FWIW, I make sure my partner has the following info before sex:

1. I have herpes. Its a skin affliction arising from the hsv virus which lives in your nerves. For me it is like cold sores on my genitals. Cold sores are also herpes. Hsv-1, hsv-2 discussion...go over the differences and similarities.

2. It is spread from skin to skin contact. Its most contageous during outbreaks and prodrome, but it is also possible to transmit the virus through assymptomatic shedding. (which I would not be aware of).

3. I have a very mild case. I actually had it 3 - 5 years without knowing it due to lack of, or extreme mildness of symptoms. This is good because it probably means I shed assymptomatically, less than most sufferers. Still, if you have sex with me for a long period of time, there is a significant chance of catching it, even if I have no symptoms.

4. My "hot" spot is not covered by a condom. This is bad. A condom therefore will not help much to prevent transmission.

5. There is no cure. There are anti-viral medications.

6. If I give it to you, your symptoms may not be as mild as mine. In fact, they may be a nightmare. If they are mild, the emotional aspects of having herpes, can really suck because of the stigma. It is also possible to get it in the eye.

7. I state my belief that a strong immune system is her best defense to the small amounts of virus she may be exposed to.

8. Tell her she should be tested anyway, because there is a 1 in 4 chance she already has it. I tell her 70% of those infected don't know.

If she decides she wants to have sex, I :

1. Smile.

2. Ask her if she knows that she is at risk for all the above. I make sure she understands it. I kinda quiz her while repeating info.

3. I tell her about all warning signs and symptoms, and tell her about Famvir/Valtrex EARLY treatment.

4. Make her sign in triplicate, an acknowledgement indicating disclosure of above. I give her one copy for her records. Just kidding. ( I keep all copies.) Yes, I'm kidding.

5.. I get busy. :)

...Ocean

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