Herpes Community
27.7k Members
Avatar universal

Irresponsible GH sufferer needs advice

I deserved to be judged for my irresponsible behaviour but I would appreciate any advice nonetheless.
After fighting an auto-immune disease for the last four years, dealing with a very emotionally unstable relationship, I started putting my life somewhat back together in February. I got suppressive therapy for my GH, which was getting me down and took myself out of the ****** emotional situation.
Things began to look up. No more outbreaks, new job, new flat. Recently, while visiting a friend in the US I met a guy who lives in my area and we've been inseparable ever since (2 weeks). I really believe he's something special, but after filling him in about my other highly embarrassing illnesses - which he accepted - I shied away from telling him about my GH. I didn't think there was any need. But then instead of heading home alone, he ended up coming with me. We had protected sex. The next day we were shattered and that evening, I felt a bit uncomfortable in my genital area - to be honest, the suppressive therapy has been so effective, I pretty much forgot it was a problem. One check and I realised because my therapy was in my suitcase in transit, I'd missed a couple of days of my suppressive therapy. This was Monday, Tuesday I was working away from the office, but Wednesday morning, I went straight to the clinic to get checked out. By this time, the outbreak was a couple of itchy heads. She said I could double my dose to get it back into my system quickly. I also started having regular salt baths to get healed up quickly.
I was due to see him Thursday and managed to excuse myself from that. I couldn't get out of Friday though. Part of me didn't want to either, but I didn't want to have the chat and I didn't want to run the risk of infecting him.
By way of exercising some responsibility, I tried to broach the subject by asking when he was last tested. But instead of opening up about my situation, I bottled it. He promised to get tested as soon as he could and I saw his injection plaster when we met up. He is just the loveliest human being, which makes me feel even worse.
Initially, I thought I could get through a full week which would leave everything to heal quickly. But when he came over Friday to watch a movie, one thing lead to another. At one point, I figured we could avoid full contact as he's good at using his hands (if y'know what I mean). But the inevitable happened. I couldn't think of a good enough excuse that sounded plausible and instead of saying stop, I've put him at risk. Numerous times I tried to keep him from going near me, but he wanted to please and eventually I panicked and let him.
I can't find any stats online about transmission risk in the latter stages of an outbreak (it's just pink healing, rather than initial crusts). I know he could be asymptomatic or he might just be one of those people that never suffers from anything. But the higher probability is, I've passed on something to someone who could have been really important. Instead, he's going to feel pain in his nether regions, for which I'm responsible and now he's been checked, he's going to know I am to blame.
The idea of facing up to the truth now, still seems so difficult. I can't emphasise enough that my health is poor - I'm not on solid food as I await an operation.(<<< who dates someone like this?! who genuinely accepts this, then wants to hear that not only is she a **** date who can't drink or eat, but she also carries a highly contagious STI?! who would ever love someone this poorly?!) This whole situation seemed like a slice of happiness in the face of what has been a very tough few years. And I've toughed it out. All I wanted was a bit of support and to feel attractive to somebody. But now I'm faced with the hideous dilemma of wait and see if he suffers and admit my guilt only to lose him, tell him what's happened, let him worry/get tested and lose him; or keep quiet in the hope nothing occurs and then hold a whole world of deceit inside. I'm now telling him I'm too sore to do anything until I've made a decision on how to move forward.

What have I done?! What a mess. :,,(

9 Responses
Avatar universal
Transmission per protected episode is very low, not more than 1 in 200. Hence it is not likely he is infected to now. You will need to think as to whether you do disclose, but it seems like you do wish to so perhaps that has to happen soon.

How have you beed diagnosed with genital herpes? Do you know the type?
Avatar universal
We initiated with protection but moved onto unprotected. Following his clinic visit and watching me pop my contraceptive pill (and unbeknownst to him, my suppressive therapy) he no doubt assumed we were good to go. This is why I'm so upset. I know better. I just got caught in the middle of a lot of emotion and made a very stupid decision.

I haven't had an outbreak they could test since i was prescribed suppressive therapy. I suspect it's Type 1 as i didn't contract it from intercourse, but from oral sex. There's also something very familiar in the way that it breaks out which reminds me of the lip coldsores I used to suffer in my teens. They tested me at the clinic Wednesday and I'm waiting confirmation in the next week. The nurse also said I could be on the aciclovir for however long I wanted and that the virus would start to die as I got older.

Over the course of the day, I've come to terms with telling him ASAP so I can move on from the mistake and whatever decision he makes. Having to backtrack if I don't broach it and it comes to light he's infected I think will be much harder.

Sometimes it's just so hard to tell when an ob occurs! When I was diagnosed it was running chaffing, so I curbed my fitness, gave up alcohol, sugars. Between my illness and the virus, life has killed the fun factor. Now it could have been a shaving rash or the bedroom activity that triggered this :( I don't know if it makes any difference in terms of proxmity that my ob is located towards my back passage than on the actual vulva itself....

I appreciate your time to respond. It was a rather significant lapse in courage - it's been so long that I've felt this appreciated, I can only hope he can look passed this and pray that if he doesn't contract it, we can move on together more sensibly.
Avatar universal
So you have no diagnosis of genital herpes! Even better as you have oral HSV1 you can't get it genitally!

So if you get a blood test that is clear for HSV2 then you do not have genital herpes.
Avatar universal
So you have no diagnosis of genital herpes! Even better as you have oral HSV1 you can't get it genitally!

So if you get a blood test that is clear for HSV2 then you do not have genital herpes.
Avatar universal
So you have no diagnosis of genital herpes! Even better as you have oral HSV1 you can't get it genitally!

So if you get a blood test that is clear for HSV2 then you do not have genital herpes.
101028 tn?1419603004
The risk of transmitting your genital herpes when you have an active recurrence is pretty high. You treating the recurrence with antivirals does help to lower the days you are shedding the virus plus it was 5 days into a recurrence but it's still higher risk than when having sex when no symptoms were present.

At this point, you need to be open and honest about it all. From the been there, done that files, partners appreciate being told about your status even if it's a little too late. He can then be sure to be seen if he develops any genital symptoms within the next 2 weeks to get a proper diagnosis and prompt treatment.

Daily suppressive therapy does help to reduce recurrences as well as to reduce the risk of transmission to a partner. If you have hsv2 genitally ( which if you were having recurrences before suppressive therapy on a regular basis, odds are it is hsv2 ), and you avoid sex during obvious genital symptoms, use condoms and take daily suppressive therapy, the risk of a male partner contracting hsv2 from you is only 1% a year. That means that a male partner is 99% likely each year not to contract your genital herpes. The odds of getting pregnant while on the pill are higher than that!!!  Being honest with a partner shows that you care as well as gets it all out front so that should they contract herpes from you later on, they can not pursue civil action against you.

We are all human. It can be very hard to accept that you have herpes and inform partners prior to sex. Just learn from this and move forward so that in the future, you realize that herpes really is the very least of your problems and I"m guessing the best controlled  so it makes it easier to talk about.

keep asking questions!!

Avatar universal
Thanks for your feedback Grace, Fleetwood. I thought I'd read somewhere that HSV1 can transmit to the genital area and I've always had HSV1, since being a kid. Perhaps have both strains.

Having gone over and over it in my head Grace, I agree with your advice. It is going to be a difficult conversation but I have to do it nonetheless. If he takes it as well as he has all the other stuff, he's clearly a keeper. If not, then it is a lesson very much learned.  
Avatar universal
I do also support openness. However you do not have a genital herpes diagnosis, nor do you know what type you have genitally. These are critical components to any conversation, particularly one you hope to go well.

Either talk upfront about your concerns and the steps you are going to take to confirm the diagnosis and type. Or avoid sex until you get the results and process them yourself and decide next best steps.

101028 tn?1419603004
When you have hsv1 orally, the odds of contracting hsv1 genitally later on are incredibly low. Your genital herpes is more likely to be hsv2. Call monday to see if your lesion culture results are back.

I learned the hard way how much harder it is to have "the talk" after the fact. Only had to do that once and since then have always disclosed it before sex. It's in my best interest to discuss all std's and condom use with all my partners so I do it every time. Most folks don't get full std testing done and most folks don't get it done at the proper times after partners so it's well worth talking about it all before sex so there are no surprises later on.

Have an Answer?
Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
Here are 16 facts you need to know to protect yourself from contracting or spreading a sexually transmitted disease.
How do you keep things safer between the sheets? We explore your options.
Can HIV be transmitted through this sexual activity? Dr. Jose Gonzalez-Garcia answers this commonly-asked question.
A breakthrough study discovers how to reduce risk of HIV transmission by 95 percent.
Dr. Jose Gonzalez-Garcia provides insight to the most commonly asked question about the transfer of HIV between partners.
The warning signs of HIV may not be what you think. Our HIV and STD expert Sean Cummings reports in-depth on the HIV "Triad" and other early symptoms of this disease.