Occupation: Student, Mother, writer, "wanna-be" graphics designer
Year Infected: 1995
OB's per year: 12-15 (sometimes it seems almost continuous)
Type: More than likely HSV II. Need to confirm it.
Prodromes: headaches, stinging sensation in the area where the blisters will appear, fatigue, and recently, stabbing pains in my right ovary.
My story: It was October '95. I had just turned 18 a few months before and was finally given a little "freedom." I worked at a music store and became involved with a man I was working with. So on October 18th, we went to a hotel and in the process of taking my virginity, he gave me a little present in return. Wonderful exchange, don't ya think?
After I was diagnosed I told him what he had given me. He said he didn't know he had it, but events afterwards have put quite a bit of doubt in my mind. But I do respect the fact that he offered to pay all the medical bills associated with it. We lost touch about 3 years ago.
Medical: When I first noticed the blisters I went to the local chapter of planned parenthood. The "doctor" took culture samples from the blisters and told me it was probably herpes, but he needed the test to confirm it. As I left, the nurse told me that if they didn't call me within a couple weeks that the test was negative and I didn't need to worry.
A month went by and I was already on my second outbreak. But I never received a phone call. This time I went to my regular doctor who was able to confirm that it was herpes. But, as I have seen in most other cases I have read about, was given too small of a dose of medication and sent home, uninformed of what I was *really* dealing with, obviously not knowing how to handle this, and thinking it was the end of the world.
Method of Control: For the first month after I was diagnosed, none. After I was re-diagnosed by my primary physician I was given 2 200 mg capsules a day of Acyclovir during breakouts, and 1 capsule a day for suppression, (which I am finding out now is a completely ineffective dosage...no wonder I was still getting them once a month). During my pregnancy I took nothing, and shortly afterwards my insurance ran out, so at this point in time, I don't have any method of control. I am serious looking into dietary control.
Telling: A few months after the second diagnosis I became involved with my neighbor's son. I knew that before it involved in a sexual relationship I had to tell him. When I told he pretty much shrugged it off, acted like it was no big deal. After I got pregnant he decided he didn't wan the responsibility, I guess, and went around telling everyone we knew "I only ------ the ----- one time. There's no way that's my kid. And she didn't even tell me she had Herpes." Since we both lived in the same neighborhood things got pretty bad. By the time my daughter was a year old we had to move.
Since then I have not been in another relationship. Partly because I am afraid to tell again (and I couldn't live with not telling). And partly due to lack of time (kids take a LOT of time! *S*). I hope to someday find someone who can trust enough to tell.