vagina was really sore and i thought it was rough sex i new i was being unsafe letely and didnt want to know but after a few days i finally took a mirror and looked and seen these sores i went to the doctor the next day and they told me flat out i had herpes i felt like dying i felt like it was a dream that i wanted soo badly to wake up from but its life i am still trying to cope with it and its been almost 6 months, since i was sleeping around i dont know who i got it from or if i gave it to anyone, no one but my sister and 2 best friends know, and whenever i have sex now i use a condom but i couldnt imagine if people found out, my heart drops everytime someone says they need to tell me something or they heard something i dont know how to forget about it..
—Guest too-young


i was diagnosed with herpes exactly 5 days after my 21st b-day. at first i thought it was just a rash i had,but as days went by it got even worse went to the dr n as soon as she saw it, she said i had herpes. :( it was the biggest shock of my life, i never imagined i would get such thing uggghhhhh, i'm so mad at myself i feel so dirty although i been with only my current bf, which didn't know he had herpes as well. i love him, n i over looked at the whole herpes thing. but my outbreak was so bad i had the whole sore throat,fever of over 103 for lk 4-5 days omg i never want to re live my past week. so i cried n cried but i'm ok now, thanks for everyone who wrote about ya's story, it really helps. i still hope to get better.my blisters r popped,don't burn anymore!!! thanks again for all of you guys!!!!!
—Guest guest from houston

Making Adjustments

As a newly divorced mom of three teens my diagnosis cames as a dull kick in the stomach. Having a horrible marriage and the desire to reconstruct my romantic life, this is not what I expected to deal with. All my partners were successful business men in their fifties and I practiced safe sex with no exceptions. This is the thing, my sex life will continue, my life will not end and this is not who I am. If millions of people have this condition, then chances are they all found a way to cope, fall in love and have reasonably manageable lives. I am a loving and vibrant woman, this doesn't make me dirty or damaged. Having Herpes makes me compassionate and less likely to judge the woman sitting next to me. This disease is spreading the fastest in my age group to individuals that would not be considered to be high risk and and reckless in their sexual practices. The truth is, every site has different stats on exactly how many people already have Herpes.

it's a normal human condition

I got lied to and ended up getting hsv1 both on my mouth and genitals. I trusted this girl but she low balled it. I did a lot of research and realized it is nothing like what the images on the web show you. A lot of people have it and life goes on. I told the girl off because she lied to me not because she has it. Just a general rule of keeping your immune system boosted and exercising will help with break outs. And from what i learned, don't trust anyone and get blinded by love. Go get tested before having sex. And don't overlook hsv1, most clinics don't test for it. But it can effect your genitals too, especially in men it can damage nerve cells on urethra and give you constant irritation for a long time. In the end we are human, there are worse things out there like hiv, cancer, etc so feel fortunate you can't die from herpes and it comes and goes.
—Guest guest12345

life goes on right??

I'm only 17. I thought I had a UTI, Or maybe a yeast infection but I'm in so much pain and my blisters and sores make me not even want to urinate properly..I'm aware that I have HSV-2 even though my STD results dont come in til next week..I'm really emotional though all your stories really made me feel better I do feel so unwanted and gross though I want to badly get back to not feeling this pain..though my moms been very supportive I just feel horrible I just need help. :(
—Guest gues in so cal

I feel so quarantined!

About 6 months ago I tested positive for hsv1 on my genitals. I had an extremely sore bump on my clitoris and when I first went to the clinic they said it didn't look like herpes but about 2-3 days later I got 4 more sores. The guy who infected me totally denied it! I took it REALLY hard and became very obsessive about reading information online and paranoid that I would infect my 2 year old son, my fam and myself in other places. I went out of my mind and decided to end my life. I overdosed on pills and ended up in the hospital psych ward for a week. My mind set has gotten better but now I am on anti depressants and I take suppressive therapy. I've had sex with one person since and I told him prior and he didn't mind. Since then I've told two others and they decided to still date me. The only person who rejected me so far has been my sons father. I was very sexual and free and now I feel like I can't be myself. I feel so dirty and that I will never find anyone. I live for my son now.
—Guest Devastated

moving on...

I was dx with HSV1 in 2010. Thought I had a UTI, but my doc did an exam & found a lesion. Of course that was Friday so I had to wait all weekend to get my results. The only nice thing about that was that I had time to prep myself for the phone call, which of course was positive. I never had symptoms, always been careful and had no idea where I could have gotten it from. I could have been carrying it for years. I had been with my husband for 4 years and we are both faithful. My husband got tested too and he is positive, but has never had an outbreak. As much as I would love to know where I got it, because I wanted to slap them silly for "ruining" me, I think its better that neither of us know who had it first. It is just something we share and honestly I don't think about it since I haven't had another outbreak. The only thing I worry about is that we are trying to get preg with our 3rd child. It scares me that if I outbreak I will have to have a c-section. But we will get thru.
—Guest getting by

How could I let this happen?

Well, I went to the doctor yesterday because I thought that the meds I was taking for what I thought was a re-run of the warts I got a couple of months ago from my ex partner. I thought it was a bad reaction to the cream and so I went to the doctor. He said the lumps looked like herpes but he wasn't sure so I had a test done. It's Saturday now and I have to wait for the results to come out on Thursday. I feel so dirty and embarrassed and ashamed. I just keep on praying a hoping I don't have it but from what I've seen on the net, I probably have it. I'm always the one who brings up protection, but with this one guy, I was drunk and just went with the flow. I feel like such an idiot, I'm 19 and I feel like damaged goods. Who would ever want me? I feel like I'm never gonna have sex again because I'd hate to give it to someone else. I really don't like myself right now, intact I think I hate myself. All these other stories just feel like stars in the sky, distant and un-reachable..........
—Guest How?

Living with Herpes....

I went for a check up because my ex-husband slept with a female who was positive with herpes. I am not really sure if she was the only one that exposed us to herpes or not, because he was a cheatin man. I have not had any blisters or problems so it really is hard for me to say how it affects me physically. I do know it has changed me as a person. I feel like I am dirty, ashamed, and not attractive anymore. I have a partner now but I think he is afraid to be with me. I did inform him before we ever became intimate. At first he just joked around but I do not think it is a joke. We split up and he went with another female and did not use protection. I don't get it . He got lucky that she did not have HIV. He did contract a yeast infection from her. He has checked for everything except herpes. I do not want to tell everyone what I have... I don't want to date constantly untill I find someone who will accept me. Sometimes I feel like my life of intimacy is gone forever!
—Guest Guest Dee

wish it was different...

I got diagnosed exactly two weeks ago. It has been the longest two weeks of my life. I had absolutely NO symptoms just went in for my yearly and asked the doctor for a full panel. Wish I could take that back. I am HSV2 positive with a high Igg never had one outbreak. Dont know if it is better knowing or not. Still wish I could take it back two weeks and be back to my normal self. My life will never be the same.l Why did I need to find out
—Guest if only

There are people out there...

I have been with my boyfriend for over 6 years, he was diagnosed with HSV before we started dating and was very open and honest with me before we went on our first date. I took a chance and ended up falling in love with him, we are getting married in August. I too just found out today that I have HSV as well, but it took 6 years to contract it. Moral of the story, you are not damaged or unwanted just because of this. People will look past it, like I did. Don't let your life revolve around this disease, there is so much more to live for!
—Guest guest

lesbians get herpes too

I was diagnosed with HSV-1 about 2 weeks ago. I'm a lesbian and contracted the virus from oral sex, from a partner that routinely gets cold sores but did not have an oral outbreak at that time. My reaction was a lot like those I'm reading on here; I felt ashamed, dirty, undesirable, and very much alone. The person I contracted it from, a good friend, refuses to acknowledge spreading the virus to me, which makes this all even harder to deal with. But slowly these feelings are fading. I've just started suppressive drug therapy (Valtrex), just more for piece of mind than anything else. I've told my close friends, who have been very supportive. I'm slowly accepting that this is quite common and that most people with genital HSV live happy and sexually-fulfilled lives. The stigma that comes along with HSV seems unwarranted. And I think that with time things will continue to get better.
—Guest slowly feeling better

Cautiously Optimistic

I was diagnosed with Herpes 3 days ago; 2 days before my 35th birthday. I have been in a relationship with someone that I met online for about 4 months now. About a week after the last time we had sex, I noticed that I wasn't feeling well and had a white bump on my vagina. I went to the Dr immmediately and was told that it was most likely Herpes and tests were done. I had a few days to marinade the idea, so it wasn't as devastating when it was confirmed. Oddly enough, I haven't heard much from him lately and am thinking he may have done this on purpose to keep me with him. Though I am hurt, angry and confused, I know that life goes on and reading everyone else's story helps make me feel a bit more normal as I initially felt dirty & worthless. I am blessed in that it could have been a lot worse. Though I am still in a fog of sorts & am not sure how future relationships will work, I am cautiously optimistic about my what's to come in life.
—Guest DCNY
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