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Then, while surfing the Web for information on the latest herpes medication, I stumbled across a web site for people with herpes.

There are dozens of web sites that provide online support and information for people with herpes.

Each time I had an outbreak, which for me consisted of a very small cluster of blisters that lasted two or three days, I'd pretend I had a yeast infection and say I couldn't have sex until it was gone.

By the time I finished college in 1994, the possibility of spreading the virus even when you didn't have an outbreak had become more widely accepted by health care providers.

Less than a week later, I found myself in excruciating pain.

It hurt to walk, and I couldn't use soap anywhere near my genital area.

As I sat in the college health center waiting to see a doctor, I watched my very short-lived social life drift by.The whole experience made me more comfortable with the fact that I have herpes and gave me the confidence to begin dating again.It was as if I had just re-entered mainstream society.He said he would know if he had been with someone who had herpes. In the end, instead of rejecting me, he chose to continue our relationship. But after we had sex, he would always wash himself like a doctor scrubbing down for an operation.I could hardly blame him, but it wreaked havoc on my self-esteem.

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