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Avatar universal

Treatment first then dating, or dating first then treatment.

Two problems - first -  I have beed dx with hep C, and second - I like someone and want to start the relationship. Is any one was in the same dilemma - to be treated for hep C before starting to date, or to start dating before treatment but tell the partner you have hep C in order he could protect himself and could not blame on you if he gets hep C from you incidentally. I concern about the moral and legal aspects on this matter, not saying about how tough it is to say to someone you like you have hep C - you never know the reaction. I think, the answer would be -get treated first. I really afraid to start treatment - afraid mostly of the side effects that can affect my ability to work.
18 Responses
Avatar universal
I wish I could be upbeat about this.  When I was diagnosed I was given to understand that hepc was less friendly with men than with women and that men converted to liver disease faster and at greater numbers than women.  In addition, there was a lot of suspicion about hepc being a sexually transmitted disease even though the liklihood of transmission is small.  These notions and the public knowledge as well as men of my generation often being into women's bodies more than anything else about them have influenced my relationships dramatically.  I have found over and over and over that men are not interested in a female partner who is infected with hepc either as a companion or romantic partner and it is very often a deal breaker.  If you are interested in relationship, your opportunities will almost certainly narrow unless the men you meet are singularly uneducated.  Knowing what I know now, I would suggest that you treat soon especially if you can still bear children.  Sure, wait a year or two to see what develops but, unless you are already in a relationship when you find out, you may need to prepare yourself for some big hurts when you inform potential partners that you thought were into you.  On the other hand, you are not me and you could get lucky.  
Avatar universal
Always be up front, if the person is into you, they will understand...your health is worth more than a relationship, take care of yourself!
Avatar universal
Actually - this just happened to me last month.  I met someone while I had 10 weeks of treatment left and had to tell him after 8 weeks had gone by. By then, I felt I knew him fairly well.  I was terrified and expected the worst but it went better than I expected.  I guess you have to go into the conversation hoping for the best, but also be prepared for the worst.  You have no control over someone's reaction and it is very, very hard to get the words out.  I set  a dinner date.

It has been hard to date  while treating.  I really am tired and have had to shy away from hiking dates or anything that requires much energy.  You don't know yet how you will react to treatment so there is no easy answer to your question.  

So, if you you feel you are close enough to lay the situation out to him, then the rest of your answers should fall into place.

Best of luck, Anne

                                    
Avatar universal
Wish to thank you both for your help to understand me my situation. Good luck to you too.
Ann.
Avatar universal
I think treating and dating are almost mutually exclusive activities.  Pick one or the other.  I think very few people are successful in doing both concurrently successfully.  Some marriages don't survive TX, many are strained in various ways by treatment.

Second..... I would get an understanding of your genotype and amount of damage/ liver staging and other health factors.  Do you need to start treatment next week........in 5 years?  
If you have minimal damage I would consider talking with your doctor and deciding when you need to treat.  If treating is off of the table, date.  : )

If you have not yet disclosed..... understand that when you do you stand a chance that this person will opt out.  Either way if you are seeing them they deserve to know before the relationship gets real serious.

willy
Avatar universal
Yes, actually I was dx'd incidentally, then came through work up and it revealed hep C, genotype 1b, minimal fibrosis, no symptoms, so the doctor told I can wait for the years. So, I hope the Vertex or some other will develop INTERFERON FREE pathway, some combination with VX-222/boceoprevir/telaprevir etc,. It seems, I have to disclose my diagnosis, and this is only the right way to start the date. Oh my! how complicated the life is after being diagnosed with this!
Avatar universal
First off, it's good news that you can wait.  I am waiting myself, although waiting is hard.  Good things are coming *relatively* soon.

It's your call on when to tell someone.  I wouldn't tell just anyone, and I think for instance a blind date wouldn't require disclosure, but I think many of us are supportive of telling someone before things progress too far.  

Since many people don't know much about the disease they may feel betrayed or very unnerved if you "expose" them to it, even if the risk is minimal.  For me, I prefer to be very open up front and even may have printed material, (such as sexual transmission.)

I'm able to say that my wife/kids lived w/ me for years with me not knowing w/o transmission occurring.

I have also done similar things with people who I work with (vectors *other* than sexual transmission  : ) ) You'll develop a sense of your own comfort level as you go.

best,
Willy
Avatar universal
Thank you ALL of you for your input - it is very supportive, really, and it will definitely help me to make a right decision. Unfortunately, it seems not too much options, but either to go through interferon tx as soon as possible or freese my private live for a while. Darn!!!  Thank you guys.
Ann.
Avatar universal
I agree that it's not easy dating and finding a guy who will accept a Hep C status. I finally decided to stop dating for a time and decided to go for treatment not long after that. I wouldn't bother dating if you're going to do treatment, it can be challenging enough for you and you aren't really yourself while you're going through treatment, you'll likely have fatigue and mood changes from mild to extreme so it's not a great time to be starting a relationship.  I put my dating life on hold until treatment was done and frankly it was easier to simply take dating off the table for awhile and put all my energies into treatment, holding down my job and managing my life for that duration.  
Avatar universal
+1 Trish
1711722 tn?1356491154
I never knew that Hep C was considered a 'true' STD, because the chances were minimal.  But the more I read here, the more I learn.  I told a guy I had just started seeing, because if was shortly after I found out and I did not know it was a "no-no" to do so.  He was supportive and did not back away, but everyone is different. I agree with Trish, in that the mood swings may/will be difficult for partners to handle.  Wishing you the best in tx and in your dating decisions.  Here is a link I found for you:

http://www.medhelp.org/user_journals/show/15788/Help--How-to-talk-to-your-partner-about-STDs
Avatar universal
Hep C is not considered an STD.  It's a "communicable disease" but not listed as an STD.   People who don't know any better think it's an STD but it's not.
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