Aa
Aa
A
A
A
Close
1287017 tn?1537898943

Horrible Heartache!!!!! Please Lend Support

Hello,

I have been a member of this site for a few years. I have mostly been a member for the TTC community. I am here today for the relationship side of things.

A little background: I got married to my soon to be ex-husband November 14, 2008. Everything was great so I thought. Things weren't as great as it seems or how i wanted them to be. Thought maybe having a child would help him grow up and realize what he was losing by acting the way he was. Thank God we never succeeded in getting pregnant. I came to the realization that the person I married was not the same person that I fell in love with. I know that people change and relationships evolve, they have to. But when someone that you thought you knew does a complete 180, red flags go up.

Speed up to my current situation. Husband and I are in the process of splitting up. I have tried to be fair and get the filing underway, but he is not working with me. I just know that I am not going to put my life on hold because he doesn't want to cooperate. Needless to say, I have met an amazing man. Nothing as far as a relationship happen until my husband decided to leave to test me to see if I would beg for him back. I was already done trying to save my marriage about a year ago. This all happened starting the end of May 2012.

Well speed up, Man A (Not releasing his name as of yet) and I have a wonderful relationship. I have never met anyone that has allowed me to truly let my guard down and is truly happy in seeing me happy. He is settled, not into playing games, loving, caring, hard-worker and has an amazing zest for life. Its very safe to say that we fell in love with each other very quickly. I am in need of support because, a fews back when he was recently divorced and trying to still support his son, he took a job in the finance department of a company. Well one of those situations of wrong place at the wrong time. He over-heard these 2 guys talking about stuff, but really had no reason to believe it was anything more than talking. Turns out, those 2 guys were heavily involved in trying to scam millions of dollars from different companies. When all of this came out, he was implicated. Since he worked in the finance department, he must have been involved. Farthest thing from the truth. He took a plea because they would have tried and sentence him along with the 2 main people ( 1 received 30 yrs and the other 20 yrs ). He didnt want to risk his future and missing out on that many yrs with his son. Completely understandable. He received almost 3 yrs. He is surrendering himself to the minimum security camp today.

I feel like my heart is being ripped out and nobody, but him cares. I get told that I am stupid for wanting to still be with him, for allowing myself to fall in love so quickly after separating from my not even ex yet ( but I told you that situation), that he doesn't deserve me and I don't deserve him. All I know is I love him and I am looking for support and advice. I am new to the being a girlfriend to an inmate. How long with it take until I get used to falling asleep without him or until my heart doesn't hurt anymore? I have never felt this much pain before, not even for my failed marriage.
29 Responses
Sort by: Helpful Oldest Newest
973741 tn?1342342773
COMMUNITY LEADER
Hi there.  Okay sweetie, you won't like this. You put a band aid over your hurt from your husband with a new man.  Rarely do we go from one man to the next where that isn't the case and very often, those situations don't work out.  I'm sorry to be so blunt.  I AM trying to be supportive though even though I am not saying what you want to here.  I'm being supportive of YOU even if I am not supportive of this relationship.  

You need time with NO man.  All of that time of trying to conceive----  frantically at times was not very long ago.  And I must admit that I am surprised to see you already with another man and so in love.  These relationships did not overlap?  

The advice I give is not unique to you-----  it is hard when we are in the situation to look at it objectively.  I'm giving you objective advice that I would tell anyone that found themselves in your circumstances.

Man A is correct.  You should allow this relationship to be 'on hold' and see what life has in store for you as a strong woman that does not need a man in her life. Then you may find that there it might not be a great plan to tie yourself to someone in jail.  

I feel strongly that a therapist would greatly help you sort this out.  Explore the relationship hop you made as that is really key to your future.  

You will get over this man in jail as we all get over painful break ups.  You keep really busy, you work on your own hobbies/work, you exercise, you write in a journal, you give yourself tlc, you pray.  After he is out of prison, if you feel like you want to see this man again----  you date.  Not go immediately into a relationship, but casually date at first and judge him with open eyes verses hurting eyes over lost dreams with another man/ lost dreams of having a child.  You were hurting when you met him.  He was your band aid.  It will be better to wait until you aren't hurting to get involved with anyone so that you can really find the right partner verses A partner.  

Okay,  I know you didn't like reading that.  But I feel strongly that this is the best advice I can give you.  Hang in there.  I've had horrible broken hearts as well and have gone on to find a good husband and a long term marriage.  I'm so glad that I didn't stay with any of those people that I cried about.  Peace and luck to you dear.
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
Sorry, You are asking for support that I can't offer You.  I would never call You "stupid" - but often We are  often "blinded" because We want to Love and be Loved.  From Your brief explanation, I think there were probably Red Flags the first time around, - Red Flags that You either did NOT see or CHOSE not to see.  The Person You married is indeed the Person You fell in Love with - it's highly likely they ARE one and the same!!  People don't "change" - instead it's most likely our Own understanding or perception of the Person that "changes" - because We don't initially "see" what is likely there to be seen - We CHOOSE not to "notice" - We believe what We "want" to believe.  People don't "fall in love" quickly - what We do, is fall in "like" to People We feel attracted too.  LOVE takes a long time, a long time to get to know One Another - love BUILDS and GROWS and it takes "time".  No such thing as "love at first sight" !!

This time around , I think You are again "CHOOSING" not to consider another Red Flag, a HUGE Red Flag, You are "choosing" to ignore it.  It's hard to imagine that One would "take a plea" if One were TOTALLY innocent.  Would You??  I know I certainly would not!!

SO, I cannot offer You support - in my view - You are making another mistake.

It seems You have made the "choice" to be the "girlfriend" of an "inmate"-
Most of us will be unable to tell You "how long it will take until You get used to falling asleep without him"  Most of us cannot tell You "how long before your heart doesn't hurt any more".

But, I WILL re-emphasize that You have choices here!! You DO NOT have to put YourSelf through this.
Helpful - 0
480448 tn?1426948538
I couldn't agee more with specialmom.  I appreciate how hard this is for you, but you really MUST look hard at the situation.  For one, it's a brand new relationship, and while relationships have hardships, this one is already off to a bad start.  It's going to be an uphill battle for THREE long years.  Three years of your life you're basically putting on hold for this guy you JUST got involved with.  That's a sacrifice NO one should be willing to make.  Your feelings are strong, but that's also because this is so new.  I also agree that you should break your ties with the new guy and start working on YOU.  You haven't really done that, and in order to be successful in a relationship, you must be okay with YOU first.

Really not entirely relevant, but I also want to mention, that many people don't realize that our justice system isn't entirely "fair".  Just because someone pleads guilty to a crime, doesn't mean they really ARE guilty of that crime.  

It's very easy to say "I wouldn't do it", but when you find out that turning down a plea means harsher sentencing if convicted, you have to be reasonable.  If a defendant turns down a plea bargain, and are subsequently convicted, that's actually used against them in sentencing.

Therefore, IF if really is innocent (and obviously, I'm not saying he is or isn't)....was he really going to risk 25 years in jail?  The outcome of a trial isn't always fair.  You're putting your life into the hands of jurors, who may or may not side with you, and DA's aren't out for the "truth", they're out to get convictions.  Just sayin'.

I wish you the very best, I know you're in a terribly hard situation.  If you can take the emotional aspect out of the equation, I think you'll see there's only really ONE logical choice here.

Take care.
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
I just think you are jumping from one dramatic situation to another.  Starting a new relationship when you haven't ended the other one completely and for good, i.e. divorce papers, is never a good idea.  

Plus, this man A is in a serious situation that really isn't that attractive.  Being a gf to an inmate isn't any kind of easy or ideal life nor would I recommend any woman to pursue this.  Furthermore, this will NEVER be removed from his record.  If you did try to have a serious relationship with this man or even marry him.....what then in regards to employment for him?

I am not sure if you are just trying to excape feeling the pain and hurt of your impending divorce by jumping so quickly into another relationship or what, however, now you are compounding more pain on top of the pain you had already.  

Do you have friends and family that are supportive?  I also would recommend you seek counseling to help you through this rough patch.  

There is no easy way to go around the pain; you have to find your way through it and I recommend you do that without a man.  

Helpful - 0
13167 tn?1327194124
I totally agree with the others.

There's more to this story - an educated man doesn't take a fall for simply minding his own business and overhearing two criminals talk.  He was in this.  No lawyer would listen to the story he told you,  and think it was true.

Best wishes moving on.   You're about to exchange one bad apple for another.
Helpful - 0
1287017 tn?1537898943
You had mentioned some stuff in your post so some of this in answer to your post, but to everyone as well.

I don't expect anyone to truly understand what I am going through. All of my close friends that knows me and my ex, knows that even though we were married, we really weren't. I haven't been in a relationship in over a year. I had a roommate and a mortgage. I should have filed back then, I just didn't for whatever reason. I did my thing, he did his thing. I was not hurt when the decision was finally made to split for good. I was so relieved and happy to get out of this marriage. All of it was an act and all I was doing was fooling myself. I was really hurt back then when I was the only one trying any and everything to make it work with someone that wasn't worth it. I have had time to grieve that relationship. A year plus to be exact. I was not looking for any relationships or casual dating or anything, but I also didn't close myself off to that possibility.  He just happened. I fought it because of the current situation. There are just somethings that you can't deny and this is one of them. We have mutual friends and they could sense it. They even told us that we love each other before we admitted it to each other. I don't know how else to make anyone understand.

As far as his case, he is innocent. He worked(works) for a huge restaurant chain in their corporate office and the CFO testified on his behalf saying that their is no way that he would ever actively participate or benefit from the charges being help against him. He has a job waiting for him when he gets out. The same job he just took a leave of absence from. I have worked corporate and restaurants. They don't tolerate that at all. Also, he can get it removed from his record about 2 years after his release. Lawyer said so. He shouldn't have received any time and I know its hard for people to see this and understand that sometimes, people that are innocent get bad reps.

I used to think that whirlwind romances were a crock of ****. That nobody fell in love so quickly. I believe that now. I kinda started to believe it before he came into my life because my soon to be ex in-laws were the same way. 3 dates and then my  ex mother and father inlaw were married. Not even together for a year and my ex sister in law and her hubby were married. It does happen, but most don't realize it until it happens to them or someone close to them.

I do appreciate the warnings I guess from yall. He is an open book with me. I knew what I was getting into with him. Unlike my ex, he never hid anything from me.
Helpful - 0
1287017 tn?1537898943
Thank you for posting about the justice system. It was the best option for him. Why be sentenced along side 2 people who got 20 and 30 years. I would take the plea. I know I would.
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
It sounds as though You know what You want.  I'm not sure I understand what Your question is here but I wish You luck with this.
Regards,
Tink
Helpful - 0
1287017 tn?1537898943
Was hoping to find some ladies that have ben through the same thing as far as being with someone who is in prison and just to be that support. Maybe I just need to start a forum/community for this if it hasn't already been one
Helpful - 0
480448 tn?1426948538
I just want to be clear about something.  I only said what I said because, due to some personal experiences, I have a VERY different viewpoint of the justice system than I used to.  

I would have said the exact same thing Tink said not long ago.  I just wanted to explain, for general purposes, why an innocent person WOULD plead guilty to something they didn't do...because if a plea isn't taken, and they lose in trial (it happens)..all bets are off, and they usually get the max sentence.  For some people, they have to think logically, and it's way too big a gamble.    

I am not making any comment about if Della's BF did or didn't do the crime.  My advice still stands, that it just isn't a healthy situation to enter.

Della...you may want to double check what the lawyer told you.  If a person pleads guilty and actually does jail time, I can't see how their record could be expunged, unless it was a "sentence without verdict" type of deal.  I still can't imagine, with jail time being involved that he would be eligible for that.  Just double check it.

Very best to you.
Helpful - 0
1287017 tn?1537898943
Thanks. I have been. I want to say that's what it was. I also have a lawyer for my DWI and without knowing all the specifics of the case, he pretty much said the same thing that I have been told. Another reason I don't understand the system and why I think it is really flawed.
Helpful - 0
973741 tn?1342342773
COMMUNITY LEADER
I'm sorry as I knew you wouldn't like my advice  It wasn't meant to hurt you.  

In all---  and complete honesty----  my advice would completely the same to you if he weren't going to prison but simply taking a job in a city an hour away.  Okay, it would be the same if nothing was going to take him away from you.

All I can do is wish you luck.  Honestly, I HAVE been in the situation of having a bad relationship fall apart and then thinking I was so in love with a new person . . .  only to find out that I wasn't thinking clearly.  THAT I can relate to.  

Either way, you are going to be on your own.  What you do with your time --- the next three years worth is up to you.  You can not date anyone else and patiently wait until he gets out.  OR you can live life saying "maybe things will work out when he is free to be a regular guy I can date".  You have no choice in the matter that you WILL be without him for three years.  

That is something to be sad about as you obviously care for him.  It doesn't matter if I or anyone feels you should be so desperate for this man at this point or not----  regardless of that, you will go through sadness and mourning as he is incarcerated.  But nothing at all will change it.  Just don't marry him while he is in prison.  Wait until he gets out and you can try to date again.  

good luck.  Nothing can take away your sadness or feelings----  those have mnothing to do with what is in your best interest in terms of speed to get into another relationship.  good l uck and peace
Helpful - 0
13167 tn?1327194124
I think your idea of talking to the lawyer again is a good idea,  Della.  In Texas (where I live too) you can't get a crime expunged that you've been convicted of.  And certainly not a felony.

If he's been sentenced to prison - for ANY length of time - he's been convicted.

Crimes that can be expunged are misdemeanors,  and then only if you get deferred adjudication or deferred prosecution.  In those cases,  the judge decides to withhold a conviction for a matter of time,  while the accused pleas "no contest" and submits to a probationary period with terms like no subsequent arrests,  no alcohol,  attend classes,  etc.  Upon the completion of the probationary period the accused has to wait two years from the date of the commission of the crime to begin the expunction process,  which can take up to 6 months.

I think you need real clarity before you proceed - you're not operating with correct information,  in my opinion.  Sorry that I actually have had to learn the details of the expunction process.  :(
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
Dear, we are trying to support you.  In my opinion, support doesn't mean telling someone what he/she wants to hear; it is telling him/her something he/she NEEDS to hear.  In your initial post you stated you were looking for support and advice.  Plus, I have been through a divorce myself.  Never had a relationship with someone in prison though.  

I think everyone who has posted are older women including myself that have lived life long enough to know bad patterns and good patterns of a situation.  Not to say your situation might not have the desired outcome that you want, but the odds are sure stacked against you.  If I may take the liberty and say that we DON'T want you to end up in a bad spot you can't get out of or ruin your life related to a terrible or bad choice you made.

Even if this guy wasn't in the situation he was in I still wouldn't recommend you jumping so quickly into another relationship.  I wasn't just concerned about this man A's legal woes, but also the fact that he has no qualms about getting involved with a married woman.  A real gentleman would have told you "I will wait until your divorce is final before I pursue you" or something along those lines.  I do understand that you have been disconnected from your husband a year before you started divorce proceedings......same thing happened to me, but you MUST take the time to thoroughly close and end this married life before you start your single life.  TRUST ME dear.  To Add:  this man has a son and ex-wife too, trust me that has another dynamic all of its own and then he was just recently divorced.  

As far as whether he is guilty or not.......well, it's all about presentation and convincing in a courtroom and not so much the truth in my opinion...which laywer can do that the best will win.  

"He took a plea because they would have tried and sentence him along with the 2 main people ( 1 received 30 yrs and the other 20 yrs ). He didnt want to risk his future and missing out on that many yrs with his son."  Dear, dear, dear......people who are innocent don't accept a plea of a lesser degree.....they do when they know they are guilty and want less time or a lighter sentence.  Innocent people just don't do this.  At least, I have NEVER heard or seen an innocent person do this.  I can't really comment or make any judgement about whether he is innocent or guilty.  I do know innocent people have gotten the "shaft" in regards to penal/legal systems. Lawyers can say alot, but keep in mind it might NOT be the 100% truth in the end.  Expunging someone's record is NOT something that is easily done, UNLESS they were found to be COMPLETELY innocent in the end of course.  Perhaps he has the OPPORTUNITY to have this done after 2 years of serving his sentence and even then I DOUBT this will be anything easily done or even done.  

"He has a job waiting for him when he gets out. The same job he just took a leave of absence from." ..... That remains to be seen; can't really comment on that.  

"I also have a lawyer for my DWI and without knowing all the specifics of the case, he pretty much said the same thing that I have been told. Another reason I don't understand the system and why I think it is really flawed."  .......I believe any system involving judgement on a human being from another human being is "flawed."   Plus, this DWI lawyer DOESN'T have privy or know all the particulars or specifics to your bf's case, so he really can't make any sound judgement about what will happen.  

You can by all means start your own forum to connect with actual people dealing or have dealt with this situation.  There might even be organizations in your community that can help you as well.  

I guess I am looking at this more from a mother's or older woman's point of view.  I just hate to see a young woman making this or that decision with her life when I know it can and should be better.  I have lived and seen so many unfortunate situations and consequences related to poor or unhealthy choices people have made in their life.  





Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
He's innocent--I just know it.I've heard of cases like this before.He should get off and have no record against him--I have studied law at UNI but didn't finish my degree.There is no justice here it seems.The DA will push for a harsh sentence just like the DPP here in Australia so they can get another star added to their name.This is so unfair.
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
In my opinion the MAIN focus isn't whether the bf is innocent or not as we aren't lawyers involved in his case.  

Della, I wish you all the best with figuring this out because this is a very diffcult place to be in.  

You can by all means start your own forum to connect with actual people dealing or have dealt with this situation.  There might even be organizations in your community that can help you as well.  

I think all the women here who have responded offered very sound advice.  Maybe there are things you didn't want to hear or were looking for, but nevertheless it was advice and points of view.  Take what you can use or want to use.

Good luck dear.  


Helpful - 0
1287017 tn?1537898943
I appreciate the responses. I understand how the situation looks and yes with me still having an active marriage license, not the best timing. But I also know that we both fought it. Once I made the decision to get divorced, that's when we decided to just hang out. Grew from that. Doesn't make him any less of a gentlemen.

I know I have a long road ahead of me, but I also am the type of person that I am not going to not do something because it's going to be harder than normal. I was mainly looking for advice on how to handle dealing with him being away from me not advice on how my relationships should be.
Helpful - 0
973741 tn?1342342773
COMMUNITY LEADER
Well, I think you are going to have to approach this then like you would with a new boyfriend that went off to war or something like that.  You are forced to be seperated and that is just the circumstance that  can't be changed.  I would write him letters and visit occasionally.  Hon, I think what I would love to ask of you is that you don't stop living your life while he is gone.  Stay open to doing things with friends and family, explore your hobbies, dive into work, etc.  

I know that I always wish that I could control life.  It always ticks me off and makes me sad when I can't.  Realizing that I don't know how things will turn out and I need to be open to the twists and turns life takes me helps.  Be open to the fact that you can't control this and time will tell what is meant to be.  You can still go on and live life----  maybe a year from now you will meet someone you want to go on a date with.  I personally just think you should be open minded to this type of 'unknown' of what the next three years has in store for you rather than trying to control it.

But no doubt it hurts to have someone we want to be with taken away for whatever the reason.  You really don't have to make any decision about anything right now.  You can keep in contact with him and still live your life to the fullest and as time goes on, it may become more clear what direction to take.  peace
Helpful - 0
1700643 tn?1464846682
u want advice from someone who has been in the situation of someone being in prison and there partner having to deal with it.I WILL TELL U!I got to c it up close and personal for over6years with my mom.She was w/this man7+yrs b4he went to prison.It was AWFUL.Its exactly like you r locked up with them.I was13when he went in.I lost the mom I had.She changed and Ive known other women who did the same waiting.U will become very depressed,u will end up making ur whole life about doing stuff for him.Scheduling ur life around visits,phone calls,getting packages together,writing them and so much more.U love him o.k. but even my mom will tell u NO DONT DO THIS.U dnt even realize he will not be the man ur n love with when he gets out after3yrs.U will be living HIS LIFE&BE LIVING ON THE REAL WORLD PHYSICALLY BUT MENTALLY U WILL BE IN PRISON.U will probably end up resenting him regaurdless of how in love u r.U need to move on.If its meant to be it will be but dating someone a short time then waiting for them for 3yrs is silly.U deserve to have a real life whether ur single or date others eventually.Ur not married to him,no kids with him.Dont put ur life on hold.And please dont say u wont be doing that because trust me U WILL.
Helpful - 0
1287017 tn?1537898943
I understand what I am getting into as much as I can. He was upfront with me from the get go. I chose to be in this situation.

I do look at it as military situation. I love him and I will wait for him.
Helpful - 0
13167 tn?1327194124
This is probably the best support group you could find - wives and girlfriends of prisoners.  

Interestingly,  the welcoming article specifically says that if you have to sugar up this relationship by calling it "like the military",  you haven't yet stepped into the brave truth of the matter.  It is,  the opening article says,  nothing like that.

I am amazed at the bravery,  and candor of these women,  and think you will benefit greatly from reading through this site and staring down your own reflection in the mirror through them.  This support group might be just the face slap of reality that we here can't manage to convey,  because in fact,  you do not understand what you're getting yourself in to.

I urge you to join this support group,  or at the very least read the articles and opinions that are on the website available to those who haven't joined as members yet.

Best wishes.

http://pwgp.org/
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
Absolutely RockRose.  

RockRose has provided EXCELLENT info.  I just took a quick peek at the site and it is VERY informative and eye-opening.  

All the best.
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
RockRose ALWAYS Rocks!!  We should ALL listen when She contributes to these forums!!

DellaKemp:  There is Denial in ALL things!!   but THIS is denial in the extreme!! As regards Your 1st Marriage:  People DO NOT do a "complete 180 degree change".  The "change" is in YOU becoming "aware".  I would suggest there were "red flags" at the "get go" that You CHOSE to ignore ( insert deny!!)
I truely believe You are doing this YET AGAIN!!
You would behoove YourSelf to question why You are SO desparate to be "in love" that You keep subjecting YourSelf to "unfullfilling" relationships??  It takes COURAGE to read the signals!!

My advice:  
You REALLY need to look inside YourSelf to Understand, Realize WHY You "attract" to Relationships in which You need to sacrifice YourSelf!!  Maybe therapy is in order??
Good Luck
I Truely Hope You Find Your Way to Realize Your Own Self Worth!!
Helpful - 0
1287017 tn?1537898943
I say I look at it like military, because of the waiting for emails or phone calls. Difference is one I get approved I can go see him which I know is a luxury military wives don't have. And he is not away defending our freedom. But truthfully, I have found more support from my friends that are military wives. They themselves have said they sometimes feel like they are in "prison" when their spouse is away fighting.

I have been on that site and have read numerous articles from there. I just wish that in order to get the most from the support group you didn't have to pay anything. That *****.

I guess I shouldn't have asked for advice. I have come to the conclusion that most don't understand and won't/can't ever understand. I don't really understand why. The heart is a funny thing and love is just that, crazy. I have been told to listen to my head more so than my heart on this journal. Well they have never been so in tune with each other before.

He told me a month in of the situation and told me that he would not blame me if I moved on and he actually encouraged me to do so. To his surprise, I don't want to.

I will say that yes I agree that a new relationship should not have started until my divorce is final. Completely agreed on that. I was not looking for anything serious when I knew that I was going to be divorced. I went out with friends, talk to different guys, nothing sexual or anything, just getting to know what else is out there for when I did start looking. I met my current man and no matter how hard i fought it, there was something different. I kept wanting to talk to him, get to know him more, build something with him. I started going up to a bar on certain nights because him and his brother and friends like to play poker there just so I could see him and say hi. This relationship developed very quickly so I can see how some can say there is no way this relationship is strong, or that there is no way we could love each other or just plain don't get it.

No to answer the last post.

Thanks for your opinion. Not in denial, but I can see why you would think so. I actually do now regret posting this on this forum. I was looking for support in dealing with someone that is in federal white collar prison. Not what now has become an attack on me and my character and this relationship. If you can't understand it or don't understand it, ok. But there is fine line between giving advice and forcing an opinion down some ones throat. The best way to get to someone is by speaking to them with respect and a level of understanding. Especially when there is a huge level of emotions involved.
Helpful - 0
2
Have an Answer?

You are reading content posted in the Relationships Community

Top Relationships Answerers
13167 tn?1327194124
Austin, TX
3060903 tn?1398565123
Other
Learn About Top Answerers
Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
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.
Herpes sores blister, then burst, scab and heal.
Herpes spreads by oral, vaginal and anal sex.
STIs are the most common cause of genital sores.
Condoms are the most effective way to prevent HIV and STDs.