It's Not What You Think

by Mercedes

Stay Positive!

Stay Positive!

I was diagnosed with herpes three days ago. I'm currently going through my first outbreak and just like everyone says, it's the most painful experience to go through. I've gotten tattoos that hurt less and although I've never given birth, women have written about the pain of herpes being worse than giving birth and I can honestly believe that.

However, the truth is that the physical pain is not the hardest thing to deal with. As read in anyone else's inspiring story, the scariest and most devastating aspect of herpes is telling a loved one. What will they say? How can they love me after they realize what I am now?

I've known pretty well about herpes since I was old enough. My mother was diagnosed and has told me about it and educated me since. Well, go figure I followed in her foot steps and contacted it too. When I first noticed something "funny" going on down there I told my mom first. I gave her a list of symptoms and even had her inspect and give her opinion since I was so terrified. I was swollen and red among other things but no blisters. She was positive it wasn't herpes. I was relieved to hear that so I confidently scheduled a check up. My boyfriend decided to go with me for moral support. I had somewhat told him of my symptoms, mostly just about the swollen bumps. He wasn't worried at all because he, just like I believed, was clean and so was I.

Walking out of that doctors office was the most terrifying experience. The first person to ask me about my result would be the last person I want to tell. I was silent. We walked to the car and after about the eighth time of asking I finally spit out, "I have herpes." I started bawling and immediately drove to Walmart to get my prescription filled. THE WHOLE WAY THERE MY BOYFRIEND DIDN'T SAY ONE WORD. I was in tears and he wouldn't even console me.

My mind was racing with everything but my main worry was what he was thinking.

Once we got there we had to wait for my pills and sat down at McDonald's. I was so scared to finally hear what he was going to say. When he finally opened his mouth he looked at me and said, "I can't believe we have herpes."

WE. He said the word "we." I looked at him and asked how he knew he had it and he said: "I have to have it too, right? We've been together for 6 months and have only had sex with each other. Where else would you get it from?". From there he continued to express how sorry he was for giving it to me and swearing up and down that he didn't know he was infected. Before I knew it I was consoling him.

Our conversation got nothing but better from there. He expressed how much he loves me and wants to marry me someday. That, if I have to deal with this he is dealing with it, too. After all we talked about I've felt even closer to him than ever before and certainly more loved. Not only did he supported me, he empathized with me, and has been catering to me since.

All I can say to the people reading this is- don't sweat it. You are a beautiful, amazing person and those people who love you, will love you for you. Herpes doesn't make us a different person. It doesn't suddenly lessen the awesome people we are once we contract it. It's just another lemon that life throws at us and as far as I'm concerned, life is too short to be worrying about life's lemons or the people who make us feel worse because of those lemons. I'm so thankful for my boy being here but even if he hadn't been, I still have my wonderful mother making up warm bathes for me.

Like I said, the people that matter love you for the awesome you. :)

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