There is always a stigma that comes with certain diseases. Herpes is no different. This has led to the notion that dating someone with herpes is a no-no.
But that’s exactly what it is; a notion. It is the wrong perception of reality. Before one had herpes, wasn’t he “datable”? Those same qualities that made one datable before the disease still exist after. Herpes doesn’t make one less desirable. It is but an adversity. Yet it is through adversity that one learns the truth about those closest to him.
A man seeking a love interest will pursue her for as long as he needs to. However, when he realizes that she keeps the deep dark secret, he may want to pull away from her. But what if he doesn’t? What if the connection spans deeper than what the stigma allows?
For the girl with herpes, she will probably feel guilty on the first date, knowing she is keeping something this big from him. She won’t want to say it because of the kind of judgment she might get. She would feel much like a leper did those very many generations ago. This begs the question: should she come clean?
Probably not right away, as one never really knows a person on the first date. She would be scared and insecure about her condition. She would want the man to know that it is really not as bad as society makes it out to be. In fact, the virus could be dormant and remain that way for years before coming out. She takes medication to suppress the virus, so it would never really look like she has it.
That then brings us to the question: when would herpes actually be a factor in their love life outside of sex?
STD dating is not impossible. The only thing that would keep it from happening is the stigma generated in society. Someone struggling with herpes should not be afraid to go out and look for love. Sex is hardly the most important aspect of a relationship, so why should it be the deciding factor.
Condoms do help, but only so much. Herpes can be spread even with a condom on but there is a much lower risk.
So let’s go back to our first or even second date scenario. The girl has developed a liking for the boy and vice versa. If this relationship looks like going anywhere, the girl would probably be thinking of breaking the news to him soon. Because, with a closer emotional bond comes the want to kiss. And slowly, kissing leads to fondling and cuddling, building up the intimacy. Of course there is no rule stating these things have to happen so soon, but if they do, the girl will probably want to think of saying something.
Kissing is safe. The same goes for cuddling. But the more intimate they get, the higher the risk.
So what happens once the girl opens up to the boy? Obviously, he will not be thrilled about the news. The unfortunate fact about human-nature is that rejection will most likely happen. But this girl with a beautiful smile and great personality, who just so happens to have herpes, cannot give up. Love is blind, as they say. Go dating someone with herpes, live your wonderful life.