I had always insisted on using condoms, which can reduce the risk of transmission.
The nurse who examined me revealed that she had herpes and said it was no big deal.
When I confronted my friend about the situation, I asked if he knew that he had herpes. It was hard enough to face the fact that we'd had sex, or tried to, and it was much harder to cope with the fact that I had caught an incurable sexually transmitted disease.
In 1989, when I got herpes, the nurse told me I couldn't transmit the virus unless I was having an outbreak.
I met dozens of electronic pen pals and eventually went on several dates.
It was a relief not to worry about when to bring up my medical history, and to bond with a guy over asymptomatic shedding instead of having to explain it.