by Allie

I was lying in bed this morning and I got a phone call. It was my doctor; I thought they were calling about the prescription I hadn't picked up yet. I was wrong. I recently had some tests done at my gyno office.

The results were back, I have genital herpes. I'm 21 years old. I feel like it's over for me. I just started talking to this amazing guy and I'm going to have to break it off with him because even if he accepts it, even if we're safe, I don't want him to take that risk.

I just feel so angry; angry at the guy who gave it to me but mostly angry at myself. How do I get past this anger? That's really the only thing I want to know.


Dear Allie,

Anger is a usual reaction to a herpes diagnosis.

It is quite easy to be depressed and resentful at yourself or at the person who gave it to you. It can feel like you’re dating life is over.

But trust me, it’s not.

One in every 6 adults in the US has genital herpes but they still go on to date and live their lives to the fullest. You’ll soon find out that herpes is not that big of a deal; it’s just a silly virus that causes minor inconveniences from time to time.

Although anger is part of the healing process, the hardest but most important thing to do is to learn forgiveness. Somewhere in the back of our minds we think we need to blame ourselves or the person who gave herpes to us. We enter into a “victim phase” and carry around that anger like heavy baggage on our shoulders.

Life is too short for anger. Only by forgiving yourself or the other person can you truly find peace and happiness in life. Being angry cannot change the past, but you can change how you deal with life moving forward.

Don’t let herpes rob you of your capability to love and be loved by others. You are still the same wonderful person who has the whole future ahead.

If you need someone to talk to, perhaps joining a herpes support group can help. Sharing your experiences does facilitate in releasing those pent up emotions. Only by learning to forgive and let go can you truly heal from the inside.

Feel better soon.



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Aug 21, 2013
Just breathe.
by: Anonymous

I am also 21, and I have HSV1. I was so mad, angry, upset, and disappointed in myself. I didn't know what I was going to do, or how I was going to tell my boyfriend. What helped me the most was his acceptance of it. Also, the more research I did I realized it can happen to anyone. It's extremely common because too many people have it and don't realize it. Maybe that guy didn't know.

Forgive him and most importantly forgive yourself. You're the same person, and if he accepts it then don't break it off with him. Practice safe sex, don't have sex during outbreaks, and take the antivirals. You're life isn't over. It's just begun. Getting herpes made me realize how serious sex is.

Before it was just a thing people did. No commitment or emotion needed. Now I look at it as something more than just physical, like it always should have been. Some days are still hard for me. (I've been diagnosed since May, and only a few days after my 21st bday...happy bday to me right?) you'll get through it. I am. This website has also helped me to see how many people are in our situation and still living their lives.

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