I have Herpes. What do I do now?

You just got tested for an STI and found out you have herpes.   What do you do now?  First you have to figure out how you got it.  Herpes Simplex Virus has two types.  Type 1 usually causes fever blisters on the mouth or lips but also occurs in the genital region.  Type 2 occurs in the genital area only.  Both HSV 1 & 2 can be spread in between outbreaks of sores.  Someone may not even know they are infected and that is why the infection can spread.  You can only get HSV-2 from sexual contact with someone who is infected with HSV-2.  You can get an HSV-1 infection from oral-oral, genital-oral or genital-genital contact.  Genital HSV 1 outbreaks occur less often the HSV-2.  Once you know who gave you HSV you want to inform them so they can be tested and reduce the risk of spreading the infection to others.

Are you the only one?  About 16% of Americans are infected with HSV-2.  This means about 1 out of 6 people between the ages of 14-49 are infected with HSV-2.  More women (1 in 5)  than men (1 in 9) have the infection.  This is because it is easier to spread herpes to females from a male partner.  It is less likely that a female can spread it to a male.  Although this does occur, it is less often.

How long will an outbreak last?  The first outbreak usually occurs about 2 weeks after being exposed and lasts the longest.  One or more blisters will develop and then rupture causing a sore.  The sores can then take 2-4 weeks to heal.  Some people also develop a fever and have swollen glands during the first outbreak.  However, most people don’t ever develop any sores.  Or they are so mild that they aren’t noticed or mistaken for another skin condition.  A person can go weeks, months or years between outbreaks.  If you do develop sores right away after being infected, you can usually expect to have 4 or 5 outbreaks that first year.  Outbreaks after the first one are usually less severe and don’t last as long.  It is possible that a person becomes aware of a first episode years after getting the infection.

Can I get rid of the virus?  There is no cure for HSV.  Herpes stays in the body indefinitely.  Although outbreaks do occur less often over time.  You can also get anti-viral medication that reduces the length and severity of outbreaks and it may also prevent outbreaks while taking the medication.  Also, daily suppressive therapy for symptomatic herpes can reduce transmission to partners.

Are there any complications of genital herpes?  If you do have outbreaks of sores this can be very painful.  It can also cause complications for those who have suppressed immune systems.  It may also be dangerous to the baby if  contracted during pregnancy.  Women who have an active outbreak will have to deliver the baby by cesarean section.  Transmission from mother to baby is very rare.  HSV-2 can also make people more susceptible to contracting the HIV infection.

Other complications include psychological.  Many people with genital herpes feel dirty, contagious, and alone.  They now feel like no one would ever want to touch them much less have sex with them again.  It can take awhile to actually accept that you have an incurable STI.  There is definitely a grief process that takes place.  You will go through periods of anger, depression and denial.  There will be moments of acceptance, but it takes time to come to terms with the diagnosis.  Some people join online support groups for people with HSV-2 and find support through that.  If you are feeling overwhelmed and depressed by your diagnosis, please seek help from a counselor or trusted friend who can help you through the grief process.

Not sure if you’ve been exposed to HSV?  See your doctor to be tested.  If you have sores they will take a sample and test them in a lab.  If you don’t have active sores they will do a blood test to see if they can find antibodies.

Want to prevent spreading HSV?  The only 100% way to prevent any STI is to abstain from sexual activity or to be in a long-term monogamous relationship with someone who has been tested and is uninfected.  To reduce the risk of spreading the infection never have sexual contact with partners during an outbreak.  Always use a condom to reduce the risk of spreading the infection when you are between outbreaks.  Be aware that if you have HSV it is possible to spread the infection even when you take every precaution.  Be open with your partner so they can make an informed decision about the risk they are taking.

For more information please see links below.



235 comments on “I have Herpes. What do I do now?

  1. Yesterday I got diagnosed with herpes; only its not HSV1 or HSV2. When you get the virus of varicella (chicken pox) it is always in you; you are immune, but it can come back out as an outbreak of herpes. The cause? No, I never had sex. I’ve never even made out with anyone, or had inappropriate contact with anyone. I’m only a 14 year old girl! I got herpes because of fatigue, stress and anxiety. The amount of homework and pressure that I have been subject to in school is the cause of my herpes outbreak. I’m extremely angry at my teachers right now; because of them, my future love-life, sex-life and probably all my friendships will be affected if they find out I have herpes. And this is so unfair; I’ve done everything right! I’m smart, a straight “A” student, a star athlete at my school, and very strong in the arts, especially singing, and I’m pretty. I always felt lucky and good at everything I did, but this just brought me down and is ruining everything.

    • I’ve never heard of this before in my life! I would probably get a second opinion just to be sure. If it isn’t HSV1 or HSV2, what is it? If you don’t have either of those two viruses, you won’t be able to spread them to other people. So hopefully your love life and sex life don’t have to be ruined. It may not be transmittable like the other two viruses of herpes. I may have to look into this more carefully, but hopefully you don’t actually have an STI that can be transmitted through sexual activity.

    • you are definitley thinking of herpes-zoster, shingles which is in your case, shingles is chicken pox. once a person has had chicken pox, the shingles virus stays with the host and remains dormant until, [fatigue, stess, and anxiety] triggers an outbreak. this is not hsv-1 or hsv-2, it is simply known as shingles or herpes-zoster.

  2. I just found out that I have HSV 2, and I’m in complete shock. I’ve never had an outbreak, so I’ve never known that I’ve had it. The nurse that called me also told me that I probably never will experience an outbreak if I haven’t yet, but part of me just thinks that she is saying this to make me feel better. How else can I prevent the spread of this besides telling my partners? And what can I not do because of this?

    • Thanks so much for your comment. I want you to know that your nurse is right, some people never experience an outbreak but still have the virus. It is less likely to spread to a partner when you don’t have an outbreak, but not impossible. You do have to use protection to minimize the risk to others. Many times, people with HSV 2 feel like they can never be in a committed relationship and not use protection (ie. when married and want to conceive a child) It is possible that your partner would never contract HSV 2 even with out protection, but they would be at risk. Some people decide they don’t mind taking that risk in a relationship in which they plan to be with someone forever. If both partners are infected then you can’t reinfect them. Those couples go on to do whatever they want unless there is an outbreak which may make it painful to have sex. I have some links on this post and in my blog that may be able to give you a lot more specific information. Seek out that information and then make your decisions from there.

  3. Hi Becca, I just went to the doctor today and he told me I may have HSV2 (most likely). I feel scared and want to cry all the time… I don’t know how I got it. I’ve been with the same partner for years and got tested a few months ago, everything came back negative. How do I cope with this… Is there anything to help the pain go away? I just need to talk to someone, I can’t tell anyone or they will judge me. Thankfully my partner is with me through thick and thin, I just need to educate myself on this virus and hopefully things will get better. Hope to hear from you soon. I’m almost done with college too, what a way to end, right? Thanks.

    • Hey…thanks for your comment. I can’t imagine how scared and confused you must feel. Just so you know, this post is the most viewed on my blog. Since I posted it last spring, more than a 1400 hits have been on this post alone. Many people are going through what you are going through. There will be a grief period. When you lose a part of your health, it is very hard emotionally, not just physically. If you got diagnosed right, then your doctor can give you some medicine to reduce the symptoms. If you’ve been in a long term relationship, definitely get your partner tested. He/she might have had it and never had any symptoms. If you stay in a long term relationship and both of you test positive you won’t have any danger of reinfecting one another. Many couples go on to have a great sexual relationship. If your partner is negative, then continue to use protection when having sexual contact to minimize the risk to your partner.

      The first outbreak is usually the worst and the medication will help you not have as many outbreaks and keep them from being as severe in the future. It is devastating to get this news for sure, but don’t lose hope. You are still a great person with so much to offer someone in a relationship. Like you said, continue to educate yourself and try to find a HSV2 support group online that may also help you figure things out as well. Congrats by the way on almost finishing college! Don’t let this ruin your last semester. My best advice when dealing with grief is to try to balance the times you sit and feel sad about it and the times you go out and try to distract yourself from thinking about it. You need both to get through it, some tears and some pretending that everything is fine. Just don’t get stuck on one or the other for too long. Take care of yourself!

      • Hey becca you have basically said it all but I just feel the need to VENT because like others I feel nobody understands what I’m goin through…. I was diagnosed with HSV2 in September….but the doctor just looked at it and knew… I haven’t gotten tested yet… i just believed him and took it for what it was… I was so depressed and cried my eyes out because idk who could have giving it to me…. but as the months went by I started to feel better even though the thought of Givin it to someone else still scares the mess out of me which also just happened….I gave it to someone smh but he knows about my situation….I had no outbreak or anything but yet he got it…..that broke my heart….to have it is one thing but to infect and ruin someone life is another…..I have so much knowledge about HSV2 I just still don’t wanna believe that I have it!!!!!

      • I understand your brain wanting to deny this diagnosis. It is really hard to accept. I know it’s hard to believe this, but your life isn’t ruined and either is the person’s who you gave it to. It is going to be harder and some things in your life will be more complicated, but it isn’t ruined. I encourage you to seek online support which I know have helped other people deal with having HSV2, because it is hard for others to understand what you’re going through. Continue to take care of yourself and try to keep your head up even when it’s hard.

  4. I was diagnosed with HPV 1 & 2 JUST last week and it feels like my whole world has come crashing down on me. I cry all the time, I cant eat, I cut, I blame myself, I blame the guy and I feel down right disgusting! I’m terrified to have sex again, I’m terrified to get close to anybody, I’m scared to even hug my sisters! I’m only 18 and my life feels like it’s over!! I have this incurable curse on me and I honestly don’t know how to cope with it. Please help

    • It is going to take some time to come to terms with this diagnosis. It isn’t for your brain to wrap around. I strongly suggest talking to someone who can help you manage your emotions better while dealing with this devastating news. I know it’s hard to believe, but your life isn’t over and many people go on to live happy, healthy lives with HSV. Hang in there!!

    • Becca. I don’t know why doctor’s haven’t told you , there is a medicine you can take every day to prevent outbreaks. It helps a lot . But stress and anxiety can induce a breakout. If that happens then you take the medicine., twice a day. I know how it makes you feel,, I still get angry and depressed at times from me getting it from rape. I didn’t have anyone to talk to and I have been through. A whole lot of hard times, being a teen mother learning.xg all about life the hard way. But my child grew up to be an excellent hard working. Doesn’t human being. I am the proudest mom in the world. Go get yourself some valtrex

  5. I have had HSV-2 since 2007. I was infected by my only partner whom I married. I am now separated from him since August this year and I can’t seem to stop have occurrences. Before this year my outbreaks where often and easily treated with the antibiotics to an extent. I take Valcyclovor, lysine, Vitamin C, and Bioflavanoids (only for the past two weeks), but it is not working. Now, I am constantly on websites and the government sites trying to better understand this virus, but I always seem to be left empty handed. I am an emotional wreck, i can’t sleep, and I have the constant looming thought that I am going to be alone for the rest of my life! I have a two year old with this man, so I can’t escape my ex-husband or the disease(Don’t get me wrong I love my son)! On top of all the stress, I have nowhere to go to talk out my problems. The city where I live doesn’t have the resources I need to feel comfortable enough to go to a stranger and tell them about my situation. I have always done what I am supposed to do and I feel like as a college student at the age of 23 my life should just be beginning, but of course it is not! I would really like some advice on what to do or how to feel or even just how to get rid of my constant occurrences because I am feeling lost and unneccessary!

    • Thanks so much for your comment. I wish there was more I could tell you about why you are having more frequent outbreaks. I suggest going to this website if you have a chance. http://www.herpes.com/hsv1-2 It may be helpful to you and may have other links to resources you need. If you can’t seek out professional counseling, there are chat rooms for those who have HSV-2 that may be helpful to you when you want to talk about it with someone, yet remain anonymous. Continue to take care of yourself and your son and hopefully the future will start to look a little brighter for you.

    • Yes, herpes can be transmitted even if you are taking medication and aren’t currently having an outbreak, but it is a lot less likely and the risk is a lot lower. You should always use condoms to further minimize the risk, but your partner should know that it is still possible to get it even though it is safer to have sex while on medication than off. The medication is used to lessen the severity and frequency of outbreaks. Never have sex during an outbreak, this is when you are most at risk for spreading the virus. Ask your doctor if still feel unsure or have any other questions. Also make sure you know whether you have HSV1 or HSV2 so you can pass along the correct information to future sexual partners. Stay safe!

  6. Hi

    i am negative hsv 1& 2
    how to have sex with a Herpes type 1 infected husband
    he got diagnosed with HSV Type 1 due to oral sex from another partner

    • To answer your question about how to prevent HSV-1, here are a few tips.
      Avoid contact with another person’s cold sore such as kissing or oral sex.
      Barrier protection methods such as condoms and dental dams help to reduce the risk of herpes transmission.
      When a person has a cold sore, avoid sharing personal items such as razors, drinking cups, and eating utensils.
      After his first outbreak, he may not be as symptomatic and it will be less likely that you will become infected. Also, avoid kissing for a few days after the sores are gone because he could still be shedding some cells that are HSV-1 positive. Take care and thanks for your comment.

  7. Hi Becca,
    My partner and I both recently received the diagnosis of HSV-1. Neither of us is sure how long the virus has been in our systems or who had it originally. I’ve never had an outbreak and he only recently had some genital sores show up which is why we both went to be tested in the first place. He is taking the diagnosis a lot harder than I am and is feeling an immense amount of guilt. We were both fairly promiscuous before we found each other so I’m trying to assure him that it may not be entirely his fault. Any thoughts or suggestions to help us move past this?

    • I appreciate your comment and can imagine that this has been hard news for both of you to hear. I’m glad you aren’t playing the blame game because that can make things so much harder. Time will help you move past it. It can be hard for your brain to wrap itself around this information. It may help to continue to educate yourself and know that medication can help reduce the symptoms of outbreaks. Also, HSV-1 has far fewer outbreaks than HSV-2. As for the guilt, not blaming him will hopefully help and maybe he’ll eventually stop blaming himself. No one thinks it will happen to them and it is hard to accept it when it does. Just know that a lot of people are in your position and many have been successful at coming to terms with it. Continue to give it some time and continue to try to talk about it. Talking about it helps to normalize it and not give it so much power over your emotions. Take care and thanks again for sharing your story.

  8. Hi my name is Liza. I just got diagnosed with herpes. I’m scared. I have kept myself abstinent for about four years. I met a guy four years ago. I had sex with him couple of times. I stopped seeing him for three years. I recently started seeing him. I would always wonder about him so I gave him the opportunity to be in my life again. I kinda knew he was a man whore, but I felt so secure with him. He promised to be with me, so I gave in. The first time I noticed something wrong was when we first had sex. I didn’t pay much attention to it. Then the next time was two weeks later we went out for drinks and surely enough I decided to go to his house and we had sex. The next day I woke up and I felt irritated. I decided to ignore it go about my day. School started so as school went on I noticed it got worse. I thought it was a yeast infection but I went to the doctor. She said possibilities that I was hsv1 or hsv2 positive which meant I had herpes. My week went on and my pain got worse. I was experiencing my first outbreak the test came in she called me and said u have herpes. So now I’m stuck. Do I tell this Guy the truth or do I move on with my life and just keep abstinent like I did before? I’m scared about how this Guy might react what if he doesn’t believe me. Please help.

    • It really sucks to find out someone you trusted probably infected you with HSV. I would recommend telling him. Otherwise he may spread it to other people unknowingly. It is possible he isn’t having any symptoms. It is not your fault if he doesn’t believe you. The right thing to do is to tell him even if he thinks you are lying. Hopefully he will get tested and be more careful in the future. As long as you get on medication, your outbreaks will be less severe and less often. It will also decrease the chances of you spreading it to future partners. Take care of yourself and I hope everything goes okay for you.

  9. hi, I was told that I had the virus while pregnant with my 2nd child, 20+ years ago, however, based on what I’ve learned from the internet over the last 15 yrs I learned that I actually contracted this from my ex-spouse to be, about one month before before we married. I was 17. I had the breakout 2 weeks after our first sexual contact and it hurt like heck to use the bathroom for weeks. I thought I was gonna die, it hurt so bad. I was never treated nor did I go to the dr. I had re-occurrences while pregnant with my 1st child but was so young and afraid to ask my ob. My ex left me and three yrs later I remarried and was going to have my 2nd child. That’s when I found out. My delivery was stopped because of a breakout. But the had him 2 weeks later, it was a vaginal birth. I have FEARED for years that I passed this on to my children by washing our clothes together and using the same toilet, that kind of thing. The reason I am writing is this. My 2nd son(the one who’s labor was stopped) just told me a few month ago that one of his partners called him and told him that she had the virus. Could he have gotten it from me during birth or as a baby, then passed it to his girlfriend then she ends up with it? I know I may just be going through the guilty phase again, but I just really wonder. My 3 child had thrush as a baby which just scared me to death…I thought it was my fault and he was always sick, so I wondered about his immune system being weak cause of the virus.
    Second reason for writing is…over the yrs I might have a break out if my ex caused me grief or stress, but he’s really been out of my life a good while now, so I usually don’t have a breakout but every few yrs. until this week…. I don’t have a dr. or insurance, so I’m not sure where to go about this. I just ended my cycle and noticed a pain. It’s the lesion for sure, but today my right buttocks is sore and painful. Even to sit feels uncomfortable. Really tender. The redness is what is bothering me. Usually it’s just a spot or few blisters, but I have redness (bright) all over the vaginal area. I am concerned. I still have young children living at home. Is washing my hands good enough. Should I not wash my clothes with theirs, or kiss my little guy goodnight? Honestly, I know it doesn’t ruin your life like you’ve tried to explain to others, that have posted. But even after all these years of having this virus. I really don’t know the answers to my questions. And it’s so dog gone embarrassing, that I don’t know who to ask! but you!
    thanks for your advice.

    • It sucks that this virus has caused you so much pain and heartache. I know it is embarrassing, but I do encourage young people to ask their doctor if they suspect they have any type of STD. The medications are helpful and it can help the coping process to have your questions answered. It is a very common virus and health care professionals aren’t judgmental, they want to help you and prevent anyone further from becoming infected.

      I do not think you gave your son the herpes virus through birth. If your doctor’s stopped the birth and then two weeks later gave you the okay, they must have been reassured that you wouldn’t pass on the virus. Otherwise they would’ve given you a c-section. Did your second husband ever contract herpes as well? He is the one more at risk than your children. No, you can’t pass it on through washing clothes or by sitting on your toilet. It sounds like you have HSV-2, although I encourage you to get tested as soon as possible. HSV-2 can’t be transferred though a kiss good night. They would have to come in direct contact with your genitals. HSV-1 is the cold sores on the outside of the mouth which can be transmitted mouth to mouth. If you haven’t had break-outs there, then you most likely don’t have HSV-1, but again, I encourage you to get tested for your own peace of mind.

      I also think you should try to go to planned parenthood or another facility that works with people who don’t have insurance to have your current symptoms checked out. There could be a secondary infection that could get into your bloodstream and cause more serious problems. Try to let go of the embarrassment so you can actually find out what is going on and figure out all the answers to your questions. This will greatly reduce your stress. I hope all goes well. Take care.

      • thanks for your quick reply. I will look into someplace like you mentioned. I used to have insurance and got the medication to make go faster. But that was ages ago. It’s just still so embarrassing. Sure pays to not mess around with a man that had been in previous relationships…Hard to tell young people to be more guarded when it comes to their sexuality, I’m now one of those that wished I’d been taught better! thanks again for putting my mind at ease.

  10. Pingback: Am I at Risk for Getting a Sexually Transmitted Infection? | College Life- Sex and Relationships

  11. You seem to give great advice, and reading about these other people who share my problems and pain has helped calm me down. I just found out I have herpes and I still am not sure how I got it. It’s most likely from the first guy I had oral sex with, which occurred months ago, but the symptoms only appeared recently. My boyfriend of four months is possibly infected and I feel so bad for what I have and how I might have infected him. Needless to say, we’re not on good terms right now. I feel at a loss as to what to do, but sharing with others seems like a good outlet.

    • Thanks for sharing and I’m glad reading the post and other comments were helpful. It is a stressful diagnosis. It is hard to know who passes it to who because symptoms don’t always show up right away. I hope things work out with your current boyfriend. Thanks for reading.

  12. I was tested for herpes and came back with .98 antibodies. I then turned out to be pregnant as well, had an abortion went through hell and back and did not have any outbreaks or anything. So i assumed I did not have herpes, then i went in for a follow up to recheck as my gyno had requested I should, unfortunately it came back to 1.25 antibodies. I don’t understand though, how am i positive and had so much stress and i am not healthy at all yet i have not had an outbreak or even symptoms?!? could this be a false positive (i am really hoping so)!

    • It is hard to know for sure if you aren’t having any symptoms. I also am not sure what 1.25 antibodies means since I’m not in the medical field. I’ve only had people tell me they’ve tested positive or negative. However, I have had some people tell me they had a false positive happen to them because they found out later they didn’t have herpes. I would be thankful that you don’t have symptoms. If I were you I would get more clarification over what 1.25 antibodies means and maybe get retested just in case. Hopefully everything works out okay!!

      • i was told by my gyno that if you have antibodies over 1.1 in your body you have herpes, so she said having 1.25 meant i was positive. i do want to get retested in a month at another place to see what’s going on. the only thing i would say i have symptom wise which may not even be related to herpes is small little white particles in my urine and itching at times (but i’ve had a million yeast infections and just got back on birth control that always gives me yeast infections so i’m thinking the itching is from that) i hope i don’t have it. but if i do well I’m just going to have to deal with it. thank you for your response.

      • Gina, Thanks for the information. That helps me out a lot. I really don’t think your current symptoms are from herpes. I also hope you don’t show up positive next time you are tested. If you do, just hope you remain symptom free! Hang in there!

  13. I am a 19 year old college student and previous to being in a long term monogamous relationship with my current girlfriend, I was very sexually active with girls when i was younger. Yet I always wore a condom though. One day during sex I felt as if I had burned skin off the side of my penis. I thought it was just that, but a few days later it began to look like inflamed scars, I thought it was still just burned off skin. Later on I noticed that my lymph nodes around my crotch were inflamed as well. This scared me because I had never had this happen to me before. As all of this was happening my girlfriend had a 102 fever and was throwing up, she had inflamed lymph nodes as well. I thought she was just sick due to the fact my brother had been sick the previous week and I though she had just caught what he had. A few days went by and her fever went down but my “burns” had not. I also noticed that when I went to the bathroom to urinate it burned as well. The same day my girlfriend had told me that she had a rash on her vagina, and she thought that it was just from rough sex, as did I. The next day my “burns” had not gone away, and I began to become curious as to what the hell was going on so I asked my girlfriend to show me her “rash”. It turned out when I looked at her “rash” that it looked almost exactly like my “burns”, I began to panic and freak out so I began to do research on STD’s and it turned out that Herpes symptoms included a fever, vomiting, inflamed lymph nodes of the crotch area, and rash like sores. Upon reading this I basically concluded that we both had herpes….. I was in shock, I thought our life’s were ruined. I had no idea how this could have came about due to the fact I have never cheated on my girlfriend, and I know My girlfriend didn’t cheat on me because she is the most innocent girl on the face of the earth, and I took her virginity so she has never ever thought of someone else inside of her. I later learned that I could have had Herpes from a previous partner and it just laid dormant in my system all this time until now, and I passed it on to my girlfriend, which is probably the case. I told my girlfriend the truth and that I had never cheated on her, and that I thought it had stayed dormant in my system until now.. she trusted me and believed me. I told her that the pain would go away soon and that no matter what we would always have each other. She agreed, but kept complaining about the itchyness and burning when she went to the bathroom. I felt so bad for what I had done, because I promised myself I would protect her and never let anything harm her. But I failed, and I feel terrible. I am going tomorrow to get tested and find out for sure if I have herpes. But I’m done denying it. I have come to terms with it even though I’m not diagnosed yet and just want to move forward with my life and with my girlfriend. I tell her that everything will be okay everyday and call her every hour to see how she feels. She agrees and usually just complains about the burning…… I feel so bad, I never wanted any of this to happen, but it has, and nothing will ever change it now, but I know with the help of my girlfriend we can push through it together. I plan on proposing to my girlfriend on her birthday, and not because she has herpes as well, but because she supports me and tells me she loves me no matter what. I couldn’t think of getting through this without her. Without her and this virus i don’t know if I would want to live. But luckily I have her in my life, and I know i can still live a good life do great things and have a family with her. Which I plan to do….. I know this has been lengthy, but I had to let it out, I hope everyone with this horrible virus can find someone or something that pushes them past it as I have, and you all live a wonderful, long, healthy life.

    • Thanks so much for sharing your story. It sucks to find out after so much time that you may be infected with something. A lot of STI’s are like that. They show up later or some people never have symptoms and they infect people unknowingly. I’m glad you are getting tested. I also think your girlfriend should as well so that if you actually do have herpes then you can get on medication that will reduce the severity and frequency of any future outbreaks. Hopefully others will benefit from reading what you shared. Take care of yourself!

  14. hi! I just found out I have herpes 2. I lost my virginity to someone I loved, knew him for five years. when we had broken up, we began talking again and we did it. later i find out he had sex with someone else, that was when i decided to get tested. its been five months since, and i barely got the results today. I haven’t had outbreaks or symptoms, i wouldn’t have ever known. but does that mean i will get outbreaks soon?

    • Hey Alice, thanks for sharing. Actually, you may not ever have any symptoms. I know that sounds crazy, but not everyone has outbreaks that has the herpes virus. You could also have an outbreak a month, a year or a decade from now. It really is unknown why some people have more severe outbreaks or have them more often and others don’t. If you ever do have an outbreak, just know that the first one usually is the worst. Over time they happen less often and are less severe. If you have an outbreak, go see your doctor so they can prescribe you some medicine that will help alleviate the symptoms and keep you from having as many outbreaks. Hopefully you will be one of the lucky ones who doesn’t ever have any symptoms show up, however please be honest with future sexual partners and always use protection to lower their risk of becoming infected.

      • Thank you for your reply. it means a lot. i have a few other questions.. i am herpes type 2, but it is possible to pass it someone by kissing? or oral sex? and condoms reduce the chance of the other person getting it correct? i am so scared to get an outbreak, it could be possible that i never do?

      • No, you can’t pass it on through kissing. That is herpes type 1. If you are infected, you can give oral sex without infecting anyone, but use protection if anyone gives you oral sex. Although, I would still use protection when giving oral sex, because if they are infected, you can get it from them. Yes, condoms greatly reduce the chance of getting herpes. Taking medication can also reduce the risk, but since you haven’t had an outbreak, you may not need to take medication. And yes, it could be very possible that you never have an outbreak.

      • I was told and diagnosed with HSV 2 not one. When I went to another doctor today I asked a few questions and she told me I could have gotten it through kissing is that possible? I am aware that HSV 1 I could get through kissing sharing drinks sex etc. But how is genital herpes transmitted? Because if it is the mouth also, wouldn’t that mean I can still pass it through kissing if I got it in that form? I just need clarification that it was through just sex if it was Hsv 2 .

      • I’m sorry I ask a lot of questions. I reread your response about not being able to pass it through kissing if I had HSV 2. So the doctor was inaccurate? I just had sex with one person in my life, so it points to him. But if it was “transmitted” through kissing then it changes things. I just need clarification on the transmission for sure. And if I have oral sex with someone that has HSV 2 then I get HSV 2 in my mouth?

      • Alice, I hope I’m answering your questions accurately. I only go off the websites I have listed. I’m not a doctor, I’m only a counselor so I deal more with the psychological effects than the physical. All I know is that HSV-1 can be transferred from the mouth to your sexual organs due to oral sex. You can also get HSV-1 by kissing obviously. However, I have only read that you can get HSV-2 by sexual contact. HSV-2 does not show up on any oral parts of your body, just in the genital area. I could be reading the information wrong. Please continue to do more research, but from what I read, I think your doctor is inaccurate that you got HSV-2 from kissing.

    • Hey…thanks for your comment. Yes, you can still spread the virus even on medication. It is less likely because the medicine does suppress it, but you should still be very careful. You can still have oral sex but always use a barrier like a condom or a dental dam to make sure you and your partner are protected.

  15. becca I just found out I have herpes simplex today. I never would have thought this would have happened to me. I dont know what to do. ive always tried to be in long term relationships, with the intention of being with that person forever, though we know forever doesn’t always work out. I had just shaved my genital areas as I normally do to keep things clean and fresh down there. about 2 days later I felt a lil tiny stingy spot on my bottom area and thought I probably snagged myself. Since i was going to the doctor because i had a cough for over a week (allergies) I decided to have the doc look at it while i was there. I told him about my shaving but he also said he would run a hepes test after asking if i was homosexual. I was like, I’m not even the receiver but please do one because I would like to have one anyway, since I get my normal screenings every few months, but they never include a herpes test. I told my partner when i got home the doctor was testing me and i was freaking out a little bit in a joking manner, and so he looked at it and assured me it was probably an ingrown hair, which i believed he was probably right since he’s had ingrown hairs before and pulled up ingrown hairs online and they described the pain and the growth process of the bump online just like i was having. since it healed I didn’t think to much more about it. I got the call today with the results and I expected to hear negative and go about my business but she said positive for herpes simplex and ofcourse i went into shock. this was not even 3 hour ago. its like my tears didn’t want to come up though i wanted them too. Im just so scared, being that Ive been in a commited relationship for over 2 years…. the nurse said it may have been there dormant for a long time. but i dont know. I feel like my life is over. I was going on a big vacation this week that i’ve always wanted to go on, and now i dont want to go but my friend already paid for it, and now i just kind of want to just die in my sleep. I’m too scared to ever even think of killing myself or anything like that so it wouldn’t be something that i induce but you know i’m just like God please forgive me, and wanting to be an unexpected quick and fast end to life

    • It really sucks to get news like this. As you probably read from other comments how you feel is very typical. What is strange is that what you have is probably an ingrown hair and not an outbreak. It may be possible for the virus to remain dormant in your system without having any outbreaks. Has your partner been tested? If he comes up negative then continue to practice safe sex like you always have. If he is positive as well then you know you can’t reinfect one another. If you are in a monogamous relationship, it shouldn’t be a problem to be positive unless the outbreaks become too severe. If you do ending up having an outbreak, see your doctor for medication to help manage the symptoms.

      I know this sounds crazy, but try to enjoy your vacation. Maybe the change of scenery will help you not think about this too much. Your brain will adjust to diagnosis in time if you let yourself grieve. When you get back from your vacation you let yourself be sad when you need to. It is a loss and it takes time to adjust. Take care.

  16. i have just contracted the virus , sigh. based on what i have read my life will change forever . right now am scared ;am going through a denial processs. During my researh i read abt dynamiclear; i hope i get to use that saw very good rewiews on that, right now am using Acyclovir. Am only 24 my sex life is done really , i dont feel like myself. I need help, i text an old girld frnd of mine today, she just became a nurse. i told her i wanted a frnd , a best frnd because i have never had 1 before. i wonder what my futur will be like now. i just started my professional career.

    • Well luckily your professional career can still take off. It can sometimes help to distract yourself with your career, but unfortunately it can still take a while for your personal life to adjust. Hopefully the medication will help you manage your symptoms better and maybe making some new friends and connecting with current friends will help you feel better as well. Thanks for reading and sharing your story. Take care of yourself.

  17. i have herpes type 2 i am taking antiviral medicines, and i had an outbreak 15 days back and the sores are gone 5 days back and today i noticed some new pimples on my thing. is it possible to have these symptoms too early. ? plz help..

    • It is uncommon to have outbreaks that close together, especially if you are taking medication. I would double check with a doctor if you are unsure. Hopefully it is just some residual irritation, but definitely check with a doctor if you can.

  18. I recently shaved ‘down there’. I’m now covered in bumps, but when I looked up pictures of herpes it looks remarkably similar. Is it possibly that my razor irritation just looks like herpes? Should I be scared? I haven’t had sex in 8 months now, in theory I would have noticed this a long time ago, right?

    • You most likely only have razor burn or possible ingrown hairs due to shaving. This is why a lot of people wax instead of shave. Although, just so you know, the herpes virus can lay dormant for a long time before the first outbreak. So just because you haven’t had sex in a few months doesn’t rule out the fact that you may still have an STI. You can get tested for the herpes virus to know for sure, but most likely it is due to shaving since your skin can be very sensitive.

  19. Hi,

    I had sex with a girl twice in last two weeks at a gap of a week. Today it’s exactly the second week from the day when he first had sex. Once it was protected and once unprotected. Although I didn’t cum inside her when it was unprotected. Yesterday, she came to my house and told me that her ex told her that he has genital herpes. She was with her ex for 8 months on and off and they broke off last fall which means it’s almost 8 months since she broke off with him. She herself doesn’t know if she has herpes and is going to get tested soon. She told me that she never had any symptoms and never had any OB’s. She also told me that she never noticed any symptoms of herpes or any OB’s on her ex when she was with him, but I think her ex had it when they were together.

    I am really freaked out right now. I am waiting for her to get tested and see what her results come out. I am myself planning to visit a doc soon. I haven’t had any symptoms or OB yet and I read everywhere that it doesn’t show in the blood that you are suffering from HSV-2 so early after been exposed to the virus. It takes around 3-4 months to develop antidotes and come in your blood test.

    I have a really f*****d up time since last night she broke this news to me. I am stressed, sad, mad at myself and really worried. I have been reading, reading and reading about Herpes and HSV-1,2 since she broke this news to me. I am like a perfect healthy guy. The last thing I want is to have an incurable STD for life long. I have never fooled around with anyone sexually. This was the first time and I guess I might pay the prize for that :). I am like really emotionally overwhelmed right now. I read through your blog and through your all replies, Becca. You seems like a learned person on this issue. I would like to ask few questions to you.

    1)Is it possible she is not even infected? I mean she was with a HSV-2 infected guy for 8 months and was obviously sexually active. But she never noticed symptoms on him while she was together which means they would have sexual intercourse when the guy didn’t have any OB’s, and it’s been like 8 months they broke off and she hasn’t had any symptoms of herpes or OB’s. (I will come to know whether she actually is or not in couple of days anyway and I hope she is not :))

    2)In the worst situation if she is infected, what are my chances to have infected during those two sexual encounters, keeping all the facts and things in mind? She never had any symptoms or OB’s, and I haven’t had any symptoms yet.

    Thanks in advance and I really appreciate what you are doing here. Spending your valuable time to clear people’s doubts and educating them.

    • She is HSV-2 positive. I guess I am screwed. She had strep last year and was admitted to hospital. They ran bunch of tests and it came out that she was positive. Doctor wanted to follow up with her, but she never went back to follow up because she felt better. Today she went and found out that she was tested positive for HSV-2 .

      • Sorry to hear she is positive for HSV-2. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you’ll be infected. I would wait a few more weeks and then get tested to know for sure. Then wait 3-6 months and get tested again. If you come out negative at that point I would no longer worry. Not everyone will become infected after having sex one time with someone infected. It is possible, but less likely if she has never had an outbreak because that is when it is most risky (and right after an outbreak when infected skin cells are still shedding). I’m glad she was honest enough to tell you at least so you can get tested before passing it on to anyone else. Hang in there and be safe in the future even if you come out negative for HSV.

    • Hi Becca. I got tested yesterday which was 3 weeks after I last had sex (and 4 weeks after I first had it first) with that girl. It came out to be negative.

      I will test again after 3 months, but if I was just wondering that if I actually got infected the blood test should have shown antibodies in this blood test, correct? I think 3-4 weeks are sufficient time for antibodies to show in the blood test, as the symptoms, if someone shows any, usually show within 3-14 days after you get infected which means your body should start making antibodies during that time itself, right?

      The test results are a huge relief for me. I believe that I am not infected after the results. I hope I come negative again after 3 months when I get tested again.

      I really appreciate the work you are doing Becca. This experience has taught me a lot. I had a horrible last two weeks. I went through a lot of mental and emotional stress. I guess I can now take a sigh of relief. 🙂

      • Yes, you are correct. Your body should have been making antibodies already if you were infected. You should rest easy, but I suggest getting tested again in a couple of months just to be 100% positive.

  20. hi i was wondering how contagious is herpes before a first outbreak. I’ve only had one partner but she’s had more. She had her outbreak 3 days after i had last kissed her. She then tested positive for hsv1. I’m going to get tested just to be sure, but I was just wondering what my chances are. Thank you so much.

    • It is hard to know. You can still contract HSV even when someone isn’t having an outbreak, although it is less likely. The best way to know for sure is to be tested. It is possible that you are negative for HSV, but only a test will confirm that.

      • Thanks for the response. Is there any way to tell how long the virus has been in someone when they get tested? To know maybe who they got it from.

      • As far as I know there is no way to know how long the virus has been in your system and it is very hard to know who gave it to who.

  21. Hello, I recently noticed some blisters in my genital region. I went to the doctor the next morning to get tested. Unfortunately, the blisters had “popped” and cultures should could not be taken. Instead they drew blood. The blood test for HSV1 IGG was 0.19 (negative specimen) but the blood test for HSV2 IGG was 1.12 (positive specimen.

    I have been with the same person for the last 10 months, and just prior to us starting to date she had been tested and came back negative in both accounts. I understand that blood tests measure antibodies, does that give the potential for a false positive and that these blisters were actually from something else?

    On a side note they gave me the same medicine (doxycycline) that I had when I got bit by a deer tick (to avoid lyme disease) anything there?


    • Thanks for your comment. First of all, not sure about the medicine and what that means to be honest. Second, I would definitely have your girlfriend get tested again. I know she was negative before you started dating, but she may be positive now. That may confirm for you that you do have it. Were you tested before you started dating? It is possible that the virus could have been dormant all this time. It is hard to know for sure how you got it because it doesn’t always present with an outbreak right away. Also, I have heard of false positives. If you are willing to wait over a month and then get tested again, that may confirm to you the diagnosis or relieve you of your fears if it did come back negative. Good luck!

  22. I was tested and my doctor called me and sayed i came back positive for HSV-1 i had a cold sore during the time i was tested.. do you think maybe that’s why i came back positive for it? or am i just getting my hopes up? I’m really scared this isn’t what i wanted for myself. I don’t want to be telling myself lies

    • Thanks for your comment. If your doctor said you are positive, it is most likely that you do have HSV-1 which does cause cold sores near your mouth. If you are in doubt, go get tested again to be sure. In the meantime, if you have a cold sore, don’t kiss or perform oral sex during that time and a few days after it has healed because that is when the virus is most easily spread. Always use protection anyway when performing any sexual act.

      • thank you And dO you think that’s why i came back positive ? Or do they only call if it’s down there ? They didn’t say but they are going to do tests soon to be sure

      • HSV-1 can occur on the mouth and in the genital region. HSV-2 can only occur in the genital region. If you have HSV-1 the outbreaks are less severe and less often, although this is not always the case. HSV-1 most often occurs as a cold sore near your mouth. The cold sore you had was most likely due to the HSV-1 virus. Make sure you also get tested for HSV-2 to be sure you don’t also have that virus as well. They are a little different, so I recommend doing a little more research and asking your doctor more questions if you are still unsure about your diagnosis.

  23. Hi Becca,
    I just found out that I been diagnosed with HV-2. My current partner thought he was completely clean, since he got tested about 4 months ago. Unfortunately, the tests were only covering a small array of STI’s and STD’s…which resorted to him being unaware that he might have had a different condition…turns out he has HV-2 but never showed any signs….I even checked him thoroughly and nothing…I was amazed how sneaky they are…but I ended up getting my first outbreak 3 days after intercourse…and man was it painful…luckily I was on top of it and made sure it was clean and it healed up in a week and a half. When I first heard the news I was in disbelief and could not believe this was happening to me…I’ve only had 3 partners in my life since age 18 and I am 23…I am in a serious relationship with my current partner and he and I have a very amazingly strong bond…he has been extremely supportive and understanding about everything, and we are deff not letting this get in the way of our love. My only concern since now that we both have it, how will this affect our intimate times together? Will the virus continue to spread to other regions of the body if in contact with an outbreak or in general? What could we do to remain safe about this new condition? I want to marry this man and we plan on having children. What tips is there to help us through our new condition? Any advice will do wonders 🙂 Thank you Becca!

    • Thanks for sharing your story. I’m glad you and your boyfriend are being supportive though all of this. That really helps. First of all, HSV-2 won’t spread beyond your genital region. Only HSV-1 occurs near the mouth and sometimes the genitals. HSV-2 will only get in the way of your sex life when you have an outbreak. It may be too painful to have sex if you have open sores. If your outbreaks are often and pretty painful, I would recommend going on medication to suppress them so it doesn’t interfere as often with your sex life. Other than that, it shouldn’t harm your sex life. You can no longer spread the virus since both of you are now positive. So you can use condoms to prevent pregnancy, but they won’t do much good for anything else at this point. You both have what each other has. When planning to have kids make sure you let your doctor know about your HSV-2. They will not let you deliver a baby vaginally if you have an outbreak at the time of birth. Other than that, I don’t believe it can harm the fetus, but please ask your doctor to make sure you know all the facts. Hope this helps!

  24. Thank you so much Becca! You have been extremely helpful! It was very informative and a bit relieving to know I can still have a great love life with him. I know you mentioned that HSV-2 can’t spread beyond the genital region, but if you don’t have an outbreak on your genitals and your partner enjoys oral, would it be safe for us to perform it on one another? I’m sorry if this is a bit bluntly written, but I need to know what precautions to take. But seeing how Type 2 isn’t the one that spreads beyond the genital region I don’t see it being a problem. And as for children I will deff speak to my doctor about my condition before getting nearly close to giving birth 🙂 Thank you again Becca! You’ve are a joy to speak to!! 🙂

    • I’m glad I could help. As for oral sex, since you both are positive for HSV-2 you should be okay when you aren’t having an outbreak. HSV-2 won’t spread to your mouth. Please double check that neither of you are positive for HSV-1 because that will spread to the facial area.

  25. Hi There…so yes I have herpes and I have both kinds. I have had it for many years like 22. I am not sure where I got it but it has had a impact on my life. I stayed in a abusive marriage and tried to make it work because I didnt want to deal with dating as someone with Herpes.

    How I am 45 and single trying to date and find someone again and its so hard. I am not sure when to tell the person I have Herpes but after some thought I have decided to just tell them upfront before I even go on a first date. No reason to waste my time or theirs.

    Its hurtful to be rejected because I have Herpes but on the other hand I don’t think I want to date someone who can’t be accepting of imperfections as we all have them.

    In some ways I am glad that I got Herpes because it changed how I deal with my sex life. I am now very careful about safe sex….lets be honest Herpes is nothing compared to HIV and what a blessing it is that I don’t have HIV.

    If the day comes that I find someone I want to have as a Lover before I have sex with them we will both need to have current tests done. I am not going to risk my health and even then sex must be with a condom.

    Here is the crazy thing “I am so sick of feeling bad and less than because I have Herpes” I am going to deal with it same as my asthma or allergies….I have Herpes and so what???? Its part of who I am and its made me a more careful and understanding person. Therefore I don’t need anyone in my life who would reject me because of a illness that I can’t change.

    There is a lot of Power in Honesty and owning who you are and Herpes don’t make me who I am…being a good loving honest person makes me who I am.

    God Bless, Amy

    • Amy, thanks so much for your comment. It was so encouraging to read and hopefully it will be helpful to others just coming to terms with their diagnosis. I appreciate your honesty. I’m so glad you shared your story. I hope you find that lucky person who deserves to be with someone like you!!

      • also this is very informative Becca because as it is most doctors pass off herpes as a not so serious thing so if there are people who have better information or would like to answer peoples question make your own blog just saying

  26. hello, becca, i’ve been reading through this whole page and i relate, i was diagnosed last week, i was in shock, im doing a little better, but im still very scared. but im also very confused to what i do now, my doctor gave me a prescription of 1,000 mg valacyclovir (valtrex) as my very “first treatment” he said, i was to take it for 10 days. now my 10 days are done but now im confused to what i do now about it? he gave me another prescription in paper to hold onto and told me that if i were to have and when i have a break out within the year or so, to take the prescription he gave me for about 5 days, and to go back and see him for another one if i were to keep having out breaks during the year or so. my thing is do i just stop taking these pills? ive read on everything or mostly everything there is to know about herpes so i do know that i can have a certain treatment, but im extreamly confused to weather i just let it be now, or keep taking valtrex or whatever it is im suppose to be taking to keep everything under minimum risk. im very frustrated and confused and dealing with this all at once, can you please help?

    • Hey Josh, I’m not sure if you are supposed to take Valtrex all the time or only as soon as you have an outbreak. Maybe ask your doctor if there is treatment that you take all the time, or if it is only for outbreaks. If you go onto herpes.com there is a lot of other information for treatment as well. Here is some info I copied from the herpes.com website on valtrex.
      (valacyclovir hydrochloride) is the hydrochloride salt of L-valyl ester of the antiviral drug acyclovir (Zovirax® Brand, GlaxoSmithKline).
      An F.D.A. approved therapy for the treatment of recurrent genital herpes and shingles. You must get a prescription from your health care provider for Valtrex.

      A recent clinical study proved that VALTREX, when taken once daily, can significantly reduce the risk of spreading genital herpes.

      VALTREX is not a replacement for practicing safer sex.

      If you are taking VALTREX to reduce the risk of spreading genital herpes to your partner, there are a few important things you still need to do:
      Do not have sexual contact with your partner when you get an outbreak or think you are about to get an outbreak and always use a condom when you have sex, even between outbreaks.

      Important Information About VALTREX®

      There is no cure for herpes. Even with treatment, it may be possible to spread herpes.
      When daily VALTREX is used to reduce the risk of spreading genital herpes, still practice safe sex.
      It is not known if VALTREX reduces the risk of spreading genital herpes in same sex couples.
      Do not take more or less of Valtrex or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor. Use this medication as soon as possible after symptoms appear.
      VALTREX is intended for healthy adults. To avoid a potentially serious complication, tell your doctor if your immune system is not normal because of advanced HIV disease, bone marrow or kidney transplant.
      Patients with kidney problems may have a higher chance of side effects or more kidney problems.
      Elderly patients have a higher chance of certain side effects.
      Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding.

      Side Effects

      Common side effects are headache, nausea, vomiting, sore throat, abdominal pain, upset stomach, diarrhea, constipation or dizziness.
      If you have more severe side effects like blood in your urine, confusion, a rash, fever, itching, or jaundice, call your doctor immediately.

  27. I have read every comment. I am older. Have had only three sexual partners. Finally found a really good guy. After living alone and finding someone great, we dated and I had unprotected sex for the first time. After six months, we went on a vacation and I had a extremely horrible outbreak of genital herpes. Prior to that, he asked me if I changed the laundry detergent or some different soap wash. I said no. HE was experiencing HIS mild form of the breakout. Long story short. I contracted this disease and almost DIED. I was in Intensive care in philly. No on knew what was wrong with me. I wound up with spinal menningitis…Meningio-radiculitus. It took the docs four days to figure it out. Wound up with an aneurysm and lost bladder control, bowel function and the use of my right leg. It took me six months to recover.

    Bottom line. Everyone is different. Most of you are talking about Herpes Simples I. But viruses change DNA all the time. Perhaps, since I never had a lot of partners, my body did not adapt to this virus. All the young medical students, residents thought I was just old and crazy. The attendings and some very reputable docs could not figure this out. But finally, we did and I am finally getting back to normal

    So, I am just writing, because I am going through another outbreak. Not nearly as sever, but it scares me. Just food for thought.

    • Sorry to hear about how bad things have been for you. I think that is extremely rare to have such a reaction to the herpes virus which is why the doctors were probably so confused. I hope this outbreak is a lot less severe for you, but I can understand why you are nervous. Thanks for sharing your story and hopefully it will help those out there that are not infected yet to be more careful when they have sex. The whole point of my post it to bring more awareness about the reasons for safe sex. Take care of yourself and thanks again for sharing.

  28. Finally, there has been many posts here that you are not accurate about. Yes, both Herpes I and Herpes II can cause a cross infection. Extremely rare. But if you are going to engage in oral sex, yes, absolutely you can get both in your eyes. This is devastating.

    • Thanks so much for sharing your information. I’ll be the first to admit I don’t know everything about herpes. I am not a medical doctor, I’m a counselor. I mostly focus on the psychological effects of herpes with students. I have asked a lot of questions and done a lot of research in order to help others. I have never heard of genital herpes (HSV2) getting on the face or eyes. I would definitely look more into that because HSV1 can show up on the genitals but I’ve never heard it being the other way around. I will look into that and thanks for sharing what you know.

  29. Hello, we both have H2, and she has a few bumps on her thigh, can we still have sex?…I never had a outbreak and dont wanna get one now….But I keep reading as long as I have it, it wont spread….But the real; question is? If I havent had any outbreaks, having sex with her with bumps on her thigh, can that trigger me to break out? thanks your awesome 🙂 and Id like to say to people that are scared out there….Truly, if anything If you have herpes, now you have to be protected at all times and eat better and healthy….No big deal dont fret!

    • The only reason I think people avoid having sex during a break out is because it can be painful. If you weren’t already infected I would definitely say no because that is when it is more easily transmitted. However, since you are already both infected, I don’t think it will cause you have a break out. That has more to do with your immune system from what I’ve learned. However, to be sure, please ask your doctor. I’ve gotten my information from doctors and websites, but this is not something I’ve read about or asked before so I can’t tell you for sure that it won’t cause you to have an outbreak.

  30. Hello Becca,
    First, I’m must say this has been the most informative site I have come across regarding this subject of discussion. I’ve learned so much from reading the dialogue you have consistently held with your audience. Kudos to you!
    Now my sob story….

    Approx 2 weeks ago, I had sex with a woman (vaginal and oral) with a woman who told me after the fact that she indeed has HSV2. I must note that was ironic because 2 months prior, me and her had a discussion about another female friend of mine (who remained nameless for the sake of her privacy) who finally revealed to me why she had not been in any meaningful relationships sincemive known her (she has HSV2). If only I had been born a mind reader I wouldn’t be in this mess smh. When I mentioned it to her, I was actually asking her (the sex partner) how would she console someone who revealed such an intimate detail and she gave a pretty generic “I’d be there but I truly don’t understand” type of answer…

    Anywho, my world felt like it was literally crashing down around me when she told me her status after the fact…I lost my mother and my job in 2011 and now I may be infected with an incurable disease in 2012 (what a difference 2 years make huh?)…As for the details of the encounter it went like this: She performed unprotected oral sex on me and I returned the favor. We had protected intercourse thereafter. The night she told me the truth, I actually went to her home with a loaded gun on the verge of doing me something id regret far more than this. My sister talked to me in the phone the entire time I sat in my car outside her home until I eventually left…The anger I felt and still feel is like nothing I’ve ever experienced in my 28 years…

    Moving on, since she potentially altered my life as I knew it, I felt she should bare witness to the affects of her piss poor reasoning and decision to not inform me of her “situation” therefore I made her go to the clinic with me. The nurse practitioner was highly informative as she’s seen and dealt with herpes cases for 40 some odd years. She did a visually analysis (pretty difficult since there was nothing there) and concluded that I should wait 12 weeks to get the blood test done. As the days have passed, I’ve grown more confident in the facts I was presented with (the partner takes acyclovir daily, has not had an outbreak since December of 2011, and of course the condom use). PLUS the stats I’ve read about F to M transmission rates being much lower than the other way around especially when preventative measures have been taken, I “tricked” myself into forgetting about it (at least for a few months)…That was until today…

    I’ve read about symptoms (and lack there of) and one that stood out to me is tingling sensations near your anus or lower back pain. Here’s the thing, I’ve had a few boils in my day (more recently, one near my taint area)… Oddly enough, today, I’ve experienced some “throbbing” near that area today since this morning that has yet to subside. I’m back to square one as far as being worried because of this situation with this “partner” that I may be in for the subsequent manifestation of an outbreak. I pray this isn’t the case and even try to rationalize it as a potential boil on the horizon (it feels like its a boil coming but these symptoms are errirly similar to HSV2)…I don’t know if my mind is playing tricks on me (our brains tend to trick us into experiencing things that we really aren’t) or am I about to be in for a world of hurt *sigh*

    And to think, this encounter happened a day before my bday and I was to,d about this the very day I finally informed the woman I’ve had a crush on for nearly 15 years about how I truly felt about her in grave detail…Life’s a trip sometimes :-/
    My question is: Is it common to experience such symptoms in an area that frankly had no contact with the potentially “infected” area? Seems odd I’d feel discomfort “back there” ya know? Thanks in advance 🙂

    • It sucks that this is happening right before your birthday. It is also too bad that she wasn’t honest with you before you had sex. Even though you were somewhat careful and she wasn’t having an outbreak, it still would have been better for you know and then decide if you still wanted to have sex or not.

      It is natural to be nervous about the situation when you aren’t sure what it is you’re dealing with. Hopefully you aren’t having an outbreak. You’ll know for sure within a day or two. HSV is usually more than one sore (or boil). They look more like blisters that then scab over. If you really want to be sure, try to get into a doctor so they can either tell by looking at it and if they can they will take a biopsy of the area. They could also give you a blood test to know for sure as well. That may help calm your nerves. You said you were waiting for 12 weeks after you may have been exposed. But, if you think it is an outbreak, the doctor will be able to tell when you go in. You only need a blood test if you aren’t having any symptoms because they have no other way to know. Good luck and try to have a Happy Birthday anyway.

  31. hi i have become infected with hsv2 an although i had my first outbreak ever in my whole life i got it in the beginning of January i went to the doctor had the biopsy and it came back positive for hsv2 i got the medication and my outbreak took about one week to heal but two weeks to completely heal and ever since January i haven’t gotten an outbreak i live in fear because it was so painful i couldn’t walk to my classes being that i am a college student and it was my first outbreak ever. the doctor did not really explain anything she said that everything was going to be OK and that i only needed to worry if i had constant outbreaks and i haven’t so i have so many unanswered questions. question 1? even if i have hsv2 is it possible for someone to get infected if i share cups? : question 2? even if i do not get an outbreak ever in my life how do i keep my sexual partner from ever getting infected? Question 3? can my sexual partner get infected even if i don’t have visual side effects of an outbreak? Question 4? why is that i went to the doctor again and my blood work came out negative to hsv2 but i had clearly gotten an outbreak 3 months earlier? Question 5? how would my second outbreak ever look like and how would i know if its an outbreak? question 5? even if i am not taking any medication to suppress hsv2 can i still take the medication even if i am not having an outbreak? question 6? i am going to nursing school can hsv2 affect my career path would my blood test fail me to even get accepted to my nursing classes? question 7? i get constant head aches is this due to the hsv2? question 8? whenever i eat carbohydrates i feel a tingling sensation but no outbreak is it safe for me to eat any bread can whole wheat cause an outbreak? question 9? i do not plan on ever having sex can i still get an outbreak? and finally question 10? can my family get infected in any way. thanks i hope you can answer my questions but i really want to know i want to protect my family and people in my surroundings. I don’t want to get hurt so i want to know the facts before i even decide on nursing school Thanks

    • Thanks for your comment. I don’t know if I can answer all your questions, but I’ll do my best. 1. You can’t pass HSV2 from mouth to mouth contact. That is HSV1. 2. You are most likely to transmit HSV during an outbreak, however, to protect your partner when having sex in between outbreaks, always use a condom or dental dam even during oral sex. Know that they can still get HSV even with protection, though the risk is much lower. 3. Yes, your partner can get infected even if you aren’t having an outbreak and even if you use protection there is still a risk, again it is much lower. 4. I can’t answer this question. Please ask your doctor about this one. 5. I answered this one a few comments ago. I am not sure if medication should be taken in between outbreaks, the information I read isn’t clear. There are other things to do with diet that may help suppress HSV. Please check out herpes.com for more info. 6. Having HSV2 should not affect your nursing career at all. 7. I’m not sure if your headaches are due to HSV, my thought is no, but I’m not sure. 8. I don’t think carbohydrates will cause you to have an outbreak, but please more info on how diet can help at herpes.com 9. Even if you don’t ever have sex again you can still have an outbreak. That has more to do with how your body reacts to the virus and your immune system, not your sexual activity. 10. Your family can not get infected. HSV2 is only transmitted by sexual contact with the genitals. HSV1 can be transmitted through kissing, so if you kissed your mom while having HSV1 they could become infected. But if you do not have HSV1, your family should be fine. I hope I answered your questions. Thanks again for reading and commenting.

  32. Hi, I recently found out I have HVS2. Also I am unsure who I caught it from. A guy while i was passed out drunk had sex with me without my knowledge. I found this out when I started showing symptoms and went to the doctor. I called the guy which I was intimate with and asked if he had anything. He replied no. I called my friend and found out the guy slept with me while I was drunk. The guy which I am intimate with by choice, got tested and received positive for HVS1. We have had oral sex. I was wondering if i could have gotten it from him? Also if their was any way of finding out if i got it from him or the guy while I was drunk.

    • It is hard to know exactly how you got HSV2 unless you have had very limited partners. IT sucks that someone did take advantage of you while you were drunk. You may have gotten it from him, even if he won’t admit it. If your current partner only has HSV1 and you have come up positive for HSV2, then you didn’t get it from him. HSV1 & 2 are two different types of herpes virus. Be careful though, because you can get HSV1 from kissing, oral sex and other sexual contact. You can’t get HSV2 from kissing, but you can get it from oral sex and other forms of sexual contact.

  33. hiii… becca
    i m vishal from india..
    i have a genital herpes but its not in present, 8 months ago…
    my skin is fine and clear so can i have sex using condom? is it safe???
    plzzz reply i m waiting

    • If you have genital herpes, there is always a small chance you could infect someone else when you have sex with them. However, using condoms reduces the risk as much as possible. Never have sex during or right after an outbreak because that is when you are the most contagious. When you aren’t having an outbreak it is safer to have sex, but not 100% safe, even with a condom. Please let your sexual partners know the potential risks involved before having sex with them. Hope this answers your question.

  34. I was diagnosed with HSV2 just yesterday and I am worried that if i ever have kids in the future they will have the same problem, what is the likelihood of that happening?

    • It is very unlikely this will happen unless you gave birth vaginally while having an outbreak. Let your OB/Gyn know you’ve been diagnosed with HSV2. That way they can plan for a c-section and you won’t have to worry about whether or not you have an outbreak at the time of birth. Many people with HSV2 have gone on to have healthy kids with no problems. Hope this help ease your mind.

  35. Hi Becca, I went to the doctors in January because i had an outbreak down below but i never ever experienced cold sores, and i wasnt sure what it was but i was told it was more than likely herpes. I was given medication and they were gone within two weeks. Now that it is May, i have had swollen glands again this week and a really small outbreak again, and i am just back from my doctor who has told me that yes i more than likely have it. I am so shocked but sad at the same time, I am in a committed relationship for over a year now and i am afraid of losing her. He told me i should go to the clinic to get checked but i dont see the point when its another way of being told the same thing. My girlfriend does not have it, so she says, and has only had sex once before me but they used protection, i only had one sexual experience before her and used protection. I dont understand where it might have come from and how i have it. We dont use condoms but she is on the pill. I tried telling he and she seems shocked but kind of distant from me, tries to tell me we will be okay no matter the outcome, i havent told her its herpes just a possible sexual infection. My doctor thinks me and her should both get tested but i would hate to put her through thtat when she never has swollen glands or experienced an outbreak? and she told me if we were too get tested she wouldnt like to go together but separately, what does that tell me? i dont know what to do. I am in a state of depression, not sure should i even tell my parents but i really have no support or someone to open up to about this. I am only 19 and i feel like my life is over.

    • Hey John. It is very overwhelming when you are first diagnosed. I’m sure your girlfriend is also coping with the news and maybe isn’t reacting the way you would want her to. Try to give her some time to adjust. Just one thing, you stated that you’ve had unprotected sex with your girlfriend. It is very likely she also has herpes if that is what you’ve been diagnosed with. Some people never have any symptoms so they unknowingly pass it on to other sex partners. Even if you both used condoms with previous partners, it is still possible to contract herpes through any little break in your skin around the genital region (although it is a lot less likely). This is how one of you possibly got infected. The same can happen with HPV, which is why it is so common. This is why it is VERY important that you get retested and your girlfriend gets a blood test to confirm whether either of you have HSV 1 or HSV 2. You probably will never know who gave it to who. Because some people never have symptoms it can be hard to know who had it first. It is okay if you and your girlfriend go separately to get tested. She may feel a little overwhelmed herself and needs a little space and time to think. Don’t let this upset you too much. Try to be brave enough to undergo a blood test for confirmation of the diagnosis and encourage her to do the same. It is better to know what your dealing with than to be anxious wondering or in denial. I know it doesn’t feel like it now, but your life isn’t over. Hang in there, hopefully your outbreaks will be few and far between and hopefully your girlfriend, if she has it, never experiences symptoms at all. Take care of yourself.

  36. thank you that makes me feel a lot better. Im 19 now and dont plan to get pregnant until im a lot older, will that make a difference?

      • First, you will have HSV2 for the rest of your life. Waiting to have kids won’t change anything. Just make sure your doctor is aware so he/she can monitor the situation when it gets closer to the time you give birth. Second, if you want to have oral sex, use a dental dam (barrier), some people cut open an non-lubricated condom, between you and your partner. It will protect your partner from contracting HSV2. Use a condom when having sex. Never have sex during or right after any outbreaks. Have your partner get tested periodically to make sure he continues to be negative for HSV2. Good luck.

  37. Just found out yesterday I “have been exposed.” It was a positive result, but unsure if its type 1 or 2. Also my antibodies were so low. the blood results were confusing, even to the doctor, so I didn’t get any real answers. so the main thing that is bothering me now is fear. And anger. and just plain shock.

    I have tried my whole life to avoid being a f*ck up, but now that’s all people are going to see of me. I was dating the man who gave it to me, but we only slept together a handfull of times, he also got me pregnant and wanted me to have an abortion. He was never reliable anyway, so I agreed so we could be smart about everything. I get a call months later from his long-term girlfriend, who is also pregnant, exactly as far along as I would’ve been, and she’s the one who told me that she got herpes from him. Up until this point, the idea that I might have herpes never crossed my mind. I get routine STD tests every year. They’ve always come back negative.

    I don’t understand – if herpes is so common, why don’t they test for it?? When you say “give me the works, doc” I would think herpes would be included in those tests – but it’s not! They could greatly reduce these statistics if practices changed. Yes, it’s incurable, but the biggest problem (and their favorite stat to say) with spreading is that 90% of people who have herpes, don’t know they do, or are living in denial.

    I wish I could go back and change it. Truth is, I asked him if he was “clean”. And he lied to my face. And for him to knock two girls up and give them herpes at the same time (that I know of)? People like him should be locked up.

    I still have not had a single symptom to this day. I have sensitive skin, I get razor burn and ingrown hairs, I’ve had an abortion, moved states, broken up, been taking several hardcore antibiotics that have weakened my body, and still no symptoms.

    I almost called a suicide hotline yesterday. I feel like my life is not mine anymore. I will never be able to do the things I want to do. And ontop of my abortion secret, I now have to hide this from everyone too. (well, of course not family or sexual partners). Being called dirty from ex-boyfriends, having to tell my boyfriend that I just found out I have herpes… It’s so indescribable. The fear of not knowing when you’re gonna get a breakout, not being able to birth your children normally, wondering if they’ll be infected, wondering if you’ll ever be able to date again, or find love, or not be labeled as dirty….

    I want people to know they have to specifically ask to be tested for herpes. So many of my friends assume they get tested for it routinely. Girls should never believe a man when he says he’s clean (this is the second time a man has given me an STD after lying about it) . That condoms are NOT 100% effective for herpes. That even though you don’t have symptoms, you need to get tested. Don’t wait till you have a breakout, or a few weeks so you’re sure.

    Sounds like a horror story, but to finish it up, it happened to me, it can happen to anyone.

    • Thanks for sharing your experience. It will hopefully help others who may read it. I can understand how you feel that your life isn’t your own. Almost like it’s been hijacked out from under you. With some time you may feel differently and more in control of where your life is going. Don’t give up hope. Many people live with this diagnosis. They do go on to have fulfilling lives and healthy children. Just continue to take care of yourself and let this situation lead you to a place where you feel smarter and stronger instead of f***ed up.

  38. Hey. I always went the safe route with relationships. In December my girlfriend of a little over 3 years left me basically for someone else. I went through a month of depression and needed that “close” contact. I found someone on the internet and made an agreement to receive oral sex from them. I asked them if they were drug and disease free and they responded “yes”. After the act I felt extremely dirty. I have always held sex on a high level and have only had 2 sexual relationships (other than this incident) with long term partners. Two weeks later I noticed the outbreak and got tested. It was positive. I tried having some fun like all my friends who have multiple, unprotected sex partners and I’m the un lucky one. I already felt alone losing the love of my life and now I am basically a lepor of society. I have been going through severe depressed mood swings dealing with my break up and diagnosis. The only thing that kills the lonliness are drugs and alcohol. I grew up fast and went through my partying stage early, but this is different. I use substances to forget how I feel now. To a bad extent. A few weeks ago I used so much cocaine that I thought I was overdosing. And I was fine with that. I wanted to pass because of the lonliness and guilt of passing this on to others, not to mention the embarrassment. I drank here and there and smoke marijuana medicinally. I have found myself abusing marijuana, snorting cocaine, doing extasy, drinking heavily, taking prescription narcotics, and animal sedatives. It’s so hard receiving attention from girls and I have to force myself to be an a**hole so nothing happens. I can’t live a normal life and I’m only 24 and my career is finally taking off. I have come to terms with my substance abuse and have kicked everything except for the couple social beers occasionally. I have also come to terms that I will always be alone from now on. I guess its my pride, but I am to embarrassed to tell any girl about my condition. It sucks. But whatever. Some were meant to stand alone. I hope for some leaniancy. How possible is it to transmit this virus during normal sex with no outbreaks?(protected vaginal sex and un protected oral sex) Also how possible is it to transfer it to yourself from tour genitals to your face? I have been an absolute clean freak since my diagnosis. Any info would help. Thank you. Great site by the way.

    • The diagnosis of herpes is a tough one to come to terms with. I do know from talking to many people that you do eventually accept it and eventually a person comes into your life that you’re willing to talk about it with rather than lose. There are a lot of people with herpes that do find and get into happy and healthy relationships, so don’t give up yet. As for your questions, I’ll do my best to answer with the knowledge that I have. First, it is possible to transmit herpes without any outbreaks. This is why so many people get infected. If you could see the sores on your partner, you wouldn’t have had sex with them. Some people are unlucky and get infected just after one time. Other people may come in contact with someone with herpes but still be negative themselves. It is a mystery I can’t solve. All I know is that you are far less likely to become infected if you use protection even during oral sex and your partner is not currently having an outbreak. It is also more contagious just after an outbreak because of dead skin cells shedding that may have the active virus on them. So always wait a few days after an outbreak before having any sexual contact even with protection. As for transmitting it to yourself, if you have HSV2 it is impossible. Gential herpes only occur on the genitals. However, HSV1 occurs on the face and the genitals. If you have HSV1 in your body, you may have a cold sore on your mouth or on your genitals. Washing your hands isn’t going to matter. It is already in your body and it will be random where it shows up during an outbreak, although it shows up mainly near the mouth. Keep in mind you can still get HSV2 through oral sex because it can enter the bloodstream through your mouth, even though you won’t have an outbreak there. Only HSV1 can spread through kissing. HSV2 will require some kind of genital/sexual contact. Both can be transmitted through oral sex, vaginal sex or anal sex. Hope this helps you out! Take care of yourself.

      • What about bodily fluids, such as semen? I’m assuming yes since there is a high white blood cell count. Thank you for your earlier response.

      • I’m not exactly sure what you’re asking, but I’m assuming that you are asking whether you can spread herpes through semen. You can’t reinfect yourself, but you can infect others. This is why it is important to use protection to minimize the risk. I hope that helps. It isn’t just semen and bodily fluids that spread HSV, it is also spread through infected skin cells during or right after an outbreak. That is why condoms don’t always work, but only minimize the risk.

  39. hiii… becca
    i m rashmi from india..
    i have a genital herpes but herpes is not present in body 1 year ago…
    my skin is fine and clear but now i m pregnent so can i get a safe dilivery and my baby get a herpes???
    plzzz reply i m waiting

    • Hi Rashmi. I’m sorry to hear that you have the herpes virus. If you are pregnant, let your doctor know that you are positive for HSV. They won’t want you to deliver naturally if you have a break out during the time your baby is born. If you do have a break out, they will take the baby by cesarean section so your baby won’t become infected. They may decide to schedule a c-section no matter what, but it depends on your doctor. By knowing about your diagnosis and letting your doctor know, your baby will be fine.

  40. I was recently diagnosed with HSV2 and i am only 19, still living with my parents. I was with a Maori guy for about 2 months, he didnt know that he had herpes but he infected me. Now my parents are constantly calling me every dirty name they can think of (whore, slut etc) and its mostly because my parents have this stupid idea that all islanders have aids, how can i get through to them? im not a slut!

    • It is unfortunate that your parents are being so judgmental and hurtful to you. If they already have preconceived ideas about islanders, then there probably isn’t much you can do to get through to them. Just try to stay positive even though it’s hard. You know you aren’t a slut or a whore, but you may not be able to convince your parents. Hopefully in time they will get over it and it will be easier to be confident in yourself when you aren’t living with them and having to listen to their negativity. Use your energy to become independent as soon as possible, rather than fight with your parents to get them to change their mind about you.

  41. Hi i am 17 years old and have HVS i don’t know who to deal with it or exactly what to do the virus alone is driving me crazy aside from the fact my uncles almost died moms been trying to kill herself gramma dealing with cancer and was hustlening to try and help support my house untill i found out my brother was snitching to the police. I was also untill very recently doing large amounts of cocane on a daily bases to cope with my life. Now that i am trying not to cope with drugs and i am clean I truely do not know how to deal with my life I feel pretty pathetic anymore i also recently tried killing myself by crashing a car but was obviously not succesfull and i am trying to fight it but i really just want my life to end. I dont know what to do

    • It sounds like you have a lot that is bringing you down. It is hard to keep going and think positive when it seems like so much is against you. I don’t know if I can help with only this short message. I would encourage you to seek help as soon as possible. Wanting to end your life is really serious. I have a link on my blog called Band Back Together. It has a lot of helpful information for people who are struggling and you can share your own story and get some feedback. I also have links on suicide prevention and handling depression. Please seek this help out because you are too young to give up. It is hard to do it on your own, but if you can reach out for help, you might just find someone is willing to be there to get you through this hard time. Take care of yourself and please click on the links on my site that could help you more than I can right now.

  42. i have HSV1 and i dont know much about it, i have a few questions.
    1. can my boyfriend perform oral sex on me? even after an outbreak?
    2. how do i tell a person that i have herpes?
    3. in the future when i decide to have a child, am i able to get pregnant without infecting my partner?
    4. im a strong believer in God, a few years ago i had a brain tumour but that just brought me closer to God. now, after finding out that i have HSV i feel like im being punished, i feel like there are so many bad people out there that have it easy but im a good person and bad things keep happening to me! how am i supposed to deal with this? i understand that this would be a hard question to answer but any advice will be appreciated 🙂

      • Thanks for your comment. First, your boyfriend can perform oral sex with a dental dam, which is a barrier to protect him from becoming infected. I wrote post about how to tell someone you love that you have HSV. Hopefully that post will answer your question. As for your third question, I have to say I’m not sure. Some people may not become infected even if they have unprotected sex, but it is definitely a possibility that your partner will become infected if you have unprotected sex to become pregnant. I would definitely ask your ob/gyn how to minimize this risk. I know some medications will reduce the risk of spreading herpes and it is less likely to become infected if you aren’t having an outbreak. However, there will always be a risk of infecting someone else. As for your last question. It is hard to deal with the fact that life isn’t fair. It is why a lot of people have faith in God. The world we live in is harsh. A lot of people take comfort that after they die they will be rewarded in heaven for the suffering they had to endure here on earth. They also take some comfort knowing that those that hurt others without remorse will suffer in hell after they die. A lot of people with faith in God believe that things will even out after death, because we all know that this world doesn’t always reward those who do the right thing. Good luck with everything in the future.

  43. Thank you so much Becca, your answers did give me a little comfort. I have been with my boyfriend for 2 months and we have had sex twice, i havent told him that i have herpes, we use a condom and when he wants to give me oral sex i just tell him i dont like people touching me down there… stupid excuse i know, but he seems to believe it lol. im terrified of what the outcomes will be if i tell him, i thought i could keep this up for a few months and then tell him when the relationship gets more serious, is this not a good idea?

    • It depends. Waiting isn’t always a bad thing, but once you have sex you are putting him at risk. It would be better for him to know and decide if he really wants to take the risk. It will be extremely difficult because it is a very real possibility that he could reject you. It really sucks but it is better for him to find out this way rather than him getting tested and finding out he has been infected without knowing you had it. Also, give him some time to digest the information if you do tell him. He may react badly at first, but then come around after he has thought it through. Dating with an STI is extremely difficult, but not impossible. Some people can deal with the fact that you have HSV better than others. Hopefully he is one of the good guys, but if he isn’t, don’t give up looking for the ones who are.

  44. Can you catch herpes from a makeup lip brush? I saw the Sephora lady blot the brush on a paper towel, but I don’t know if she cleaned it with solution before she applied it on my lips. I’m paronoid now. I woke up with a swollen upper lip , but I don’t know if it’s just allergies.

    • I really have no idea if you can catch HSV 1 from a lip brush. I don’t have all the facts on HSV 1 & 2 and all the ways it can be transmitted. The best way to know for sure is to go to the doctor to be tested for HSV. Or wait to see if a cold sore develops. I’m sure you just have allergies, but time will tell. Sorry I couldn’t answer your question more definitively.

  45. He claims his test came back clean. I have tested positive for HSV1 antibodies. I’ve been married 20 years with no prior positive test. Is this possible? Can this be acquired somehow without sex? I have never slept with anyone except my husband. Can I pass this on? How serious is this diagnosis from a health perspective? What do I do now? This is all new to me.

    • HSV1 is a sexually transmitted disease, but it is one that can be transmitted by face to face contact, kissing mostly. But also sometimes just from hugging someone and having the person’s mouth close to your cheek or mouth during the hug. A lot of children contract HSV1 from a positive parent or relative who may not realize they have HSV1. It can also be transmitted sexually, but just so you know, you could have contracted it without having sex. If you are positive, you can pass it on. You may want to do a little more research because I don’t know all the facts of how it affects you physically. HSV1 is serious, but the symptoms are usually a lot less severe than HSV2. HSV1 usually appears as a cold sore on the mouth. It is annoying, but it isn’t usually too painful and they don’t appear too often in most people. People with HSV2 usually have more severe outbreaks in the genital area and they appear more often. Some people don’t ever have any symptoms appear with both HSV1 & HSV2 which is why they unknowingly pass it on. Definitely go to herpes.com to look up more specific information that may put your mind at ease. Take care.

  46. I dont yet know if i have the virus or anything, but i recently found the sores in my … genital area. Im fifteen and i am not at all sexually active, i havent even kissed yet. But reading this blog has scared me. I mean, what if i do have this virus and what if i am not ever really able to have that high school experience of dating and kissing. I dont want this to ever hold me back from anything and this possiblity of the virus is scaring me completely. I dint even know how to go about bring this up to my mother, its mortifying to even think about .

    • I can understand being scared, but it is entirely possible that you don’t have the herpes virus. If you aren’t sexually active, even oral sex or kissing, there is no way you could have contracted this virus. It could be possible that you have a cyst or an ingrown hair. It is hard to know. The herpes virus is usually a cluster of bumps that then break open and scab over. It is hard not to freak yourself out and at 15 you’ve probably never had a pelvic exam. If you are brave enough, maybe you could ask your mom to take you to the doctor. Otherwise, keep up your research and keep your eye on the sore to see what happens. Hopefully it isn’t anything and you’ll be fine.

  47. Hello, yesterday I found out I successfully autoinnoculated myself with HSV-1. I have my first cold sore ever right now and mistakenly thought it was a pimple, I had no idea since it was on my chin first. The boy I was dating kissed me and I let him perform oral sex in me. So my cold sore was transferred from my mouth to his mouth to my vagina. Talk about a rare case. So I have cold sores both places now lol. I’m just sad I could have avoided it so easily and been more careful. I’m worried about my future relationships, and being judged since there is such a taboo on genital herpes, even if it’s the cold sore kind!! I’m just wondering from people with the same thing if it gets better. I’m devastated and kicking myself because I literally gave myself genital herpes. I have support from m parents, but I’m so scared that every guy from now on will push me away. 😦

    • First of all, I don’t think you have genital herpes which is HSV2, HSV1 can be on the mouth or the genital area. It is usually less severe and doesn’t produce as many outbreaks. HSV2 only occurs in the genital region and isn’t transferred to the mouth. I would definitely get tested to be sure. I do know for some people it does get better and there are support groups online that could help you more with that question. However, make sure you know what you have before you worry too much. You may have a sore in both places for different reasons and be freaking yourself out for nothing.

  48. hi becky i have been to my doctor today and she has confirmed hsv2 i am in apsalute agony with it to i am 28 years old and feel like my world has just crummbled around me im well down in the dumps 😦 is there a support group where i can chat to others who have the same problems please get back to me

    • It is devastating to get this type of news. There are support groups online. Go to herpes.com and they will have some links to different support groups that may help you.

      • thanks hun the tabs the doc gave me have also gave me tummy ache 😦 can they know its herpes just by looking ? i have had no blood work done or swabs she just said yer u have it and sent me on my way :O

      • I would definitely have a blood test or culture done on the sores that you have to confirm what she saw in the office. She probably is right, but I’d want a test to confirm.

  49. hi today i found out i have herpes, the doctor told me not to worry that i had great immune system really healthy and that not to stress out about, im not alone, but my question is, that could my kids get herpes also if i have it, i have never experience any symtopns, first time i had a really bad headache , fever, vomitting, back pain, i was in the hospital for 4 days they made blood test, and thats how i found out but he didnt explain what kimd of stage of herpes. he just told me herpes, that maybe i already had it in my stage teen and that berly came out, i dont understand. im worried of my kids so worried crying, thinking all day, omg please help!

    • It is very scary to be diagnosed with something and not have all the details. Go back to your doctor and get confirmation about whether you have genital herpes, HSV 2, which is only sexually transmitted and your kids would be safe, or if you have HSV 1 which occurs on both the mouth or the genitals. This can be passed though kissing, especially if you have a cold sore on your lip at the time. It is highly unlikely that your kids are positive for HSV 1, but it doesn’t hurt to go back to your doctor and get more information. When you find out the diagnosis, go onto herpes.com and get more information about how it is transmitted to put your mind at ease about your children.

  50. I have had herpes since 2008 I was pregnant with my 2nd child at the time. My kids father gave it to me. I found out I had it b/c I had fevers n wasn’t eating. I was hurt confused n angry. I didn’t leave him b/c of the constant apologies he gave n also me being alone to raise two kids by myself n plus just the thought of giving this disease to somebody else. But even after 8yrs of being together he still remained to cheat. So now that I’m fed up n ready to move on I still have in the back of my head how can I b/c I’m scared of giving this to somebody else n what I don’t understand is how he freely having sex with whoever n they not catching it?! I don’t understand?? I don’t have alot of break outs they normally run once every four or five months or longer n when we were together Ieverytime we had sex I would normally have a breakout the next day the doctor has me on acyclovir 5pills each day once one occur. But it’s a secret that I have been keeping for four years now I do want to move on with my life but how and I will never confess my disease to a man unless he trying to marry me but I still have resentment towards my kids father not only for this but b/c 8yrs went by n I still didn’t get anything out of it but a constant broken heart and a disease for the rest of my life.

    • Thanks for sharing your story. It can be hard to move on when there is fear of anyone else accepting you. It is normal to be afraid. It sucks that your kids father isn’t faithful to you. It is also very possible that he has spread HSV to other women unfortunately. You would think having HSV would get him to be faithful, but a lot of people just don’t care. It will be hard to move on and let go of your anger. I would encourage to try to do both. Talking about it with someone confidentially (either a counselor or a trusted friend) can be helpful. There are chat rooms online as well that may help too. I wish I could tell you an easy way to move forward. It takes a lot of courage and belief that you do deserve better. I wish you the best.

  51. Becca I found out on my 20th birthday that i got herpes i was with the same boy for 4 years. but before i met him i got raped … and we ended up just a while ago breaking up were both 21 now . and Im so scared that i will never find any one that will love me. Im still me ! but im afraid others wont feel the same way. i did find an amazing guy and i felt like i was betraying him by not telling him i thought he would understand but he didnt … he left me and now i feel like there really is no hope .

    • It really does suck that one you have HSV and that the new person you met left you when he found out. That is devastating news and your self esteem is bound to take a hit. It is hard to have hope that others will be okay with your situation. Some will, some will not. Some will also be infected with HSV and it won’t be an issue. It is hard to be positive after a rejection. Give yourself some time. You are young and hopefully in time you’ll find the right person who can love and accept you no matter what.

  52. I am desperate. In January, I broke up with someone whom I thought was the love of my life. A few weeks later I found myself in the hospital with 6 IV’s in my arms. I was shocked and I had no clue why I kept throwing up, or why I couldn’t see, or why my head was hurting so much. The days prior to the hospitalization, I noticed a lot of headaches and chills. It felt like I always had the flu. It was weird. I noticed random fissures in my groin and cramps for months prior but every time my doctor checked it out, she just said it was a urine infection or dry skin. She never suspected herpes.

    When I arrived at the hospital, I got diagnosed with Mollarett’s Meningitis (herpes meningitis). I have HSV 2. All of those “urine infections,” cramps and weird fissures were actually outbreaks and I had no clue. I noticed these symptoms before but it never interrupted my sex life. I actually got tested for all STI’s (including herpes) when we first started dating so I felt secure with my sexual health. We weren’t using protection and he never got any outbreaks so I was certain I could not have herpes. I was wrong. I noticed symptoms about 6 months after we started having sex but disregarded it because they were so minor and didn’t look like the pictures on the internet. Little did I know that it was slowly turning into meningitis.

    When we broke up, I kept getting the “small symptoms” but the fevers, chills and headaches increased. I’ve been hospitalized twice (so far) for meningitis. The first time was 8 days (plus 3 weeks on IV treatment) and the second time was only 4 days (no IV treatment outside of the hospital). Each time, a lumbar puncture revealed that I have HSV-2. I told my ex what happened to me. He says “Herpes is no big deal. I’ve been getting cold sores ever since I was a kid.” So he is not getting tested for type 2. (I get the feeling he knew the whole time). I currently take oxycodone and valcyclovir 4 times a day (and a few other things as needed for pain). Whenever the meningitis resurfaces, I lose vision in my right eye for a few months but eventually it comes back. Herpes may seem like a small thing but it can be VERY DIFFICULT to deal with…and expensive.

    The hardest part of all of this is that I now have herpes. To be honest, I wouldn’t mind all of this discomfort for another non-std virus. It is hard to deal with the stigma. Apart from the discomfort of the meningitis and the irritation from the outbreaks, the worst part is psychological. I cry all the time.

    I have dropped out of grad school. I have become very promiscuous. I have mixed my medications with “other things.” I have considered suicide. I am desperate. I am herpes.


    • It sucks that your symptoms are so severe. I also agree that the psychological toll that herpes brings is hard to bear over time. It is too bad that it causes you so much pain and grief. I can see you why you say “I am herpes”, but it doesn’t tell the whole story. You are so many other things. Some positive, some negative. I hope in time you will find ways to love yourself again and hopefully you’ll find others who love you no matter what. In those lonely times it can be really hard to think positive. I would suggest trying to find others with HSV online who may be a good support to you. If anyone knows how it feels, it is others with herpes. I wish I could offer you more encouragement. It is hard to be realistic and and positive at the same time. It is hard, but on the other hand, I know from so many people who have HSV, that your life isn’t over. I hope the medications reduce the symptoms and you don’t have to suffer so much through outbreaks. Thanks for sharing your story.

      • I know how your feeling hun really I do I had my 1st outbreak 4 weeks ago and having another one now the aches and pains headaches and sore aching limbs are a real downer 😦 although its made me realise life is to.precious to sit and feel sorry for myself Im just thankfully it wasn’t one of the life threatening ones x

    • I’m not a medical doctor, but I don’t believe there is a “cure” for herpes. Like cold medicine helps reduce symptoms, but it can’t cure a cold; fungicides can help reduce symptoms, but it can’t actually get rid of herpes.

      • hi becky i have genital herpes was diagnosed 2 months ago my partener does not have it if he was to go down on me could i pass it to his mouth with no signes of an outbreak ???

      • It may be possible to pass it on through oral sex, even if you aren’t experiencing an outbreak. Definitely use a dental dam which will protect your partner when he wants to perform oral sex.

  53. Hi becca, first off let me say You Are A wonderful person for taking the time out to help people n educate them on herpes. Ok, me and my girl have been on and ff for 6 going on 7 years. I surely love her and I can assure you that we’ve never broken up because of one cheating on the other. Immaturity, timing, location, and stabilty were the main factors. Anyways during these “off” periods we’ve seen other people and have had sex with other people but always wound up back to each other because were so attatched to each other. I’ve never lied to her/cheat on her r anything. We’ve always been honest with each other to knowledge even if we were seeing other people and respected each others space during these times. We’ve only had 1 major bad break up n still I never did anything out of anger to harm her. Last october ’11 we started communicating again, got back together in January ’12, are now moved in together June ’12, Fastfwd to September of this year, [4 months later]… a couple days ago she was having what we now believe was her first outbreak. She went to see her doctor n was diagnosed with HSV2. Weve been having unprotected sex since January ’12 this year. I feel guilty (even though im waiting til this friday the 21st to get tested. and kinda dont know if I am positive or not) and Let me explain y. First off Let me say that Ive never EVER truly felt like I had anything. I went to get tested because she told me back in March/April ’12 when she went in for a regular check up and her doc said she had Chlamydia, & HPV. We both had blood work done during this period. I was treated for Chlamydia [tested for everything: all were negative but Chlamydia] back in September when the previous girl I was dating cheated & gave it to me so I figured I was clear. I was honest n told her about all of that. She went n got it treated for it. She also, had surgery done to remove the cervical cancer cells in May ’12 due to the HPV. Mind u the last time I got tested was in August of 2010 because I was in long term realtionship with someone esle. I know this is alot but were trying to make sense of this too. Went I went to get tested I had these little bumps pop up. I told my gf about it and the doctor who was seeing me. She looked at it and said IT DOESNT LOOK LIKE ANYTHING SERIOUS. NOTHING I NEEDED TO BE WORRIED ABOUT and Said go to CVS and get this cream.Something called Hydrocortizone. Something Ive never used before. The bumps went away n hadnt been back since. So boom, a sigh of relief, right? BUT COULD THAT HAVE BEEN WHAT STARTED ALL OF THIS MESS?!! SHOULDNT I HAVE WENT SOMEWHERE ELSE AND GOT A 2ND OPINION? I mean yea, there was never any pain or any feeling of discomfort near my private area but still, I shouldve done sumthing you know? When I saw her goin thru all that pain I couldnt understand what was goin on. Ive never even gave the word herpes a 2nd thought cuz I couldnt picture it in our lives. Now its here. Can you make anything out of this? Like if I had it why didnt it show itself when I was tested? I love her to death and it kills me to see her go through this pain. I FEEL LIKE A COMPLETE IDIOT. help US.

    • First of all, thanks for sharing your story. Second, what you had in 2010 could have simply been a rash which is why hydrocortizone worked and you never had any symptoms again. That said, it is possible to be infected with HSV 2 and never have any symptoms. This is why it is hard to know who gave it to who. If both of you were having sex with other people in the last couple of years, it is entirely possible that either of you became infected by someone else. Try not to do the blame game and blame yourself or your partner. Unless one of you knew you were infected and purposefully had unprotected sex, then there is no point in blaming anyone. Now you just need to be tested and try to be supportive to each other. If you do have it, then the good news is that you can’t reinfect one another and just have to refrain if it is too painful to have sex during a break out. If you don’t have it, then you have to decide how you want to proceed sexually. You will take a risk having any sexual contact, however, having protected sex will reduce the risk significantly. Also, if your girlfriend is taking medication for HSV 2 that will also help reduce the risk of passing it on to you. I hope things work out either way. Try not to feel guilty and try to encourage your girlfriend not to feel guilty either. Unfortunately a lot of people pass on STI’s unknowingly because they don’t have any symptoms. This is why so many millions of American’s are infected with an STI every year. Just continue to take care of yourself and your relationship. Try not to look back and figure out the mess, try only to accept what has happened and do your best to cope with it. And by coping with it, I mean that it is okay to be upset, angry and sad. Just try not let the guilt or blame get to you or your relationship. Work through your feelings the best way you can without bringing more pain and suffering to your relationship. That is what I mean about supporting one another and letting each other know that you are still valuable and loved even with HSV.

      • Hi Becca.. I was diagnosed with herpes in 2007. I had experienced an awful first outbreak and had gone to the hospital, and immediately as the doctor looked at my vagina, she knew instantly that it was herpes. They did take samples, but I actually do not recall ever knowing the breakdown on whether it was hsv1 or 2. I assumed it was 2 as it was in my genitals. Time goes on, and I actually marry the guy I had been with when I got hsv. Til this day he has not experienced any breakouts, (this is where I ask, is it true that girls experience more breakouts?). Anyway, over the past few months I have had these breakouts on my face, and I’m not known to have breakouts on my face, but Im worried as it may be HSV as well, and so now I’m wondering how this could be. I actually had gone and had my hsv medication refilled and took them hoping to clear up my face.. although it didnt seem to do anything? So I went to the doctor and she said it was some type of bacteria infection, so she gave me a steroid cream to use, it cleared it up. I was still not convinced that it wasnt hsv though.. time goes by, and I now have a breakout on my forehead, and again Im worried its HSV, so I’m going to the docs again today. Im curious with ur experience have u ever known someone to get it orally after having it on their genitals? I feel like my denial and depression feelings are coming back and overwhelming me, as they did the first time I ever was told I had hsv… and I am now married and want to have children, but how can I have children if I have HSV not only genitally but ORALLY.. I would be devastated to ever pass this awful thing on… and I’m just really stressing over this…..

      • I wish I could tell you for sure what you have is or is not HSV on your face. However, I can tell you that HSV1 can appear on both your face or your genitals. The cold sores people get on their lips are usually HSV1. Maybe ask your doctor about this possibility. As far as I know, HSV2 (genital herpes) does not appear anywhere but the genitals. I can’t guarantee that, that is the information I have. Also, I don’t know if it is true that women experience more outbreaks than men. I think it really depends on your immune system and body chemistry to be honest. I do know that it is easier for women to contract HSV and almost any STD because of the physiology of women’s bodies compared to men. However, men thinking they are less likely to contract an STD is what perpetuates infections because they assume they don’t need to use protection or get tested. We all know this isn’t true. As for having children, you do need to talk to your doctor when it comes time to deliver. Your doctor may want you to deliver c-section just in case if you have HSV 1 or 2. If you do have oral herpes, you will always have to be vigilant about kissing anyone during and right after (when skin cells are shedding) an outbreak. Otherwise, your kids shouldn’t be in danger of contracting it. Definitely do more research and definitely talk more to your doctor so you can get a definite diagnosis and know best how to proceed from there.

  54. This is a great post! I’ve been diagnosed since 2008 with HSV-2. I’d love to chat with anyone that needs someone to talk to, since I understand what they’re going through.

    I’m sure this somewhere in the comments or in your posts, and I’ll look through, but I thought I’d ask- do you have any advice on how to break the news to a new partner?

  55. Ihave been diagnosed since 2008 w hsv 2 and I still feel so worthless. I still hate myself for what happened. I dont think ill ever stop hating myself. If i cant love myself, then who will? is a question i keep asking myself. who wants to be with someone w an incurable sti? I have tried to date, met 2 guys, both very short term, espically since I was upfront about it. They left so fast i swear to god I saw smoke coming from their heels. so i gave up, anytime I meet someone i willbreak it off before it gets too intimate. I figure that atleast I get a little feeling of being in a relationship. I avoid having to explain anything, even if I feel worse for doing that. How can anytthing get better? time doesnt make it any easier. and noone knows about this disease in my family. help

  56. Hi, I am pretty sure I have herpes, I am 20 years old and going through a promiscuous faze I guess you could say.. I am going to the clinic tomorrow for sure. It started with finding about to strange bumps on my genital area.. I have pink eye in one eye now, and I’ve had a cough all week. I had unprotected sex on Friday thanks to liquid courage. I don’t know what to do if I have it. I don’t feel like i can tell anyone 😦 does this sound like hsv 2?

    • I appreciate your comment. I wish I could confirm or deny your diagnosis. I hope your trip to the clinic gives you more information. They can do a biopsy and a blood test that will hopefully tell you what is going on. If you do have it, I know it will help to go on some online chat rooms and talk to others who have been infected. Good luck!

    • If you have HSV2, your partner could only contract HSV2 from you. They can get it from having unprotected oral sex, vaginal sex and possibly anal sex. However, even with protection, your partner could still be at risk. Talk to your doctor for more specific information.

  57. im 17, female. Recently i’v been getting cold sores around my face. right now i have 4 and they are increasing. I have never kissed a guy before. How is that possible? And then i noticed i’m itchy down there. Its usually red and dry and on my underwear i get weird yellow orange, pink colors all the time. It also smells bad all the time even after showers. I AM FREAKING OUT RIGHT NOW. FIRST, does this mean i have hsv1 and hsv2? and if its does What do i do.. It doesnt make scense to me ive never had sexual contact and even before i can i get herpes. My life is ruined.

    • I wish I could confirm what is going on with your outbreaks of sores. I don’t want to give you false information. The only way to know is to go to the doctor and find out what is really going on. It isn’t easy, but definitely will give you the answers you’re looking for. It is doubtful that you have herpes if you’ve never had any sexual contact, but it isn’t impossible. Please see a doctor as soon as possible and hope for the best!

  58. I just found out I have type 2 herpes. My ex whom I was engaged to and with for three years, was the only person I’ve ever had unprotected sex with. I asked him to get tested before we got together, and he claimed it was negative. I am having a very hard time coming terms with it. I’m not eating or sleeping much and feel like no one but my ex will want to be with me. Should I get a second test to be sure or not. How accurate are blood test for hvs. My doctor said it detected the antibodies for the disease

    • Sorry to hear about your diagnosis, especially if you think you got it from someone you could trust. You could get the test again. I honestly am not sure how accurate the blood tests are. I imagine they are pretty accurate, but I am not an expert in all the medical and technical stuff. I would advise you to get a second opinion if that would help you know for sure.

      • Thank you for your reply, how can I move on from knowing I have herpes? I’m not sleeping or eating all I do is look up info on the disease and worry about it. How can I move on?

      • Trust me, it takes some time to adjust to the reality of having a virus that is life long. I know a lot of people have joined chat rooms for people who have herpes. Also, look above to some of the other comments. Other people with HSV have given their email if you want to talk to someone who has been there. That may be helpful to you. Give yourself some time and please know that your life isn’t over. Take care of yourself.

  59. What a nice blog, reading is helping me emotionally on dealing with this . I just found out that I have herpes , to make it worse I am 9 months pregnant 😦 so I have been sleeping with the man that means everything to me without protection obviously bc we wanted a baby … now I have to find a way to tell him , within the next few hours .. my life has definitely taken a turn down a really painful path . Im scared , very and im contracting 7 mins apart so i done have time to sit on telling my man . Crazy stupid . Also everything and everyone explains what this infection is and does but ….. it never says how it will infect your overall health , are we goin to die from this eventually ? So depressing , I think im goin to need couseling for sure .

    • I hope everything goes well with the birth of your baby! Congrats on that! To be honest, I don’t know much about any long term health issues from HSV. However, I’ve never read anyone dying from complication with HSV. Doesn’t mean it hasn’t happened, I just know it isn’t common. I hope this eases your fears.

    • I have complications from herpes. Every few months I get meningitis from it and it’s incredibly painful. I take Acyclovir 4 times a day and oxycoton daily to regulate the headaches. When I get meningitis, I usually have to be on an IV drip (in the hospital) for about 4 weeks. I hate this virus so much. The lucky people get outbreaks. I don’t get outbreaks. I get meningitis.

      • Thanks Matthew for the comment. I really appreciate this information. I mainly deal with people’s emotional and psychological stress from HSV. I don’t know as much about the complications and other physical symptoms people endure from HSV. It’s good for me to continue to learn about HSV so I can best help those I do talk to in counseling. Sorry you have to go through so much. It really isn’t fair that some people have to suffer so much while others who may have done the same thing don’t contract HSV, HIV or any of the other incurable viruses. I do appreciate you sharing your experience, it was helpful to me. Take care of yourself.

  60. I recently found out that I have HSV1 and HSV2. It was a total shock and I swear I blanked out when my doctor told me for about 5 minutes straight. I haven’t been the most careful person when it has come to my sexual health, but it really got me thinking. I’m a 19 year old female and I pin-pointed exactly who gave it to me. I was hurt because I don’t have any other issues and I try and take care of myself (especially sexually (now anyway)). I told hi to get tested and turns out he infected more than just me; figures! Anyway, I’m not really sure how to deal with it. I’m not in a committed relationship, but I don’t sleep around. I just don’t have time to be with one person. The military keeps me on the move =/ I’m just wondering….What now?

    • Thanks for your comment. As for your question…I would suggest looking at some of the comments above. A few people have left their email or blog links who have HSV and may be willing to give you some insights. I would say, keep being you. Be as open and honest with people you let into your life as much as possible. Be responsible and you may even come into contact with others who are living with HSV and can understand what you’re going through. Your life isn’t over, but it will be different. For some people, they suffer a lot with physical symptoms. Others don’t experience outbreaks or other health complications, but still suffer emotionally. Talking with others who have been through can be supportive. I wish you luck and thanks for serving our country!! Take care of yourself.

  61. Hey becca, I just found out that I have herpes. I don’t know what kind yet I just got tested today. But I don’t understand, I’ve been with my now wife for the past two years and only her. I’ve had very mild outbreaks before but I didn’t think anything of it because it looked like dry skin, I put lotion on it and it went away the next day. I just recently had a worse outbreak making me go to the doctor to get tested. How can this be? I’m in complete and utter shock. I’ve been looking around the Internet hoping that they have come up with a cure. Some websites say they have but is this just money hungry people taking advantage of scared people looking to do anything to cure this? I am so scared. How will this affect my future kids, my relationship with my wife…if she wants to stay with someone like me, I feel so dirty and want to jump off a cliff. I don’t know what to do. I want to try these “miracle” cures and get rid of this thing that seems to be destroying my life. I feel like everything is falling apart, I was already at rock bottom, now after this I feel like the rocks just buried me at the bottom of the pit.

    • Thanks for your comment. You, like most, are naturally freaked out about this. However, you are luckier than most in that you are married. You are in a committed relationship. You may never figure out if you gave your wife HSV or if she gave it to you. My guess is that she also has HSV whether she is having symptoms or not. She should be tested as soon as possible. It really shouldn’t change her opinion of you. Would you change how you feel at this point if you found out she had it? What is hard about HSV is that not everyone has symptoms, so people pass it to others unknowingly. The only way you know for sure that you got it from someone else is if she is negative for HSV. If she is positive, neither of you will really be able to know at this point who had it first. If you both have it, then there is nothing to worry about because you can’t reinfect each other and if she isn’t having symptoms then she is very lucky. It is very unlikely that she is HSV free if you have been having sex for several years. Unless you’ve always used condoms. Just remember, you aren’t dirty. This happens to millions of Americans and trust me, most of them aren’t dirty or promiscuous. Hopefully you won’t feel so horrible about this after you’ve had time to adjust to the diagnosis. The important thing is to talk to your wife and get her tested asap. Medicines do help reduce the severity and frequency of break outs, so please talk to your doctor about that option. I wish you luck and hope that you soon realize that your life isn’t over and that you are still the great person you were before you found out you had HSV. Take care.

  62. Hey Becca.
    I am sorry to bother with my problems.
    So about 3 years ago I got infected with HSV 1 on my genitals. That guy he didnt tell me anything. I feel horrible. Disgusted of myself. 😦 i am 25 and since 2 years I haven’t had sex, i feel i cant love or trust anyone anymore! I am not the prettiest girl and I feel my life is over. that is so not fair!
    So in my first year after the infections I havent had any outbreaks. I lived in Europe for a year! And since I am back home in the US I get every 3 months an outbreak and I always get headaches, also if I dont have an outbreak. Could it be the climate? I dont really eat much different here and back in Europe.
    Also my vagina is itchy a lot! (also if I dont have an outbreak!)
    A couple of days ago I read that you could get cancer from Hsv 1 and 2 on your genitals? is that true?
    And having herpes causes Alzheimer???
    how can i avoid having outbreaks? How can i get rid of herpes forever! why cant it get cured?
    I wanna feel in love again and have a normal sex life again 😦

    • Anna, I wish I had the answers to all your questions. Most of your questions are medical, and to be honest, I don’t have the answers since I’m not a doctor. It is odd that you have more outbreaks here than in Europe. It could be stress levels that also are causing some of the outbreaks to happen more often. Talk to your doctor and ask some of these important questions to get the answers you need. I wish I could also tell you that there was a cure for Herpes, but right now, there is not. I hope the doctor can help you find a way to relieve some of your worst symptoms. As for a normal sex life, please seek out chat rooms for people who have contracted herpes. It may be helpful to ask those who have been there how to have a more normal sex life. If you look up in earlier comments on this post, there are people willing to email you that may be more helpful than me. Good luck.

  63. Hi, I was diagnosed with HSV2. I’ve been sleeping with the same guy for almost three years. I recently had a child for this guy. my child is now 9 months. I’ve never cheated on my boyfriend. He has been known to communicate with other females behind my back. He says he has never cheated on me. I just can’t bring myself to believe that he would lie to me and go behind my back and actually physically do it. My doctor told me the virus in me was new, like the last two weeks.She said that if you have herpes and become pregnant that you will have a outbreak during your pregnancy. I’m having my first outbreak now. That’s why she says I just got infected. So basically this means my boyfriend cheated on me and has infected me. I’m only 17, he is much older. He denies cheating and says I must’ve gotten it another way, or that it’s been in his system the whole time. What are the chances that he didn’t cheat is my question?? I don’t know what or who to believe anymore. I really love this guy, and has been through everything with him. He is my first love. Please tell me is he lieing or could it have just gotten to me. We have never used condoms, and he had never had a outbreak.

    • I wish I could answer your question. If you read enough on HSV2 you will know that it hard to tell how long it is in your system before you develop any symptoms. It is possible that he has had it this whole time and you just became infected. It is also possible that he became infected months ago and you are just now getting it, or he could have been infected only weeks ago. He should definitely be tested and maybe his doctor would be able to know how long it has been in his system, but it is doubtful. Whether he cheated or not, it is obvious that you don’t trust him. You have to decide whether you want to stay with someone you can’t trust. It is a hard decision and you may change your mind several times before deciding to definitely stay or go. Just know that he may never admit he has cheated, so you have to decide whether you can move past it or not regardless. It really is up to you whether you stay because you can’t make him say or do anything he doesn’t want to. Just remember that the only person you can control is yourself, so remember to take care of yourself and the baby first and hopefully he’ll decide to be more open and honest with you at some point. Good luck.

      • Thanks a lot. I have another question. If he had HSV2 or me beforehand and we have participated in oral sex, does that mean we both have HSV1 also? Although this is the first outbreak I’ve had and he has never had one. I’ve never had cold sores or anything like that, although he has. I just noticed today that I have a little red bump on my top lip. could that be HSV1? or am I paranoid? I’ve been really stressed lately, and I’ve also been constipated and had hemroids come out. my doctor said that’s probably why I’m just now having a outbreak because of the stress on my body. could the little bump be from constipation, or HSV1? what are my chances?

    • Honestly, there is no way to tell how long you have had HSV. It is completely bollocks that your physician would tell you that if you became pregnant and had herpes, then you would have an outbreak. I am prime example. I have had HSV-2 for 5 years now. I married, became pregnant (outbreak free, might I add), and have a healthy 3 year old. HSV can stay in your body for years without having a single outbreak. Usually, and I will place emphasis on this word, the first outbreak is the worst. However, for some, the outbreaks can be as just as severe or mild as the first. If you have had a sexual partner before your boyfriend now, it is possible you have gotten it from a previous partner OR your boyfriend has had it BEFORE you and never knew about it or said anything to you.

  64. Do the outbreaks always come on the same spot in your body? because i got a small one on my neck and I’m scared in the next outbreak will be on my lips or somewhere on my face…. 😦

    • To be honest, I really don’t know. I think HSV1 can appear anywhere on your face, neck or genitals. HSV2 only appears on the genital area. Please ask your doctor for more information.

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  66. So I just found out that I have HSV2 yesterday after I went to the doctor thinking I just had a terrible yeast infection… The news was so shocking all I can do is cry. The guy who gave me herpes was my ex who while we were split up decided to sleep with his ex before me… before I found out that I had contracted the virus he decided that he wanted to be back together with me…I can honestly believe that he didn’t know that he had HSV2 before passing it to me but he still wants to be with me after he gave me this incurable thing… my life will never be the same but part of me just wants to stay with him due to the fact that if I do I know that I will never pass this to anyone else, and another part makes me think that he ruined me for any other person that may come along. I do not know whether to stay with him or leave him. should I set up an appointment with my doctor to be prescribed a medicine that I will have to take to keep the outbreaks at bay? is there a special diet that I should be on? all these website scare me when they keep telling me to not do all these things but do not tell you what you can do… am I going to be sheltered for the rest of my life?

    • It sucks to find out you have HSV. I would set up another appointment with your doctor. He/she can give you more accurate information than you might find on websites. I don’t know about any special diets that help, but do ask your doctor who may know more. Get accurate information that will help you know what to do moving forward. That will help you feel less scared and hopefully more reassured.

  67. Hi Becca, I’ve read through all of your comments and wanted to THANK YOU for all of your feedback. I was diagnosed with HSV2 yesterday. During college I did go through a bit of a promiscuous phase, so I honestly have no idea where/when/who I got it from. Now several years out of college I’ve been dating this guy I’m absolutely head over heels for. I’m the only person he’s ever been with. While on birth control, we’ve been having mostly unprotected sex for about 4-5 months. He hasn’t had any symptoms but as I understand, he could still infected. The guilt of possibly passing it on to him is killing me. He’s been supportive but I’m so scared of him rejecting me now. I feel so dirty. I also feel so frustrated that this is such a common STD but yet it isn’t routinely screened for (I’ve never tested positive for any STD). How can this be such a common STD, yet no one is talking about it or testing for it? It’s so frustrating.

    • I agree. HSV should be routinely screened for, but compared to HPV, Chlamydia, and Gonorrhea, it isn’t as common. I hope in the future people will ask for HSV testing more often. I think people assume if they’ve never had an outbreak of sores, that they are not infected. Unfortunately with a lot of STD’s, people have them and never have any symptoms. They then unknowingly pass it on to others. I hope things work out okay with you and your boyfriend. Thanks for your comment. Good luck.

  68. I just found out I have type 2 herpes. will I ever feel normal again? or will I always be sad. I feel like I am SO Stupid, and why the heck didn’t I use a condom!!? I am so mad at myself. and wondering if I will ever feel better.. emotionally?? 😦

    • If you’ve read my previous comments, you will know that it will take some time to come to terms with having HSV. It is a hard diagnosis because it isn’t curable. You can do your best to manage the symptoms, but trust me, you aren’t stupid. Unfortunately many people trust others and think they’ll know if someone has an STD. Many people have STD’s and never have symptoms and then unknowingly infect others. I hope you will tell others to use a condom. I never stop encouraging others because your health is a gift that can swiftly be taken away. Luckily, your life isn’t over. I hope you will connect with chat rooms and other resources for people with HSV because it can be very helpful to know how to deal with it. Take care of yourself.

  69. I found out on June 10th, 2013 that I had genital herpes. I got it from my first love because I had asked him prior to us getting back together if he had anything. He assured me that he did not. I slept with him once in October of 2012 and then we started a relationship in January 2013 until May 8 2013. We lived together and I thought we would be together because we were happy. Until his ex-girlfriend found out we lived together then used his child to get him back. She then made a fake profile on Facebook to let he know he lied to me and that I should get tested. But I needed to get my birth control anyway so I needed to get my yearly anyway. I thought I was fine because I haven’t had a break out. When I received the news from my doctor that I had the virus I knew exactly who I got it from. She won’t allow him to talk to anyone nor have friends. I feel like I should be able to ask him why he did this to me because he has known since 2007 and didn’t say anything to me didn’t wear protection or take the medication to attempt to keep me protected. I feel like my life is over, I will never have a family, or anyone that will love me again because of the STD. I feel all the things you have said to others. Gross, nasty, contagious, unhealthy, just everything you can feel. I’m in the denial stage because I have had a break out and it’s been over a month since the last time he and I were together. I just received another call from my doctor on June 17, 2013 that I have an infection which is common in woman and is treatable within 5 days with cream. But I also have to start of cervical cancer and I have friends that are nurses and cervical cancer is the one thing that genital herpes can cause. They caught it early enough to where hopefully it’s treatable. It feels like every week it’s something because of the one person I loved with everything in me, and to know he lied and it could possible cause me to never have a marriage or children (something he already has). I know hate is a strong word, but my love from him turned into hate overnight. I want to press charges on him for knowingly giving it to me but we live in a small town and everyone in town will then know I have it and not giving me that option to protect myself. I want to also make it to where he has to pay all my medical bills and anything else I need due to this. All he had to go was tell me, wear a condom, and take the medication. I know I should have made him were a condom but I’m also allergic to them, but looking back I would rather have an allergic reaction than this. I don’t even know how I would tell someone I wanted to be with. I’m scared to get close to anyone or to have someone fall in love with me at the risk that they may leave as soon as I tell them. I have to go Monday for my testing to see if the cells are advanced cancerous or if we can do treatment without any damage or removal. I just don’t know where to start with anything. I put on my happy face and go to work and try to hang with my friends, but inside I’m confused, sad, angry, depressed, and I feel alone.

    • You’ve heard me comment before that this is a very tough diagnosis to receive. The news will hit you and it will take a lot of time to come to terms with it. It is even harder when you have other medical complications from the STD as well. It sucks that your ex was not honest and did not warn you of the possibility. However, you’ve also probably read that your life is indeed NOT over. It is possible to find love again and to have a normal sex life. It will take a special person to accept this or someone who is also diagnosed. Try not to be so hard on yourself in the meantime. I wish you could somehow get back at your ex, but I’m not sure that is where you should focus your energy. Try to keep working to get past your need for revenge and focus your energy on taking care of yourself and your body. It sounds like you have at least a couple of procedures to go through. Focus your energy on becoming as healthy as possible so you will have a future with a better person who will love and respect you instead of wasting any more time or energy on your ex who obviously was too much of a coward to give you the truth. I wish you the best.

    • I am going through exactly the same situation as you I was diagnosed with cervical cancer and now I found out that I have herpes I wonder how everything turned out for you knowing that I’m about to go do the same thing I am A little afraid to at my destiny awaits. I feel like I was intentionally affected by a person who knew they had herpes they had it on your lips and they pursued to do oral sex on me knowing that I was going to be effected. I also feel like I want to make him pass charges and make him pay for what he did to me but I don’t know how to go about it knowing that I also live in a small town where we know everybody and I do not want to be labeled as the girl with herpes. I am lost and I don’t know what steps to take. I also don’t know what type of medication to take because I feel as if my medicine is not working I’ve been on here for nearly a week and I still am going to my outbreak.

  70. Hi I had a std and a hiv test done a week ago they took a blood test thats how they tested me i found out I have herpes type 1 I felt so sad and I wanted to cry so much I’m only 18 and I feel like my life is at a end I had high hope for the future but I dont see it anymore I love my mom and my family so much and my mom brother and cousin know no one else knows my doctor says I have to get a window screen or something like that 3,6 months later my question is is it possible the blood test could be wrong bc when the event took place after a month i went to get checked and is the blood test accurate ?

    • Thanks for your comment. To tell you the truth, I’m not sure what a window screen is. It would really suck if your doctor told you that you have HSV1 if he wasn’t sure and would need to do another test in 3-6 months. I would definitely ask more questions when you go back to see your doctor so you have most accurate information possible. Believe me, your life is not over. Many people get HSV1 because that one can be transferred through kissing when someone has a cold sore or just after they have one that has healed. It still sucks, but unfortunately there are many other people who are suffering right along with you. Hang in there…

  71. Hi Becca

    My name is Ryan, I’m 19 and I’ve just been diagnosed with HSV1, the way I was diagnosed is I told the doctor my girlfriend gave me oral whilst she had an cold sore, but after speaking with her I found out it was just an ulcer, would that still give me HSV1?

    If that doesn’t, I did have 2 sexual partners before her which I didn’t use a condom with (and she was a complete virgin when she met me) so I could have got it from them, although the first I was 16 and the second it was only very short (about a minute) since her room mate entered the house.

    I’ve read that outbreaks can last up to 20 days, if so, how can I be happy? my girlfriend (been with her for 1 year and 3 months) wont be getting satisfied at all, I wont be getting satisfied and if we were to come to an end because of that, what have I got left?

    I can’t have children either can I? unless someone wants to sacrifice their sexual health..

    Is there any cure?? or is there one coming??

    • I’m sorry to say there isn’t a cure. Also, HSV1 can be spread through just kissing since it does appear on the face. So, even virgins can have HSV1. It doesn’t always appear on the genital area, but it can. HSV2 only appears in the genital area and those outbreaks can last up to 20 days. Oral herpes (cold sores) don’t usually last that long. If you’ve been with you girlfriend for over a year then you both probably have HSV and can’t reinfect each other. There is no cure, but it doesn’t mean you can’t be satisfied sexually. People who do have outbreaks in the genital area refrain from sex during that time because it can be uncomfortable, but not everyone has outbreaks and in time, they usually occur a lot less often and are less severe. It is hard to accept, but your life isn’t over. I hope I answered your questions. If not, please talk more to your doctor to get more information. So much wrong information causes people a lot unnecessary anxiety.

  72. What are the chances that you will have herpes from being tested by culture and receiving equivocal results?

    • I actually don’t know the answer to that question. I am not a doctor and only know more about the psychological effects of HSV than the medical stuff. Please go ask your doctor.

  73. Hi,
    I have HSV2 and I will be studying abroad in Spain for a year. I was wondering if you have any information on the stigma of hsv2 in Europe or Spain specifically. From the research I’ve gathered there isn’t one, but American information and forums are much more common than European/Spanish forums. Thanks for your time!


    • I am not sure about the answer to your question. I don’t know what the stigma is over in Europe. Hopefully you’ll know more when you get over there. I hope you have a great trip no matter what.

  74. If my partner and I both have HSV-1 that manifested genitally, gain we gain it orally by performing oral sex on each other? (sorry for bluntness)

    • I am not sure actually. My guess is that if you have HSV1 already, it can show up on your mouth as a cold sore or in your genital region, but I don’t think having oral sex is going to cause this to happen. It will happen because of the way HSV1 manifests itself in your body. If you both already have it, you can’t spread it to each other any more no matter what you do I would think. No matter what, if you have HSV1 it can show up on your mouth or your genitals no matter how it manifested in the beginning. However, I’m not 100% sure this is accurate, but this is what I have learned in my past research. I would definitely ask your doctor who would know more about the medical and physical effects of HSV. I hope this helps you out a little bit though.

  75. Hi Becca…I was just diagnosed yesterday and my heart is broken. I truly don’t know this can happen. I was married to my first husband at the age of 19 and had my first child with him. I never had any issues and the dr never said anything while I was pregnant. I got divorced and met someone and have been together for almost 6 yrs now. I have a child with him as well and everything was fine with my pregnancy as well. No issues were ever brought up to me. I truly don’t know how this could have happened, I don’t know how I got this. Now my partner claims to never have done anything since we’ve been together but I truly don’t know what to think. I do have a few questions. 1- is there a possibility that my kids can catch this? 2- since we are both infected with herpes 2 and we do not get outbreaks at all, is it safe to have oral sex? Are there other ways to spread it? Please let me know, I’m so lost right now.

    • Thanks for your comment. I am aware that this diagnosis is very scary. From what I know, your kids can’t catch HSV2 because it only transferred through the genitals. Also, since both you and your partner both have it, you can’t reinfect each other. If you have no pain, you can have oral sex. HSV2 will not show up anywhere on the body except in the genital area. It is only transferred through sexual contact and you both already have it. So, no worries there. HSV1 is a little different and can be transmitted orally. However, if you don’t have HSV1 already, then you don’t have to worry. Hope this helps ease your mind. Please also ask your doctor for a second opinion. I’m only a counselor and am just giving you my knowledge, but I don’t have a medical degree.

  76. I was wondering if my partner had a cold sore and I received the hsv1 virus from that, could he then get the hsv1 in the genital area as well? I’m confused and a bit scared about the whole situation and how other people will think of me now. Thanks!

    • It is possible for HSV1 to show up in the genital or oral region. However, if either of you already have HSV1 you can’t get it again. The sores just show up in different places. If you already have HSV1 and a sore breaks out on your mouth that doesn’t mean if you have oral sex someone is going to get sores on their genital region. HSV1 virus is in the body and then manifests itself in sores where ever it decides. HSV2 can only show up on the genital region. You can’t get HSV2 from a person that has HSV1. I hope this clarifies it for you.

  77. I found a medicine that will prevent you from the outbreaks (cold sores) of hsv-1. I don’t know if it helps with the hsv-2 (genital herpes) because I haven’t had an outbreak in that area. Whenever I feel an outbreak coming I take this medicine which is safe for all ages and has been around for over 50 yrs.. When it came out it was not meant for the prevention of herpes simplex-1 (oral herpes) but for other purposes but after many years of testing I found it works. I haven’t had an outbreak around my lip for over 10 yrs. although I do get attacked by this virus about 3-5 times a year. I only take it when I feel the virus coming and it stops it in its tracks. I have been living with this horrible virus for over 25 yrs.. I have learned to live with this virus. Because of my findings I have been trying to get in touch with the medical professionals to take a good look at this findings. The great thing about it is that I only pay less than $5.00 per year to prevent the outbreaks. It does not cure the virus but I can live with it now much better than when I had to go around with cold dores around my mouth when it attacked my system. If someone out there could guide me to an expert in the medical field I know I can bring alot of relief to alot of people that lives with this virus. Thank you for your attention….there is Hope!!!!!

  78. I tested positive for herpes type 1 but I have sores and blisters only in my genitals no where else. Can I still have pass the herpes through saliva as in kissing even if I didnt get any breakout a around my mouth?

    • I am not sure to be honest. I would check with your doctor. I know it is very hard to pass through saliva, most of the time is is passed through an open sore or dry skin cells that have HSV1 from a cold sore that has healed. I would think it would be unlikely, but I don’t know for sure. Consult with a doctor to know for sure what the risk is.

  79. Im scared to get tested but I had an outbreak few weeks ago and now I see another one.is this normal for me tobhave an outbreak so fast.their not painful(thank god) but.my partner got tested and she has it.im trying to be strong but when I saw it im freaking out.i have a kid and im scared to hug her or kiss her on the forehead due to it spreading . Please respond cus I dont know what to do and I will get tested in a few weeks but im scared.

    • I would definitely get tested to find out whether you have HSV1 or 2. If you have HSV1 you can pass it on if you have sores on your mouth by kissing your child. If you don’t have sores on your mouth, you won’t pass it on by kissing them good night. If you have HSV2, it is only transmitted through sexual contact because it only appears in the genital region. I know it is a scary diagnosis, but it isn’t as contagious as you think…if you have a cold sore on your mouth, you just have to be careful during and after the cold sore disappears because this it is the most contagious. Do some research and hopefully you’ll feel more reassured and less scared…

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  82. First let me say I was surprised to see a picture of my school at the top of this page lol. I was diagnosed with this not too long ago and strangely I haven’t been very upset by it. Maybe because I haven’t had another breakout so it feels like I really don’t have anything.Before I got my diagnosis, I kind of figured I knew what it was, so when I was told I didn’t burst out in tears or anything. I sort of braced my self. I told myself, before I found out what it was, that if this was herpes, there is nothing I can do about it but move on with my life because there are much more serious conditions to have. I guess that is how I moved on from it. The bad thing about herpes is the assumptions people make about people who have it, such as that person is gross or a whore. All it takes is one time to contract it and not even a condom can stop it. I think the public in general should be more educated about this. It’s not gross. It’s just a sore you get every now and then like a zit. I hope this helps someone to cope with this diagnosis.

    • Thanks for your comment. I appreciate it. I’m glad you’re handling things well. Sorry I haven’t responded to this comment, but I no longer keep up with this blog as often as I used to.

  83. I have been getting cold sores since I was a kid. During a routine check up the doctor said that is herpes. I only had sex once in my life and got tested for std’s and came up negative. Now because I know my cold sores are hpv-1 and my fiancé which I never had sex with is a virgin will hpv-2 ever come into play. I am getting confused about hpv-2. So to make a long story short if I have hpv-1 and my fiancé has nothing as long as I don’t kiss or perform oral sex will everything be ok.? Also since neither have hpv-2 is that something I don’t need to worry about ?

    • You are correct, HSV-1 will not become HSV-2. Unless your girlfriend already has it, you will not get it and she won’t get it if you don’t have it. HSV-1 and 2 are totally different things. Unfortunately HSV-1 can be passed through kissing, but less likely if you don’t have any active cold sores (or a couple days after a cold sore heals). Talk to your doctor, but HSV-1 is fairly common and less serious than HSV-2. You don’t have to worry about getting HSV-2 if you don’t already have it.

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  85. “You can only get HSV-2 from sexual contact with someone who is infected with HSV-2”. Is this true ? can you explain more detail about this ?

    • Yes, this is true. You can’t get it any other way and HSV-2 only infects the genitals. It won’t show up on your face or around your mouth like HSV-1.

  86. I just recently found out i had herpes last year got dianosed with type….now me and my girlfriend dont know what to do…she wants to have a second baby with me but im affraid if i have unprotected sex with her i might infect her and the future baby…i need advice on this please

    • Please ask your doctor about advise on this one. I don’t know all the risks when it comes to unprotected sex or having a baby. Your doctor will know more about the physical side of things. I know it is scary, but I’m sure other people who have herpes have healthy babies. The only way to find out is to ask a medical expert. Good luck!

  87. Hi i went to the hospital because i suddenly had a lower back pain i couldn’t even stnd up straight. So, they took a bllod test, urine test, ultrsound and check my vagina. The results are all normal but the only one no result yet is the swab they did from my genital for the herpes. But the doctor give me right away a medication for herpes good for two weeks and one enjection. I was so confused why he gave me a medication for the herpes while the doctor told me is only a suspect that i have a herpes. Is that means i have herpes? Thank you

    • I wish I could answer your question, but only your doctor can tell you for sure if you have herpes. Please give them a call or schedule an appointment to put your mind at ease. They may have put you on medication as a precaution, but I don’t know for sure. I hope you get some answers soon!

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  89. I have had HSV2 for 3 1/2 years I do not know who or where I got it from. I didn’t sleep around or have multiple partners at once. I have been on n off with my fiance for 5 years. I have a 3 1/2 year old son. Before the person I was with I was with the biological father and I know he was cheating. But never had an outbreak or anything abnormal on my lady bits. But while with the person I am now with who after all this time has had No outbreak No abnormalities or pain or itching but I slept with my fiance and the next day I felt some itching. Then days past I came down with a sever cold like flu symptoms. I could pee without crying my eyes out or screaming. I couldn’t sit down. I had a full blown painful unbearable outbreak. I went to the doctor got the valtrex and the ointment and pain medication. I told my fiance the minute the doctor left the room. I was crying n I almost fell clean off the examine table. He is and always has been ok with what I have in the beginning we used condoms he stopped giving me oral all together which sucks. After that he decided to stop wearing the condoms. We talked it over together got all the facts and still till now he has been clean of this nightmare. But I feel I can’t really talk to him because he doesnt really understand what I’m feeling because he doesnt know first hand. Sunday I got another outbreak we had sex on Friday n then bam I now have an outbreak. Not too sever but I’m taking the valtrex using witch hazel, alcohol and peroxide. I might even try orajel because I can’t afford the ointment. I’m just concerned couldn’t it be that my fiance is a carrier and have No signs or symptoms? He has gotten tested and it’s always negative but I’m just worried. Then again I am working two jobs one Monday – Friday 9-5 n then sat n sun at another job and those times are 9-5 n 9-230 I have gained more weight. I just don’t know what to do. And as a result I push my love away from me because I have felt down sad I have been crying every night since Sunday. Your the first person I have told the whole story too. I can’t talk to my family they are all too judgmental and will outcast me like a black sheep. I have told friends but they can’t comprehend what I’m exactly going through. I do apologize about this page turn but you respond wonderfully to all these readers and I’m desperately hoping you will give me some type or guidance or idea. Thank you and God bless.

    • I’m glad this post has been helpful to you. First, your fiance could have HSV and not have any symptoms, but that isn’t what is making you break out after sex. After the first break out, you may have several more the first year or so before it starts to taper off. Usually the break outs are less severe with time. They can be brought on by stress or when your immune system is a little low which can be caused by getting a cold virus or even stress as well. Continue to take care of yourself and remember that feeling guilt and negative thinking only contribute to stress which can contribute to you having more break outs. The best thing you can do is try to take care of yourself both mentally and physically. Remember that you are still the same person you were before and you will survive this. It is okay to feel down at times, but try to keep a positive attitude because it may help you have less break out over time. Thanks for sharing your story. I wish you the best.

  90. Hey Becca,

    I realize my problems aren’t as severe as others on here, but I need some advice. I was seeing this girl that I fell head over heals for and during our relationship I heard about one of my exes having something and so I got tested. Well my gf at the time is questioning my decisions and tells me that I’m irresponsible for not being tested and she’s just so angry that she didn’t ask me a out being tested and a angry that she put herself in this position. Well I go get tested and the results come back positive for HSV-1. I’m basically screwed and now she’s freaking out she might have it. I never had a any breakouts or signs and we never had sex. We just kissed a lot. What are the chances of me giving it to her?
    One other thing. It’s been a week since we broke it off. She tells me she doesn’t know how to deal with this. I started taking valtrex and now my heart is in shambles because she never talks to me and has been spending a lot of time with a guy I actually met while we were dating. I know I should let nature take it’s coarse but I need help on what I should do or can do to get by. I don’t think she realizes that we could have a healthy relationship, but I have the feeling she wants nothing to do with me. And this is coming from a girl who I thought was stronger and would want to still give us a try. All your advice will be much appreciated! Thank you for your time.

    • It sucks that she is so upset. Unfortunately, HSV-1 is very common and can spread from kissing, oral sex or sexual contact because it can appear on either your mouth or sexual organs. If you haven’t had a break out, it is less likely that she has it. I’m surprised that her doctor prescribed Valtrex unless she was having active break outs. Usually with HSV-1 people use Abreeva for cold sores on their mouth. Please consult with a doctor and maybe giving her the correct information will help her to feel more calm about the situation. Good luck!

  91. Nearly a week ago I was diagnosed with herpes I talk to just simply looked at it and said he was going to stand me up on treatment I’m still waiting for my results but I’m sure I have herpes have extreme pain testers and I’m sorry to be so graphic that puss Is coming out of My vagina! I am very concerned, I feel like I’m going to affect everybody! I feel like if I take a bath I am going to leave the infection in the bathtub I feel like if I use a toilet when I leave it there as well I am constantly losing in my vagina have a six-year-old daughter and I’m afraid that I might affect her how do I take the proper precautions not to spread this infection. I’ve been taking medicine for about a week now and I do not feel any type of comfort I don’t feel like it is helping me at all. I feel as if I have a sore inside my gums on the roof of my mouth I don’t know what to do I’m very depressed I don’t want to do anything for disgusting ashamed. I don’t even know what my next step is going to be feel like my life has come to an end and I’m only 27 years old. I wonder if it can be spent in my bed do my sheets clothing towels I am just so overwhelmed

    • Ann, I wish I could tell you more than what is in my blog post, but I’m not a doctor so I don’t know all the physical symptoms. Please ask your doctor for more information about how contagious this is. I don’t think you will infect your daughter, which is why it is called a sexually transmitted disease. However, please check with your doctor about any precautions you need to take.

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