Woman A: This is an unpopular opinion, but generally, I don't tell casual sex partners.
Despite wishing there was more open dialogue about STIs and wanting people to realize how common it is to have herpes, I guess I'm not ready to divulge that piece of personal information.
It's not that I'm ashamed about it now, but I am not comfortable with the idea of people knowing that about me? My mom helped me a lot when I was first diagnosed, because I was freaking out and didn't know who to confide in.
Got the all-clear on the virus in late 2013, but have still had bad pap results.
Woman C: I found out I'd had a bad Pap test and was positive for HPV in June 2011.
That was the first moment I thought that I might have a normal life. Firstly, it was painful and gross, and then I was worried about the implications it'd have on my then-relationship and potential future relationships. And I felt incredibly stupid and ashamed, like I could have avoided it if I had just been more careful and, oh, I dunno, refused oral sex from my then-boyfriend whenever he had even the slightest hint of a cold sore. I've always practiced safe sex, so it felt really unfair, aside from anything else.