I need advice.

  • DrobUA

    Posts: 1331

    Sep 11, 2009 8:55 AM GMT
    Alright, I've been talking to this guy. So far he seems like he is a great guy and I kinda like him. We have never done anything sexually but he decided to tell me he has HSV-2. My first reaction was,"What's that?" He told me it was genital herpes. I was very impressed that he had the decency to tell me before we had done anything because the sad truth is that many guys wouldn't say anything. I'm not naive, I know STD's are extremely common and I don't want this to be a deal breaker. My question is what is the best way to protect myself. Obviously condoms are a must and avoiding contact during an outbreak is pretty standard but is there anything else I should know? Certain things to avoid? I thought I read somewhere that it can be spread through saliva and it just shows up different places on different people. Anyways, your thoughts are appreciated.
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    Sep 11, 2009 4:32 PM GMT
    you're right the guy did the right thing by telling you and you're asking the right questions. even if you decide not to have sex with this dude it's good to educate yourself on std's. that said, it looks like you're a college student, isn't there a campus health center where you could speak to someone confidentially and get the right info? that might be a good place to start.
    good luck.icon_cool.gif
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    Sep 11, 2009 4:40 PM GMT
    I think you should discuss this with a medical professional in your school's health center also. They'll be much more informed than us.

    If you decide to have sex/form a relationship, you'll have to set up precautions for yourself so you dont catch herpes, and even then they're never foolproof. But after talking to the professional, if you want to pursue it, I think you should.
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    Sep 11, 2009 4:43 PM GMT
    nthing the suggestion that you speak to a professional. If you are not on a campus you can go to a Planned Parenthood, AIDS services, or an LGBT center and they will have a ton of info with illustrations!

    But, anyone that tells you something like that before things get sexual sounds like an A+ person. So, get educated and hopefully it wont seem so scary.
  • CuriousJockAZ

    Posts: 19129

    Sep 11, 2009 4:55 PM GMT
    MunchingZombie saidnthing the suggestion that you speak to a professional. If you are not on a campus you can go to a Planned Parenthood, AIDS services, or an LGBT center and they will have a ton of info with illustrations!

    But, anyone that tells you something like that before things get sexual sounds like an A+ person. So, get educated and hopefully it wont seem so scary.



    Totally agree. He sounds like a quality guy who had the maturity and decency to do the responsible thing and tell you -- which I am sure was not easy for him to do. Quality guys are hard to find sometimes, so I wouldn't let this scare you off. Just educate yourself and take the necessary precautions.
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    Sep 11, 2009 5:53 PM GMT
    DrobUA saidAlright, I've been talking to this guy. So far he seems like he is a great guy and I kinda like him. We have never done anything sexually but he decided to tell me he has HSV-2. My first reaction was,"What's that?" He told me it was genital herpes. I was very impressed that he had the decency to tell me before we had done anything because the sad truth is that many guys wouldn't say anything. I'm not naive, I know STD's are extremely common and I don't want this to be a deal breaker. My question is what is the best way to protect myself. Obviously condoms are a must and avoiding contact during an outbreak is pretty standard but is there anything else I should know? Certain things to avoid? I thought I read somewhere that it can be spread through saliva and it just shows up different places on different people. Anyways, your thoughts are appreciated.


    The answer here is obvious. The VERY best way to protect yourself is distance. If you're not around him, you won't get it. Folks can "shed" even without visible sores, so, it's just a guessing game. I know several folks who are married who have Herpes and gave it to their partner.

    Herpes viruses cycle between periods of active disease—presenting as blisters containing infectious virus particles—that last 2–21 days, followed by a remission period, during which the sores disappear. Genital herpes, however, is often asymptomatic, though viral shedding may still occur. After initial infection, the viruses move to sensory nerves, where they reside as life-long, latent viruses. Causes of recurrence are uncertain, though some potential triggers have been identified. Over time, episodes of active disease reduce in frequency and severity.

    Herpes simplex is most easily transmitted by direct contact with a lesion or the body fluid of an infected individual. Transmission may also occur through skin-to-skin contact during periods of asymptomatic shedding. Barrier protection methods are the most reliable method of preventing transmission of herpes, but they merely reduce rather than eliminate risk. Oral herpes is easily diagnosed if the patient presents with visible sores or ulcers. Early stages of orofacial herpes and genital herpes are harder to diagnose; laboratory testing is usually required. 20% of the U.S. population has antibodies to HSV-2, although not all of them have a history of genital lesions.[1] Prevalence of HSV infections varies throughout the world. Poor hygiene, overcrowding, lower socioeconomic status, and birth in an undeveloped country have been identified as risk factors associated with increased HSV-1 childhood infection.

    There is no cure for herpes. Once infected, the virus remains in the body for life. However, after several years, some people will become perpetually asymptomatic and will no longer experience outbreaks, though they may still be contagious to others. Vaccines are in clinical trials but have not demonstrated effectiveness. Treatments can reduce viral reproduction and shedding, prevent the virus from entering the skin, and alleviate the severity of symptomatic episodes.

    Herpes simplex should not be confused with conditions caused by other viruses in the herpesviridae family such as herpes zoster, which is a viral disease caused by varicella zoster virus. There is also a possibility of confusion with "hand, foot and mouth disease" due to apparition of lesions on the skin.
  • latenighter

    Posts: 64

    Sep 11, 2009 8:31 PM GMT
    you said you kinda like him, how about wait until you really really like him, then you have sex. Use condoms, thats the best protection you can get, and don't have sex if you are sick or somehting when your immune system is weak. These are the precautions you can take, but not 100% safe...but there is always a risk. If you want to play 100% safe, and don't want to catch Herpes, then u better to walk away.
  • DrobUA

    Posts: 1331

    Sep 12, 2009 2:39 AM GMT
    Alright well let me ask this. If you had an STD and you started dating someone, would you be offended if he didn't want to have sex with you?
  • DCEric

    Posts: 3713

    Sep 12, 2009 2:51 AM GMT
    1) I have oral herpes, and have managed it well enough that I have not transferred it to my partner of 4+ years.

    2) Depends. If the uninfected person is being reasonable, and is willing to work towards a solution, yes. If not, I probably would be upset.
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    Sep 12, 2009 3:09 AM GMT
    @DrobUA, I am impressed. Both you and the "guy" are rare eggs, indeed. The only advice I can give to you is to sit down with him and talk. Discuss your fears and anxieties (they are warranted). Who knows how it will pan out, but one outcome is certain; you have made a longtime, possibly lifelong, friend. He sounds like a winner and, for once, I'm not being sarcastic.
  • DrobUA

    Posts: 1331

    Sep 12, 2009 7:25 AM GMT
    Tapper said@DrobUA, I am impressed. Both you and the "guy" are rare eggs, indeed. The only advice I can give to you is to sit down with him and talk. Discuss your fears and anxieties (they are warranted). Who knows how it will pan out, but one outcome is certain; you have made a longtime, possibly lifelong, friend. He sounds like a winner and, for once, I'm not being sarcastic.


    Not sure what makes you think we are rare eggs but thanks I think, haha I'm pretty sure that was a compliment?
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    Sep 12, 2009 7:33 AM GMT
    I think it's funny there's automatically a Valtrex ad on this page. icon_rolleyes.gif
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    Sep 12, 2009 8:23 AM GMT
    DrobUA saidAlright well let me ask this. If you had an STD and you started dating someone, would you be offended if he didn't want to have sex with you?


    Not really, because I know I'd want to have the opportunity to make an informed decision if the roles were reversed. After all, it's a decision that has the very real potential of haunting you for the rest of your life. icon_neutral.gif

    So yeah, I'd be sad but I'd understand their position well enough not to be offended.
  • jrs1

    Posts: 4388

    Sep 12, 2009 9:11 AM GMT


    An STD won't deter me from getting closer in mind, body, and beyond, however, that will not stop me - as you are at present - in terms of trying to find out more about what our options would be. The fact that he told you beforehand makes me feel great as I'm sure you felt once time had passed since his admission. He sounds like a keeper for sure.
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    Sep 12, 2009 12:17 PM GMT
    buffenuff999 saidI think it's funny there's automatically a Valtrex ad on this page. icon_rolleyes.gif


    And every single time I log into RJ, I'm bombarded by AIDS, MRSA and Manhunt ads. It deters me from spending too much time on here. It makes me feel like I'm in a free clinic with a clientele full of man sluts.
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    Sep 12, 2009 12:46 PM GMT
    Ahem, let me revise my statement. You should go to PP with him. So you can negotiate the safest sex possible. There are activities you can still do that don't even have the possibility of spreading the virus, and fun activities at that (like full on butt sexs! woot!). It all depends on his particular situation and what you two are into.

    But, he told you upfront. It is your decision whether or not you want to continue. I just hope you aren't making this decision out of fear.
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    Sep 12, 2009 12:56 PM GMT
    kRakaJak saiddude if he has an incurable virus why even consider anything but ending it. this ain't a hard choice. at least he was honest about it. but, damn, man...kick his ass to the curb.

    testing_intel.gif
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    Sep 12, 2009 10:41 PM GMT
    The straight community has been faced with this "dilemma" since the 1980's and there are plenty of couples who negotiate through this and have great sex, and even children. However, happy, healthy sexual relationships like these is built through TRUST and LOVE.

    I have a female friend who married a man who has herpes (a parting "gift" from his ex-wife). From what I understand, he takes a daily does of medication & that's it. They have a very happy, healthy sex life (I know my friend well, and she wouldn't put up with anything less). I didn't ask if they use condoms on a regular basis "just in case", but that is something a qualified sexual health care practitioner could recommend.

    Oh, and she's a nurse, so she better than anyone on here -- excpet for those who are health care professionals -- about the risks and about prevention.

    The other way to look at it is this: Essentially, herpes is a cold sore on your penis. Now would you date someone who got cold sores on their lips? I'm sure you would -- but you'd smartly take procautions and avoid kissing or receving oral sex from them during a flare up. Likewise, this guy seems conscientious and moral. I'm sure that on top of his treatments, he'd notify you if he was having a flare up, at which point you'd simply avoid having sex until it was safe to resume.

    In the end, you will have to make the decision for yourself. Just make sure you have all the health facts you need before making it. And if you do find you are unable to follow through with him, please be upfront with him and tell him so. He was courageous enough to tell you, so he should expect nothing else in return.
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    Sep 15, 2009 9:20 PM GMT
    if he´s telling you this he´s a better guy than most out there.

    Someone with that sort of character deserves special treatment: if he has integrity there, he has it elsewhere.
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    Sep 15, 2009 9:50 PM GMT
    Genital Herpes can be spread through skin to skin contact, so condoms unfortunately don't offer full protection. About 1 in 4 adults in the US have HSV2, so it's also quite common. It was nice of your friend to tell you in advance.

    There doesn't seem to be a way to completely avoid catching it if you have sex, but Lauric Acid, found in coconuts, is known to fight Herpes outbreaks.

    Also, there seems to be a link between Herpes outbreaks and aspartame, so your friend can reduce the chances of having active Herpes when you're together by avoiding beverages and other products that contain artificial sweetners. Whatever your friend can do to lessen his viral load, should help prevent transmission to you too.

    Regarding Herpes in different places, you're right. HSV1 and HSV2 can sometimes show up in atypical places. For example, someone with a cold sore (HSV1) may spread Herpes to a partner's genitals when giving them oral sex. In that case, the newly infected partner would have Herpes on their genitals, but it would be HSV1, rather than true Genital Herpes (HSV2).

    If you were married and this came up, I'd say just learn to live with it. Worst case you get it too. However, when you're dating, it's a difficult decision to make. Since whatever STDs you get from the current guy will affect your ability to find partners in the future.
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    Sep 15, 2009 10:24 PM GMT
    Lostboy saidif he´s telling you this he´s a better guy than most out there.

    Someone with that sort of character deserves special treatment: if he has integrity there, he has it elsewhere.


    Agreed 100% he is willing to face his fears to tell you. The man displays honesty and trust. Without those qualities nothing real can exist between you.
    So yes he deserves honesty and trust in return. Treat him well.

    BTW...........there is no difference between herpes simplex (1) or 2 genital herpes. They estimate herpes (1) on your genitals has replaces herpes 2. Genetically very little difference between them.

    A large number of people only find out they have herpes the first time they get a test in a routine exam if STD test are ordered at a sexually active age. You can have the antibodies and show no signs. Little aunt Mary that kissed you as a baby with a cold sore passed it to you and you never knew. You than passed it on to your date male of female to their crotch and so on. Many times before either party knows.

    So he knows, he told you, I say he is amazing more so if he is young.