Penelope James, Patient Expert

Penelope wrote for HealthCentral as a patient expert for Sexual Health.

Herpes and Telling Your Family

As we all know, talking about having herpes is often harder than actually living with the virus. One of the most common questions that come up on this site is how to effectively tell one’s partners that he/she has herpes. However, we rarely discuss t...
Penelope James

Telling Your Partner, Gender and Acceptance

Maybe I’m picky or maybe I’m hard to be in a relationship with, but for whatever reason lately I seem to change partners about as often as I change my Facebook status. Due to the moderately high turnover, and my resolution to always inform my partner...
Penelope James

Shaving, Waxing and STDs

I’ve recently discovered a huge obsession with pubic hair in today’s world, or at least in the metropolitan city in which I live.
Penelope James

Giving Herpes a Hand

Typically, herpes are passed though genitals or mouths, but can it also be passed from hand to hand?
Penelope James

Keep a Positive Attitude

If you’ve been diagnosed with herpes you’re likely thinking your love life is over—but it’s not. 7 reasons to stay positive!
Penelope James

Taking Responsibility for Your Sex Life

Last week I had a refreshing conversation about sex and responsibility with a former lover. I was telling him how my attitude has recently changed, and that I will only engage in sexual relations with someone who knows I have herpes. Believe it or no...
Penelope James

Genital Herpes Rumors

A simple mouth sore can start rumors about genital herpes—but let’s clear some things up before that rumor spreads.
Penelope James

Herpes and a Good Night's Sleep

As someone who frequently struggles with keeping herpes under control, I’m constantly looking for what triggers my outbreaks. I started to cut down on caffeine after an unusually painful situation involving a double cappuccino last year. (I have now ...
Penelope James

Herpes and Itchy Skin

Do you ever get the sensation of itching all over your body? I had it so bad last week that I could barely sleep.
Penelope James