Can I Get Married If I Have Herpes?
Why we hold ourselves back in love with a herpes diagnosis
Over the years of working on Life With Herpes I’ve spoken to people who’ve not gotten married because they have herpes. I’ve also spoken to people who haven’t had children because they have herpes but that’s another blog. It makes me really sad when I hear this or read this.
I know when I was first diagnosed I believe that I had to settle for who I was with because he had herpes, (my gifter) and that nobody would want me or find me desirable because of having herpes.
Does this sound familiar?
This feeling is so common and I’d bet that everyone who gets diagnosed with genital herpes feels this way at one time or another. The truth is that having herpes plays no role in who you fall in love with, with who falls in love with you and if and when you want to get married.
I get it, it’s the fear of rejection or the fear of telling someone that you have herpes that keeps you from going out there and dating. The thing is that we all have something that we have to disclose or tell our partner when we start dating. Maybe it’s that you have a ton of debt and it will take you 20 years to pay it off, maybe it’s PTSD, maybe its that you want your mom to live with you. The point is we all have something or a secret we have to tell the person we’re dating.
Having herpes shouldn't be this end all be all deal breaker. Yes, in some cases the disclosure won’t go well and the person will run for the hills but this person really isn’t worth your time. If they can’t get over you having herpes then you have to imagine that they would have a hard time with other things that life will bring you. I can think of plenty of times I dated guys before having herpes and they just stopped calling or they broke up with me for one reason or another. And it had nothing to do with herpes. The point I’m making is maybe someone ends a relationship with you because you have herpes but there could have been a million of other reasons why they weren't the right one for you.
The other thing that’s important to bring up is that you don’t have to date or find someone with herpes. For some people it’s really important to find someone that has herpes too. Usually it has to do with disclosure or not wanting to be responsible for passing herpes to their partner. And I totally get that and we all have our personal preferences when it comes to a partner. If this is important to you then I suggest seeking out some of the dating sites that are specific to herpes. I have a blog on this and you can read more here.
I’ll talk about my marriage and having herpes. Basically it’s a non issue. My husband loves me for me and doesn’t care that I have an STD. He knows that I do want I can to prevent transmission to him but at the end of the day it doesn’t stop us from having a normal sex life or a normal life for that matter.
Here’s the deal; yes, I get outbreaks, yes, theres times when we can’t have sex and yes, there’s times when we’ve had sex and then I’ve freaked out because later on that day I’ve gotten an outbreak and I freak out thinking I’ve given it to him. But there’s other times we can’t have sex because I’m on my period and don’t feel like it or one of us has a cold. So really putting the pressure on yourself to feel like you cant have sex, get married and live a normal life is completely unnecessary. Not only is it necessary but you’re allowing the stigma to run your life.
Ok so I know it’s one thing to hear it from me, the person with herpes, and it’s another to hear it from someone who doesn’t and is dating or married to someone with herpes. So this is why I did a podcast interview with my husband. My husband, Bill, talks about what it’s like to date someone with herpes and then of course be married to someone with herpes. He gives his real answers and opinion. So if you want to hear more from the other side then I suggest you check out the podcast interview.
And of course if you want to hear more from Bill about what it’s like to be married to someone with herpes and how it impacts his life he’ll be speaking at our upcoming live retreat. Book Your Seat
Telling your partner is seriously one of the hardest things to do and it is what holds us back from dating. So...I put t gether a toolkit that walks you through how to disclose to your partner that you have herpes. It’s super helpful and will give you step-by-step tips and tools to get out there and tell your crush you have herpes. Go here to get your Tell Your Partner Toolkit