A throwaway account u/herpesthrowaway2015 wrote that her best friend, a 20-something woman named Heidi contracted herpes after her long-time boyfriend cheated on her and caught it from someone else. Now, she’s been sleeping with men without telling them that she has herpes.
Here’s the story:
My best friend, Heidi, got out of a long term relationship (6 years) about 9 months ago. The break up is a long unneeded story, but the tl;dr of it is that he began starting to date someone right away while still sleeping with Heidi. After about 2 months of this, he came to Heidi and told her that his new woman had admitted to him that she had herpes and had never told him, and therefore he had transmitted it to Heidi. When she found out she was devastated. She spent a couple of weeks sobbing on the couch and housing bottles of wine and calling him drunk and screaming at him for ruining her life. She shared this information with me, but begged me to not tell any of our friends. At this point in time, she said her love life was over and would never be the same again.
Fast forward a few months and she is not feeling the same way. Two things:
- She was tested recently and came out positive.
- She has had two outbreaks that she has told me about.
But she is still engaging in casual, unprotected sex. And not telling these men that she has herpes, including while she is having an outbreak. (Maybe a little TMI but she apparently only has had them on her behind. She says this makes her “lucky” so she can hide them during sex.)
When I’ve brought it up to her she tells me that it’s really not that big of deal. That a good portion of the population already has herpes and just hasn’t had an outbreak. She says that her outbreaks are so easy to take care of and never really affect her life that much. I’ve never dealt with herpes, so I don’t ever know what to say to her. I just feel like it’s really messed up to not share ANY STD with someone you are going to be having sex with.
When I’ve brought up at least using condoms, she says that she always “intends” on using them but then the “heat of the moment” gets to her and she just forgets. I try to remind her how devastated she was when she first found out, to which she replies that she was just misinformed about how easy living with herpes is.
I feel like I should intervene here but I don’t know what the hell to do.
Well, what should Heidi’s friend do about this?