Welcome to the STD forum.
Most likely you have two entirely unrelated problems here. The facial/head problem probably is herpes simplex (HSV-1), not shingles (herpes zoster). Shingles rarely if ever recurs with the frequency you describe. If your recurrent rash is due to any kind of herpes -- and I believe that it is -- more likely it is herpes simplex, i.e. an HSV-1 infection. The vast majority of HSV-1 infections of the facial area are non-sexually acquired. Therefore, your sexual orientation and the lack of sexual experiences with men is entirely irrelevant. Most likely you acquired this by a nonsexual route, as is usual for HSV-1.
The genital problem may or may not be herpes. Other medical conditions can cause genital ulcers, although herpes certainly is a possibility. If it is herpes, most likely it will turn out to be genital herpes due to HSV-2. That problem certainly can and does occur through sexual transmission between female sex partners. But whether any sort of herpes is the cause of the genital problem, I cannot say.
If you haven't done so, I suggest you ask your primary care doctor to refer you to a dermatologist or infectious diseases specialist. You should have a blood test, which can accurately determine whether you are infected with HSV-1, HSV-2, or both. A separate blood test can also tell whether you have been infected with the varicella (herpes) zoster virus -- but that isn't very helpful, because the same virus causes chickenpox and most people have positive blood test results. In addition, the next time you have an outbreak either involving the face or genital area, the lesions could be tested for all 3 of these viruses. That has to be done very promptly, preferably within 1-2 days of onset -- but it has the potential to give exact information about the cause of each problem. A dermatologist or ID specialist will know how to go about it.
I hope this helps. Best wishes-- HHH, MD
If you think the stuff on my forehead is HSV-1 then how did I contract it at age 10?
My mother has had recurring shingles for 20 years on her back and around her side. So, while I know it is rare, I know that shingles do recur in some people.
As for the genital blisters, as I noted, I have not had ANY sexual contact (with my partner or anyone else) in over a month. And my partner and I do not share toys nor do we have genital to genital contact and we have been together for 2 years. Also, it is my understanding that hsv-2 is not very painful. The blisters I have are hands down the worst pain I have ever had in my life.
With that said, what else could this be? If I schedule an appointment with the dermatologist tomorrow will it be too late to get the results? The outbreak on my head is cleared up. And the vaginal outbreak has been in full force for 4 days.
HSV-1 is not primarily an STD. Oral/facial HSV-1 is usually acquired in childhood, often from other kids -- althought the exact source rarely is known.
I won't second guess your mother's diagnosis. But I stand by my statement that recurrent shingles is rare and would ask whether any of her outbreaks were tested for HSV.
Genital HSV-2 can be mild (even asymptomatic) or very painful; no reliable education source would ever say that painful outbreaks are rare. Anyway, I don't know that you have genital area herpes. There are other viral infections, and other kinds of skin rash, that can cause painful blister-like rashes, both genital and nongenital.
I cannot judge whether your rashes are too far into healing for accurate diagnosis. Whether or not they are, it will be interesting to hear your dermatologist's opinion and advice; please share it. Also please talk with him or her about what I have said about recurrent shingles, herpes, and your mom's diagnosis. Most likely s/he will agree with most or all I have said. (Consider printing out this thread and taking it along.)