The girl I’m dating told me she had herpes today

So much of this is not true, and as someone with gHSV1, that upsets me because it makes it promotes stigma. Some of the information itself is okay, but the way you’ve framed it makes it seem like the likelihood of him contracting genital HSV1 from this girl is high, which could not be further from the truth. Let me tell you about it and I hope OP reads this:

First, it’s important to restate that 80% of people with gHSV1 or gHSV2 will never show symptoms, which you got correct.

HSV1 is the virus that usually causes oral herpes. HSV2 is the virus that usually causes genital herpes. HSV1 can live below the belt, but it doesn’t like to. HSV2 can live above the belt, but it doesn’t like to.

This is really important when we’re talking about asymptomatic shedding. Asymptomatic shedding is fancy terminology for when you’re contagious without having visible sores.

On average, gHSV2 sheds 98% of the time, or 357/365 days per year.

On average, gHSV1 sheds only 2% of the time, or 7/365 days per year. That is a DRAMATIC difference. And get this: After just 2 years of being infected with gHSV1, the average shedding decreases to just 1.2% of days. That’s like 4 DAYS out of an entire year.

There’s really only one credible source for herpes information that is not outdated, and that’s the University of Washington. It’s like the Mecca of herpes research.

Genital-genital transmission of HSV2 is super common which is why 25% of sexually active adults have it.

However, researches at the University of Washington have found genital-genital transmission of HSV1 so exceedingly rare, that most have never seen a case of it. The primary way HSV1 is spread is through oral-genital contact.

In other words, you know those cold sores so many people get? That nobody discloses about? Yeah, you have a much better chance of catching gHSV1 from someone who gets cold sores on their mouth than from someone who has gHSV1.

Oh and get this- let’s say OP moves on to another woman because he doesn’t want to catch the herpes (that he probably already has) from this one.

Let’s say his new lady got tested for all the STDs and she’s negative for HSV1 and HSV2. She’s “clean” right? Guess what? You’re still not safe.

For as long as i’ve had gHSV1 I have never had a single positive blood test. Every time I’m tested, it comes back negative even though I still have it.

This is because the HSV1 antibodies test is only 70% accurate (compared to the western blot). That means 3/10 people with HSV1 will always have false negative serology.

The HSV2 antibodies test is way more accurate at 92% accuracy, meaning it only yields 8 false negative results for every 100 tests.

Why is HSV testing so shitty? Because the virus is literally so harmless that it’s the extremely low priority for researchers.

So what are you going to do? Make every potential partner get a Western Blot? ($400 and only 1 lab in the nation does it which is at University of Washington)

Bottom line is that if you want to avoid herpes, you might as well just join the convent, and remember not to kiss or drink after anyone.

/r/relationship_advice Thread Parent