Wednesday, October 22, 2014
Friday, November 06, 2009 confused and sorry, Community Member, asks

Q: Had unprotected sex with a girl who has herpes.

I had unprotected sex with a girl who has herpes. She didn't tell me at the time. It's been about three weeks now and no symptoms. I don't know if she was having an outbreak at the time. What are the chances of me having herpes?

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Answers (1)
rise_above, Community Member
11/ 6/09 10:19am

Hey man.  Sorry to hear about your situation.  My first reaction is to call the girl a criminal for not telling you first, but as someone that knows what it's like to be rejected because of having genital herpes, I can understand why she'd be scared.  Still, it was a pretty weak move.


Anyway, sorry to get off topic.  Honestly, there's a 50/50 chance that you have it.  I know that's not news to you, but based on the scenario, those are your best odds.  It looks like you may not have caught it just because you haven't had any symptoms yet, and it's been almost a month.  According to most of the literature I've read, primary outbreaks (outbreaks that happen in brand spanking new cases of herpes) may happen within 4-7 days, and are normally pretty noticeable.  Apparently if it's your first outbreak, you can even get flu-like symptoms in addition to the blisters.


HOWEVER, let me re-type what I just wrote, but with a different emphasis:  "Primary outbreaks MAY happen within 4-7 days, and are NORMALLY pretty noticeable."  The flipside to that coin is that you may never have symptoms or outbreaks (noticeable ones, at least) OR your outbreak may just be delayed.  You may still have the virus.


My advice to you is to invest in a blood test to know for sure.  There's tons of anonymous online testing options.  Make SURE you get tested for HSV-1 AND HSV-2, and that you get the test that is specific for your blood type.  You may spend between $100 and $200, but isn't that a small price to pay for your peace of mind?  You may be able to get it done for free or at a reduced cost if there's a clinic near you.  DO NOT ASSUME THAT YOU DON'T HAVE IT.  I never had an outbreak or symptoms, yet I got a blood test done for shingles and found out I had genital herpes.  You don't want to unwittingly spread it if you have it.

confused and sorry, Community Member
11/ 8/09 6:56pm

Thank you very much for your response. I'm getting the blood test done tomorrow. I'm really worried and hoping for the best. I've heard that I won't really have a good idea of if I have it or not until I have an outbreak or if the blood tests show up negative after six months.


Do you mind if I ask how long it took until you had your first outbreak (if at all)?


Thanks again.

rise_above, Community Member
11/11/09 4:42pm

It's really tough to say... originally, I thought I never had an outbreak.  I know that I never had any sores on my junk.  But the more I read, I found out that sometimes outbreaks can be very, very minor, to where you may not have noticed them.  I also learned that an outbreak doesn't HAVE to happen on your penis... you can also get them on your butt, thighs, and any other area that boxer shorts cover (the pubic area).  So now I'm convinced I probably did have a minor outbreak at some point, but wrote it off as a case of itchy crotch or something.  At any rate, I never saw any blisters or had any pain.


Anyway, I'm hoping for the best regarding your results, too.  But remember, even if you have it, it's not so bad.  Sure, it's a pain in the ass, but once you get past your initial depression from the diagnosis, you get back to normal.  It hasn't even slowed down my sex life at all.  I've just had to get used to wearing a condom all the time, and a quick self-inspection before I get busy.  Girls will be more understanding than you think, especially if you're honest with them and tell them everything they want to know about the virus.  Anyway, good luck.

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By confused and sorry, Community Member— Last Modified: 10/24/13, First Published: 11/06/09