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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » EXPERT ADVICE » Emergencies and Crises » Freaking out...

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Author Topic: Freaking out...
rigby
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Member # 35955

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My boyfriend and I have been dating for 6 months. I've never had vaginal intercourse with him (or anyone) but I have had oral sex with him. He's the only person I've ever been remotely sexually active with, and he's never shown any symptoms of oral or genital herpes. However, he has had three sex partners previous to me (two of whom were virgins, and the other with whom he used a condom).

A week ago I had three small lesions on my inner labia. They were painful, and developed into a larger blister. By the weekend I had flu-like symptoms (though it may have just been a flu) and had a temperature, headache, and muscle ache in my hip area. This lasted about 4 days. I know flu symptoms are common in primary outbreaks, and all together, this has me terrified. Now, about 12 days later, everything is cleared up, except I seem to have a bit of a scar.

Is it likely that someone could contract genital herpes through oral sex with someone who's never shown signs? Can you carry a herpes virus without ever having outbreaks? We've been orally active for months, so it seems a bit odd that I'm only having a problem now.

Please help, this literally all I've been thinking about for a week, and I'm making myself sick over it. Thank you!

Posts: 3 | From: detroit | Registered: Nov 2007  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Heather
Executive Director & Founder
Member # 3

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Do you mean receptive oral sex for you (cunnilingus)?

If you do, then yes, unprotected cunnilingus presents a high risk for contracting herpes via someone who has it orally. Too, plenty of people with herpes often don't have outbreaks, or have very long periods without them. As well, basing ideas about what is safe on the virginity status of someone's previous partners isn't sound: a person needs screenings to have any accurate idea of what their STI status is.

Ultimately, if you're going to have any kind of genital sex without barriers, it is very important for BOTH partners to have full STI screenings first -- two for those who have been sexually active before, over a six month period -- and use barriers until those screenings come back clear. If neither of you has had those screenings, it's past-time to have them done. Unfortunately, it's ideal with something like sores that you get seen WHEN you have the sores, so while your screening can still net results, it would have been best had you gone in when you had those sores.

Don't make yourself sick with worry: just take the basic care of yourself you need to when it comes to sex and safer sex, and start by both of you scheduling a screening, okay?

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

Posts: 68290 | From: An island near Seattle | Registered: May 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
rigby
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Member # 35955

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Thanks so much for the information; I have since gone for a screening and am now very anxiously awaiting the results. I never would have imagined that cunnilingus with someone who hasn't shown signs of herpes before could be so risky.
Posts: 3 | From: detroit | Registered: Nov 2007  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Heather
Executive Director & Founder
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You went for a screening in the last half hour? Are you quite sure? Generally, you have to schedule an appointment, and the intake alone tends to take more time than that.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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rigby
Neophyte
Member # 35955

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No, no, I went for a screening after the lesion, before I asked this question. The results can take up to 3 weeks, so I was hoping to gain some peace of mind in the meantime (I was praying you would say that contracting genital herpes via cunnilingus from someone who hasn't previously had an outbreak is very unlikely). Unfortunately, that doesn't seem to be the case at all.

But many thanks nonetheless. I really appreciate what you do on this website.

Posts: 3 | From: detroit | Registered: Nov 2007  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Heather
Executive Director & Founder
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Ah. [Smile] Always worth checking, since so many people often assume they've been screened when they haven't.

And yeah, afraid I can't say what you'd hoped. Again, ideally, you just don't want to have unprotected genital contact with a new partner before you've had a six month period of safer sex including monogamy, screenings and latex barrier use.

So, too, in the meantime, especially if your partner hasn't started his screenings, it'd be smartest to be sure you're using latex barriers with any genital sex. With cunnilingus, you can either buy dental demas, or make them by simply cutting a condom down the middle and opening it up.

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

Posts: 68290 | From: An island near Seattle | Registered: May 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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