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Readers Respond: How Do You Tell Someone You Have Herpes?

Responses: 33


Updated November 02, 2009

Telling someone you love or are interested in that you have herpes can be very embarrassing. If you've ever had to tell someone you have herpes, how did you do it? Did it go well? What would you do differently if you could?

Afraid to date again

I got herpes from someone I have been in a relationship with for two years. When I was diagnosed he said he didn't know he had it but I am not sure I believe him. We aren't doing very well right now and I don't see us remaining together. One of my main fears right now is the fear of dating again with herpes. Some of the comments here have helped ease my mind. I hope my partner and I can work out our problems but if not finding someone that is accepting of my condition seems hopeless.
—Guest Lady


I have never contracted herpes...yet but I know a friend who has it and I feel bad for him. He was dating this girl for a month and when she finally tried to sleep with him he told her he had it and she started sreaming at him and ran out of the room. I happen to be friends with this girl and she is a very aggressive person in general so it's probably a good thing the relationship ended before it got too serious. For those of you out there that have herpes don't beat yourself up too much about it. If I found my soul mate I would be more than willing to sleep with them, regardless of weather or not they had herpes. If the person runs off after you tell them then maybe it just wasn't meant to be. :)
—Guest Chridine

Its a life sentence

I got diagnosed 6 months ago, after a really bad first outburst. I told my boyfriend immediately, gave him the literature and explained what I understood. He was very supportive and understanding. After all, it could have been him that gave it to me. I think the thing to remember is to be honest and respect the person you are sleeping with. Its then up to them to make a decision about how much it affects them. The other thing to tell yourself is that you weren't born with it, and someone gave it to you, more than likely, unknowingly. It doesn't make you a bad person. It has affected our sex life, dramatically, and who knows what the future holds, in that department. I can't change it, so I try not to dwell too hard on it. Life is too short, and there are far worse things that could happen.
—Guest 888


I currently have a boyfriend that recently found out but as far as telling friends..no way. that's a personal situation to deal with. i tld my mom and a trusted older male friend but that is hard to swallow especially when you r so confident in being ok. getting your yearly, and paps done. i'm still trying to deal wit this. i feel punished,
—Guest caramel

Just be upfront

I was recently diagnosed and told my boyfriend the same day. I love him very much and was expecting the worst - that he'd break up with me. But he's been so supportive and loving and patient with me. Bottom line is just be honest. Yes it's scary thinking that the one you love will leave you, but then what kind of person is he if he that's how he reacts?
—Guest working it out

be truthful

My story starts off awful. I was diagnosed in 2007 a couple of days before thanksgiving. Ill never forget. I thought I was gonna die. I was sick for a couple of days. Did not date anyone for a year bc I felt nasty. I got this from a guy I had been dating for about 8mths. Well I met and married my husband and never told him. I felt awful but was so afraid he would leave me or hell maybe kill me. That's how I felt when I discovered it. I deceived my husband for almost two years when he found out. He was livid and angry. Said he forgave me but didn't. Our marriage change understandly. After being seperated for five mths he has truly forgiven me and I have forgiven myself. We are moving on with our marriage and its stronger. I thank God but pls be up front and honest with your partner. A lot of ppl have this virus and have no clue. Be blessed
—Guest guest2

A little something about telling someone

Im 20 as of now. I got genital herpes at the age of 17 from an exboyfriend during oral sex. But.. the reason I wanted to write something is because.. I know how difficult it is to tell someone you have herpes. Ive told my family, a few close friends, and of course, everyone ive ever been sexually involoved with since then. It is the hardest thing that Ive personally ever had to do, u feel ashamed almost, but don't! Because its not as if you wanted this.. I know I didnt. I feel that, if the person your involved with cares enough about you.. it doesnt matter. And thats what I've come to understand. I've had 3 different partners since then, and all of them were very understanding. Honenstly. The right thing to do is to tell them, no matter how hard it is. Ive been there. You worry about they're reaction. But if they cant love you for who you are and what you may or may not have, they arent worth crying over! So keep your head up!!Everything WILL be okay in the end!!
—Guest Sami

at midlife

I contacted herpes at about age 40. I have always been honest with men. I explain prior to sex that I have the virus and how I try to be safe. I only share this info when we are actually seriously considering sex. I am recently in a committed relationship. We are really careful (though we don't use condoms). We are also totally honest. So far, no man has ever rejected me due to this issue. In fact, my partners have expressed anger about the man who gave me this condition! It is a crummy thing to have but life goes on and there is still joy in life.
—Guest Gayle


You just have to tell them flat out, guess what I have "HERPES", do you still want me and leave the rest to them, it's their choice but you comtinue to live your life.
—Guest Lady Kay


I had my first outbreak 4 months into our relationship (we had been intimate for approximately 3 months at the time). I didnt know what to do. We had both fallen in love with eachother and told one another how we felt,then this happened. We both got tested to be sure. I was the only one who tested positive so I had gotten the virus from someone else prior. My boyfriend had never been tested before with other partners and I had been tested but not prior to him and I dating, after my ex and I split.I cried in his arms for a couple of hours that night, he always says our relationship is more than sex and it is. He's very understanding and would do anything for me. We've been living together for a year now and we do have unprotected sex and I rarely have any outbreaks.I am on Valtrex when needed. Be honest with your partner. Remember that its not only your life that has changed.
—Guest canada21

This couldnt happen to me

I just recently found out i have herpes, I was hysterical. I'm only nineteen and this is gonna be with me for the rest of my life. I dont deserve this but then again no one does, I feel like no one will ever love me, im scared becuase thats all i was really lookin for. Herpes is something you joke about with friends not something you get. I've been thinking about this every moment for the last couple of days, i cant go back only forward. At the end of the day i'll find out who really cares about me and who never really did. Herpes changed my health, not me.
—Guest M


My ex husband gave me herpes after sleeping around. I got the divorce but Im stuck with this infection. I havent dated anyone for 5 years because of this. I recently dated a guy I like and yes we had sex but I didnt tell him (we used a condom) now I know I have to tell him and I just dont know how to do this. I feel such a liar and wouldnt want someone to do the same to me. Im having sleepless nights over it. BTW I am permanently on Valtrex and tend not to get outbreaks


i just found out yesterday. I've been crying since then because me & my new partner are very much in love. I just cant find the right time or the right way to tell him. I am afraid he will leave do to how much he is into his health. I'm afraid of his reaction. I almost feel like he would kill me, But that could just be because i am still in shock & am assuming that this is a bigger deal than I think. So confused...
—Guest lola


I got herpes wen i was in high school, i was in a relationship wit a older man and i was prego:( i knew he was the only one i was wit at the moment i was devestated and cryd day and night. Wen i told him he jus sat der and didnt say nuthn wit a dumb look on his face:(( so i knew he was the one gave it to me so he told me he was der for me untill he start telln people in my town lik girls and other guy i got the virus and remindn you he's my baby father i was so upset and thngs havent been the same for me since:((tear) and its been four years. All they do is talk about me now:((( gud luck hope urs so better.
—Guest "MnS"


I just went to the doctor today adn found out i have genital herpes. im so scared to tell anyone, my fam my fiance. I dated this other guy for about 3 months after my current fiance and i had broke up for a while. I Have beein with my current fiance for 8 years now besides whne we were boke up... now i cant come to tell him and its soo hard i keep cryin when i see him cuz i dont want him to think im discusting and not love me afterwards. Idk what to do or how to tell him i kno he loves me with all his heart but would he still if i told him? I feel ashamed of myself i wont even get to close cuz i keep crying. I need advice :'(
—Guest guest W

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