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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Sex Basics and Sexual Health » I have Oral Herpes?!

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Author Topic: I have Oral Herpes?!
xxKristii17
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I feel really dirty about this issue when I contracted this disease when young.

I forgot about having HSV-1 due to not having outbreaks for most of my teen years, until a week ago when something unknowingly made the virus active. Now because of that, the virus being active (I am clearing up), I fear for the safety of my partner and feel as though I was unfaithful to her by not telling her I had herpes (HSV-1) before we began dating.

We had sex with each other without protection and were also tested for all STDs. I thought I was clean of everything and didn't think HSV-1 was a big deal (from what I've been told by family members who also have this disease)--but now that I read of all the things it can cause, I am worrying and upset that I didn't know I had HSV-1 when younger (I was never informed that cold sores were the herpes virus. I was never thought that in school, that cold sores are associated with HSV-1).

My partner has continuously kissed her mother who is prone to cold sores (multiple blisters at one time) and has never caught the virus. She has also tested negative for this disease. Is it possible I can have sex with her and not have you contract the virus? ..

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I love you Steph. <3

Posts: 53 | From: Halifax | Registered: Apr 2011  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Captain Girl
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Herpes viruses are really common.

I would say a couple things. One is that you might talk to a doctor about transmission - if I recall correctly, you usually need direct contact between an active sore and a mucosal membrane (like yor mouth, the inside of your nose, or your genitals). Asymptomatic shedding of the virus is possible, but unusual.

I don't know what you've been reading about HSV and its effects. Herpes infections can be very bad in patients with compromised immune systems (particularly AIDS patients and patients undergoing chemotherapy). Active genital herpes outbreaks during delivery can cause health problems for infants, so if you go into labor while having an outbreak of genital herpes, you should expect your doctors to agitate for a c-section (which I think is a good idea in those circumstances). Chicken pox (which is a herpes virus) can also cause birth defects when women who aren't immune get it while they are pregnant, which is why many doctors offices have signs asking you to tell them if you have CP, so they can take you out of the waiting room and limit other patients' exposure.

People with herpes certainly can have sex without transmitting the virus, provided that they take simple precautions. No oral sex during HSV-1 outbreaks, for example, and use of condoms or dental dams.

FWIW, I have had occasional herpes cold sores since I was seven. No one told me they were herpes-related until I was in college, and then I found out because my doctor recommended an anti-viral cream to make the outbreaks briefer and less painful. I have had plenty of sexual partners who did not have HSV-1 when we met, and continue to this day to not have it. HSV-1 is usually something that people just live with, that doesn't have much effect on their lives.

Posts: 129 | From: Boston | Registered: Mar 2011  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
xxKristii17
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Thank you so much for your reply.

I know the herpes virus is common, most of my family has it. I do not mind myself being a carrier of this, since I hear about 80% or more of the world population(s) are also carries (knowing or unknowing) of this virus.

What I am worried about is the sexual contact between my partner and I. You see, I'm the type of person who goes into panic mode or a 'crazy state' when I hear or think I may have some disease or another.. I find it very hard to reassure myself that I am absolutely fine (I keep thinking I *may* have a disease and cannot deal with people who are ill). I am, what most would define as, a Hypochondriac.

I am afraid that I may have reinfected myself with HSV-1 in the genital region when my partner and my family continuously says I am perfectly health. I cannot come to the conclusion that they are right and no matter what the doctors say, I think the opposite (I have to be told over, over & over again for a month before it actually gets into my head that I AM ABSOLUTELY OKAY). Sometimes, these 'crazy states' get so bad that I cannot control my emotions whether it be at home or school and I breakdown in tears.. convinced that I have the disease, no matter what others tell me.

How can I control this? How can I keep my partner safe? .. It took a long while to trust her sayings in being STD free due to having trust issues (emotional, physical and verbal abuse) and I do not want this relationship to end. I want to work things out together like she promised we would. She promised she would stick by me no matter whats going on or what happens.

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I love you Steph. <3

Posts: 53 | From: Halifax | Registered: Apr 2011  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Captain Girl
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Okay. You say that you're worried about the sexual contact between you and your partner, and then you go on to tell me... nothing about the sexual contact between you and your partner. So I have no idea whether your concern that you may have re-infected yourself is justified (although I will say that it's highly unlikely that you could have an initial outbreak of genital herpes without noticing it).

What you are telling me about is anxiety. A lot of it.

Would you consider talking to your doctor about your mental health and asking for a referral to a therapist who can maybe help you get a handle on this stuff?

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xxKristii17
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I would really enjoy speaking to somebody. I am aware that I suffer from Anxiety and I would like to get it under control.

I'm sorry If my last reply made no sense to you. What I meant to say is, is there a point to start using protection since we have already been having unprotected sex for 4 months? .. during that time, I wasn't aware I had HSV-1 (thought I was clean) but now I am freaking out, thinking I can infect myself in the genitals (I have herpes on the mouth) and my partner.

If we are going to use protection, what exacly can we use? I know condoms are a bonus but what if you are lesbians and enjoy doing tribalism with one another? how can you protect your bodily fluids from touching then? you obviously cannot hold the thin layer of latex between you--it just won't work.

Basically, what are the chances of me or my partner contracting this disease somewhere else on the body? .. I hears retransmission or relocation is rare, specially when you are not new to the virus (had it for years).

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I love you Steph. <3

Posts: 53 | From: Halifax | Registered: Apr 2011  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Captain Girl
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Of course there's a point to starting to use protection - you may have been lucky so far (the odds are in your favor), but you don't have to rely on luck.

As you know, retransmission or relocation of herpes is rare - I can't give you a number, and honestly I don't know if numbers help. Statistics are great for making predictions about populations, and not so useful for determining which individuals in the affected population are going to wind up coping with something they'd rather not have to. Rare means that the chances of relocation or retransmission are low.

In terms of what you can use to avoid contact between bodily fluids and mucosal membranes - direct vaginal-vaginal contact can be a transmission vector for STIs, and sharing a yeast infection or a case of bacterial vaginosis is not sexy. Dental dams are a little unwieldy for this. Forgive me - I haven't been shopping for this stuff in a while. It seems like what you need is something to hold that piece of latex in place. I am sure that someone has solved this problem, but my google-fu is failing me. Would an appropriately large piece of latex clipped (think paperclips, because they're easy to come by - I recommend the plastic coated ones) to the waistband of a sexy pair of panties solve this problem?

Posts: 129 | From: Boston | Registered: Mar 2011  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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