You are smart, successful, and attractive. You have a wonderful group of friends and life is going well. You take care of yourself and are picky when it comes to dating. Basically, you’ve got it going on. So, how did someone like YOU get herpes? Even if the first sentences didn’t remotely describe you, the shock of it all is probably the same. People like YOU just don’t get herpes, right?
You did nothing wrong. You just had sex.
In the case of genital herpes or HSV2, the odds are that you got it from having sex. At the very least, you had skin to skin contact with someone who has herpes. You didn’t do anything wrong or anything to feel ashamed of. Millions of people have sex. By the time you finish reading this, 1000’s of people all over the world are probably having sex. Sex is normal. It is how we bond, show love and form families. Our bodies are designed to have sex. Wars have been fought and ships have been sunk over sex and that is why millions of people have it. Besides, sex is fun!
People like me don’t get herpes.
“Only people who sleep around get herpes.” This is a big misconception and what fuels the negativity surrounding herpes. You don’t need multiple partners or a wild night in Vegas to catch it. All it takes is one person. They could have been someone you have known for a while, a friend of a friend, or someone you just met. They also could be someone that you have been in a committed relationship with or even married to for years.
I should have known better.
It’s not your fault. You had no way of knowing. Millions of people have herpes. There is not a “Herpes type” of person. Politicians, actors, doctors, and nurses can and do get herpes. Regular people get it, too. Herpes doesn’t care what color you are, what your background is, or where you came from. In many cases, herpes simply goes unnoticed. Medical professionals estimate that 1 out of 4 people have herpes and up to 80% of them don’t know they have it. Either their symptoms are so slight or they don’t have any signs at all, they are just unaware of it. Unless they told you, you would have no way of knowing.
I should have been more careful.
A condom does not prevent herpes. A condom can reduce the chances but you are still at risk if skin touches skin. In the heat of the moment, this isn’t always possible to avoid. We know of many people with herpes who caught it the first time they had sex and when a condom was used. Sure, you both could have got tested then wait 3-4 months for another test but most people simply don’t think about herpes at the time.
You are still the same wonderful you.
Herpes was probably not something you ever expected to have. Yet, here we are. You are still the same wonderful person you were before herpes. Nothing less but perhaps, something more. Sure, you will have curve balls thrown your way but you will get through it and be stronger for it. Your life doesn’t stop just because of herpes. You will still be you. You will be fine.
What will change?
If you are honest, your anxiety over dating may change. You will want to tell your next potential partner that you have herpes. How you do that is up to you. You wouldn’t want to put someone else in the situation that you are going through now. Sure, you may be rejected but at least you gave them a choice. It is a choice that many did not get to make.
What should I do right now?
Breathe. Relax. There will be a lot of emotions, probably anger, and “What if” questions that will go through your head. It can be overwhelming. There is no cure for herpes. The faster you can accept that, the faster you get back to living your life. It won’t happen overnight. You’ll get there but it is up to you to decide how long it will take. You can read more about “I Just Found Out I Have Herpes. Now What?”
Don’t try to do this on your own. A LOT of people have herpes. Thanks to the internet and social media, there are Secret Facebook Groups and others for people with herpes. These groups consist of people who were once where you are now. They can give you advice on everything from dating, how to tell a partner (“Giving the Talk“) or what medications to use for outbreaks. They can also be there for you with support, if you need it. Who knows, you may even make some friends along the way. Groups will save you a lot of time instead of scouring the web for information and weeding through the misinformation. Sign up for our Newsletter and information for how to join our non-member Facebook Group (It’s completely free) if you want to jump right in.
HWerks is more than just herpes dating…
Sure, we have herpes dating. We also have great support for people living with herpes. We have forums, chat and we will be setting up weekly Zoom meetings shortly. Our members also have access to our “Secret” Facebook group where we assist in helping you find a local herpes group in your area. Of course, you don’t need to join HWerks. With a little digging, you can find support and group information on your own. We just make it a easier. Our low, one-time membership fee keeps the lights on and things running smoothly for our members.
If you are ready to get started and jump right in, Join HWerks! Use the Promo code “Hello10” and we’ll take 10% off your membership.
Until next time, stay awesome!