It was October 11th, 2014. It was an unusually warm day for being in October and it was 3 days after I proposed to my girlfriend. She asked if she could just come over really quick because there was something I needed to know before we got married. I had so much swarming through my mind. Was she pregnant? Was she going to confess to an affair? Maybe she was going to reveal that she was born a man?! (I watch too much Jerry Springer). She sat me down and said, “Jake I love you so much but I need you to know this”. She gulped really hard and I felt her pain as she opened her mouth. I don’t even remember seeing her say it I just remember hearing her say “I have herpes. My last boyfriend gave it to me .”
WHAT THE FUDGE?!
So many thoughts came into my head “You whore!” “That’s what you get for not following God’s law!” but I wanted to be as Christian about it as I could so I just feigned a smile and said “it’s okay honey still I love you” and gave her the fakest hug I’ve ever given her it was like she was untouchable. I wanted to take a shower after hugging her. “Well I have a lot of work to do around here,” I told her. She didn’t speak. She just got up and left and I was glad she did.
I went through so many emotions that night. First was anger that she didn’t tell me, then fear for her and my safety. I called her and asked what happened. She said that she was intimate with her ex-boyfriend before she began to take Christ seriously in her life. Then she noticed some sores in her private area so she got tested and came back positive for genital herpes.
We talked about what we were going to do. I didn’t want to judge her since frankly she didn’t do anything I didn’t do. She just got caught with her hand in the cookie jar. We went over options and nowadays you can live with herpes without having a single outbreak. She said she was taking Zovirax but it made her feel so nauseated. We began to do some research into natural remedies. We found one that worked really great. It’s from the Lost Book of Remedies. She had much better results and so far as I know has only had one outbreak.
I did my research and found out a few things.
- Herpes is incurable
- A person may be contagious even if they don’t have an outbreak
- The virus can be transmitted even if you use a condom
- With medication, the virus can be suppressed
Should a Christian be willing to date someone with Herpes?
When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.”John 8:7
When I thought about whether or not to stay with my girlfriend I just kept thinking of that verse. The truth is she didn’t do anything I hadn’t done. She just got caught with her hand in the cookie jar. I decided to stay although I admit after intimacy I would scrub like a doctor about to go into surgery at first.
I’m not going to tell anyone else what they should do. That’s something you need to decide through prayer and meditation. I would start by asking yourself ‘what would Jesus do?”.
Christian Dating With Herpes
Sadly Christians can be some judgmental folks even though judging others is explicitly forbidden in our faith. That means a Christian with herpes trying to date may face some additional challenges. The first step is to accept that you are who you are and that you’re not ‘unclean’ or any less than because of this condition. You may have herpes but that doesn’t mean herpes has to have you.
Remember, we are all sinners and no one has the right to look down on you for your condition. If you have herpes the biggest issue in dating is probably when to reveal your condition. I honestly don’t think you’re obligated to reveal your condition right away. I say let the person get to know you and see you as a perfectly normal human being. Your moral obligation to disclose only kicks in once physical intimacy starts to enter the picture.
To be honest, looking back, I’m glad my wife waited to tell me about her condition. If she had told me from the jump I may have let my ignorance blind me into losing the greatest woman in the world!
A word of caution on STD specific dating sites
Many Christians living with herpes may be tempted to sign up for a dating site specifically for those with STDs. The logic makes sense. They do the work for you of having to have that uncomfortable conversation with your new partner. But here’s a word of caution. Those sites may not be as private as you think.
A user on positivesingles.com, a site for those living with HIV, discovered his profile (which included his status) had been shared on other dating websites such as MeetBlackPOZ, Herpesinmouth, and ChristianSafeHaven. The thing was he wasn’t even HIV positive, Black, or Christian!
In addition on the terms of service page of positivesingles.com state that they can share your information for profit without having to inform you. One user of positivesingles complained of being bombarded with messages from homosexual men despite the fact that he clearly indicated on his profile that he was stright.
The bigger question is why limit yourself to people with herpes. That’s a rather small dating pool if you ask me. First and foremost the most important aspect a Christian should be looking for in a partner is their faith. That’s the only dating condition given to us in the WORD.
Love conquers all
Just remember the right partner will understand you and you don’t need to feel less than because of your condition. Jesus loves you and so will the right guy or girl.