Name: FlyingOrca
Age: 31
Sex: M

Occupation: Developmental service worker (with adults with mental disabilities), musician, writer (mostly songs and poetry), WWWeb design

Year infected: 1988 (diagnosed around 1991)

Type: Everything I've read tells me II; I'm currently confirming that for Molly's benefit.

Prodromes: Very recognizable pain in right buttock/leg - I've heard it called both burning and itching, but it's neither for me, just a general soreness (about like a pinch?). This appears a few days before an OB and might fade a day before the lesions become detectable.

Method of control: Since I was married when first diagnosed, and my wife had the same thing, controlling outbreaks was never much of an issue... and we were both fortunate, from what I've read here, in that ours were relatively mild. Since becoming single again, I've used no drugs, but my diet and habits in general have improved, and I'm much happier and feeling almost no stress. This may be why my OBs have dropped off. Now I have the prospect of a life-long relationship with another member of this Super Special Club, so - with my OBs comparatively rare and mild - it likely won't be an issue. As an aside, I've noticed that infection with another virus (flu and colds are an occupational hazard) will occasionally set off an OB, but stress is the real killer. Interestingly, an interest of mine which definitely gets the immune system worked up - tattoos - seem to have no effect on OBs.

Status: Divorced, four children (one natural son and three stepsons), none live-in

OBs per year: 2-6, roughly

My Story: Given the "gift" in parting by my third partner, I didn't realize I had it (duhhhh) until after I'd passed it on to my next partner, to whom I was married... ouch! Divorced years later for unrelated reasons, two partners since (one with, one without, if
anyone's counting). Currently involved (and plan to be forever)! with a thoroughly delightful woman I met through MPwH.

Medical: Culture of active lesion, but I already knew I had it, since my (ex)wife had been diagnosed by that time. Went through the formality of diagnosis in order to get involved in drug studies, mostly Acyclovir and Famcyclovir trials.

Other: Outbreaks tend to be mild (compared to what I've heard described), for which I'm thankful. Basically, when I was married, neither of us paid the occasional outbreak much attention, and regarded it as something relatively minor. I have absolutely no desire to pass this thing on, though, so I'm very happy to be involved with someone who already has it. We do have to figure out if it's the same version, but I'd gladly accept an "upgrade" (Herpes 2.0, or whatever) as the price of staying with this wonderful new love... :-) Thank you, MPwH!>

Telling: I know where I got it, and I later found out that she knew (or at least suspected) that she had it, so I didn't have to tell her. I've only once had to deal with telling a potential partner. I sat her down and told her straight out, over tea, once it looked like things might progress to the point of physical intimacy. She took it well, read all the information I had, did some research, and decided to go ahead with things. Needless to say, I was quite pleased that it went so well! And, I am equally pleased to report, she did not become infected, to the best of my knowledge and hers.